Report: Acer building a Google Chromebox

This week, Lenovo introduced its ThinkPad X131e, a web-centric laptop specifically targeted at students.

The rugged Chromebook is powered by an Intel processor (unspecified as of now) and features an 11.6-inch 1366×768 HD LED anti-glare screen, along with three USB ports. The device weighs four pounds and is said to offer enough battery life for an entire school day.

Lenovo’s rugged ThinkPad X131e joins a slew of other Chrome-powered devices currently on the market, including Samsung’s versatile $250 ARM-powered Chromebook, the Series 5 550 Chromebook (Wi-Fi), the XE300Mww_A01US Chromebox, the slightly redesigned XE300M22-B01US and the recently launched XE300M22-A01US Chromebox powered by an Intel Core i5-2450M processor.

Clearly, demand for devices running ChromeOS has increased significantly since June 2011, when the very first Intel-based Chromebook was introduced.

As such, it comes as little surprise that industry heavyweight Acer may be prepping a Chromebox which has apparently been code-named “Kiev.” According to François Beaufort, the device is powered by an Intel chip (running at 2.70 GHz) paired with 2GB of RAM and a 500GB SATA HDD instead of an SSD.

Chrome OS can best be described as a Linux-based operating system designed to operate exclusively with web applications and Mountain View’s cloud-based Google Drive.