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Acer Chromebook Spin 513 review: A solid Chromebook 2-in-1

Acer Chromebook Spin 513

MSRP $616.00

“The Acer Chromebook Spin 513 hits all the marks as a premium Chromebook with all the bells and whistles.”

Pros

  • Solid productivity performance
  • Strong battery life
  • Excellent 3:2 IPS display
  • Comfortable touchpad
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Keyboard was behind the curve
  • Display bezels are large

Chromebook convertible 2-in-1s have completely caught up with their Windows competition. Active pen support, taller 16:10 and 3:2 displays, and higher resolutions screens — they’re finally up to snuff.

Acer’s updated Chromebook Spin 513 is a classic example, offering an efficient and quick MediaTek ARM processor and a 3:2 display that’s bright and sharp. Acer wanted us to mention our review unit’s model number, the CP513-2H, noting that it’s the model’s second generation.

My review unit is priced at $615 and includes the MediaTek Kompanio 1380 8-core CPU and a 13.5-inch 3:2 2K (2256 x 1504) IPS display. I found the 2-in-1 to be a fast contender in the Chromebook space, with enough battery life to stand out. It’s a solid offering for Chrome OS fans who want the option of flipping their display into tablet mode and writing or sketching on the display.

Design

Acer Chromebook Spin 513 rear view showing lid and logos.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

A combination of sandblasted and anodized aluminum in the chassis’ top and bottom covers and plastic in the keyboard deck creates a laptop that’s meant to be durable on the outside but lightweight. I found the lid slightly bendable, the keyboard deck to demonstrate some flex, and the bottom chassis sturdy.

It wasn’t egregious, though, and the overall build quality was quite robust for a $600 laptop. It’s equal to similarly priced Chromebooks like the slightly larger Acer Chromebook Spin 514, while it’s less robust than the slightly more expensive HP Chromebook x360 14c. The hinge was loose, allowing the lid to be opened with one hand but being a little wobbly in a couple of its four modes: Clamshell, tent, media, and tablet.

Acer Chromebook Spin 513 media mode showing display.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Aesthetically, the Chromebook Spin 513 is a bit plain, with a unicolored dark grey chassis with zero adornments and straightforward lines. The rear edge is angled, and there’s a flair at the front sides, but otherwise, this is a typical laptop design. The Chromebook Spin 514 is a little sharper in its silver color, but it, too, is minimalistic. It seems that’s the trend with Chrome OS laptops (and laptops in general, frankly), as the HP Chromebook x360 14c is another that’s simplistic in its aesthetic.

The Chromebook Spin 513 doesn’t have minimal bezels, particularly on the bottom, where the chin is massive by contemporary standards. Given the slightly larger 13.5-inch 3:2 display, it’s quite a bit deeper and a little wider than other 13-inch laptops. It’s 0.64 inches thick and weighs 2.83 pounds, which is thin and light enough to be easy to carry around.

Ports

Connectivity is solid, with two USB-C 3.2 Gen 1 ports, a USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 port, a 3.5mm audio jack, and a microSD card reader. Wireless connectivity is slightly behind the curve with Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1.

Performance

Acer Chromebook Spin 513 top down view showing display and keyboard deck.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Acer Chromebook Spin 513 is built around the eight-core MediaTek Kompanio 1380 CPU, paired with an Arm-Mali G57 MC45 five-core GPU. The CPU is intended to be fast enough for the lightweight Chrome OS while offering long battery life. My review unit was also configured with 8GB of RAM, a ton of memory in a Chromebook, and 128GB of slower eMMC storage.

We can’t run many of our benchmarks in Chrome OS, but I was able to test the Chromebook Spin 513 in the Android version of Geekbench 5 and the Speedometer 2.0 web benchmark. In Geekbench 5, the MediaTek CPU achieved 936 in single-core and 3,438 in multi-core. That’s quite competitive with other ARM-based Chromebooks such as the HP Chromebook x2 11 with its Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c that scored 599 and 1,718.

I found the Chromebook Spin 513 to be plenty speedy at everything I threw at it.

Of course, Chrome OS laptops with Intel Core processors were faster, including the Asus Chromebook Flip CX5 with a Core i5-1135G7 that scored 1,190 and 4,151. However, the Chromebook Spin 513 wasn’t far off, which is a solid showing. In Speedometer 2.0, the Acer hit 76, well above the Chromebook x2 11’s 45 and below the Chromebook Clip CX5’s 163.

Subjectively, I found the Chromebook Spin 513 to be plenty speedy at everything I threw at it. I could open multiple Chrome tabs and run a few Android apps without things slowing down, largely due to the large amount of RAM. Even Android gaming was quick, with titles like Asphalt 9 playing without noticeable stutter.

Geekbench
(single / multi)
Speedometer 2.0
Acer Chromebook Spin 513
(MediaTek Kompanio 1380)
936 / 3,438 76
HP Chromebook x360 14c
(Core i3-1125G4)
898 / 2,866 N/A
HP Chromebook x2 11
(Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c)
590 / 1,689 45
Asus Chromebook Flip CX5
(Core i5-1135G7)
1,190 / 4,151 163

Display and audio

Acer Chromebook Spin 513 front view showing display.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

One of the laptop’s more impressive features was its 13.5-inch 3:2 2K (2256 x 1504) IPS display. The taller aspect ratio is great for productivity, and the panel was sharp enough that I had to look for pixels. My colorimeter isn’t supported in Chrome OS, so the following are my subjective impressions.

First, I found the display more than bright enough for all my working environments, with only outside in direct sunlight being unusable. Acer quotes 360 nits for the display, and I believe it’s hitting that number, if not higher. Next, colors were plentiful and seemed natural, with no oversaturation. Finally, the contrast seemed high enough that blacks looked black and not grey, and text on a white background popped.

Tablet mode works great thanks to the 3:2 aspect ratio.

The display was comfortable in tablet mode thanks to the 3:2 aspect ratio that’s closer to a sheet of paper. The display is touch-enabled and worked well, and there’s optional USI pen support.

Sound is delivered via two downward-firing speakers on the front bottom of the chassis. It was average in volume with clear mids and highs and zero bass. You’ll want headphones or external speakers for your Netflix bingeing and music listening pleasure.

Keyboard, touchpad, and webcam

Acer Chromebook Spin 513 top down view showing keyboard and touchpad.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The Chromebook Spin 513’s keyboard is nicely sized, with keycaps that are just big enough and plenty of key spacing. The switches have a solid click and require more pressure to engage than most. There’s a comfortable bottoming action and plenty of travel. Overall, it’s a serviceable keyboard that may not be among the best you’ll find on premium laptops, but it’s the equal of most laptops I’ve tried that are less $1,000.

The touchpad is adequately sized for a 13-inch laptop, although there’s room for a larger version. It’s covered with Corning Gorilla Glass, which is a nice touch at this price point, and it’s smooth and comfortable with precise support for the full complement of Chrome OS multitouch gestures. The buttons have a responsive snap that’s just the tiniest bit too loud.

While the laptop industry is heading toward Full HD webcams, you don’t necessarily expect that from a budget laptop. Accordingly, the Chromebook Spin 513’s webcam is a 720p model, although it still provides clear and bright images.

Battery life

Acer Chromebook Spin 513 rear corner view showing ports and hinge.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Chrome OS is an efficient operating system, and the MediaTek CPU also promises greater efficiency. That should result in strong battery life even given the relatively small 36-watt-hour capacity.

