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24 May 2011, 12:43

Xi3 announces Chromium OS-based modular computer

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Zoom The small, cube-like ChromiumPC is expected to arrive in the second half of this year.
Source: Xi3
The Xi3 Corporation has announced that it plans to release a small, Chromium OS-based desktop computer later this year. Chromium OS is the open source branch of Google's Chrome OS, the company's minimalist Linux-based operating system that is built around the Chrome web browser.

The ChromiumPC will be powered by a dual or single core 64-bit CPU and housed in an aluminum chassis that measures just 4.0 by 3.66 by 3.66 inches (HWD). The modular design consists of three components: the processor module, the primary I/O module and the secondary I/O module. The processor module houses the CPU and RAM, while the primary I/O module contains "the majority of the external communications ports". The secondary I/O module consists of ethernet, video and power connections.

While Xi3 hasn't confirmed which ports the ChromiumPC will feature, the 5 Series Modular Computer, upon which it is based, carries the typical array of I/O ports, such as multiple USB ports, a standard DVI connection, DisplayPort, an Ethernet port and eSATA connections. In the company's announcement, Xi3 Crop President and CEO Jason A. Sullivan said, "Although we've been promoting, discussing and working on modular computers for some time, we feel the market is now ready for a desktop computer with a cloud-based operating system like the one offered by Google," adding that, "If someone chooses to switch their ChromiumPC to run a different operating system, it's as easy as swapping out one of the three boards inside the computer."

Further details can be found in the company's announcement press release. The ChromiumPC will begin shipping "in the second half of 2011" in multiple colours, including chrome. However, pricing has yet to be announced.

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