Best Chromebooks for the Best Web Browsing Experience in the UK

Review & Comparison, Last Update September 19, 2018
Do you want to be always online and enjoy all the awesome services of Google? It is easy if you have a cutting-edge Chromebook. Read our Chromebook review and decide which one to choose. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2018
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Design
Performance and Memory
Display and Image Quality
Battery Life
Dimensions and Weight
Warranty
 
PROS

The model's dual-band MIMO technology 802.11ac technology provides three times the speed of your usual wireless connection, making this device arguably the fastest laptop in its price range as far as the download and upload speeds are concerned. The webcam supports High Dynamic Range. 

CONS

Some find the touchpad a tad inaccurate or difficult to get used to. 

OUR VERDICT

The model in question is everything a laptop like that should be and then some for good measure. Though its specs are impressive, we believe that it is all of the extra benefits and the sleek design that make this gadget one of the best Chromebooks in its price range.

detailed parameters
Design

All aluminium alloy housing

Performance and Memory

CPU: Intel Celeron N3160 (1.6 GHz, up to 2.24 GHz)

RAM: 4 GB (LPDDR3)

Storage: 32 GB eMMC

Display and Image Quality

14"; 1920 x 1080; IPS

Battery Life

Up to 12 hours

Dimensions and Weight

450 x 290 x 65 mm

1.55 kg

Warranty

2 years

PROS

You can use the model as a tablet or a laptop. Among other things, the Tent mode is perfect for giving presentations and the Stand mode will allow you to enjoy a movie at a comfortable angle. The non-slip texture hides wear and scratches. Plus, it improves students' grip, so you're less likely to drop it. 

CONS

You'll have to update the software. 

OUR VERDICT

This convertible gadget from Lenovo is as good as the next Chromebook when it comes to security, boot-up speed, and intuitiveness of Chrome OS. But the convertible design makes it a lot more versatile and practical than the majority of its counterparts.

detailed parameters
Design

Sturdy plastic

Performance and Memory

CPU: Quad Core MediaTek MTK 8173C (2.1 GHz)

RAM: 4 GB (LPDDR3)

Storage: 32 GB eMMC

Display and Image Quality

11.6", 1366 x 768 multitouch; IPS

Battery Life

Up to 10 hours

Dimensions and Weight

296 x 206 x 21.2 mm

1.35 kg

Warranty

1 year

PROS

Acer provides two-year limited warranty for the model, which means a more serious approach to the Chromebook R11 development. The laptop delivers an excellent combination of performance, quality, and features.

CONS

The touchpad buttons are soft and can be pressed accidentally.

OUR VERDICT

As fast and convenient laptop to access the Internet and Google services, the Acer Chromebook R11 is an excellent choice. The model offers outstanding performance in a light, thin chassis. It has a powerful 4-core CPU, 4 GB of RAM, and 32GB of eMMC storage, as well as an HD IPS touchscreen and a battery good enough for up to 12 hours of continuous operation.

detailed parameters
Design

Premium aluminum top panel

Performance and Memory

CPU: Intel Celeron N3060 (1.6 GHz, up to 2.48 GHz)

RAM: 4 GB (LPDDR3)

Storage: 32 GB eMMC

Display and Image Quality

11.6"; 1366 x 768 multitouch; IPS

Battery Life

Up to 12 hours

Dimensions and Weight

294 х 204 х 19.2 mm

1.25 kg

Warranty

2 years

PROS

The nano-moulding technology is incorporated on all 4 exterior edges and corners. This way, the Chromebook keeps the critical components safe and secure. The rubber bumper with a reinforced rubber frame protects the device against bumps, knocks, and drops. The 180-degree hinge will allow you to fully open the laptop.

CONS

You may find the display lacking in brightness. 