In our web benchmark that runs through a series of popular and complex websites, the Chromebook Spin 513 made it to just over 11 hours, a strong showing that’s behind the HP Chromebook x2 11 with its slower Qualcomm CPU. It’s much longer than the Intel-based Chromebooks in our comparison group could manage. Next, in our video test that loops a local Full HD Avengers trailer, the Chromebook Spin 513 lasted for about 12.75 hours, another strong score that led the pack.

Battery life was a real strength of the Chromebook Spin 513.

Web browsing Video
Acer Chromebook Spin 513
(MediaTek Kompanio 1380)
11 hours, 7 minutes 12 hours, 42 minutes
HP Chromebook x360 14c
(Core i3-1125G4)
7 hours, 44 minutes 8 hours, 2 minutes
HP Chromebook x2 11
(Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c)
12 hours, 42 minutes 10 hours, 59 minutes
Asus Chromebook Flip CX5
(Core i5-1135G7)
9 hours, 25 minutes 8 hours, 50 minutes

Our take

The Acer Chromebook Spin 513 provides a compelling balance of performance and battery life. It’s neither the fastest Chromebook you can buy nor the longest-lasting, but it’s a Chrome OS 2-in-1 that doesn’t force you to compromise.

The laptop had few outright weaknesses, with a build quality that was good enough given the $616 price, a really nice display, and an attractive if somewhat plain aesthetic. It’s a great option for anyone in the market for a Chrome OS 2-in-1.

Are there any alternatives?

I’m unaware of any Chromebook 2-in-1s in the same price range and with the same 3:2 high-res display. Acer’s Chromebook Spin 713 is one option, even though it’s a bit older, more expensive, and is stuck with Intel’s 1oth-gen CPU.

The HP Chromebook x360 14c is another option, coming in at about the same price with decent performance but less battery life, and it’s still running with a 16:9 Full HD display.

Finally, if you want to go the detachable tablet route, consider the HP Chromebook x2 11. It’s less expensive, has a smaller and sharper 11-inch 3:2 2K display, and also has good battery life. However, its performance can’t quite keep up.

How long will it last?

The Acer Chromebook Spin 513 was robust enough to last for years of typical use, and its components should keep up with Chrome OS. Its one-year warranty is typical and fine for a laptop in this price range.

Should you buy it?

Yes. The Acer Chromebook Spin 513 provides an attractive combination of speed, longevity, and value.

Editors’ Choice




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Why Zoom is shutting down its Chromebook app

Zoom has plans to shut down its Chrome app in August, to enable it to focus on its other applications.

9to5Google recently discovered a notice in the Zoom app detailing that the brand is directing users to begin using the Chrome PWA (progressive web app) ahead of its discontinuation of the Zoom app for Chromebooks.

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

“This app will no longer be officially supported after August 2022. Please use the new Zoom for Chrome PWA to join meetings on ChromeOS,” Zoom said in the notice.

The Zoom video conferencing platform, which became popular during the pandemic in 2020 has been compatible with most computing systems. Chromebooks have been especially popular with schools and universities due to their low cost and compatibility with Google’s ChromeOS, TechRadar noted.

However, Google has had plans since August 2020 to discontinue its Chrome apps on all platforms across the board, culminating with the end of support for Chrome apps on ChromeOS in June 2022.

But with the option of either the Chrome PWA or the Android app, accessing Zoom shouldn’t be a problem. Zoom plans to provide some app updates to the web app that makes it easier to use, with a look and feel similar to other platform versions such as Windows and MacOS. It also has various advanced chat features, such as background blur, 9to5Google added.

PWA installation is fairly easy and can be done through most web browsers, such as Chrome. Typically, you can find the installation option by accessing the three-dot icon located at the top right corner of the browser.

Have the app or program you want to install open in the browser tap. If there is no “apps section” in the drop-down menu, you should be able to go directly to an “install app” option. Select install and it should do so automatically.

Once installed, many popular apps will show up as icons on the system dock for easy access. To uninstall just go back to that setting and select uninstall.

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Lenovo 2-in-1 Chromebook Deal: Save $300 While Stock Lasts

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

With many great Chromebook deals taking place right now, it’s a better time than ever to shop for an affordable, capable laptop. The Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook is seeing a huge discount when you purchase directly from Lenovo right now, as the popular laptop maker has dropped the price to just $249. That’s an impressive savings of $350, more than half off the regular price, which is $599. Free two-day shipping is included, and businesses, students, and teachers are eligible for additional savings as well. Inventory is likely to go quickly, so click over to Lenovo now to claim your discount on a new Chromebook.

When considering Chromebooks vs. laptops for your next computing device, the Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook is a good consideration no matter what direction you may be leaning. It has the portability and affordability we’ve all come to value in a Chromebook, and it manages not to sacrifice when it comes to performance and capability. It packs the power of an AMD Athlon Gold 3150C processor, 4GB of system RAM, and integrated AMD Radeon graphics. Its 13.3-inch full high-definition touchscreen brings the touch functionality of a tablet to your computing workflow, as well as an immersive experience when taking in movies and other content.

If you’re thinking about making one of the best Chromebooks for your next computer purchase, the Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook is a device that has to be part of the conversation. It has a high-quality webcam, which makes it an option amongst the best laptops for videoconferencing, and its modest price point makes it ripe for buying in bulk, and a great option amongst the best business laptops. Students will love its portability and versatility, as its 2-in-1 nature makes it a lot of fun to tote around campus. Lenovo’s ThinkPad lineup features a lot of great Chromebook options, and if you feel there might be a better ThinkPad out there for you, explore the models in our Lenovo ThinkPad buying guide.

Powerful, portable, and super affordable with this deal going on at Lenovo right now, the ThinkPad C14 Yoga Chromebook makes one of the best laptop deals around. It’s currently just $249, and is typically priced at $599. That’s a savings of $350, and even more savings are available for businesses, students, and teachers.

Editors’ Choice




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This Chromebook is $99 at Best Buy today — save $120!

Don’t get stressed out if the laptop deals that you see are still beyond your budget, especially if you’re only planning to use the laptop that you’ll buy for basic tasks such as typing documents, browsing the internet, and watching streaming content. If that’s the case, you might want to consider buying a Chromebook, which is generally cheaper than traditional Windows-based laptops. You can even get one for less than $100 with this offer from Best Buy that slashes $120 off the Asus 11.6-inch Chromebook’s original price of $219, making it extra affordable at just $99.

The Asus 11.6-inch Chromebook, true to its name, comes with an 11.6-inch display with HD resolution, which is supported by Intel HD Graphics. The laptop also comes with a built-in HD webcam and microphone, so you can be clearly seen and heard when you join video calls and online meetings. The Chromebook is also very light and sleek, with a weight of just over 2 pounds and thickness of less than an inch, so it’s easy to carry around if you’re always moving.

Inside the Asus 11.6-inch Chromebook are the Intel Celeron N3350 processor, 4GB of RAM, and a 32GB eMMC flash memory. While these specifications are very low for other kinds of laptops, they’re already decent for a Chromebook because Chrome OS relies on web-based apps instead of installed software. Even with budget components, you’ll be able to enjoy quick startups and snappy performance. The Asus 11.6-inch Chromebook isn’t as feature-packed as the best Chromebooks, but for both students and professionals who won’t be using any intensive apps in their daily activities, it’s more than enough.

