12.5" LED-backlit IPS touchscreen, 1920 x 1080
CPU: Intel Core m3-6Y30
RAM: 4 GB
Storage: 64 GB
11.9 x 8.3 x 0.59 in
The full HD panel features the sort of anti-glare technologies that minimize reflections, thus allowing people to use the device in school as well as outside without putting too much of a strain on the eyes. The 100% aluminum chassis will allow the model to survive even the most inconvenient transportation scenarios.
Might time some time to set up and get used to the touchpad.
We would recommend this model to people that tend to travel a lot and could really find some use for the exceptional battery. And if you're a student, the display of the model alone should be enough to convince you to give this Chromebook a try.
14", 1920 x 1080
CPU: Intel® Celeron® N3160 (1.6 - 2.24 GHz)
RAM: 4 GB
Storage: 32 GB
Up to 12 hours
100% aluminum chassis with rounded corners
13.43 x 9.31 x 0.67 in
11.6" anti-glare screen, 1366 x 768
CPU: Intel Celeron N3060
RAM: 4 GB
Storage: 16 GB
11.6 x 7.9 x 0.9 in
2 cameras offer maximum opportunities for communication, the body is reinforced against drops, and the keyboard is spill-resistant. Optionally, you can include a stylus in the purchase.
Compatibility issues with some apps.
The Chromebook was designed with students in mind: it offers long battery life, a body with military-grade durability, and smoothly working sensitive keys.
11.6" touchscreen, 1366 x 768
CPU: Celeron N3350 (2.4 GHz)
RAM: 4 GB
Storage: 32 GB
Up to 12 hours
Sturdy lid, rounded corners, rubberized edges
12.1 x 7.8 x 0.8 in
The slip-resistant texturized finish makes your grip more secure. In case you do drop it, the model can withstand accidental falls from up to 2.4-foot height thanks to the high-quality housing.
The touchscreen needs care for longer life.
360° flexible lid can be set in one out of four positions for the most convenient use at any given moment. The housing is plastic but reinforced and protected from external hazards. The keyboard and touchpad are spill-resistant.
11.6" IPS anti-glare touchscreen, 1366 x 768
CPU: dual-core MediaTek MTK 8173C (2.1 GHz)
RAM: 4 GB
Storage: 32 GB
Up to 10 hours
PC/ABS plastic body with rounded corners
11.6 x 8.1 x 0.8 in
ASUS Chromebook Flip (C302CA-DHM4)
The Company's Flagship Chrome Laptop
Chromebooks are an offshoot of conventional laptops that are operated by Google's Chrome OS. At first glance, you might not even be able to tell a Chromebook from a real laptop. Yet, can a Chrome laptop be used as a primary computer? The answer is rather positive if it comes to the ASUS C302CA as this device is compact and really high-performance. Needless to say, all your data will be securely stored in a cloud storage and you will be able to access them from any part of the world. Buying the C302CA, you will get free access to 100 GB of Google Drive storage and you will be able to it not just from the ASUS Chromebook but from any other computer as well, just log in to your Google account. As for the hardware, this Chrome laptop is fitted with the Intel Core m3-6Y30 CPU clocked at 2.2 GHz, which is enough to ensure a smooth operation of the apps you need for everyday use. If you travel a lot, you will like a long battery life, up to 10 hours. Finally, we would like to highlight the all-metal chassis of this ASUS Chromebook; it's durable scratch-resistant, and look posh.
Fast and Convenient
If you wish to copy some data from the Chromebook to a flash drive or another storage device, the top speed is guaranteed since the C302CA has two USB 3.1 Type-C ports. This is the latest USB version and it ensures an incredibly high data transfer speed. Also, one of the ports is used for charging the Chrome laptop, so you don't need to carry a long and messy charging cable. This is a truly space-saving solution, particularly if you carry the device a lot. Also, we'd like to mention the unique design of this Chromebook: it has 360° hinges, so the screen rotates, turning the device from a conventional laptop to a large tablet. Any tablet requires a touchscreen display and the ASUS Chromebook is not an exception. It has a multi-touch IPS-based LED-backlit screen that provides a top-class image quality. In all, this Chrome laptop is the perfect pick for people who need to work with securely protected documents every day.
