Rumor: Google to Charge Monthly Fee for Chrome OS Devices

Pulkit Chandna

It's been well over a month since Google finished distributing the entire quota of 60,000 Cr-48 Chrome notebooks reserved for Chrome OS pilot program participants, and the mid-2011 launch of retail devices promised by the company doesn't seem too far off now - just as long as the river of time keeps flowing at its familiar rate. But wait, what if there is yet another delay like the one that pushed retail Chrome OS devices to mid-2011 from late 2010?

Pretty unlikely, according to our friends over at Neowin . The site is reporting that a reliable source has confirmed “a late June/early July” launch for the first batch of Chrome OS devices. The source also hinted at Google offering these devices to consumers under a subscription-based model, with monthly subscription ranging between $10 and $20 per user. The subscription is also likely to cover any product replacements necessitated by faulty hardware. While the source said that Google would charge a one-time payment for the devices, they are likely to be subsidized if such a strategy is actually implemented.

What do you make of this latest rumor? Can you imagine yourself paying a monthly subscription just to access what is, for all intents and purposes, a web browser?

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