Google and HP have teamed up to offer the new ultra-portable HP Chromebook 11, now available for pre-purchase on Google Play. Unlike the Chromebook Pixel launched earlier this year, this device is lightweight, low-powered and arrives with a much lower pricetag of $279. HP claims that it's also the first affordable Chromebook with a "brilliant" IPS display, and the first Chromebook to provide USB charging.
According to the specs, the new Chromebook features an 11.6 inch IPS display with a 60 percent color gamut, a brightness of 300 nit, and 176 degree viewing angles. The device is powered by a dual-core Samsung Exynos 5250 SoC, aka the Exynos 5 Dual (opens in new tab), along with 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB of internal storage, and a battery promising up to 6 hours of active use.
The Chromebook also provides Wireless N connectivity, a built-in VGA webcam, a Chrome keyboard, a "fine-tuned" clickable touchpad, a headphone/microphone jack, "digitally tuned" speakers with sound directed through the keyboard, and two USB 2.0 ports. Also included is a microUSB port for charging the Chromebook, and video output via Analogix's SlimPort HDMI tech.
"The sleek and lightweight design comes in either a white modern design with blue, red, yellow or green color accents or a more traditional black design, and all come with a cool lightbar on the lid," reads HP's press release (opens in new tab). "It is super sturdy, with a thermal-bonded magnesium chassis that protects against everyday bumps."
HP's new Chromebook weighs 2.3 pounds and measures just 0.70 inches thin, making for a very lightweight, thin device that's also rather sturdy. "We wanted the Chromebook to hold up well against everyday bumps and bruises," adds Google's Caesar Sengupta, VP of Product Management. "You can hold it from a single corner without it bending or flexing."
The Chromebook 11 comes with 100 GB of Google Drive cloud storage for two years, a 60-day free trial of Play Music All Access (subscription is $9.99 monthly after that), and 12 free sessions of GoGo InFlight Internet connectivity.
Google is now offering five HP Chromebook 11 models for $279 each here. Color options are white/blue, white/green, white/red, white/yellow and black. All five also arrive only with 16 GB of storage and Wireless N connectivity -- no additional storage and connectivity options are provided at this time.
Check out our sister site LAPTOP's hands-on in the video below:
I can understand the idea behind a Chromebook, but when they're hitting the lower end of the full laptop pricing spectrum, I just can't see them being worth it. Machines like this should be $100'ish, not coming up on $300.
Someone find a tablet that comes even close to those specs with a keyboard for under $300.
Not going to happen either way.
Closest competitors? Asus T100 @ $350. That's $70 more with identical specs and worse screen.
Surface RT? Looking at minimum $450+keyboard.
$300 10" Android tablets? Junk and not good for productivity.
Only 16GB of storage? That's more than the 32 GB Surface RT has left over after Win 8 is installed. What do you need more for? I am currently using less than 2 GB on my Chromebook. There's no programs to install. Any other content is stored on the 100GB of free drive storage.
What does the average user do on the computer that the Chromebook doesent?
Web browser? Check.
Word processor? Check.
Basic photo editing? Check.
Music Player? Check.
Gaming? Browser based, but who is really gaming on a $300 11" laptop?
Also, don't mention the line about "You can't do anything offline" because you can. Docs and many other apps are available for offline use.
No antivirus, no malware, no program updates. Did I mention it's fast? It will never slow down and will always have the latest software.
To the average household consumer, this thing is a steal. It does everything they need fast like they are used to on their tablets and phones.
"But But it doesn't have Office!!!!!" No one really needs it. Google Docs has 90% of the functionality, and there is also the Microsoft Office Web apps if you don't like that. If you are doing something incredibly technical, you probably aren't going to be buying a $280 notebook.
I can't speak for this model, but Samsung's chromebook has an SD card slot, so if you need more storage then that's easily taken care of.
The guts of the chromebook are essentially a smartphone with a keyboard and a larger display panel. It has a 2300mah battery. My phone has a 2100mah battery. You could easily double the capacity without a significant cost or weight, and have a truly usable all-day device. This 4-6 hour usage is sub-par by today's standards.
The issue here is cost. Higher capacity batteries cost more. The battery in the Chromebook is powering a screen about 4x bigger than a typical smartphone. Asking them to have similar battery life is not reasonable, especially at $200-280
Macbook Air? Costs 4x as much as a Chromebook. They can afford to put a bigger battery in there.
Chromebook battery life is actually very good compared to most Windows notebooks in the price range which typically have 3-4 hour battery life. The Samsung Series 3 Chromebook what I have has 4080 mAH and is rated for 6.5 hours, yet I can easily get 8+ hours of web browsing and word processing with the screen at half brightness. This is the one case where battery life has actually been better than advertised.
Battery-wise, your phone has a 3.7V 2100mAh battery. The Chromebook likely has a 7.4V (two cells) or 11V (three cells) 2300mAh battery pack. So that would be 7.8Wh for your phone VS either 17Wh or 25.3Wh battery capacity for the Chromebook. The Chromebook 11's Google Play page says it has a 30Wh pack so, if it uses 2300mAh cells, that would be four cells. (2.3Ah x 14.8V)