Pros No operating system so no way to install malware.
Cons Only Cons if you are expecting a pc environment.
Summary Anyone who follows http://krebsonsecurity.com/ will notice a pattern of many small businesses getting robbed of many tens of thousands of dollars; mostly because someone downloaded malware into the pc that is used to login to their bank accounts. The advice is to reserve 1 pc that does nothing other than banking logins. A Chromebox would be ideal for this purpose!
People are thinking of the Chromebook machines the wrong way. They criticize them for the effects of not having a traditional OS when that is their main benefit. Don't try to compare then to cheap pcs, instead look at the benefits of a machine without an OS that the user needs to maintain or accidentally infect.
Note: I don't have Chromebox (yet). I do have 1 year experience using my Acer Wi-Fi only Chromebook which I like (and I also have other Mac & Windows pcs too)
Pros Nearly instant boot. Actually gets better over time. Google prevents the problems associated with most users'systems.
Cons Virtually none.
Summary I'm always amazed when someone disparagingly reviews a product they do not own. The Google Chromebook, and now the Chromebox, are near perfect for most users. Ask any computer expert that's had to work on the average user's computer and they will agree users do not know how to manage their systems. Most I see are absolute disasters.....loaded with junk. These are EXCELLENT systems for 99% of users that do nothing but surf the web. Most, obviously including cNet editors, simply do not get it.
"No disk drive"on by teknozen
Pros Cheap & Simple
Cons No disk/Blu-ray drive
Summary Bummer. With a Blu-ray drive, this box would not only be a Mini Killer, but I would have already flipped out the plastic and ordered one.
Pros teknozen pointed out there is no drive but there are USB ports. That thing has an Intel chip, so it has a BIOS chip that can be set to boot USB. So the Google OS gets replaced with Debian or Windows. $330 is great price point.
Cons Other than taking the time to change out the OS, nothing.
Summary Another good review by me. CNET is scared. Molly is debating if she should hire me or turn me over to the authorities. But I am serious, this is a good idea. You couldn't build a mini-itx system for $330 with TWO display ports. I am really considering buying this. I am thinking Windows Media Center PC actually and a set-top box config next to the TV.