HP TECH TAKES
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HP Chromebook Family: A Complete Review
September 7, 2018
Computer users are extremely mobile and have needs that change daily. Thankfully, there is a complete line of laptops ready to meet you wherever you go. HP Chromebooks come in a variety of styles, speeds, and sizes, but all models are designed with adaptability in mind.
Whether you need a laptop for traveling on the job or are managing a connected classroom and need durable student laptops, there is an HP Chromebook for your budget and performance needs. These brilliant notebooks perform well, with less bulky software, and are easy on the eyes and wallet.
If you’re not sure which HP Chromebook is best for you, see what these easy-to-use products have to offer and why you need one in your life.
What is an HP Chromebook?
If you’re not familiar with the differences between an HP Chromebook and a typical laptop, you’ll be impressed with the perks. Those who are used to working on a laptop will enjoy how portable and adaptive the HP Chromebook is. Also, it's a Google product, which means it features some pretty unique and amazing features.
First, there’s the operating system; Google Chrome OS™. This proprietary solution is easy to start using, especially if you’re already familiar with the company’s many services. Simply log in to your Google account and instantly be connected to your YouTube, Google Docs, Gmail, Chrome browser, and Google search profiles.
You can choose to sync across devices to have access to your more important files and history via Google Drive. You'll be able to store and retrieve your data from the cloud at any time, from any device. You’ll also have access to thousands of Android™ apps in the marketplace, or you can download apps you already own.
All of these laptops have a tough exterior with a screen that can handle what life throws at it. Corning® Gorilla® Glass allows for a brilliant display that won’t scratch or crack with regular handling.
It also sounds just as beautiful. The Bang & Olufsen speakers produce sound for a larger laptop but are seamlessly integrated into the slim design of these small notebooks. Webcam, full-size speakers, and expansion slots come standard on most models.
Whether you refer to them as a laptop, notebook, or by their brand name, HP Chromebook, these are truly the innovative, multipurpose laptops you can afford on any budget.
Most popular HP Chromebook models
While all of the HP Chromebooks run on the same operating system, that’s where many of their similarities end. Each model is specifically designed to meet a need, from being productive in the classroom to crushing it in the boardroom.
HP® has thought of everything with their wide array of consumer options. Here are the top choices for anyone looking to get into the HP Chromebook game.
HP Chromebook 11-inch Laptop
This entry-level laptop is a steal as one of the most affordable notebooks on the market.
The HP Chromebook 11 offers a super-slim design so you can pop it into a backpack for school or tote for work. With a 12-hour and 45-minute battery life, you can surf, read, chat, or stream for most of the day between charges. It also boasts an 11.6-inch diagonal HD display that’s perfect for watching movies - even on a cramped airplane.
This notebook features an Intel® Celeron® N3060 processor equipped with Intel Turbo Boost Technology and Intel HD Graphics 400. The included 4GB of memory is more than enough to do everyday tasks, and the 16GB of storage is easy to supplement with included Google Drive access.
Want all of this with a touch screen and convertible design? Get the HP Chromebook x360 11-inch laptop, which has the same computing power with intuitive touch capability and four modes including tablet.
HP Chromebook 13-inch Laptop
The sophisticated older sibling of the HP Chromebook 11 is the HP Chromebook 13 G1.
With an anodized aluminum casing and seamlessly smooth hinges, this laptop looks as beautiful as it performs. Designed to work in tandem with the powerful Google platforms it syncs with, it’s also equipped to handle its fair share of workload alone.
Choose between 6th Generation Intel Core™ m3, m5, or m7 processors and snag the full 16GB of memory to handle all those Chrome tabs without freezing or slow load times. Even with a significant power boost over the other models, this laptop brings the battery life. Get up to 11.5 hours of productivity in a single charge.
If you enjoy chatting with friends, you’ll love the integrated Google Hangouts software that connects with your existing account and displays brilliantly on the 3200 X 1800 resolution Quad High Definition (QHD) screen.