OUR VERDICT

What we have here is one of the most affordable Chromebooks on the market. It isn't the most powerful rig and it won't be able to compete with some of the more expensive devices in terms of performance. But it is as rugged as they come. The battery is solid and the size is very convenient.

detailed parameters
Design

Sturdy plastic with reinforced rubber guards

Performance and Memory

CPU: Intel® Celeron® N3060 (1.6 GHz, up to 2.48 GHz)

RAM: 2 GB (LPDDR3)

Storage: 16 GB eMMC

Display and Image Quality

11.6"; 1366 x 768

Battery Life

Up to 10 hours

Dimensions and Weight

294 x 200 x 22.5 mm

1.2 kg

Warranty

1 year

PROS

Despite its miniature size, the HP Chromebook provides surprisingly good sound for comfortable movie watching and music listening.

CONS

The battery doesn't provide the specified time of autonomous operation.

OUR VERDICT

If you are looking for a well-performing Chromebook at an affordable price, the HP Chromebook is worth an investment. The notebook is equipped with a powerful CPU and 802.11ac Wi-Fi module. It's one of the best Chromebooks you can get in this price range.

detailed parameters
Design

Sturdy plastic

Performance and Memory

CPU: Intel Celeron N3060 (1.6 GHz, up to 2.48 GHz)

RAM: 2 GB (LPDDR3)

Storage: 16 GB eMMC

Display and Image Quality

11.6"; 1366 x 768; SVA

Battery Life

Up to 12.45 hours

Dimensions and Weight

286 x 205 x 18.4 mm

1.2 kg

Warranty

1 year

Acer Chromebook (CB3-431)

A Book's a Looker

This model from Acer may not be the most powerful option on the market but, unlike any other Chromebook, this device essentially incorporates everything that makes Chromebooks such a great middle-ground choice between tablets and standard laptops.

First, this thing is as sleek as they come. It may not be the most compact gadget but it sure looks the part. The chassis is made of 100% aluminium alloy and boy does it look good. Of course, a thin and light frame is usually accompanied by a fragile composition, but that's not the case here.

Since we're not dealing with some sort of cheap plastic but an aluminium alloy, this thing is as robust as they come. The folk at Acer say that it will go the distance and back again. And, you know what, we're willing to give them this one.

If you're familiar with the whole idea behind a Chromebook, then you know how important of a role a stable and reliable Internet connection plays in it. And, with the model's dual-band MIMO technology 802.11ac technology, you'll be able to put every kilobyte of your Internet's or the surrounding WiFi's to good use. Three times the speed of your usual wireless connection make this device arguably the fastest laptop in its price range, at least as far as the download and upload speeds are concerned.

Review of Acer Chromebook (CB3-431) 14" Full HD Laptop (Intel Celeron N3160, 4GB RAM, 32GB eMMC)

The Freedom of Mobility

The laptops in question have always been a good choice for college students and this model is no exception. Since the battery is capable of delivering up to 12 hours of uptime, you can bring this thing to a class, then back to your dorm room, do your homework, and enjoy a few hours of leisure time, watching movies and browsing the Internet, all on a single charge.

You can't always be in control of the lighting situation in the room but this device will make up for it. Featuring a low reflection anti-glare technology, the 14-inch display of this Chromebook will allow you to work, watch movies, and do whatever you want with it regardless of the surrounding area. You can bring it to a coffee shop, take it with you to a park, or just position in by the window and still be able to show excellent productivity.

Lots of people enjoy these types of laptops for their mobility and how that mobility can improve their interactions with their friends. And, for them, the engineers at Acer have incorporated an HD webcam that supports the High Dynamic Range technology. It'll make your Google Hangouts, Skype calls, and any other variation of online visual interaction a lot more dynamic, especially for your friends.

In conclusion, the model in question is everything a laptop like that should be and then some for good measure. Though it does not trail behind in terms of performance, we believe that it is all of the extra benefits and the sleek design that make this gadget one of the best Chromebooks in its price range.