You won’t always get the chance to buy a laptop for less than $100, so you shouldn’t hesitate on taking advantage of Best Buy’s $120 discount for the Asus 11.6-inch Chromebook. The offer brings the machine’s price down to just $99 from $219 originally, but it will end on June 10 so there’s not much time left for this bargain. It’s highly recommended that you don’t wait until the last minute though, as there’s a chance for Chromebook deals to end early because stocks run out. Finalize your purchase for the Asus 11.6-inch Chromebook quickly, while the price cut’s still online.

Editors’ Choice




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AMD May Work With Samsung on New 4nm Chromebook Processors

AMD may soon work with the Samsung chip foundry in order to prepare 4nm Chromebook processors, according to Gokul Hariharan, an analyst at J.P. Morgan.

AMD has previously only worked with two semiconductor factories — TSMC and GlobalFoundries — but if the report proves to be true, the cooperation with Samsung may also extend to graphics cards.

AMD

The cooperation between AMD and GlobalFoundries, and later mainly TSMC, has lasted for over a decade. It now seems that AMD may be looking to expand its reach and utilize Samsung’s 4LPP process in the creation of new Chromebook processors. These new 4nm nodes are likely to end up in AMD’s entry-level APUs, which are optimized for long battery life at minimal power requirements.

“Our research indicates that AMD is likely to outsource a Chromebook CPU to Samsung on its 4nm (likely mass production in late 2022), and TSMC may have limited capacity to allocate for Chromebook projects, given the declining market demand,” said Hariharan in a note.

If AMD does indeed proceed with working with Samsung, some of its products will be changed compared to the chips manufactured at TSMC. It’s possible that AMD may have to redesign its CPU and GPU IP in order to adapt it to Samsung’s 4LPP 4nm-class node process. Although this could prove to be rather costly, branching out is never a bad idea, and the 4nm process node seems well-suited for the low power requirements of Chromebooks.

AMD Ryzen 5000G
AMD

The analysts at J.P. Morgan also believe that AMD may use the Samsung Foundry for some of its graphics card designs going forward, but this won’t happen until much later. The report predicts 2023/2024 as the time when AMD may work with Samsung 3nm on some GPU-related projects. Although AMD is definitely branching out, the analysts predict that the vast majority of its core platforms will remain with TSMC N3.

The information comes from a note prepared for the clients of J.P. Morgan that was then shared on Twitter by @MarcTheShark83. We’re not likely to see the new AMD APU anytime soon — production is set to begin in 2022. AMD is also working on new APUs from the AMD Rembrandt 6000-series, which when released will offer unprecedented iGPU performance for this price range.

AMD is not the first manufacturer looking to switch things up. Recent rumors suggest that Apple may soon change its new M1 Pro and M1 Max chips. Found inside the new MacBook Pros, these chips are currently based on a 5nm manufacturing process, and it’s impossible to deny that they deliver top-notch performance. However, Apple might be about to switch to a 3nm process in order to achieve even better output. These chips would be created in cooperation with TSMC.

Editors’ Choice






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Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook Review: OLED For Cheap

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook

MSRP $500.00

“The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook brings OLED goodness to a surprisingly cheap 2-in-1.”

Pros

  • Acceptable productivity performance
  • Very long battery life
  • Excellent display
  • Solid build quality
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Display is in the old-school 16:9 aspect ratio
  • Limited to Wi-Fi 5
  • Kickstand add-on is inconvenient

Chromebooks don’t often beat Windows to market when it comes to implementing new technologies, but Lenovo’s IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook did just that. It’s the first detachable tablet with an OLED display, hitting the market just before the Asus Vivobook 13 Slate that marks the first Windows 11 detachable tablet sporting OLED technology. The IdeaPad Duet 5 is built around Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 7c Gen 2, an ARM chip, giving it another first. It’s a larger tablet, but it’s nevertheless an alternative to other low-cost devices like the Apple iPad and Microsoft Surface Go 3.

I reviewed the midrange configuration of the IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook, running $500 and including the Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 and a 13.3-inch 1080p OLED display. I found the tablet to punch well above its price, representing one of the best 2-in-1 tablets at this price.

Design

The Asus ZenBook 14X OLED in its case.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The first thing you’ll notice about the IdeaPad Duet 5, if you look closely enough, is that its display is in the old-school 16:9 aspect ratio. The laptop world is moving toward taller displays, 16:10 or 3:2, which is particularly useful in tablets that more closely mimic a standard sheet of paper in portrait mode. A 16:9 tablet, by comparison, is longer and skinnier, making it less comfortable for viewing documents and taking notes with a pen.

The IdeaPad Duet 5’s bezels are small on the sides and slightly thicker on the top and bottom. They’re not huge by tablet standards, and the IdeaPad Duet 5 is reasonably sized given the display. Compared to its closest Windows 11 competitor, the Microsoft Surface Pro 8 with its 13-inch 3:2 display, the IdeaPad Duet 5 is almost an inch wider, but the Surface Pro 8 is nearly an inch taller.

Microsoft’s tablet is thicker at 0.37 inches compared to the IdeaPad Duet 5’s 0.28 inches, but the Surface Pro 8 has its kickstand built in — more on that a moment. Of course, the IdeaPad Duet 5 is significantly larger than the Apple iPad and Microsoft Surface Go, which are built around 10.2-inch and 10.5-inch displays respectively. If you can stand the size, then the Lenovo is a viable competitor.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X12 Detachable is another competitive tablet with a 12.3-inch 3:2 display, and it’s roughly the same size as the Surface Pro 8, thanks to the latter’s smaller bezels. In terms of weight, the IdeaPad Duet 5 is 1.54 pounds for the tablet alone, compared to the Surface Pro 8 at 1.96 pounds and the ThinkPad X12 Detachable at 1.67 pounds. The IdeaPad Duet 5 isn’t a small tablet by any means, but it’s manageable. You’d save about half a pound going with Apple or Microsoft’s smallest tablets.

Closeup on the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED kickstand.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Now about that kickstand. Like the HP Chromebook x2 11, the IdeaPad Duet 5’s kickstand is an add-on that snaps onto the tablet’s back and is held in place by powerful magnets. That makes the tablet thicker and is inconvenient — it’s another thing to carry around. The Surface Pro 8 and ThinkPad X12 Detachable are much more pleasant to use with their built-in kickstand, although the IdeaPad Duet 5’s version works just as well. It, too, holds the tablet vertically without any wobble, and it extends just as far, to where the tablet is almost lying flat on a surface. If you don’t mind another piece to fiddle with, then you’ll be fine with the IdeaPad Duet 5’s version. And let’s not forget that this is a $500 tablet while the Lenovo and Microsoft versions are more than twice as expensive fully configured.

The IdeaPad Duet 5 is crafted of plastic, with the top portion of the back being a soft-coated version. It feels solid enough in hand, and your first hint that it’s not made of a metal alloy like the other laptops I’ve mentioned is that it’s not as cold to the touch after it’s been asleep for a while. Unless you have a thing against plastic devices, that’s not a real knock against the IdeaPad Duet 5 — especially given its price.

Aesthetically, the tablet is a dark grey (Storm Grey) or blue (Abyss Blue) slab with just the two-tone portion on the back giving it some panache. Minimalist designs are pretty much the standard for tablets, though, with the Lenovo ThinkPad X12 Detachable having the most exotic look.

