Is there anything Chrome can't do? In addition to helping us browse the Internet with our desktops and mobile devices along with streaming content to our televisions, Google has added "meetings" to Chrome's growing repertoire. This venture is called Chromebase, and is in a way a "poor-man's Surface Hub" functionality. The first company out with a product is Acer, with the $800 CA24V.
Similar to the aforementioned Surface Hub, Chromebase is designed to give meeting-goers a better, more intuitive collaborative experience. Part of the charm here is the fact that the display is a touch screen, and based on Chrome. That doesn't mean that it lacks power and functionality, though; it just happens to be a very powerful, tailored version of the OS.
Acer is no stranger to all-in-one PCs, but the CA24V is the first that the company has built around Chromebase. The "base" in the Chromebase's name could allude to the fact that it acts as a base, or mission control, if you will. The host of the conference would be planted in front of the CA24V, while everyone else could connect via their own devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and of course, notebooks.
As a business product, Acer takes security seriously with its CA24V as well. Every six weeks, like clockwork, the OS will automatically be patched. Beyond that, those who purchase the CA24V will be given the first year's management and support fee for free, a $250 value. It's important to note that the Google integration is high with this device, so while it supports up to 25 participants at a time, each of those needs to have a Google Apps account (starting out at $5/user per month).
As we noted, the CA24V retails for $800, and in addition to the U.S., it will also be sold in Canada, UK, Ireland, and Australia. Customers who are in the U.S. can sign up for a free trial of the Chromebase for meetings solution.