Google recently revealed the existence of the HP Chromebook 11, an 11-inch Chromebook that is now available in the US Google Play Store. According to Google, the Chromebook 11 is the result of a partnership with HP, and has a design that is inspired by the Google Chromebook Pixel. However, unlike the pricey Chromebook Pixel, the HP Chromebook 11 is made with affordability in mind, and will cost only US$279, much more affordable than even some tablets in the market.
To keep the price of the machine low, an ARM processor (Samsung Exynos 5250) primarily used in tablets was used in the Chromebook 11. Casual browsing and browser games would be no problem for this processor, but anything more strenuous (like 20 open tabs) would prevent an optimal experience with the Chromebook, which also only has 2GB of RAM.
A nice bonus that comes from this processor choice, is that you can expect the battery life of the Chromebook 11 to be pretty long lasting -- about six hours, according to Google. This also means the Chromebook 11 can afford to have a fanless design, due to the low power demands of its processor.
But of course, being cheap doesn't mean that the machine will look and feel cheap. The Chromebook 11 has an 11-inch display with a 1366 x 768 pixels resolution, which is pretty low when you consider what kinds of resolutions that tablets pack.
However, it's made with IPS technology, which means it's bright, and clear, even when you're viewing it from extreme angles. This means you don't have to sit squarely in the center to enjoy whatever is being displayed.
And even though the 1.03kg HP Chromebook 11 is made entirely from plastic, it has a magnesium alloy frame that gives it a rigidity that prevents the machine from bending or flexing, even if you hold it from the corners. This shows that the Chromebook can take a fair bit of abuse, and is quite suitable for children to use.
And as for charging, the Chromebook 11 relies on micro-USB, so there's no need to carry around any bulky power cords or bricks. All you need would be a generic micro-USB cable and you'd be able to charge the notebook. This gives users the convenience of charging their Chromebook anywhere they can charge a mobile phone.
As with other Chromebooks, the Chromebook 11 will be come with 100GB of Google Drive cloud storage, but unfortunately it will only be free for the first two years, after which, a subscription fee has to be paid in order to retain it.
When Google revealed the new HP Chromebook, only the 11-inch version was mentioned. However, if you went into the HP Chromebook page, you will see that there's also a new 14-inch version which runs a fourth generation Intel Celeron (2995U) processor.
This larger Chromebook will also come in three different colors, and has a 32GB SSD instead of an 16GB eMMC drive that comes with the Chromebook 11. In our experience, SSDs typically have less issues with multi-tasking than eMMC (for example, it tends to slow down if you're downloading something) has.
Both Chromebook models come with the typical connectivity options like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, but the Chromebook 11 only has built-in 3G, instead of the built-in 4G that the Chromebook 14 has.
There has not been any announcements regarding the HP Chromebooks' availability in Singapore, but Chromebooks are officially available in Singapore now, so it's highly possible that HP will make them available here. We'll update this space once we hear more from HP.