My First Experience with Google’s Chromebook

I have barely used Google’s Chromebook for a few minutes and am already very dissatisfied by the product. It could be because of the unfamiliarity. It could be because I am not tech-savvy. It could be because I don’t like innovation. Or more likely, it could be because I so much dislike the product. One of the things that Google takes pride in is that it provides users with a convenient experience, and it should be understood by most idiots. But by those standards, I must either be a real idiot or Chromebook is actually not designed for idiots.
As a first comment, it is not surprising that Google forces you to use their products. That is even more so the case than in Microsoft, where Microsoft will at least not hinder you from using Open Office as an alternative to Microsoft Office. When you use the web browser, you can use Google search besides Bing Search, which belongs to Microsoft. Google is much sneakier by letting you sign your e-mail address when getting the Chromebook started. That way all your information, all the websites you previously browsed are visible, and easy to access. While this may be an indication of convenience it also makes you less likely to want to remain anonymous or use any other service within Chromebook.
Chromebook makes it difficult for you to use any service other than what Google offers you. So if I am interested in using Open Office to write my documents in, I have access it via an App called rollapp, and so far I am not capable of saving any documents on odt. format, because I have to turn off the popup blocker, and there is no indication how to do this. This feature lacks user-friendliness, and was designed on purpose so you have to use Google Doc.
What’s the matter with Google Doc? Many people are using Google Docs, so why should I complain about using it myself? The problem with Google Doc is that it does not allow you to configure small details. Has anybody ever copied and pasted pictures into docs? How do you do first line indents, which is a common feature among Open Office and Microsoft Office? I think the sharing feature is absolutely awesome. But the simplicity of it does not allow the user to take advantage of the full range of editing features.
Most of my work is saved as odt and docx files on my USB stick that I always carry around with me, so that I can call it up on any Microsoft desktop or laptop. I have thus far stayed clear from Apple products, because I don’t have the same understanding as I have for Microsoft products. Now, Google comes into the picture and creates its own operating system, and unlike Microsoft ensures that all aspects of the work saved in Chromebook is done with Google services. But what about my USB files? I plug the USB into the Chromebook, and I can open up the file list. When I hit the file, it tells me that I can open it but only with an App, and that is either purchased in the Google App store or freely downloaded there, but requires of me the effort and time to download it, just so I can open it. I would have liked to download the Open Office program myself, but I am not capable to because it only works on Windows and Linux.
When I close the window frustrated, I then no longer have access to the USB files. Microsoft at least in the 7 version (not in 10 as far as I know) has the computer button, which allows you to access the external media like USB sticks. If you have the respective program installed to your PC, you should have access to those files. But a program is very different from an app, and I have to take the pains to download apps. Where is the convenience here?
The huge question is whether users can get used to the universal services provided by Google? In some sense, most people have as they are using it. As a long-time user of Microsoft products with USB file access, I am still very skeptical of using Google products. Long gone are the days when it used to be only an online search engine. I love the online searches. I love Google maps, and how you can use it as a flexible GPS (i.e. avoid toll roads, avoid heavy traffic etc.), or how you can have the street view in many corners of the world, which allows you to do tourism and sightseeing without going there, or how you can look up the typical traffic to avoid rush hour. There are certainly many Google products that one can grow fond up, but I should say that the ever so restricting Chromebook is not one of them.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s