Amazon's Kindle may have been the most buzzed-about gizmo this past holiday season, but it looks as though Google and its OEM partners (Acer, Samsung) made out well, too, as retailers including Amazon, NewEgg and others sold out of the midrange Google Chromebook cloud-friendly netbooks.
Google's holiday success was first hinted at by a blurb on its own Chromebook "Buy Now" product page:
Due to the busy holiday season, some online retailers may be temporarily out of stock. If you can't find the model you’re looking for, please try a different site.
And, true to its word, at the time of writing, the Acer AC700-1099 Chromebook (Wi-Fi only) and a few others have sold out from Amazon.com, with similar results on fellow electronics retailers TigerDirect and NewEgg. It's worth noting that it's mostly the midrange models that sell out: the priciest model, the Samsung Series 5 3G model (MSRP $459.99) appears to be in stock at all three retailers.
They're expected back in stock soon, and it's not as though the Christmas rush made Chromebooks into a Tickle Me Elmo-style prize. But with doubts cast on the future of the very concept of a cloud-only netbook, and with Google Chromebooks soon to be available to the search giant's reseller channel, it's an important validation of the product line's future.