Connectivity is limited to two USB-C 3.2 Gen 1 ports, one on either side of the tablet — either can be used for charging — and a pogo pin connector for the detachable keyboard. That’s it. And yes, Lenovo left off a 3.5mm audio jack. That’s a huge bummer in my book, and it’s the first tablet I know of that’s dropped the connection.

You’ll be limited to Bluetooth headphones, which I consider a liability. Speaking of wireless connectivity, the Snapdragon chipset limits the tablet to Wi-Fi 5 and Bluetooth 5.1. There’s no option for always-connected internet as there is with the HP Chromebook x2 11.

Performance

Asus ZenBook 14X OLED open on a table.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

The IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebooks uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 system-on-chip (SoC), a slightly updated version of the same ARM processor used in the HP Chromebook x2 11. As far as I can tell, the only significant difference is a tiny speed bump from 2.4GHz to 2.55GHz. Unsurprisingly, I found the IdeaPad Duet 5 to perform a lot like the Chromebook x2 11. That is to say, the ARM CPU was able to keep up with Chrome OS as long as I didn’t have too many tabs open in Chrome or too many Android apps running in the background. I’m sure that the 8GB of RAM and 128GB of eMMC storage had something to do with that.

We don’t have our full suite of benchmarks available with Chromebooks, but in the Android Geekbench 5 app, the IdeaPad Duet 5 scored 599 in single-core mode and 1,718 in multi-core mode. That’s just the tiniest bit faster than the Chromebook x2 11’s 590 and 1,689. It’s well behind faster Chromebooks like the Asus Chromebook Flip C536 which runs a Core i5-1115G4 that scored 1,209 and 2,849 and the Asus Chromebook Flip CX5 with a Core i5-1135G7 that achieved 1,190 and 4,151. The IdeaPad Duet 5’s score on the Speedometer 2.0 web benchmark was 47, just ahead of the Chromebook x2 11’s 45. By comparison, the Chromebook Flip CX5 hit 163.

Overall, you’ll be fine with the IdeaPad Duet 5’s performance as long as your productivity workflow isn’t too demanding. As I said, with a reasonable number of tabs and Android apps open, the tablet performed just fine. Exceed that amount, though, and things did start to get noticeably slower. And limit yourself to casual Android games — Asphalt 9, the Android game I use to test Chromebooks, was choppy and demonstrated considerable lag when I tried to run it on the IdeaPad Duet 5. An Apple iPad will run iPad OS games more fluidly, making it a more viable gaming tablet.

Display

Closeup on the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED display.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

From the moment I turned on the IdeaPad Duet 5, I could tell there was something different. OLED displays are so much more dynamic and eye-catching than IPS displays, and the 13.3-inch Full HD version on the IdeaPad Duet 5 is no exception. The colors were pleasant and natural, the contrast was deep with inky blacks, and the display was more than bright enough for all my working environments.

My two complaints start with its 16:9 aspect ratio, which, as I mentioned earlier, isn’t nearly as functional in portrait mode than 16:10 and 3:2 displays, and it also seemed squashed. It’s not a deal-breaker — there are plenty of 16:9 laptops and tablets still being made today — but it’s less than ideal. Next, the Full HD resolution was just okay at the 13.3-inch display size. A sharper screen would have helped, particularly regarding text, and while black text on a white background popped, they did so with some pixels. A higher-resolution display would also have been welcome, but for $500, it’s hard to complain.

Closeup on the Asus ZenBook 14X OLED display without keyboard attachment.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Despite this, most users will love this display. Even creative types who want a Chromebook for viewing photos and videos will love the colors and contrast. This display will please all but the pickiest pixel-peepers and those who use a pen to take lots of notes.

Unfortunately, the audio doesn’t live up to the display, despite sporting four side-firing speakers. To begin with, there’s not a ton of volume, even when turned all the way up, and worse yet, there’s distortion that strips out what little bass is there and creates a very tinny sound. Mids and highs are clear with the volume at about half, but the bass is lacking. Overall, you’ll want to use Bluetooth headphones or speakers for anything other than system sounds and the occasional YouTube video.

Keyboard and touchpad

Lenovo includes a detachable keyboard with the IdeaPad Duet 5, and it’s the same basic design as most such keyboards — with one exception. It attaches to the tablet via magnets and connects via pogo pins, but unlike most keyboards, it doesn’t have the option to prop it up at an angle. You’re stuck using it lying flat, which isn’t nearly as comfortable. There’s plenty of key spacing thanks to the 13.3-inch display and the width it provides, and the keycaps are large and comfortable. The switches provide plenty of travel and have snappy bottoming action. The keyboard feels great — if only Lenovo would have built in an angle.

The touchpad is also good, of sufficient size to be comfortable using the Chrome OS suite of multitouch gestures. The surface is comfortable for swiping, and the buttons have a nice click without being too loud. The display is touch-enabled, of course, and it supports an optional Lenovo active pen. One wasn’t provided with my review unit, so I couldn’t test inking with the IdeaPad Duet 5.

Battery life

OLED displays can sometimes be the kiss of death when it comes to battery life. But that’s primarily because most OLED laptops use 4K resolution. The IdeaPad Duet 5 uses a 1080p screen and combines that with a low-power Snapdragon processor. It also packed in 42 watt-hours of battery, a reasonable amount for this size device — and more than the HP Chromebook x2 11’s 32 watt-hours. I was very curious to see how long the detachable tablet would last on a charge.

I was pleasantly surprised. In our web browsing test that cycles through a series of popular and demanding websites, the IdeaPad Duet 5 lasted for 15.5 hours — an excellent score that beat the Chromebook x2 11’s 12.75 hours. The 10.1-inch Lenovo IdeaPad Duet, with its 27 watt-hour battery and MediaTek Helio P60T ARM processor, lasted about 13 hours. In our video test that loops a local 1080p movie trailer, the IdeaPad Duet 5 made it to a whopping 21.75 hours — one of the longest-lasting devices we’ve tested. It trounced the Chromebook x2 11’s 11 hours and the IdeaPad Duet’s 12.5 hours.

Simply put, the IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook will last you through well over a day’s work, while leaving some time left over for binging Netflix. Chromebooks running ARM CPUs should have excellent battery life, and the IdeaPad Duet 5 lives up to that promise.

Our take

At $500, the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook is an excellent value. You get good enough productivity performance and outstanding battery life. The OLED display looks great too, even if it’s not perfect.

Anyone looking for a Chrome tablet on the cheap that they can use for their web browsing, email triage, and media consumption will find that the IdeaPad Duet 5 is a great choice.

Are there any alternatives?

The HP Chromebook x2 11 is a close alternative, sporting almost the same CPU and a very similar performance. At the same time, its display is good but not as great, and its battery life lags. You can also get it for $100 less, albeit with half the storage.

Another option is the Microsoft Surface Go 3. It’s a Windows 11 laptop, and it’s smaller, but its build quality and performance are just as good and it has its own excellent display. It’s more expensive when you add in the cost of the keyboard, but it’s worth it as well.

Finally, the Apple iPad is a good tablet to consider, although it too is quite a bit smaller. You’ll want to stick with the $329 entry-level model or risk spending a lot more. But it’s faster thanks to a speedier ARM CPU and a highly optimized OS, and it has a great display. It’s also thin, light, and well-built.

How long will it last?

The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook might be made of plastic, but that doesn’t mean it won’t provide years of service. You’ll get plenty of performance out of Chrome OS for some time as well. The one-year warranty is fine for a $500 laptop.

Should you buy it?

