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Google Chromebook Price Decreases Amid Tussle With Apple

Google Inc. said the price of some Chromebook laptops will drop by as much as 30 percent, to $299, part of a push to get users to choose its software over products made by such rivals as Apple Inc. and Microsoft Corp.

The price cut affects machines made by Samsung Electronics Co., which formerly cost about $429, and Acer Inc., which cost about $349, Mountain View, California-based Google said in an e-mailed statement. Both devices feature Wi-Fi wireless access and are available through Inc. and Best Buy Co., the company said on a blog.

Google devised Chrome to be a faster, more Internet-focused operating system to challenge Microsoft’s Windows and Apple’s Mac software. Google announced Chrome OS in 2009, and manufacturers began offering the devices in June.

“We’ve also been working closely with our partners to continually improve the overall Chromebook experience while making them even more affordable,” Venkat Rapaka, a senior product manager, said in the blog posting.

Microsoft’s Windows is the most widely used computer operating system, while Google is the most popular Web search engine.

Google also made improvements to the Chrome operating system, including a streamlined log-in page and new tools for managing applications and bookmarks.

Google fell 2.3 percent to $580.94 at the close in New York. The shares have declined 2.2 percent this year.

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