Chrome OS devices have earned the reputation of being low-power and low-cost computers mostly because of how most Chromebooks, especially the first one, were precisely those. These days, however, Google and its OEM partners have been trying to raise the profile of Chromebooks and Chromeboxes by providing beefier hardware components. That, of course, also means raising prices and that combination is perhaps best seen in CTL’s newest Chromebox CBx2 which may have the hardware to rival even some gaming computers.
Part of the reason why Chrome OS targeted entry-level to mid-range hardware was to make Chromebooks more enticing for schools and businesses who would buy devices in bulk. It could also afford to run on those less powerful devices because it offloaded many of the apps’ processing needs to the Web. Today’s Chrome OS, however, is a far cry from its earliest days and can definitely take advantage of the more powerful hardware available today.
CTL’s newest Chromebox CBx2 delivers on that and then some. It has several models available but its most powerful one runs on an Intel Core i7-10610U. It’s not exactly the latest 11th-gen Intel processor but, for a Chromebox, that’s plenty of power already.
But wait, there’s more! CTL also throws in a whopping 64GB of DDR4 RAM, the most that any Chrome OS device, be it Chromebox or Chromebook, may have seen. There’s also plenty of storage space with the 2TB M.2 SSD flash that it packs inside.
It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise that the CTL Chromebox CBx2 also comes with a whopping $1,419 price tag. Developers who want to take advantage of Chrome OS’ ability to host both Linux and Android environments won’t be disappointed and it could also future-proof the computer for Chrome OS’ gaming future. That said, the company is also offering a cheaper $729 configuration that keeps the same CPU but downgrades RAM to 8GB and the storage to a 128GB eMMC.