This rumor has been floating around for a while now, but if the latest report from Digitimes is to be believed, ASUS will produce a Chromebook and bring it to market sometime in the last quarter of this year. After seeing unsatisfactory demand during the back-to-school season, ASUS intends to leverage the success of other Chromebook manufacturers and gain some footing in the education industry.
ASUS recently reduced its notebook shipment forecast for 2013 down to 17-19 million units, from an original high of 24 million. Since ASUS already has a good working relationship with Google via the Nexus program, producing a Chromebook is the obvious next step, especially since Chromebook sales have been steadily increasing as PC sales decline. And ASUS is, after all, first and foremost a PC manufacturer.
I, for one, am happy to see increased competition in the Chromebook arena, and look forward to what ASUS will have up its sleeve. I’ve always been satisfied by the build quality of ASUS products, so I doubt its upcoming Chromebook will disappoint. This should also go without saying, but the Chromebook line is in desperate need of a product refresh, so a new ASUS Chromebook should be welcomed by most with open arms.