Yes. The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 is fast enough for the price, making it a long-lasting secondary device with a beautiful display for consuming media. It’s the best tablet you’ll find for the money.




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Best Cyber Monday Chromebook Deals 2021: Early Offers Today

Black Friday is over and Cyber Monday is right around the corner, and the early waves of Cyber Monday deals are already bringing in plenty of Cyber Monday Chromebook deals. That means that if you’ve been thinking about trying out one of these efficient and affordable Chrome-powered laptops — portable computers that run on Google’s cloud-based Chrome operating system — now’s your chance. There are plenty of great Cyber Monday laptop deals up for grabs today, and these include a lot of deep discounts on Chromebooks. Read on to see all the best Cyber Monday Chromebook deals that are on tap.

Best Cyber Monday Chromebook deals 2021

  • Acer Chromebook 311 — $109, was $249
  • Lenovo Chromebook 3 Touch — $149, was $319
  • Lenovo Chromebook Flex 3 11-inch — $160, was $320
  • Samsung 15.6-inch Chromebook — $199, was $299
  • Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook — $225, was $280
  • Asus Chromebook Flip C433 14-inch — $330, was $480
  • Acer Chromebook Spin 713 — $346, was $373
  • Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 — $399, was $549
  • Samsung Galaxy 4K Chromebook — $599, was $999
  • Google Pixelbook Go Touchscreen Chromebook — $599, was $649

Acer Chromebook 311 — $109, was $249

Why buy:

  • Great value
  • Sufficient specs for a cheap Chromebook
  • Stylish design
  • Good brand

The best Chromebooks don’t have to cost a fortune, as demonstrated by this Acer 11-inch Chromebook. It looks fantastic thanks to its sleek black and gray stylings, making it seem like a far more expensive laptop than it actually is. There’s no reason why you have to skimp on style even when checking out the cheapest of Chromebooks.

Elsewhere, it packs a reasonable punch for the price. It has a MediaTek octa-core processor, along with 4GB of memory and 32GB of eMMC storage. We’re also huge fans of the Chromebook having an 11-inch HD screen. Most Chromebooks go larger than this, but that compact screen makes this laptop a good choice for being more productive while on the move. You certainly won’t miss out on any key details here.

It’s these little things that soon add up and make this Chromebook a fantastic value for the price. Other features include all-day battery life, an HD webcam, a USB-C port, and solid Wi-Fi, as well as Bluetooth so your connection will never drop — just what you need from a reliable portable device.

Lenovo Chromebook 3 Touch — $149, was $319

Lenovo Chromebook 3.

Why buy:

  • Versatile touchscreen
  • Great size for productivity
  • Convenient design
  • Fantastic battery life

The Lenovo Chromebook 3 offers a lot for its low price — that’s because it’s a touchscreen laptop. You can use it as a regular Chromebook, or you can switch it up and start using it sort of like a tablet. However, it’s not a 2-in-1, so the display sadly doesn’t fold flat. Nonetheless, a large 14-inch touch display is easily the best thing about the Lenovo Chromebook 3 because it’s simply so flexible. It’s the kind of extra detail that we love to see in these cheap Chrome OS machines. However, there’s plenty more to love about this Chromebook.

It has a MediaTek multi-core processor, 4GB of memory, and 64GB of eMMC storage. It’s just what you need to get stuff done before storing things on the cloud via Google apps. Impressively, there’s also a battery life of up to 10 hours, so there’s little chance of you running out of juice, even throughout the busiest of days. Whether you’re using it as a laptop or taking advantage of the handy touchscreen, the battery life remains the same, so it’s truly convenient.

While it could be a little faster, if you want a touch display but don’t like the smaller 11-inch Chromebooks, this is an ideal alternative.

Also available

  • Lenovo Chromebook 3 (Non-Touch): $129, was $289 — VIEW DEAL

Lenovo Chromebook Flex 3 11-inch — $160, was $320

Lenovo Chromebook Flex 3 11 inch Laptop in white.

Why Buy:

  • Two-in-one device
  • Lightweight design
  • Good amount of storage
  • Conveniently practical

The Lenovo Chromebook Flex 3 11-inch keeps things simple yet surprisingly practical. It has almost everything you could need from a basic Chromebook, even if it’s not the fastest of devices. That includes a MediaTek processor, 4GB of memory, and 64GB of eMMC storage. The latter is a bit of a rarity for Chromebooks, especially at this price. Simply put, usually you only get 32GB of storage. That’s usually just fine as the majority of your files and work will be conducted online via the cloud but it’s nice to know you have the extra space at your disposal.

The other big convenient factor is that the 11.6-inch display can also be used as a tablet. You can easily switch things over between using it as a laptop or as a tablet with the option to use a form of a kickstand to place it in a more convenient way for typing up documents or presenting certain things. You can even turn it into a portable movie-watching device.

Long battery life means you won’t have to worry about running out of juice any time soon, either. Plus, it’s very practical in terms of size. It’s less than an inch thick and it only weighs about the same amount as a hardback book, so it’s easy to toss into your bag and take between classes or on your daily commute. Simple yet effective, it’ll make your life far more productive over time.

Samsung 15.6-inch Chromebook — $199, was $299

Samsung Chromebook on a white background.

Why Buy:

  • Classy design
  • Intel Celeron processor
  • Large display
  • Slim build

The Samsung 15.6-inch Chromebook instantly has one key thing going for it: Its screen size. It’s a great size display for a Chromebook, especially at this price. Being able to see so much more, thanks to it being 15.6-inch rather than anything smaller, is a huge advantage if you plan on using your Chromebook to type up plenty of documents or presentations. Despite that large screen size, it remains portable at just 3.75 pounds and 0.6-inch thin. Simply put, it looks great, suggesting it’s far more expensive than it actually is. It would not look out of place in an office environment.

Under the hood is a set of reasonable specs. That includes an Intel Celeron processor, 4GB of memory, and 32GB of eMMC storage. The latter is a little on the low side, but that’s because Chromebooks are designed for storing the bulk of your files on the cloud. There’s always a built-in media reader, too, if you want more physical storage, but Google apps should mean this is rarely necessary.

Other features include a built-in HD webcam with a microphone, so you can easily take video calls with your buddies or for work purposes. At this price, this Samsung Chromebook has everything you could need while looking pretty great too. It’s sure to catch some people’s eyes, who are bound to be surprised at the price you paid.

Also Available

  • Samsung 15.6-Inch Chromebook (128GB SSD): $259, was $379 — VIEW DEAL
  • Samsung Chromebook 4 (11.6-inch): $129, was $200 — VIEW DEAL

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook — $225, was $280

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 2-in-1 Chromebook.

Why Buy:

  • Lightweight and versatile design
  • Lovely 1200p display is an upgrade over most cheap Chromebooks
  • Classy style
  • Useful as both a small laptop and a tablet

Looking so much sleeker than anyone could expect of a Chromebook, the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet is pretty sweet. As the name spells out, it’s a two-in-one — more like a tablet with a keyboard — sporting a 10.5-inch 1200p touchscreen; no 720p nonsense here. That means you can easily get more tactile with what you’re doing, thanks to its vibrant touch display that lets you use this thing as a dedicated tablet if you want. You can easily detach the keyboard and kickstand, making it a great travel companion. However, it does so much more than that.

That’s in part thanks to its MediaTek Helio processor, along with a 4GB of DDR4 memory. For its size, it’s surprisingly useful for multitasking purposes. There’s also 64GB of eMMC storage, which is plenty to store all your key files for when you don’t want to solely rely upon the cloud.