Acer Chromebook (CB3-431) 14" Full HD Laptop (Intel Celeron N3160, 4GB RAM, 32GB eMMC) in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Lenovo Chrombook N23 (ZA260059GB)

Convertible in all of its Glory

Chromebooks are inherently flexible and versatile. Among other things, they remove the cumbersome offline operating systems like Windows, Mac OS, or Linux from the equation. Just this one thing makes them already a lot faster, less demanding, and more responsive than your run-of-the-mill laptop. But, with this model, the folk at Lenovo decided to go even further than that.

First and foremost, this is a convertible gadget, also known as a 2-in-1 laptop. That means it comes with a touchscreen and a removable keyboard, so you can use it both as a laptop and a tablet. No, we don't have to tell you how much more versatile and practical this one "little thing" makes this gadget. People often refer to convertibles as the ultimate education tools and they do it for a good reason. Not just a regular laptop or a tablet, you can also use it in a Tent mode or Stand.

With this newfound freedom, you will be able to position this Chromebook however you want. Any room, any place, any table, any surface can become your new school desk, with multiple modes compensating for the shortcomings of these premises and surfaces. Among other things, the Tent mode is perfect for giving presentations and the Stand mode will allow you to enjoy a movie at a convenient angle.

Review of Lenovo Chrombook N23 (ZA260059GB) 11.6" Convertible Laptop

One Tough Book

Of course, the convertible nature of this model will make you want to bring it with you wherever you go. So the people at Lenovo had to make this device as sturdy and rugged as they could, rugged enough to face the rigours of the school day or to survive the rough and tumble of the road. And we would say that they did a pretty good job.

First, they reinforced the swivelling hinges and the ports. Then, they sealed the touchpad. We particularly enjoyed the job they've done with the keyboard. Aside from being water-resistant, the keyboard features mechanically anchored keys, so you won't be able to damage them even after writing hundreds of lengthy essays.

Though it's made of plastic, the non-slip texture work wonders when it comes to hiding wear and scratches. Plus, it improves students' grip, so you're less likely to drop it. Finally, the model in question is drop-resistant and was built to withstand bumps and drops from up to 75 centimetres.

Now, we've been focusing on its construction and design, but it's not like the model isn't packing solid hardware. The Quad Core MediaTek MTK 8173C 2.1 GHz CPU will more than suffice for most tasks. Four gigabytes of LPDDR3 ram will allow you to keep quite a few tabs open and run multiple demanding applications at the same time. And the IPS, anti-glare display offers great colours and wide viewing angles.

All in all, this convertible gadget from Lenovo is as good as the next Chromebook when it comes to security, boot-up speed, and intuitiveness of Chrome OS. But the convertible design makes it a lot more versatile and practical than the majority of its counterparts.

Lenovo Chrombook N23 (ZA260059GB) 11.6" Convertible Laptop in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Acer Сhromebook (NX.G54EK.005)

Light, Fast, and Versatile

The Acer Chromebook R11 is a budget-priced laptop that brings outstanding performance in a light, thin chassis. It has the unique 360-degree, dual-torque hinge that makes it easy to open and holds it in place when you swipe, pinch, and tap on the touchscreen, offering you a wobble-free touch control. The Chromebook slides easily into tablet mode from the standard laptop shape—tablets are more convenient for scrolling through web pages on the go, after all. In fact, you can use the Chromebook R11 in three modes: as a standard laptop, as a tablet, and in a tent mode; the position sensor will flip the image on the display over automatically when you go into the tent mode.

With the latest MIMO 802.11ac technology, the Chromebook R11 provides incredibly fast connection speed and long signal range. An impressive Intel Braswell CPU enables it to support an ultra-fast USB 3.0 port. The Acer R11 comes with separately located USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 ports. An integrated webcam supports HDR imaging for brighter video chats and clearer photos. Also, there's a full-size HDMI port with HDCP support, an SD card slot, and a headphone jack. The device is powered by a 1.6GHz quad-core Intel processor with 2GB or 4GB of RAM. Chromebooks were created for Internet surfing and cloud-based works mostly, not for collecting files on the drive, so most users will find 32GB of storage quite enough. It should be mentioned that you'll get 100GB of Google Drive storage, so there is enough space to store everything you need in the cloud.

