Samsung is reportedly working on a new Chromebook that features a detachable keyboard. The upcoming device is believed to be part of Google’s plan to start releasing new 2-in-1 Chrome OS devices that are able to run Android apps.

Evidence for the upcoming Samsung detachable Chromebook was first spotted by Chrome Unboxed. The site noticed changes to the code inside the Chromium Repository in early October. One of the changes to the code was a new Chromebook that’s codenamed “Nautilus.”

The listing doesn’t mention exactly who’s behind the new device, but it did mention a person named Jongpin Jung, who apparently has a Samsung email address. The very same name was also attached to the Chromebooks that were codenamed as “Kevin” and “Caroline,” which turned out to be the Samsung Chromebook Pro and Chromebook Plus.

The word “base” was also mentioned several times in the Chromium Repository. There’s also a reference to tablet mode when the device is disconnected from the base. This heavily suggests that the Samsung “Nautilus” Chromebook features a detachable keyboard, which is a common design for 2-in-1 laptops.

Chrome Unbox suggests that the upcoming new Samsung Chromebook might look like the Samsung Galaxy Book, which was released earlier this year. The Galaxy Book is also a detachable 2-in-1 device, but it runs Windows 10. It arrived with Intel’s Kaby Lake processors and can be configured to come with a Core m3 or Core i5 chip. Like the Galaxy Book, the new “Nautilus” Chromebook is also expected to be powered by an Intel Kaby Lake processor.

Why is Samsung making a 2-in-1, detachable Chromebook? A lot of users feel like Google is no longer interested in optimizing Android OS for tablets. Some believe that Google is trying to slowly discontinue Android tablets and replacing them with Chromebooks. After all, Android tablets haven't really made a huge impact, with some people even saying that Android tablets are dead.

As pointed out by 9To5Google, there are already around 60 Chromebooks that are capable of running Android apps. Many of these Chromebooks are convertibles or 2-in-1s which let people use them in “tablet” mode. It’s possible that Samsung is making this new detachable Chromebook to prepare for Android apps becoming fully compatible with Chrome OS.

Beyond what’s already available in the Chromium Repository, there’s not much else to know about Samsung’s upcoming new 2-in-1 Chromebook. Samsung hasn’t announced that it’s working on a new Chromebook, but it wouldn’t really be surprising if it was. Samsung is one of the biggest manufacturers of Chromebooks and the company will likely continue doing so.

When will Samsung release this new Chromebook? Based on the company’s release schedule this year, it’s possible that Samsung could announce the “Nautilus” Chromebook at CES 2018 in January. Samsung revealed both the Chromebook Plus and Pro at CES 2017, so it makes sense that it would announce a brand new Chromebook at the same annual event.

However, based on the limited mentions of the “Nautilus” device in the Chromium Repository, it seems as though Samsung is still in the very early stages of development. If that’s truly the case, then Samsung might not even announce it at CES 2018. Another possibility here is that the new “Nautilus” Chromebook might not even be released in 2018 at all.

Samsung Samsung's rumored detachable Chromebook is codenamed "Nautilus." Photo: REUTERS/Lee Jae-Won