We’ve seen some interesting collaborations with Google in the past couple of years, including the Nexus 7 with Asus and the Nexus 5 with LG, and now, HP is coming together for a Chromebook that comes in under $400.
Built with the help of HP, the Chromebook 11 is one of the first Chrome OS driven laptops we’ve see that looks more like it was built by Google rather than by the manufacturer of the laptop, which is what previous Chromebook offerings have been like.
For those who don’t know, Chromebook is Google’s take on the laptop world, with not so power hungry hardware running an operating system based on Google’s Chrome browser.
There are many reasons why Chrome as an operating system makes sense, with many revolving around how much we do on the web these days, including social networking, web surfing, emailing, and even work, and Google has made some impressive developments to let you do the latter, with Google Drive, which includes a full office suite in a web browser, which can even be used and run offline when there’s no net connectivity (like on an aeroplane).
Also of note is the security, and because Chrome is a browser and doesn’t really have an attackable operating system, the security here is heightened considerably, especially in comparison to Windows and Mac OS machines.
In recent months, we’ve seen Toshiba getting in on the Chromebook space, joining Samsung and Acer in our country, so it’s nice to see HP join this space, too.
Specs for the HP Chromebook 11 will include a Samsung Exynos processor, the same one used in the Samsung Chromebook from last year, as well as 2GB RAM, 16GB solid-state drive, two USB 2.0 ports, and an 11.6 inch IPS HD (1366×768) screen with a wide viewing angle. The frame will be magnesium, though the outside of the laptop will be made of plastic, completely white, with the entire thing coming in at just over a kilogram.
Wireless connectivity will be here too, with WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0, and because the internet is such a big deal, 100GB of Google Drive storage will also be provided free for two years.
One part of Google and HP’s collaboration definitely has us cheering, and it likely will grab you, too: USB charging.
Yes, just like some of the Windows 8 tablets coming out, the HP Chromebook 11 will charge from a microUSB port, with video able to be sent out through this via a SlimPort adaptor, which is like the MHL used on so many devices, but not quite the same, with DisplayPort support added.
Google says the battery should be good for up to six hours of life, though with microUSB charging, it will at least be more convenient than being forced to carry yet another power brick around.
Pricing for the HP Chromebook 11 comes in at $399, with availability from this week at select Harvey Norman and JB HiFi stores across the country.