The laptop has an aluminum top with a distinct engraving-like pattern that makes it even more attractive. A nano-imprint technology creates this distinguished texturing which allows you to grip the laptop firmly. This remarkable slim 19.2mm notebook, weighing less than 1.6kg, can easily slip into your bag.

Review of Acer Сhromebook (NX.G54EK.005) 11.6-Inch Notebook, Intel N3060 Celeron Processor, 4 GB RAM, 32 GB eMMC

Attractive Minimalistic Design

The R11 Chromebook is Acer's first convertible laptop. It's mainly focused on a web browsing experience. The notebook has an attractive minimalistic design, it comes with a white plastic chassis with a matte surface finish. The lid has a textured metal panel that feels and looks perfect. This texture gives the laptop a great grippy feeling when you carry your Chromebook around. The diamond-weave texture adds an expensive look to the white lid. On the top, there's a metal panel decorated with Chrome and Acer logos. An 11.6-inch touch display with an Acer logo is located on the other side of the panel. A recessed keyboard with slightly-textured keys on the base offers perfect tactile feedback. And further below, there's a wide trackpad with comfortable palm rests.

Acer Сhromebook (NX.G54EK.005) 11.6-Inch Notebook, Intel N3060 Celeron Processor, 4 GB RAM, 32 GB eMMC in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

ASUS Chromebook (C202SA-GJ0027)

A Smaller Chassis

The modest price is definitely one of the best things about this model from ASUS. For about 150 pounds, you'll get yourself a perfectly capable device that will be able to cover any of your educational and most of your entertainment needs. Sure, it isn't the most powerful option on the market, but it packs enough of a punch considering the price tag that it comes with.

Equipped with an Intel® Celeron® N3060 that offers a base clock rate of 1.6 GHz and can be overclocked up to 2.48 GHz, the processor will be able to handle the majority of applications, so you won't have to limit your online and offline endeavours too much.

Now, with 2 gigabytes of LPDDR3 RAM, you won't be able to open a few dozens of Chrome tabs and run multiple applications at the same time, but it will be enough to cover either the former or the latter task.

Having said all of that, we have been judging this Chromebook based solely on performance so far. And that's not necessarily fair. While it isn't the slowest or the least capable device when it comes to said performance, its advantages lie in a different area.

For instance, the model adds up to no more than 294 x 200 x 22.5 millimetres in overall dimensions and it weighs less than 1.2 kilograms. That means you should always be able to find enough space for it in your backpack and it won't put too much of a strain on your hands or your shoulders as you carry it around with you.

Review of ASUS Chromebook (C202SA-GJ0027) 11.6" Ruggedised and Water Resistant Design (Intel Celeron N3060, 2GB RAM, 16GB eMMC)

A Rough One

Since the device is as compact as lightweight as they come, you will feel inclined to bring it with you to the school, the nearby cafeteria, or just walk with it around the campus. And that kind of lifestyle isn't always easy on consumer electronics. But this ASUS Chromebook has it covered.

The people behind this product went with the nano-moulding technology and incorporated it on all 4 exterior edges and corners. This way, they have been able to make sure that all of the critical components will stay safe and secure. Plus, they reduce the impact of any potential accident. In addition to the moulded, rounded edges, there's also the rubber bumper with reinforced rubber frame that protects against your typical everyday bumps, knocks, and drops.

Other than that, we would also like to mention the 180-degree hinge that will allow you to fully open the model, a particularly fitting solution for the sort of easy viewing that you need for group studies and discussion sessions. The keyboard is spill-resistant, so you accidentally spilling some coffee on it won't bring on the end of the world. The battery can last for up to 10 hours which, along with the compact size, makes this device a great travel gadget.