If you aren't sure that you will be able to recharge your Chromebook on time, consider using a power bank. This simple device will help you recharge not only your Chrome laptop but other gadgets as well (smartphone, tablet, etc.).
What customers say about this product
Acer Chromebook 14 (CB3-431-C5FM)
The Battery That Lasts
Acer wasn't always the company that was regarded as one of the better manufacturers and distributors of computer hardware and electronics. But the days when the customers were right to feel skeptical about their products are long gone by now and the Acer Chromebook 14 serves as a great proof of that. What we have here is an absolutely solid machine that delivers in a variety of aspects. But before we get into those aspects, the very first thing we would like to mention is the model's battery life as it is by far the most impressive thing about it.
Where your average Chromebook often fails to deliver even 10 hours of uptime, the computer in question is capable of working for 12 hours straight on a single charge, which is nothing short of remarkable. Among other things, this is what makes this model such a great choice for businessmen and people whose job requires them to spend a lot of time on the road. Heck, the battery will be able to last throughout the entire flight from Los Angeles to London, and that certainly isn't something that should be taken lightly.
Setting the battery aside, the Chromebook in question still has quite a lot going for it. The 32 gigabytes of hard disk space ought to offer more than enough storage space for you to install whatever software you deem necessary. And, since this is a Chromebook and not a regular laptop that we're talking about, it should probably go without saying that you won't have to install a whole lot of software as the OS keeps all of the necessary programs on the Google servers. Along with the 32 GB of HDD space, you will also receive access to 100GB of free storage space on Google Drive for two years. You can use all of it to store whatever you want, from a variety of different multimedia files to video games. And, again, given that it is a Chromebook that we're dealing with, the fact that it comes equipped with the latest dual-band 802.11ac wireless connection and Bluetooth 4.2 technologies shouldn't be overlooked either.
Indoors and Outdoors
Now, before we wrap this whole thing up, we thought it wouldn't hurt to bring up the exterior design of the Acer Chromebook 14. It might not look like something out of the ordinary but every detail has been carefully designed to make the model look pristine and firm at the same time. The 100% aluminum chassis will allow it to survive even the most inconvenient transportation scenarios, the rounded corners are there to protect both the device and its surroundings, and the classic hairline-brush finish is what allows the model to look as sleek as it does.
We also would like to at least briefly touch upon the subject of display, especially given that the full HD panel features the sort of anti-glare technologies that minimize reflections, making the model arguably the best Chromebook for students as it will allow them to use the device in school as well as outside without putting too much of a strain on the eyes.
All things considered, we would recommend this model to people that tend to travel a lot and could really find some use for the exceptional battery. And if you're a student, the display of the model alone should be enough to convince you to give this Chromebook a try.
ASUS Chromebook C202SA (C202SA-YS02)
For Rugged Use!
Chromebooks are very often used by students and teachers because of long battery life, sufficient performance, and access to the cloud storage where all the data are stored. A Chrome laptop allows checking tests in real-time as well as store lesson plans and other documents on Google Drive. However, such everyday use of the device is a tough challenge for its chassis and hardware. For example, you never know when a passer-by at your college cafeteria will turn your cup over, spilling coffee right on your Chromebook. That's why we recommend ASUS C202SA, a device designed specifically for rugged use. First of all, this Chrome laptop has an extra-durable chassis able to withstand a fall from 3.9 feet. Moreover, this ASUS Chromebook has a spill-resistance keyboard which has the character-printed keys 15% larger than on conventional keyboards. Therefore, typing is easy and totally safe, so you won't get tired too fast. The chassis has reinforced rubber guards with shock-absorption capabilities. Moreover, the guards are slide-proof, so this device will remain stable no matter what kind of surface you use it on. But that's not all! The rubber guards stick out slightly, so you can carry this Chromebook in your backpack without using any protective cover at all. Obviously, this is the best device for everyday use!