Work from home or in the office with an assortment of industry-recognized connectivity options, and get online fast with the included Citrix® Receiver, VMware Connector®, and Workspace® Receiver. Most VPN clients are supported, too.
Keeping your HP Chromebook secure has never been easier, either, as Google Chrome sends automatic updates to make sure you’re protected. Virus protection, sandboxing, and encryption occur behind the scenes so that network managers can do more with their day while Chrome OS does all the heavy lifting.
Like the other HP Chromebook models, the complete suite of Google apps is included and ready to go from initial unboxing. Store what you need with the 32GB of hard drive space and backup automatically with included Google Drive storage options.
HP Chromebook x2 Detachable Laptop
When you want an entry-level laptop that does a bit more, the HP Chromebook x2 is your pick.
This HP Chromebook comes with a detachable, magnetic hinge so you can remove the keyboard from the display and work in either laptop or tablet mode on the fly.
Use an HP Active Pen with the touch screen for a truly responsive experience and draw, sketch or take notes like you would with pen and paper.
Like the other models, it’s chock full of Google goodness. All the apps you need to work or play are included alongside battery life that impresses at a maximum of 12 hours and 30 minutes.
The processing is where this modestly priced notebook stands out, however. The Dual-Core Intel Core M3 processor is noticeably more powerful than other processors, but the laptop remains light and truly portable.
HP Chromebook 14-inch Laptop
The final HP Chromebook we’ll talk about is the most customizable of all.
Regularly used in classrooms, the HP Chromebook 14 G5 offers universal USB-C™ compatibility so that it can keep up with tech changes as they happen.
Pick your processor, memory, graphics, and more. Options go up to Intel Celeron® N3450 Processor with Intel HD Graphics 500 in addition to 8GB of RAM and 64GB of storage.
Because it’s popular for schools, it’s built to last. The minor-spill-resistant keyboard is also protected against the shock of drops and bumps, and the entire laptop passes strict MIL-STD 810G testing for durability.
Light, quiet, and offering amazing battery life, this HP Chromebook is also less than 19 mm thin and ready to tackle projects all day.
In addition, the lovely 14-inch display comes in regular or touch screen options.
Who should use it?
The HP Chromebook laptop is designed for anyone who wants a fuss-free way to surf, stream, research, write, explore, and play. It’s ideal for students and is a popular choice for classroom programs due to its versatility, durability, and affordability. For the price, it’s hard to beat the HP Chromebook.
Beginning computer users will get up to speed in minutes. That’s why it’s increasingly the ideal choice for a “first” computer and is a welcome addition for senior adults who are getting the hang of computing later in life.
Road warriors and those who work away from home adore its seamless integration into their “go anywhere” lifestyle. It’s interwoven into the Google-based apps many people already use on their phones, so switching from mobile productivity to laptop is seamless. When logged into your existing Google account, you can see your browsing history, emails, saved documents, and more between devices.
Even if you’re a computer pro, the features of the HP Chromebook impress. With many models to choose from, it’s the ideal laptop for anyone wanting to balance value with performance.
Finally, with the addition of the newly-revamped HP Chromebook 13, you don’t have to sacrifice a thing. Amazing speed, beautiful design, and enterprise-level security await users of this larger, more sophisticated HP Chromebook.
For serious professionals, it stacks up to the competition and is expandable to a full workstation with just a few affordable PC accessory extras.
The HP Chromebook has evolved significantly over the past few years.
Once a budget option for those with minimum computing needs, it’s now possible to explore, create, and communicate with a versatile notebook that runs solely on the Google Chrome OS. Choose from 11 inches, 13 inches, or 14 inches to get just the right computing experience for your unique lifestyle.
As Google expands its offerings, the HP Chromebook will get you to the next level without having to invest in extra software or laptop upgrades down the road.
About the Author: Linsey Knerl is a contributing writer for HP® Tech Takes. Linsey is a Midwest-based author, public speaker, and member of the ASJA. She has a passion for helping consumers and small business owners do more with their resources via the latest tech solutions.