It’s been 5 years now since Chromebooks landed on Earth and they’ve come a long way. Even though the first models were deemed useless by laptop enthusiasts, nowadays Chromebooks are able to make the bang for the buck a dream come true as far as productivity goes. This being said, we answered the question behind that fancy heading already: those who need a cheap solution to nail some productivity should definitely buy a Chromebook.
What can a Chromebook do and why is it called like that?
Well, Chromebooks are intended for browsing the web, editing Office documents, Facebook, YouTube, watching movies and that’s all. They are called Chromebooks because they run Google’s operating system Chrome OS. No Linux, no Mac, no fancy Windows on a Chromebook. The OS name tells the story behind the Chromebook concept: browsing the web with Google Chrome Browser.
You won’t be able to play games on Chromebooks, edit videos, or any kind of high demanding tasks. Also,running a different operating system or Windows software is not compatible. In fact, they are low-cost laptops, so performance won’t scream from a mile away. Don’t be surprised when you discover that a Chromebook won’t be able to play 2 x 1080p 60fps videos simultaneously without hiccups. They are not intended for heavy multitasking either.
The $299 aluminum Acer Chromebook 14
Let’s take a closer look at the Acer Chromebook 14. This is one of the bestselling Chromebooks on the market right now and after this short preview, you will certainly know if you need a Chromebook or not. Acer Chromebook 14 looks and feels premium because of its chassis, entirely made of aluminum. We were accustomed with cheap plastic Chromebooks in this $300 price range, but Acer wants to change things around and to push forward the Chromebook concept. If you like aluminum laptops, this Acer Chromebook 14 is certainly going to be your favorite option.
Internals are not fancy. In fact, processor and graphics need to keep a low profile in order to have a low price, good comfort (low noise – this model has zero fans installed), and a thin body. We’re talking about an Intel Celeron N3160 processor (1.6 GHz Quad core), 4 GB of RAM memory, 32 GB internal flash storage and Intel HD 400 for graphics. Nothing fancy inside, but powerful enough to get the job done.
And I really like the display, it is a 14-inch IPS 1080p panel… This is way above the Chromebook concept because they usually get 10 or 13.3 inches maximum, not 14 inches. 14 inches is perfect for mobility but also for productivity thanks to the 1080p resolution. High resolutions will make your life easier when working on large Excel sheets. I want to emphasize how important a 1080p display is on a 14-inch laptop. This is a tremendous step forward for Chromebooks.
As for the ports, Acer Chromebook 14 has 2 x USB 3 and a full size HDMI. Unfortunately, there is no MicroSD card slot for this model so you are going to be stuck with the 32 GB of internal storage. Well, to be honest, if you are going to surf the web or do your job with this Chromebook, you won’t really need more than that anyway. Small files can be uploaded into cloud storage in no time.
Time to weigh. This Chromebook is 0.7 inch thin (just like Razer Blade 2016) and weighs no more than 3.42 lbs. That’s close to nothing compared to full-size 14 or 15.6-inch laptops. The 3950 mAh battery is included in those 3.42 lbs and will get you around 12 hours of juice. Of course, realistically speaking, that would be around 7-8 hours.
Acer Chromebook 14 summary
Having said that, let’s wrap things up and review the facts behind Acer Chromebook 14. You will love the aluminum body, the 14-inch IPS 1080p display and the battery life. You won’t like the absence of the touchscreen for that 1080p display, the lack of an SD expansion slot and, of course, the lack of an illuminated keyboard. Using this Chromebook in a low-light environment will be a nightmare. But I think there are more advantages than disadvantages and the biggest advantage is the price.
This Chromebook costs under $300 and for that money, it brings a great bang for the buck and even though you could buy a full-size Windows laptop for $300-$350, it will lack the power, not to mention the battery life. You should really consider buying Acer Chromebook 14 if you need a premium looking laptop which will be able to get the job done and provide a great battery life also. Students might be interested as well.
Intel Celeron N3160 Quad-Core Processor 1.6GHz (Up to 2.24GHz)
100% Aluminum Chassis
4GB LPDDR3 Onboard SDRAM Memory, 32GB Internal Storage