Along with a host of other high-end devices from other brands, the Acer Chromebook 13 and Chromebook Spin 13 will support Linux apps at launch, according to a recent Chromium commit. Google has been working with a number of device makers on a new range of high-end Chromebooks with enterprise features. Nami is the umbrella codename for these devices.
The commit suggests that all Chromebooks under the Nami generation will support Linux apps. They have also cherry-picked this commit for the R68 branch, which is a usually a smoking gun that an update is being pushed for day one.
Acer showcased their upcoming Chromebook 13 and Chromebook Spin 13 at their next@acer event in May. They were confirmed by Chrome Unboxed to be Nami devices. The pair of models come with up to 16GB RAM, high-resolution 2256×1504 13.5-inch screens, and powerful (for a Chromebook) processors packed in an all-aluminum body. We don’t yet have a firm release date or prices from Acer.
Other devices from the Nami family have yet to be officially announced, but code-reviews suggest that both Dell and HP have high-end devices in the pipeline too.
Unless another company beats them to the punch with a surprise release, Acer’s two models would be the first devices to ship with Linux app functionality baked in. Linux apps launched on the Pixelbook and subsequently made it onto the Samsung Chromebook Plus, but even the recently released HP Chromebook X2 is lacking support along with the rest of the Chrome OS ecosystem.
The Chrome OS developers are working to roll-out Linux app support to more devices, but as this consists of backporting key functionality to older kernel versions, it could be some time before it’s available. Until then, prospective buyers will have to wait patiently for Nami or pick up the Pixelbook or Samsung Chromebook Plus.
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