Replace Hardware Yourself
As you know, replacing pieces of hardware is a fairly challenging task on most laptops. However, nothing can work for ages and you might need to repair your device. Should you pay for a service center or not? The answer is no if you choose the ASUS C202SA Chrome laptop. The chassis is designed to give you easy access to the device's hardware. For example, if the battery can't maintain the charge properly, it needs to be replaced. Get a new one, unscrew the cover, and replace the old battery in no time. Therefore, not only is this Chromebook durable, it's also easy-to-maintain. By the way, this Chrome laptop from ASUS has a high-quality Wi-Fi antenna that minimizes poor signal connection, so you will revel in high-speed and stable web surfing.
The storage capacity of this ASUS Chromebook is just 16 GB, which is certainly insufficient for storing enough pictures or videos. Keep in mind that Wi-Fi access is not available everywhere. That's why we recommend getting a microSD card with the help of which you will substantially expand the overall storage space. Also, this device has an HDMI port, which means you can stream some movie to your wide-screen TV with the help of HDMI cable.
What customers say about this product
ASUS Chromebook Flip (C213SA-YS02-S)
Tough Little Laptop
The C213 series of ASUS Flip Chromebook series was designed primarily for students and school staff to be used in educational facilities. For this very reason, the model’s main distinguishing trait is its durability. School use can be dangerous to fragile and expensive tech like computers and ASUS seems to know this, so they’ve created this series with military-grade protection. Owing to the reinforced nano-molding and rubber wrapping of all 4 edges and corners, the Chromebook can withstand drops (tests were completed with up to 4 feet height), swinging, and all kinds of rough treatment by kids, something highly appreciated in classrooms. Furthermore, the keyboard is spill-resistant as well, which eliminates another of the major concerns when it comes to laptops.
As it is a Flip model, it means you get four options to work with: a regular laptop mode, a stand mode, a tent mode, and a tablet mode, all thanks to the 360° swinging lid on sturdy steel hinges with zinc alloy caps. The laptop is also extremely comfortable to hold in hand—there are two grips at the bottom to ensure the machine does not slip from your hand. The all-around protection and utmost convenience in use make the Chromebook versatile and usable not only in a classroom but outdoors as well when kids do projects and need to take notes or check guidelines and tutorials.
Better Than a Tablet
The screen of the laptop is 11.6” and 10-point touch-sensitive, which makes for a comfortable and fast use in tablet mode. At the same time, the 32GB hard drive will handle more apps and content than an average tablet. And if it is not enough, the connectivity options include 2 USB Type-A and 2 USB Type-C ports (one of each at both sides) and a micro SD card slot, so you can connect external drives. No HDMI port, though, to connect to a TV or projector.
There are two cameras on the C213SA, a 5MP “rear” camera on the keyboard part and an HD front one above the screen. This makes the Chromebook more like a tablet—you can record videos and take photos of the world around you (in a tent mode) as well as take selfies and make video calls.
Since this Chromebook has a touch screen, it is logical for the manufacturer to include a stylus with it, which they did. The stylus pen is similar to those used with Wacom drawing tablets, it is based on an EMR technology and thus needs no battery. If you like to draw or take written notes, the pen is a great option and if you don’t, you can choose to buy the laptop alone. The option with the pen also includes a Corning Gorilla cover glass.
Lenovo Flex 11 Chromebook (ZA270025US)
Adaptable for Any Use
If you are looking for an affordable Chromebook to use for work and entertainment and versatility of use is high on your appreciated features list, check out this model.
The Lenovo Flex 11 is not a monster when it comes to features, it is more like your helpful and reliable assistant that is always there when you need it. It will not die on you, the battery is powerful enough for 10 hours of uninterrupted work. The 4GB of RAM allows you to work with fairly demanding apps. Seeing as it is a Chromebook, it is geared towards Internet work and Google apps specifically, so running Google apps will be smooth and even with multiple tabs open, the laptop will react fast to your every demand.
The model is equipped with an 11.6” IPS display and supports touch operation, including 10-point multitouch. Add here a strong 360° hinge that has four positions to choose from and the laptop doubles as a tablet with a stand when you do not need a physical keyboard. This is particularly convenient when you watch a movie or read a book. The anti-glare coating will enable you to do that outdoors as well—on a beach, in the park, or simply lounging in a hammock on your backyard.