In short, what we have here is one of the most affordable Chromebooks on the market. It isn't the most powerful rig and it won't be able to compete with some of the more expensive devices in terms of performance. But it is as rugged as they come. The battery is solid and the size is very convenient.

ASUS Chromebook (C202SA-GJ0027) 11.6" Ruggedised and Water Resistant Design (Intel Celeron N3060, 2GB RAM, 16GB eMMC) in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

HP Сhromebook (11-v000na)

Designed to Move

The HP Chromebook was made for everything you do online. With Chrome OS, you get connected and get things done effortlessly. It’s perfectly portable, easy to use, and lasts all day. Perfect, isn’t it? The laptop has a slim design and 12.45 hours of battery life, giving you all-day portability and unmatched power, so you can take it along wherever you go. The notebook loads in a matter of seconds, giving you easy access to all your Google Drive content and Android apps. The Chromebook runs Chrome OS for an easy, fast, and secure computing experience. With an 11.6" SVA HD display, you can enjoy the superb video from any angle with clarity. A solid build quality helps distinguish the HP Chromebook from the pack. The HP Chromebook has a modern minimalistic design, with its rounded edges and two-toned color palette. The lid is a sleek matte black with HP's silver logo and a Chrome logo in the top corner. The body bottom has a textured finish that makes it perfectly grippy to carry in one hand when closed. That said, you can easily carry it around the office or move it around your house.

Review of HP Сhromebook (11-v000na) 11.6" HD Laptop (Intel Celeron N3060, 2GB RAM, 16GB eMMC)

Simple, Fast, Secure

The HP Chromebook is good for doing some light browsing, video streaming, and document editing. The laptop keyboard provides a decent typing experience. The plastic keys are spaced out well and convenient to type with. The HP Chromebook has 11.6-inch anti-glare display. Despite a small frame, there’s enough room for ports. The laptop has a microphone/audio jack, an HDMI port, a USB 2.0 and a USB 3.0 slots. Also, it houses a security lock slot, a port for the power adapter, and an SD card reader. There's not much of a learning curve in how to use the HP Chromebook - just sync it with your Google account and you'll see all of your extensions and bookmarks.

The Chromebook comes with a 2-year subscription for 100GB storage on Google Drive, so you can store more documents, videos, and photos in the cloud. Also, Google Now is baked into Chrome OS, providing breaking news, sports scores, and maps. Most of the apps are designed to be used online, but many are ready for offline use. Therefore, you can draft email, edit Google Docs, and even play some games like Cut the Rope and 2048. However, note that some apps will require settings change.

HP Сhromebook (11-v000na) 11.6" HD Laptop (Intel Celeron N3060, 2GB RAM, 16GB eMMC) in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

What Is a Chromebook?

A Chromebook is a laptop operated by the special Chrome OS developed by Google. The programs are not installed on a hard drive, as it is on the conventional laptops — instead, you access them via Google Chrome browser. All your information is securely stored on the Google servers. Chromebooks have the following peculiarities:

  • Data safety — even if you lose your Chromebook all your documents, as well as photos and music, will remain in your private cloud and, therefore, will not be lost.
  • Fast system boot and operation — a Chromebook recovers from a sleep mode within 1 second.
  • Good battery life means a Chromebook works autonomously for several hours and so, can be used during business trips.
  • Chrome OS from Google is virus-proof.

Please, take a look at the wide range of additional PC accessories examined in or reviews on gaming mice and webcams.

What Features to Compare

There are many Chromebook reviews on the Internet but can you still make a reasonable choice? No, because many of Chromebook comparisons are too detailed or contain the information right from the commercial booklets. That is why we have selected 5 top Chromebooks available and analysed only the features that are truly important for potential buyers.

The first feature to consider is the Design of a Chromebook. It tells you how flexible and convenient a laptop is and how easy using it every day is. Here is what we include in this feature: a form factor, compactness, and, of course, material a Chromebook is made of.

