Chromebooks have a number of advantages over standard laptops, but like all technology there are pros and cons to consider. We’ll take a look at the potential benefits and explain whether you should choose a Chromebook or not.
We will also pick out some of the best Chromebooks, because there are now a lot to choose from, and offer details on each selection. Every Chromebook we feature can also be purchased for up to 12% off through Techscheme. Read until the end to learn about how it all works.
What is a Chromebook?
For those learning about Chromebooks for the first time, here’s an overview. Chromebooks are laptops that run on Chrome OS - they don’t run Windows or Mac. This has a number of benefits over the full blown operating systems we are used to.
Everything that runs on a Chrome OS is through the Chrome browser or the Chrome store. This means you can browse the internet, use Google Drive, Google Docs and all supporting Google apps. You can also download thousands of other apps, extensions and games available from the Chrome store. You can also enable the Play Store and download Android apps.
Ultimately this means that whilst most Chromebooks may lack some powerful desktop apps, for most tasks you can get by without them. Chromebooks are great for school, general office work, or basic browsing. If you need to access more powerful apps and games like Photoshop, Fortnite (the desktop versions) or 3D modelling software like Blender and 3DS Max, you’ll need a Windows or Mac.
If you don’t need these kind of apps, Chromebooks can be great. Because they run such a simple OS, Chromebooks do not require much hardware. This means Chromebooks can be ultralight and have great battery life. On average, a Chromebooks battery life ranges between up to 10-12 hours.
The Best Chromebooks Available
We have listed the best Chromebooks available at various prices. Below our list, we’ve provided a more detailed explanation of each Chromebook.
Find out about how you can save on these prices in our summary section below.
|ASUS C202 11.6" Chromebook
|HP 11-v051na 11.6" Chromebook
|Acer 14 CB3-431 14” Dual Core Chromebook
|Acer CB3-431 14" Quad Core Chromebook
|Acer Spin 11 11.6" 2 in 1 Folding Chromebook
ASUS C202 11.6" Chromebook - £159 RRP
On the cheaper side of things, we have the ASUS C202. It's an 11.6 inch Chromebook with a dual core Intel Celeron N3060 processor, 2GB RAM, and 16GB base storage. The display has a 1366 x 768 resolution. The battery life will get you up to 10 hours on a single charge, and the product itself is light, yet durable. It's the perfect travel companion.
The Asus C202 also has an anti-glare screen for viewing outside and a spill proof keyboard. Not the best offering in terms of display and performance, but when you need a reliable laptop for use outdoors, the 1.3KG C202 has your back.
HP 11-v051na 11.6" Chromebook - £199 RRP
The HP 11-v051na is another 11.6” Chromebook that costs just a tad more than the ASUS C202. The same processor is used, but you get 4GB RAM. The HP 11-v051na specifications besides that are very close to the ASUS C202. You get a similar 1366 x 768 resolution display, and the same style and size keyboard.
The keyboard doesn’t have anti spill, but you trade that for a larger battery life - up to 12.5 hours. Despite the longer battery life, the HP 11-v051na weighs just 1.2KG, slightly lower than the C202.
Acer 14 CB3-431 14” Dual Core Chromebook - £249 RRP
Up next, we have the Acer 14 CB3-431. This also uses the same N3060 Intel processor - it's affordable and performs well enough for Chrome OS, so you'll see it a lot in Chromebooks. Besides that, you get 2GB RAM, 32GB of storage and a battery life up to 12 hours.
What you're paying more for here is the larger 1366 x 768 resolution 14 inch display, which also allows for a bit more room for the keypad and for the trackpad. The Acer 14 CB3-431 weighs 1.55KG, which isn't bad for a 14 inch laptop. Another good point is that the laptop exterior is built from aluminum alloy, giving the interior components sturdy protection.
Acer CB3-431 14" Quad Core Chromebook - £299 RRP
Pay an additional £50 and you can get the upgraded version of the laptop above. This laptop has an improved 1920x1080 display, so if you care about viewing HD content, this is a great starting point.
The interior specs have also been upgraded. This model includes a quad core N3160 processor, a big boost over the N3060, and you also get 4GB RAM and 32GB storage. If you are looking for a device to watch media or play Chrome store or Android games, it's a valuable upgrade.
Acer Spin 11 11.6" 2 in 1 Folding Chromebook - £329 RRP
Finally we have the Acer Spin 11 - the reason for the increased price on this 11.6 inch Chromebook is because it is a 2 in 1. This means you can fold it and use it as a tablet. You have a touch screen and stylus, and you can also fold the laptop back to use as a makeshift stand. Specifications are as good as they get for a Chromebook at this price point, too.
You get an even more upgraded quad core Celeron N3450 processor, 4GB RAM and 32GB internal storage. It should also be noted that the RAM used in this model is true DDR4 RAM, which offers significant speed benefits over the other options for transferring files, installing apps, and switching between apps.
The Acer Spin 11 does only have an 11.6” 1366 x 768 resolution, which is the only weak point of the product considering its competition. As for battery life, you can expect up to 10 hours of usage.
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