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Kogan launches world's first Chromebook for £269

Australian IT company Kogan has launched the world's first computer based on Google's new Chromium OS, stealing a march on PC giants Acer and Samsung, Google Chromebook products won't launch until 15th June.

Tech pundits have been eagerly awaiting machines based on Google's Chromium open-source operating system, which was first announced in July 2009. Linux-based Chromium is a browser-based OS designed to work on relatively low-spec computers by utilising cloud-based computing resources.

Details of Kogan's device, which begins shipping tomorrow in the UK and Australia, come after the company's CEO, Ruslan Kogan, hinted at the company's plans to launch a Chromebook computer in an exclusive interview last month with thinq_.

The budget Agora 12in ultra-portable laptop sells for a very pocket-friendly £269, and while its 1.3GHz Intel Celeron processor is more budget-conscious than high-performance, the machine packs in a surprisingly high spec for the price.

Backing up the processor is 1GB of DDR2 RAM (upgradeable to 4GB) and a 30GB SSD. The 11.6in LED display offers a resolution of 1366x768, and a 1.3-megapixel camera provides videoconferencing capabilities.Battery life is claimed to be around three and a half hours

The laptop weighs in at just 1.32kg, but includes no optical drive. Users can get data on and off the Agora via USB or using its built-in 3-in-1 memory card reader. Wireless connectivity options include Bluetooth and 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, though there's no option for built-in 3G.