Chromeboxes and Chromebooks are normally not known for their hardware, and Samsung seems to be looking to change that soon. According to ZDNET, the Korean company is giving its Chromebox a boost in performance. Online retail listings have emerged showing a Chromebox XE300M22-A02US configuration that runs on an Intel Core i5 processor, instead of the Celeron chip it had been using earlier.

The Core i5-2450M still is not the most cutting edge solution when it comes to processor technology; it is a second-generation processor (Sandy Bridge) and not a third-generation one (Ivy Bridge). This means that users will be stuck with the HD 3000 integrated graphics instead of Ivy Bridge's considerably better HD 4000 graphics. Despite this, it should still be a welcome update, considering how much more powerful the Core i5-2450M is compared to the Celeron B840.

Samsung's Chromebox is getting a Sandy Bridge upgrade

Samsung's Chromebox is getting a Sandy Bridge upgrade

Other than the processor, the new Chromebox still has the same specifications as its previous iteration – 4GB of RAM and 16GB of memory on an SSD. Because of the upgrade, the price of the Chromebox has been bumped up by $80.

Back in September, Google had announced on its Enterprise blog that it would be giving Chromebooks to organisations on a rental basis.

According to the blog post, organisations can rent a new Chromebook starting at $30 per month, or a Chromebox for $25 per month. There isn’t any long term commitment and the rentals are on a month-to-month basis. The rental for the Chrome hardware goes down over time. The Chromebook will only cost $30 a month for the first twelve months, after which the rental will go down to $25 per month for the next twelve months and then $20 per month for the next twelve months. For the Chromebox, the rental will be $25 per month for the first twelve months, followed my $22 per month and $18 per month. The rental will consist of the Chrome hardware with 3 months of limited warranty, the web-based Chrome management console to centrally set-up and control users, devices and apps and 24/7 support.

Back in August, it was speculated that Google was going to offer 100 GB of free Google Drive storage space to owners of Chromebooks. Google’s latest versions of the Chromebook only have 16GB of space. While this may seem limiting to some, the machine is mostly meant to be used with cloud storage and cloud-based services—though users still need to buy that space on the cloud. By default, Google Drive gives users 5GB of free cloud storage.

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