The next issue to take into account is Performance and Memory — though Chrome laptops are designed for rather simple tasks, they need to be powerful enough to open multiple tabs in Google Chrome browser, cope with different online activities, and so on. When assessing performance and memory, you should consider the processing unit (CPU) and RAM memory. The more powerful a CPU is the better the performance of the Chromebook is. However, keep in mind that the RAM capacity is usually quite small for this type of devices and ranges from 2 GB to 4 GB. Also, you should take a look at a storage capacity since you will not always have Internet access and, in this case, you will need an internal storage.

Also, consider the Display and Image Quality of every device in our Chromebook comparison. The screen size is important since customers need different devices — some want a really small Chrome laptop whereas others want 15.6-inch gadgets. And pay attention to a screen resolution and viewing angles every display provides.

Finally, make sure to check what Battery Life every Chromebook provides. The larger the capacity of the battery is the longer a Chrome laptop will be able to run without a recharge.

FAQ:

Q: What is the Chrome OS?
A: The Chrome OS (Operating System) uses web­-based apps compared to a traditional stand-alone software. You don’t need to load programs or install updates. The Chrome OS automatically downloads the latest updates for current versions. Chrome offers a safe browsing experience thanks to its advanced security features. Besides, Chrome allows you to control the information you share online.

Q: Can a Chromebook work offline?
A: Yes, a Chromebook can work offline. Some popular apps such as Google Drive and Gmail have integrated offline modes. When you edit a Google Doc offline, it's saved locally to your laptop. And the next time you connect your Chromebook to the Internet, it will sync with your online account. However, you won’t have access to all the files stored on Google Drive while you are offline. If you need to edit a document, for instance, on a journey, make sure to open it in advance while you're on Wi-Fi. Other apps and games are available to use offline after enabling offline use in the settings.

Q: Can I edit photos on my Chromebook?
A: Yes, you can. There’s an integrated photo editor in Chrome OS. Also, you can use other web-based photo-editing programs like Pixlr to do everything from cloning parts of a picture to cropping images, adjusting the white balance, saturation, hue, luminance, and more.

Q: Can I save files to my Chromebook?
A: Mainly, you are expected to store your files in Google Drive cloud storage. Although Chromebooks have a relatively small amount of local storage, compared to Mac and Windows laptops, yet you can store hundreds of files or photos to the computer.

Q: Can I use Microsoft Office on my Chromebook?
A: Despite the fact that you can't install Microsoft Office on your Chromebook, you can convert Excel and Word files into Google Docs using, for example, Google Drive app, and then edit them. If you have a Microsoft account, you can create Office documents via Microsoft Office Online. The documents are securely stored in OneDrive, and you can log in from other devices to access them.

Q: Can I connect a Bluetooth device to my Chromebook?
A: Yes but not for file transferring (for that, please use Google Drive). Bluetooth devices compatible with Chromebooks are keyboards, mouses, and speakers, headphones, headsets (audio only).

Q: Do I need to install any virus protection software on my Chromebook?
A: No antivirus software is needed on your Chromebook.

Sources:

1. Gabie Kur How to choose the right Chromebook for youTechRadar. June 22, 2015.

2. Mark LaFay How To Choose A ChromebookDummies.

3. Jerry Hildenbrand How to choose the right ChromebookAndroid Central. September 5, 2016.

4. The Complete Guide to Choosing a ChromeBookeBay. March 3, 2016.

5. Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols How to pick the best Chromebook for school, ZDnet. August 16, 2016.

6. Henry T. Casey Should I Buy a Chromebook? Buying Guide and AdviceLaptop. July 1, 2016.

7. Jonathan Wylie Are Chromebooks Good? Pros and ConsTurboFuture. Updated on August 12, 2016.

8. Joe Donovan What’s a Chromebook, anyway? Digital Trends. January 18, 2015.

9. Natalie Shoemaker Chromebook Review: Should You Buy One? CheatSheet. July 24, 2016.

10. Jack Wallen 10 reasons why Chromebooks make good sense for businessTechRepublic. March 20, 2014.

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