A Chromebit turns a display with an HDMI port into a desktop variant of the Chromebook laptop, which runs Google‘s Chrome OS operating system. Chrome OS primarily supports a single application, a browser, thereby relying heavily on an Internet connection for software functionality and data storage. The first Chromebits are manufactured by ASUS and are expected to ship in mid-2015.
Chromebits have a superficial resemblance to the Chromecast, another Google device. But whereas the Chromecast is designed to display video and still images on a television or other large-screen display, the Chromebit is a self-contained personal computer. The device will compete against the Intel Compute Stick, which offers similar plug-in functionality using two other operating systems, Windows 8.1 and Linux.
Internally, the first Chromebit resembles a standard Chromebook laptop. The device features 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0, as well as a USB 2.0 port at one end. The other end swivels, enabling it to fit into a variety of HDMI slots.
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