Google to launch its very own touchscreen Chromebook?

Rumors of a touchscreen Chromebook made by Google have started to hit the inter webs, making for much excitement among Chrome fans. The Chinese source, Commercial Times, states that Taiwanese Compal Electronics will be in charge of production while Wintek will be taking care of the device’s touch panels. Quite a shock, right?

The idea of Google creating its very own Chromebook is no small news, this is huge. We are talking about a possible “Nexus” Chromebook. And if we can take Google’s current strategy as evidence, this will probably be one affordable machine. The addition of a 12.85-inch touchscreen is another surprise to us, as we have never seen this in a Chrome OS device.

The operating system is not really optimized for touch controls, but this is where the whole industry is starting to move. Now that Microsoft is pushing for touchscreen computers, this could be Chrome’s moment to shine and be one of the first to implement this feature at large (in personal computers).

Touchscreens are not the only factor reminding us of Microsoft, though. The PC giant also decided to create its own tablet computer, the Surface. If Google ends up launching a Chromebook, its partners probably won’t be having the best feelings about it. Many saw Microsoft’s Surface tablet as a slap in the face for other manufacturers.

We know Google puts much importance in their relations with partners, so it seems unlikely they will do anything that will significantly hurt them. Remember many times these rumors don’t end up coming to fruition, so we will have to wait and see. But sources claim Taiwanese manufacturers hav already started shipping components for the Chromebook and Compal will start shipping as soon as late 2012.

Is it possible we will be seeing something at CES 2013? Only Google knows, but you can be sure we will be there covering everything for you. But what do you guys say? Are you down for an official Google Chromebook?