Google, Samsung to sell $249 Chrome laptops

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Google and Samsung are introducing a lightweight laptop computer with a price similar to smaller tablet computers.

The computer unveiled Thursday will sell for $249 and run on an operating system revolving around Google's Chrome Web browser.

Like other so-called Chromebooks, this laptop doesn't have a hard drive. It functions like a terminal dependent on an Internet connection to get to information and applications stored in large data centers run by Google Inc. or other technology providers.

The low-priced laptop represents Google's latest challenge to the Windows operating system used in most personal computers. It goes on sale early next week, just days before Microsoft Corp. releases Windows 8, a dramatic makeover of its operating system.

Most of the PCs running on Windows 8 will sell for $500 to $1,000.

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