Google Pixelbook Down to $899 on Amazon and The Google Store

Google Pixelbook

Right now, over at Amazon, you can pick up the entry level Google Pixelbook for $899, a savings of $100 off the regular price.  In fact, you can pick up the Pixelbook and the Pixelbook Pen together for $997, which is less than the normal price of the Chromebook itself.

The price is for the Intel i5 powered unit with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.  It is certainly powerful enough to do anything you would need, be it in Chrome OS or Android apps running on the device.

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Chrome OS Gets an Optional TPM Security Update That Requires a Powerwash

Chrome OS Powerwash

There is a new, optional security update for Chrome OS that fixes a vulnerability with the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) in the majority of Chromebooks.  To apply the update however, you will need to Powerwash your device.

The vulnerability has to do with hackers potentially being able to brute force the RSA keys generated by your TPM.  This, in theory, could give the the opportunity to plant malicious code on your device or take it over.  For those not familiar, a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) is a specialized chip on an endpoint device that stores RSA encryption keys specific to the host system for hardware authentication. It essentially makes sure that the hardware and software on your device are secure and encrypted and what has access to the keys generated by it.  Thus, you see the problem.  If the TPM gets compromised, it can lead to a lot of issues for end users.

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Google Pixelbook is Currently $975 on Amazon

Google Pixelbook

Right now, over at Amazon, you can pick up the entry level Google Pixelbook for $975.  While it is not a massive discount, only $24 off the regular price, it falls under the category of “better than nothing”.

And “entry level” is a bit misleading because we are talking about one of the most powerful Chromebooks out there.  The price is for the Intel i5 powered unit with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.  It is certainly powerful enough to do anything you would need, be it in Chrome OS or Android apps running on the device.

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Official Google Pixelbook Sleeve Now Available for an Eye Watering Price

Google Sleeve for the Pixelbook

Google has quietly posted the new, official Google Pixelbook sleeve on the Google Store site.  The fabric sleeve, which holds your Pixelbook and Pixelbook Pen, is an eye watering, hellishly expensive $100.  If you feel so compelled, you can order one at the Store.

The microfiber exterior sleeve has a microfiber lining and a magnetic closure too keep your Pixelbook and Pen safely tucked inside.  It comes in one color, Stone.

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New Beta Version of Chrome OS Now Available

Chrome OS Build 61 App Launcher

Following on the release of a new Dev channel build for Chrome OS, there is now a new Beta channel build too.  Build 64.0.3282.101 (Platform version: 10176.54.0) has been released for most devices and can be downloaded now, if you are in the beta channel, by typing chrome://help  in the omnibar in the browser.

The update has a laundry list of fixes and improvements that you can read here if you are so inclined.  Ultimately there are a lot of general improvements to the platform.

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Google Pixelbook Owners Can Get a Free Loop to Hold Their Pixelbook Pen

Google Pixelbook Pen Loop

For those of you who have a Google Pixelbook and Pixelbook Pen, Google is offering you a free loop to attach to your Chromebook to hold your Pen when it is not in use.  The company has setup a site where you enter in your information and they will ship you the loop in a few weeks.

While the reviews of the Pixelbook have been gushing, one complaint from reviewers and users has been what to do with the $100 Pixelbook Pen when it is not in use.  This free loop seems to be Google’s answer to the problem.

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Native Video Recording in Chrome OS Coming to Supporting Chromebooks

Chrome OS Build 61 App Launcher

It looks like native video recording from your Chromebook’s webcam is finally coming to Chrome OS.  A new commit in the Chrome Review Gerrit points to support for video recording so long as the device is using the MediaRecorder APIs found in the platform.

We are implementing recording functionality in chrome camera app on ChromeOS devices with MediaRecorder APIs. Enabling HW VEA would greatly improve the performance. For example, FPS increases from 7 to 30 on kevin.

For reference, the device name Kevin is the Samsung Chromebook Pro.

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