Having joined the Chromebook party earlier this year with the first Chromebook to feature a 13-inch HD display, Toshiba has followed it up with its Chromebook 2. On display it IFA, Toshiba's second-generation Chromebook will come in two versions that continue the 13-inch display tradition and bring branded audio to Chromebooks with speakers tuned by Skullcandy.
Toshiba's Chromebook 2 will be powered by the latest Intel Celeron processors and be offered with 2 or 4 GB of RAM. It will also come with 802.11 ac Wi-Fi, HD webcam, two USB ports (one USB 3.0 and the other USB 2.0), an SD card slot and HDMI output. A fanless design also helps noise down.
The Skullcandy logo below the keyboard indicates expert tuning of the stereo speakers, which are now front-facing, while dual-array microphones are also on board for video chats. There's also 16 GB of onboard storage, which is supplemented by a two-year subscription providing 100 GB via Google Drive included in the purchase price.
While the entry model will retain a 13.3-inch standard HD display like Toshiba's initial Chromebook offering, the premium model steps things up with a Full HD (1920 x 1080) display using in-plane switching (IPS) technology. This provides wider viewing angles than LED backlit displays and benefits from improved color reproduction and accuracy.
Toshiba has also given its latest Chromebook a cosmetic nip and tuck, reducing the weight by nearly 0.5 lb (230 g) and reducing the height of the device to around 0.75-in (19 mm). Toshiba quotes battery life of up to 11.5 hours for the entry model, with the extra pixels helping cut times to 11.5 hours for the premium model.
Toshiba's Chromebook 2 devices will range from US$249.99 to $329.99 and feature a silver textured resin lid. Charcoal, Aqua and Rose color cases will also be offered as optional extras when the devices hit the US from October 5.
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