Google news: Pixel 2 phones coming, Pixel laptops are no more, Chrome OS beats Apple in K-12

Speaking with journalists at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, Google's Vice President of Hardware, Rick Osterloh, has confirmed that the successor of the company's Pixel smarthones will be launching later this year, Android Pit reported Friday. Osterloh shot down reports calling for a budget Pixel edition, saying Pixels remain premium smartphones.

While Google showed no intent to abandon its premium smartphone brand, the company's premium notebook bearing the Pixel brand has reached the “end of the line” status after shipping just two generations since 2013, according to Osterloh in a report by Frederic Lardinois for TechCrunch.

Gartner: tablet shipments to jump 68% in 2013 amid PC slump

Research giant Gartner Monday released new figures confirming the growth of tablets and the decline of PCs are set to continue through 2013 and into 2014. However, the numbers point to a changing market for tablets and a potential rescue for ailing PC and laptop demand.

While the overall shipment of PCs, mobile phones and tablets is expected to rise by just 5.9 percent this year, PC shipments of both desktops and notebooks will slide lower by more than ten percent. Worldwide mobile phone shipments should increase a modest 4.3 percent while tablets lead consumer demand for mobility, shipments jumping by 67.9 percent this year, according to the research firm...

Nope, Google’s $249 Chromebook totally didn’t rip off MacBook Air wholesale

I kinda like the concept of an Internet-only notebook which boots in a few seconds, is always on and runs smoothly. I wanted to like Google-branded Chromebooks and almost bought one before realizing that Apple has already ticked all the right boxes with its iPad computer. But if a portable computing device with a physical keyboard which runs a browser-based OS and runs only web apps is your thing, this new Chromebook surely will pique your interest.

Apart from being a total rip off of the MacBook Air down to its black rounded keys, trackpad and the recess right where the lid opens, know that this Chromebook is a quarter of the Air's asking price and half the iPad's. On paper, the machine is a must-have: it weighs in at only 2.43 pounds, is 0.8-inches thick, runs 6.5+ hours battery and rocks a 11.6-inch display at a 1,366-by-768 pixel resolution.

Per usual, there are some caveats that a flashy commercial (included below) fails to mention...

Samsung now copies Apple’s Mac mini?

Amid the epic Apple v. Samsung legal fight over mobile devices, it's easy to overlook other cases where an argument could be made that Samsung looked to Apple's design language perhaps too closely in order to make its gear more pleasing to the eye. Enter Samsung's Chromebox Series 3, a $300 computer running Google's Chrome OS.

The computer comes packaged in an enclosure which bears uncanny resemblance to Apple's Mac mini, down to the exact 7.6-inch-square footprint, rounded corners and silver rim, which in Samsung's case is made of painted plastic instead of aluminum. Of course, you're free to argue I'm stretching it, but first take a look at the comparison images right after the break...