Dependable Like an Old Friend
The Lenovo Flex 11 Chromebook is made to live through many dangerous situations we find ourselves in throughout the day. Though we would not recommend you to throw it from your window the moment they kill off Jon Snow for real, the housing of this laptop is reinforced enough to withstand accidental drops from certain height, at the very least. At the same time, the device is partially protected from being dropped thanks to its housing finish, texturized to make it more grip-friendly. As long as you’re careful, it won’t slip from your hands.
It will also live through a glass of water spilled on the keyboard when your cat decides it wants some attention: the keyboard is constructed in a way for the water to never get to the sensitive elements at all.
Great Option for Conferences, Classes, and Business Meetings
Connectivity in Chromebooks is usually limited to USB ports and a card reader since these devices are mainly created for browsing. This model has a traditional USB 3.0 (Type-A), a USB Type-C (suitable both for data input-output and for charging gadgets), an SD card slot, and a combined mic/audio jack for a headset. But what has grabbed our attention is the HDMI port. It is not that frequent to find one on a Chromebook, most manufacturers forego it in favor of another USB port. An HDMI will come in handy if you want to connect your laptop to a TV or a projector and hold a movie night with friends and family or a business presentation. And for online conferences and calls, there is a 720p web camera.
Truly, the Lenovo Flex 11 is a great small laptop at a nice price.
What Is a Chromebook?
Chromebook is a laptop operated by the special Chrome OS developed by Google. The programs are not installed on a hard drive, as it is on conventional laptops - instead, you access them via Google Chrome browser. All your information is securely stored on the Google servers. Chromebooks have the following peculiarities:
- Data safety - even if you lose your Chromebook, all your documents, photos, and music will remain in your private cloud and, therefore, will not be lost.
- Fast system boot and operation - a Chromebook recovers from the sleep mode within 1 second.
- Good battery life which means a Chromebook works autonomously for several hours and it makes it an important assistant, particularly during business trips.
- Chrome OS from Google is virus-proof.
You need to have access to the Internet in order to use Chrome laptops. If you realize that you will not be able to stay online but you will need a good battery life - make sure to check out our ultrabook comparison.
Also, you can get netbooks which are also compact and have a good battery life, but these devices are more expensive than Chromebooks.
What Features to Compare
There are many Chromebook reviews on the Internet but can you still make a reasonable choice? No, because many of Chromebook comparisons are too detailed or contain the information right from the commercial booklets. That is why we have selected 5 top Chromebooks available and analyzed only the features that are truly important for potential buyers.
The first feature to consider is the Design of a Chromebook. It tells you how flexible and convenient a laptop is and how easy using it every day is. Here is what we include in this feature: a form factor, compactness, and, of course, material a Chromebook is made of.
The next issue to take into account is the Performance and Memory - though Chrome laptops are designed for rather simple tasks, they need to be powerful enough to open multiple tabs in Google Chrome browser, cope up with different online activities, and so on. When assessing performance and memory, you should consider the processing unit (CPU) and the RAM memory capacity. The more powerful the CPU, the better the performance of the Chromebook. However, keep in mind that the RAM capacity is usually quite small for this type of devices, ranging from 2 GB to 4 GB. Also, you should check the storage capacity since you will not always have Internet access and, in this case, you will need to use the internal storage.
Also, consider the Display and Image Quality of every device in our Chromebook review. The screen size matters since customers need different devices - some want a really small Chrome laptop whereas others want 15.6-inch gadgets. Also, pay attention to a screen resolution and the viewing angles every display provides.
Finally, make sure to check what Battery Life every Chromebook provides. The larger the capacity of the battery is, the longer a Chrome laptop will be able to run before it requires recharging.
1. Gabie Kur How to choose the right Chromebook for you, TechRadar. June 22, 2015.
2. Mark LaFay HOW TO CHOOSE A CHROMEBOOK, dummies.
3. Henry T. Casey Should I Buy a Chromebook? Buying Guide and Advice, Laptop Mag. October 13, 2016.
4. Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols How to pick the best Chromebook for school, ZDNet. August 16, 2016.
5. Valentina Palladino Chromebooks vs. Windows 10 Laptops: What Should You Buy? Laptop Mag. May 13, 2016.