Have one of those new bargain-priced Chrome OS laptops convinced you that it’s time to take a chance on Google’s browser-based OS? If so, then you’ll be happy to know that those HDMI ports will come in handy. In the most recent update to Chrome OS, Google has delivered dual monitor support so that you can mirror or extend your Chromebook’s display.
At first glance, it might not seem like there’s a real need for a secondary display on an inexpensive system built for browsing. After all, it doesn’t offer the same kind of muscle even a low-end Intel Core i3 processor achieves. But even on the first-gen Chromebooks, it’s still nice to know that you can now look at two tabs simultaneously — provided, of course, that you can find the requisite cable.
Once you’re hooked up, you’re free to drop the Chrome OS media player on one screen while you browse for Black Friday deals on the other… or play your favorite browser-based games while keeping a Gmail or Facebook window open nearby so that you can see when your friends are trying to get in touch with you.
For business users, this also means that you can actually use a Chromebook to run a presentation now. Fire up an app like SlideShare and turn mirroring on, hook up your projector, HP 484170-001 battery and you’re good to go.
At the end of the day, Chrome OS is still basically a bootable web browser. But with each passing update, Google’s getting closer and closer to a lightweight OS that offers users nearly the same functionality as Windows or OS X — as long as you can find web apps (or Native Client apps) that compare favorably with your current desktop standards.