Only 30,000 Chromebooks to be sold in 2011?

23 Nov 2011

Google's Chromebook notebook

Google’s Chromebook – a notebook powered by its Chrome browser – has some hurdles to climb if reports that only 30,000 of the devices made by Acer and Samsung will be sold by the end of 2011 are correct.

Tech news service DigiTimes reports that HTC is evaluating the feasibility of combining Chrome OS with Android for use in internet access devices that rest somewhere between tablet PCs and netbook computers.

The report suggests Chromebooks made by Acer and Samsung may see low cumulative sales of between 25,000 and 30,000 units by the end of 2011.

Although the Chrome OS has advantages in terms of operating under x86 and ARM and has faster boot times, the report says notebook manufacturers are taking a conservative stance on the potential of ChromeOS devices to compete with Windows devices which are cheaper and have higher specifications.

Acer’s 11.6-inch AC700 Chromebook is priced at less than US$349 in the US and Samsung has models starting at US$429.

The report suggests the price of Chromebooks may need to drop to US$199 to gain traction in a market that is dominated by tablet computers and by next year will be flooded with ultrabooks.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years