Best Chromebooks for 2018

Looking for a Chromebook? Lightweight, secure and reasonably priced, Chromebooks are an excellent alternative to normal laptops.

Chromebooks are thin and light and in most cases look far more expensive than they really are. They don’t run Windows or iOS operating systems like normal laptops and instead run the highly optimised Linux based Chrome OS. For those of you not familiar with Chromebooks, check out my post to learn more about Chrome OS.

The Google Play store is also available on Chrome OS, so Chrome and Android apps can also be run. If you’re happy working with cloud based apps and internet surfing then most of your favourite Android apps and games are available.

Chromebooks also double up as superb Linux laptops with a bit of tweaking or you can use crouton to install Linux inside of Chrome OS similar to a virtual machine. For Linux users Chromebooks offer amazing value and great performance.

Here’s my list of top 5 Chromebooks to buy in 2018:

Size CPU RAM Storage Weight Battery Price
Google Pixelbook 12.3″ Intel i5 8GB 128GB SSD 2.40 lbs 10 hrs $749.00
ASUS Chromebook Flip 12.5″ Intel Core m3 4GB 64GB eMMC 2.65 lbs 10 hrs $474.99
Acer Chromebook 14 14″ Intel Celeron Quad-Core N3160 4GB 32GB eMMC 3.42 lbs 12 hrs $249.00
Acer R11 Convertible 11.6″ Intel Celeron Quad-Core N3160 4GB 32GB SSD 2.76 lbs 10 hrs $289.00
Acer Chromebook 15 15″ Intel Celeron 3205U 4GB 32GB SSD 4.85 lbs 9 hrs $208.18

Google Pixelbook

12.3″ | Intel i5 | 8GB RAM | 128GB SSD | 2.4 lbs | 10 hrs | $749.00

This is Google’s top end Chromebook with a touch screen and a powerful Intel i5 processor. The keyboard and trackpad are premium quality and both Chrome and Android apps are easy to use.
Chromebooks are known for how affordable they are but this Chromebook is on the high end and expensive side. Think of this Chromebook like the Ferrari of Chromebooks it might be expensive but if you want the best Chromebook money can buy, this is the one to go for.

It’s light and really stylish as well as being versatile with four modes that you can flip into: laptop, tablet, tent and entertainment modes. Other features include aluminium casing, gorilla glass, a backlit keyboard and USB-C fast charging.

I like this Chromebook and wish I could afford it because it does productivity, portability, entertainment and creativity (with the pen) with beautiful style.

Buy it on Amazon

ASUS Chromebook Flip

12.5” | Intel Core m3 | 4GB RAM | 64GB eMMC | 2.65 lbs | 10 hrs | $474.99

This is another Chromebook where the hinges turn full 360 degrees allowing you to use the Chromebook in different positions along with a touch screen. It’s thin and light and is in between an 11 inch and 14 inch laptop at 12.5 inches.

It’s a best seller on Amazon because of its clear and bright display, comfortable keyboard and trackpad and USB-C charging port.

This is an attractive Chromebook with a beautiful aluminium body that easily looks like it should be double the money that it’s selling for. The backlit keyboard adds value and the fast Intel core m3 processor justifies the slight higher price tag than other Chromebooks on this list.

Buy it on Amazon

Acer Chromebook 14

14” | Intel Celeron Quad-Core N3160 | 4GB RAM | 32GB eMMC | 3.42 lbs | 12 hrs | $249.00

You could be forgiven for mistaking this Chromebook for a MacBook because of its sleek look and aluminium casing. This Chromebook has a very respectable Celeron quad core processor and gets everyday tasks done.

The screen is a full HD IPS display and 14 inches is a good choice for compactness while allowing comfortable viewing for those that prefer larger screens. This Chromebook is perfect for those that want to carry it around with them everywhere because it’s thin and light and lasts for about 12 hours.

Buy it on Amazon

Acer R11 Convertible

11.6” | Intel Celeron Quad-Core N3160 | 4GB RAM | 32GB SSD | 2.76 lbs | 10 hrs | $289.00

The idea of laptops that can flip so that you can use it in different positions is becoming more and more common and this Chromebook can be used as tablet, laptop and bent to stand on the table to watch movies for example.

With an 11.6 inch screen and a slim 0.8 inch chassis, this Chromebook is light and compact. The specs are fairly standard for this price range with a N3160 processor, 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage space but a touch screen is also included.

At a very affordable price any students and bargain hunters should look to this Chromebook if they need an 11.6” laptop.

Buy it on Amazon

 

Acer Chromebook 15

15” | Intel Celeron 3205U | 4GB RAM | 32GB SSD | 4.85 lbs | 9 hrs | $208.18

The main selling point for this Chromebook is that it’s 15 inches which is large for a Chromebook. The extra size means it’s heavier than all of the Chromebooks in this post and the battery life comes it at around 9hrs.

Although a small, thin laptop is great for carrying around, some people only use their laptops at home on a desk or on the sofa and prefer a larger screen. This Chromebook is for you with its full HD display and IPS screen.

Buy it on Amazon

 

Chrome OS is a lightweight operating system without the bloat and baggage of Microsoft and Apple systems. Cloud apps and services have become the norm on phones and tablets and the Chromebook easily fills the gap for a laptop to use those apps and services.

Chromebooks are a great alternative to normal bulky laptops at the same price and have quickly become the go to laptop for those looking for affordable laptops that are thin and light. If you can afford it, Google’s Pixelbook is the best Chromebook out there.



2 Comments

  • I am an old Unix type, vi, troff, etc.
    Got sucked into mgmt.
    Coming back into hdw/sftw.
    Read your Linux on a Chromebook article, last year.
    I have been tracking Dell Chromebook 13 3380, the i3 is now coming into affordable range, if outlet or refurb.
    Does the SSD upgrade still hold true?
    Or did they hard solder?
    And what of the LPDDR3, upgradeable ?
    I tend to stay a couple of years behind.
    Linux distro recommended for older Unix convert?
    P.S. VI skills came right back with VIM.

  • just found your site and am loving it. I would like to learn linux and am very tempted by the pixelbook for several reason. I want to keep my kindle books and I hope could do this on android, I also have many udemy videos which again I am hoping could be downloaded on chrome os with android (since they can be downloaded on my android tablet). Captain I have a few questions,
    1) do you know if linux proper is installable on the pixelbook in dual boot? I would probably do crouton but would want the option of having “real” linux bootable for the purpose of (question 2)…
    2) I’d like to run some virtual machines (perhaps learn centos under ubuntu) and wonder if dual boot works if the pixelbook would support virtualization which I understand is something enabled in bios based on the processor
    3) if dual boot could be done, would I spend 6 months fighting to get stuff working or does dual boot linux on a chromeboot/pixelbook generally work well (I don’t really care bout touch on the dual booted linux touch features but sound, keyboard etc would hopefully work).

    Finally do you have any thoughts on going a different route which would be getting linux on a touchscreen laptop and then trying to get android apps working on the touchscreen?

    Thanks for listening

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