The Chromebook comes with an enlarged touchpad, so you have more room to interact with it, but it’s also compatible with a stylus (sold separately), so you can use a pen to get things done more efficiently.

Asus Chromebook Flip C433 14-inch — $330, was $480

Chromebook Flip C433 2-in-1 in tent mode.

Why Buy:

  • Practical 14-inch size
  • One of the best laptops for students
  • Durable and attractive chassis
  • Versatile two-in-one design with 1080p touchscreen

Asus is a household name in the world of Windows PCs, but this value brand is also serving up some of the top Chromebooks that have been hitting the market in recent years. One of them is the excellent 14-inch Asus Flip C433, which is easily one of the best Chromebooks for students thanks to its utilitarian size, reliable performance, and affordability.

Asus PCs tend to be pretty reliable performers, and although the Flip C433 has pretty standard specs for a laptop, it’s no exception. It’ll get the job done for work with its Core m3 CPU and 8GB of RAM, and with an HD webcam, you can also use it for video calls and online classes. The attractive design is durable, and the Chromebook has some nice modern touches like Bluetooth connectivity and a USB-C port.

Another thing we like about the Asus Chromebook Flip C433 is its fold-flat display — and the fact that it’s a Full HD 1080p panel (not standard 720p HD, like you often see on cheaper laptops). You also get a normal 64GB solid-state drive, giving you a little extra storage space for all your stuff.

Acer Chromebook Spin 713 — $346, was $373

Acer Chromebook Spin 713 Screen.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Why buy:

  • Great specifications
  • Classy 3:2 2K screen
  • Robust design
  • Lightweight

The Acer Chromebook Spin 713 is potentially overkill for some users, but it looks great. It offers a Core i3 processor — which many Chromebooks don’t provide. It also has 4GB of memory plus 64GB of SSD storage rather than the usual 32GB that such devices typically have. It’s solid hardware for a Chromebook, which is why it’s considered to be a more premium device. If you can’t decide between a regular laptop or a Chromebook, this is a good way of having some of the power of a laptop while enjoying the benefits of ChromeOS.

But where it really shines is its gorgeous 2K 13.5-inch touchscreen, which folds flat so you can use it as a tablet as well as a regular laptop. Useful features like a backlit keyboard, a built-in HDMI port, and two USB-C sockets all add up to make this a truly high-end Chromebook. It also has a unique 3:2 ratio display that gives you an extra 18% more vertical space, making it feel bigger than it is.

The thing we most like about the Acer Chromebook Spin 713 is how smartly designed it is. Everything oozes class, from its USB-C ports and DisplayPort functionality support to the lightweight design that’s still robust thanks to its metal chassis, plus 11 hours of battery life. It even offers DTS audio, so it’s great for listening to music or streaming your favorite shows.

Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 — $399, was $549

A red Samsung Galaxy Chromebook opened on a table.

Why Buy:

  • QLED touchscreen display
  • Stylish look
  • Plenty of storage
  • Ideal for more high-end Chromebook needs

The Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 looks gorgeous in every way. At its simplest, it looks delightful with a mercury gray or red exterior that looks far more expensive than it actually is. However, it’s the touchscreen that’s truly exceptional. It’s a 13.3-inch QLED display — something you don’t often see in any laptop, let alone a Chromebook. In fact, it’s the world’s first-ever QLED Chromebook, giving you something to boast about to friends. It means crisper colors and far superior image quality than you’d get with other Chromebooks, plus you can always go hands-on with the touchscreen if you need to. That gives it a real sense of class and means it’s fantastic to use. It actually looks more like a MacBook than a regular Chromebook, thanks to its stylish gray design and thin bezels.

Alongside that, the Chromebook is simply great elsewhere. It has an Intel Celeron processor, 4GB of memory, and 64GB of eMMC storage — everything you need to get things done. It also has Smart Amp audio, which surrounds you in sound up to 178% louder than normal amps, plus it has a backlit keyboard with wider keys for added convenience.

Everything about the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 has been designed with convenience in mind, so you get a truly professional experience for far less than you’d ordinarily expect to pay. If you’re keen to enjoy a more premium Chromebook for less, this is the one for you.

Also Available

  • Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 (Core i3, 8GB RAM, 128GB eMMC): $549, was $699 – VIEW DEAL

Samsung Galaxy 4K Chromebook — $599, was $999

Samsung Galaxy 4K 2-in-1 Chromebook.

Why Buy:

  • Great design and build quality
  • Gorgeous 4K touch display
  • Versatile 2-in-1 design
  • All-day battery life

The Samsung Galaxy brand extends beyond smartphones now and graces one of our all-time favorite Chromebooks: The 4K Samsung Galaxy two-in-one. Simply put, this 13-inch convertible is an amazing value for a 4K laptop, even before you consider its impressive hardware and great all-around performance.

Under the hood, this Chromebook packs an Intel Core i5 processor, which works alongside a full 8GB of memory to deliver great all-around performance with the cloud-based convenience of Chrome OS. If you’ve found cheaper Chromebooks stuttering and stumbling a bit under heavier workloads, this hardware package is a worthy upgrade.

On top of that, the Galaxy 4K Chromebook is a true two-in-one convertible with a UHD thin-bezel display that folds flat, and instead of eMMC flash storage, you get a nice 256GB SSD that gives you some more space for your apps and other digital goodies. That’s a nice touch for times when you’re offline and can’t access the cloud. It also delivers surprisingly good audio from its built-in stereo speakers. It’s built well and offers great battery life, too. If you’re willing to pay for some hardware upgrades, a gorgeous 4K display, and a refined design, then the Galaxy two-in-one 4K Chromebook is well worth the extra cash.

Google Pixelbook Go Touchscreen Chromebook — $599, was $649

Google Pixelbook Go Touchscreen Chromebook.
Riley Young / Digital Trends

Why buy:

  • Great design and build quality
  • Bright 1080p touch display
  • Quality speakers
  • All-day battery life

Google might be known as a software company, but it offers some pretty solid hardware in its Pixel line, including the Pixelbook Go and Pixelbook. The 13-inch Pixelbook Go is the more budget-friendly model of the duo — with the standard Pixelbook’s price being on par with that of MacBooks! — and proves why Chromebooks are still the top choice in classrooms. If you’re having trouble choosing between Chromebooks and laptops, the Pixelbook Go can make that decision a little easier with its PC-like specs.

Those specs include an Intel Core m3 CPU and 8GB of RAM that combine solid performance with the cloud-based convenience of Chrome OS. Its 13.3-inch touchscreen is a bright and vibrant 1080p panel as well, which is a notable improvement over most Chromebook displays — many of which are only 720p — and it delivers surprisingly good audio from its built-in stereo speakers.

This is one of the best Cyber Monday Chromebook deals available right now on one of Google’s finest offerings, and one of our all-time favorites. If you’re willing to pay for some hardware upgrades, a higher-quality display, and a refined design, then the Pixelbook Go is well worth the extra cash.

Also Available

  • Google Pixelbook Go (Core i5, 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD): $749, was $849 — VIEW DEAL
  • Google Pixelbook Go (Core i5, 16GB RAM, 128GB SSD): $849, was $999 — VIEW DEAL
We strive to help our readers find the best deals on quality products and services, and we choose what we cover carefully and independently. The prices, details, and availability of the products and deals in this post may be subject to change at anytime. Be sure to check that they are still in effect before making a purchase.

Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.

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3 Chromebook Deals Under $200 for Black Friday 2021

It’s no secret that the days surrounding Black Friday are the absolute prime time to shop for electronics, and these three Black Friday Chromebook deals only prove it further. Getting a Chromebook for under $200 is next to impossible during the majority of the year, but we found these deals that make your savings bigger than ever, slashing prices by hundreds of dollars.

The notebook market has been affected by an ongoing chip shortage and supply chain issues for over a year now, so it’s been difficult to get reasonably-priced laptops. The best Black Friday deals make Chromebooks more affordable than ever, but they’re likely to sell out quickly. If you’ve been wanting to get a Chromebook, shop quickly before all of these notebooks get snatched up.

Chromebook deals under $200 for Black Friday 2021

14-inch HP Chromebook — $149, was $319

Why Buy:

  • Vibrant, beautiful, and bright 14-inch FHD display with anti-glare technology
  • 64GB of storage included on an embedded multimedia card
  • HD webcam comes in handy for work calls, online classes, and more
  • 4GB memory and onboard graphics ensure smooth performance

For the perfect mix of portability and power, this 14-inch HP Chromebook ticks the majority of our boxes. It’s an elegant, lightweight notebook that offers a new spin on a classic laptop design, mixing the chalkboard gray chassis with ultrathin bezels to come in at just over 3 pounds. The side bezels are so thin you can barely see them. The top bezel is more noticeable, but it houses HP’s True Vision HD camera, perfect for video calls, meetings, and online classes. It provides a clear image even when you’re in a dark setting, so you don’t have to worry about looking for a light source the next time you want to call your family. Both video chatting and various other computing tasks are made easier thanks to this Chromebook’s reliable Wi-Fi connectivity that can be swapped for a wired connection if you prefer that.

Storage is the one thing that even the best budget laptops often lack, but this Chromebook has a lot of it for this price range. It comes with 64GB of storage housed on an embedded memory card. Not only does it make booting up faster, but it also ensures that you’ll have plenty of space for all of your files. And there’ll be plenty of things to use it on too, because, in terms of sheer computing power, this Chromebook has a lot to offer. It’s equipped with an Intel Celeron processor and Intel’s UHD integrated graphics. This will allow you not only to tend to your various tasks, be it presentations or light photo editing, but even to engage in some casual gaming. Web browsing and watching movies is a given, too, and it’ll all look extra great thanks to the 14-inch Full HD display. It has extra-wide 178-degree viewing angles and comes with an anti-glare solution, meaning you can use it in just about any environment.

Another reason why this laptop ranks among the best Chromebooks out there is its battery life. While HP promises 10 hours on a single charge, it’s possible to get even more out of it if all you do is schoolwork or remote work. This makes it similar to the HP Chromebook x2 11, which we found to have a battery life of up to 17 hours during light productivity. Whether you’re in need of a portable companion for your workday or an entertainment system to use on the go, HP’s 14″ Chromebook is a shockingly affordable solution that satisfies every quota.

Buy Now

11-inch 2-in-1 Lenovo Chromebook — $149, was $379

A woman sitting in front of an open Chromebook laptop.

Why Buy:

  • Extremely lightweight and portable
  • Mediatek processor is perfect for multitasking
  • 2-in-1 means that you can use it in tent, tablet, laptop, or stand mode
  • Bright 11.6-inch IPS touchscreen displays an amazing range of colors

If you value flexibility and the ability to adapt your devices to match your exact needs, this Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 3 Chromebook might be right up your alley. Combining the use and ergonomics of a full-fledged laptop with a highly advanced touchscreen tablet makes your work easier than ever. It also comes in handy when you just want to relax with a bit of web browsing or watch a show. The 11.6-inch HD screen — extra bright thanks to the IPS panel — installed in this Chromebook has a 1366 x 768 resolution to accommodate all kinds of presentations, spreadsheets, and videos as required. All of that is useful, but this Chromebook’s biggest perk is definitely the fact that it’s fully touch-controlled — just like a tablet. This allows you to make the most of its features while still giving you a full-sized keyboard when you just need a laptop.

You may just be looking for a laptop, but going down the 2-in-1 road with Lenovo opens up a whole new world of possibilities. This notebook can be used in tent, tablet, laptop, or stand mode, depending on what you need. Sharing images and presentations during meetings has never been easier, and you can trust that this Chromebook will be able to handle such tasks with ease. Equipped with a multitasking-oriented 8-core Mediatek processor and matching onboard graphics, this is a notebook for those who value efficiency and portability in their daily life. Despite its small size, this Chromebook packs a lot of punch in this department, letting you watch movies, browse the web, and even engage in some basic creative workflows without limiting yourself. All of this is supported by 4GB memory, further adding to the multitasking capabilities of this 2-in-1 laptop.

Portability is the key when it comes to Chromebooks, and this one plays into that perfectly. Not only do you get over 10 hours of battery life on a single charge, but you’re also getting a device that is as easy to carry as it is energy efficient. This Lenovo IdeaPad weighs just a bit over 2.5 pounds and is 0.77-inches thin, meaning you can easily fit it in your backpack no matter where you’re headed. This is further enhanced by full Wi-Fi connectivity, complete with the use of hot spots, as well as the ability to connect to the internet through a wire if needed.

Buy Now

15.6-inch Samsung Chromebook — $199, was $299

Samsung Chromebook sitting on top of a table.

Why Buy:

  • Large, Full HD 15.6-inch display
  • Built-in webcam and microphone, perfect for remote work and studies
  • It supports microSD memory cards, making file storage and transfer easy
  • With built-in cloud support, you can upload your files and share them

Chromebooks are always thin and easy to carry, but that sometimes comes at a price. Be it the specifications or the screen size, something often has to go. Not this time, though — this 15.6-inch Samsung Chromebook has it all and then some, combining the three things you want in a notebook: Portability, performance, and ease of use, all in one elegant package. The use of platinum makes the notebook stand out without being as striking as the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2, but it’s almost just as portable as its more expensive cousin. It’s almost shocking how light this Chromebook is: Weighing in at just 3.75 pounds and measuring just 0.6-inches thin, it’s easier to transport than some textbooks. It features thin bezels around the screen, optimizing the display ratio. The slightly wider top bezel comes with an HD webcam and a built-in microphone that is plug-and-play ready for video calls. You can use headphones thanks to the included headphone jack, but this Chromebook also has stereo speakers for when you don’t feel like being plugged in.

One of the biggest perks of buying this Chromebook over other models is its beautiful, full HD, 15.6-inch screen that’s fully supported by Intel’s UHD onboard graphics. Using the industry-standard 1920 x 1080 resolution, this notebook will display all of your files exactly as they were meant to be seen. Whether you want to wind down after work with an hour (or a few) of Netflix or you’re preparing an important presentation, the larger screen makes both work and entertainment just that much easier and more enjoyable. If you’re worried about battery life, you really don’t have to be. Despite the screen being large and bright, it’s lit by an energy-efficient LED backlight, ensuring that you can take this Chromebook with you when it’s time to head out. Samsung promises up to 10 hours of battery life on a single charge, making it perfect for both work and school.

