Less than a month ago I wrote a blog post about the first 20 minutes with my Chromebook. I talked about how I really liked the idea of ChromeOS but the execution with the Chromebook wasn’t quite there. Well one month later, I can say it’s not even close.
The biggest problem is the stability. Tabs regularly crash. Sometimes it’s out of memory and sometimes it just crashes for no reason. It’s not like I have 30 tabs open either. I was having constant crashes with 5 or 6. On an OS that doesn’t have windows, 6 tabs is not very many. Flash works ok, but not well enough that I want to spend very much time watching videos or anything with it.
Lots of things that I want to work (Netflix, Silverlight, Skype, etc.) do not. Hopefully those things come soon, but they might not.
The trackpad is really bad. I thought it was okay at first, but after a month, I really don’t like using it. The scrolling is slow. Clicking and dragging is a struggle. It’s missing tons of gestures that I really like on my Macbook Pro. Is writing a trackpad driver really that hard? Is there only one person in the world that has solved that problem and Apple hired them?
I still haven’t gotten to the worst part.
A couple weeks ago, I started noticing a flicker in my screen. Everything would turn blue and speckled. It was rare and a light tap on my screen would fix it. As time went on it was more and more frequent but still tolerable. Then finally, it just sorta stopped working. It will only turn on sometimes (very rarely) and when it does the screen has a red tinge. If I move the laptop at all, it turns off. It doesn’t shut down, it just crashes and powers off. Last time it turned on, all I saw was a message about a corrupt preferences file before it crashed and turned off again.
This really sucks because I was finally going to try out the Verizon 3G service on a road trip next week. I had tried to use it before, but I had a lot of trouble actually activating the Verizon service. It told me it was activated, but it never worked. Then I finally tried activating it again before it worked. This trip was one of the reasons I bought the stupid 3G Chromebook. This was going to be my travel computer. I guess I’m not going to find out if this thing will replace my iPad.
So I called Samsung and they should be fixing my Chromebook. I’ll give it one last try. Maybe I just had some bad luck. It’s not all bad after all. The instant login is awesome. The way multiple accounts work is great. My girlfriend can use it just like it’s her computer. I can use it just like it’s mine. A guest can use guest mode. It’s really great. Unfortunately, it’s just not all the way there. Not even close.