Samsung’s 15.6-inch Chromebook comes with an Intel Celeron processor, optimized for quick performance during various computing tasks. Whether you’re working with spreadsheets, presentations, or relaxing while browsing the web, this processor combined with 4GB memory will get you through your tasks quickly. It boots up quickly thanks to its embedded 32GB memory card, and it is fully compatible with various Wi-Fi networks and hot spots, as well as wired internet connections. It even comes prepared on the software side of things. With Google Chrome OS preinstalled on the device, you’ll have access to all the latest apps and Google products, as well as enhanced virus protection to keep your files safe from harm. And when it’s time to get going, you can always transfer your work onto a microSD card.

Buy Now

Should You Shop These Chromebook Deals Now or Wait Until Cyber Monday?

Cyber Monday, taking place just days after Black Friday, is another day many shoppers look forward to with anticipation. It’s true that Cyber Monday may bring with it some new deals, but will they really be better than these Black Friday Chromebook deals? It’s quite unlikely. Cyber Monday deals tend to be more of the same — a last hurrah to round out the amazing shopping season started by Black Friday. And on a year such as this, when everything is in short supply, it’s best to shop now rather than wait and see what pops up on Monday.

Waiting on purchasing your new Chromebook is quite risky. Due to various supply constraints and shortages, these deals are likely to sell out quickly and may all be gone by the time Cyber Monday rolls around. However, Best Buy Black Friday deals often include an extended holiday return period, so if you do happen to find something cheaper — which is, again, rather unlikely — you can always cancel your order without any risk.

If you want to make sure that your new Chromebook will arrive in time for the holidays, and that you’ll save up to $230 on your purchase, go ahead and buy now while supplies last.

We strive to help our readers find the best deals on quality products and services, and we choose what we cover carefully and independently. The prices, details, and availability of the products and deals in this post may be subject to change at anytime. Be sure to check that they are still in effect before making a purchase.

Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.

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Walmart is Practically Giving Away This 2-in-1 Chromebook Laptop Today

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This is an amazing 2-in-1 Chromebook Black Friday deal! It’s extremely rare to find such a drastic discount on a product that’s so popular, but you can purchase this 2-in-1 Chromebook laptop for only $155, down $144 from its original price of $299. It’s one of the best Black Friday deals we’ve seen so far, so if you’ve been looking at some Black Friday Chromebook deals, this might be the product for you to pick up.

Today’s Best 2-in-1 Chromebook Black Friday Deal

Why Buy:

  • Tablet and laptop in one
  • Light, compact and portable
  • Long battery life
  • Wide range of supported apps

The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is a versatile device that can change into a laptop, tablet, notebook, or stand-up display thanks to its flexible 360-degree hinge. This versatility allows you to transport this handy device wherever you need it, and it becomes a tool that’s functional in multiple situations. If you like to take your reading or work on the go to a café or park, you can easily switch between a tablet or a laptop. It supports a number of apps, so you can make business video calls, look at important documents, or watch some videos on this Chromebook.

As for the technical specs of the device, the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 has a power-efficient MT8183C processor and has a very respectable battery life of 15 hours. A full charge will give you plenty of time with this device unplugged, so you don’t have to worry about it draining as soon as you go out. The device itself only weighs 2.21 pounds which means it’s ultra-portable and you probably won’t even feel it when you carry it in your bag or briefcase. It’s the perfect travel companion for whatever you need it for.

While the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 used to set you back $299, you can get this versatile device for only $155 today for Black Friday 2021. We rank this product highly in our roundup of the Walmart Black Friday deals as it’s not every day you get to see a massive $144 discount on one of the best Chromebooks out there. If you’ve been eyeing a Chromebook, we highly recommend you take advantage of this generous deal. This device has so many uses and functions that we can guarantee it will be a regular piece of equipment for your digital needs.

We strive to help our readers find the best deals on quality products and services, and we choose what we cover carefully and independently. The prices, details, and availability of the products and deals in this post may be subject to change at anytime. Be sure to check that they are still in effect before making a purchase.

Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.

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Should You Buy a Chromebook on Black Friday 2021?

The best Black Friday deals are a good opportunity to buy just about anything, but it’s cheaper products that tend to get the deepest discounts. And given the explosion of interest in Chromebooks over the past year or two, you might be wondering if Black Friday is a good time to buy a new Chromebook in particular.

We’ll cover that and more, as we discuss some of the best strategies for shopping the Black Friday laptop deals and Black Friday Chromebook deals this holiday season for a computer that lasts you for years to come.

  • <span data-contrast=”auto”>View Chromebook Black Friday Deals at Amazon</span><span data-ccp-props=”{“134233279″:true,”201341983″:0,”335559739″:160,”335559740″:259}”> </span>
  • <span data-contrast=”auto”>View Chromebook Black Friday Deals at Best Buy</span><span data-ccp-props=”{“134233279″:true,”201341983″:0,”335559739″:160,”335559740″:259}”> </span>
  • <span data-contrast=”auto”>View Chromebook Black Friday Deals at Walmart</span><span data-ccp-props=”{“134233279″:true,”201341983″:0,”335559739″:160,”335559740″:259}”> </span>

Black Friday is the best time to buy a Chromebook — but shop early deals

Chromebooks are often on sale. Especially the cheapest ones. In most cases, however, the bargain bin Chromebooks don’t provide a good computing experience. Especially not if you or your child has to use it for many hours each day for school or work. Nearly none of the options that are under $100 are likely worth your time. If it doesn’t have at least a 1080p screen, for example, it’s a hard pass — no matter how cheap it is.

But on Black Friday, the deals you might seem some midrange Chromebooks that are being discounted down into the budget tier prices. If you see discounts of $100 or more, you’re likely getting a good deal.

There are reasons not to wait, though. The ongoing chip shortage and extreme demand during the holidays have led to significant delays, which means your holiday gift might not show up in time. Ahead of Black Friday, for example, the Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5 13-inch is $100 off, costing just $330 right now. That comes with an Intel Core i3 processor, 1080p screen, and weighs under three pounds. That’s quite the deal.

Another good option is the Samsung Chromebook 4+, which has nice thin bezels, a 15-inch 1080p screen, and MacBook-like silver chassis. You can pick that one up for over $100 off at Walmart for just $209.

Why buy a Chromebook?

Closeup on the HP Chromebook x2 11's keyboard.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Chromebooks have seen a surge in sales over the past year or two. The obvious reason why? Remote education, of course. With many kids continuing to learn from school, affordable laptops have become a central tool, whether it’s for completing assignments or being in video calls to replace the classroom environment.

Chromebooks are a natural fit for this for two reasons. First, they’re as cheap as computers come. If you need a keyboard, a screen, and a connection to the internet, a cheap Chromebook can cover your bases for a price that’s hard to beat.

Manageability is the second big reason Chromebooks have become a natural for education. An entire fleet of Chromebooks can be easily managed by an IT administrator, and some of the restrictions of the operating system can be benefits. For example, can’t download applications right off the internet.

Beyond the education market, though, Chromebooks have really increased in quality in the past couple of years. There’s a wider range of options than ever, spanning from $100 up to $1,000. And even though it might seem like these more expensive Chromebooks are niche, they are certainly a growing market.

Some of the best Chromebooks, like the Pixelbook Go, Acer Chromebook Spin 713, and Asus Chromebook Flip C436 all provide the Chrome OS experience in a much more premium package. There’s even a legitimate iPad competitor in the HP Chromebook x2 11.

As an alternative to clunky Windows and the closed-off MacOS, Chromebooks present an alternative that is every bit as high quality — so long as you do almost all your work in a web browser.

Editors’ Choice




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