Acer on Monday took the wraps off the Chromebook 13 — its newest laptop that comes with a full HD display and supposedly all-day battery life.
The Chromebook 13 differs from the company’s older models for a few key reasons, the most prominent of which being its high-end specifications.
The Chromebook 13 is the first device of its kind to be powered by Nvidia’s new K1 chip — a mobile processor designed to enable all-day battery life and smooth multitasking. Nvidia’s chips are known for their graphics performance, too, so the Chromebook 13 is likely to handle heavy graphics with ease. Since Chromebooks are often used in the classroom, this can especially come in handy for students studying 3-D models.
But the real selling point seems like it’s going to be the Chromebook 13’s battery life. The Asus Chromebook, announced earlier this year, boasted 11 hours of battery life, but the new Acer model, according to the company, can last between 11.5 and 12 hours.
The Chromebook 13 is also Acer’s largest offering to date. The company’s C720 models all feature 11.6-inch displays, while the new Chromebook comes with a 13.3-inch screen. This could make it a more suitable option for students or productivity users looking for a slightly larger screen.
Acer is offering a full HD model at a relatively cheap price point too. The $US299 mid-range model, which is only slightly more expensive than the $US279 entry level edition, comes with a 1080p display. Acer breaks down the specific differences between models on its product page here.
Early impressions of the Chromebook 13 seem to be generally positive. The Chromebook 13’s thinner and more durable design doesn’t feel as cheap as the company’s earlier offerings, The Verge notes.
Chromebooks have been around since 2011, but they’re becoming an increasingly attractive option for those shopping on a budget. Most Chromebooks falls into the $US300 range, which is significantly cheaper than most entry-level PCs, which start around $US1,000. Acer and Samsung were among the first manufacturers to jump into the Chromebook market, but within the past several months we’ve seen new offerings from Toshiba, Dell, and Lenovo.
Chromebooks are different than your average laptop, since they run on Google’s Chrome OS instead of Windows or OS X. Their functionality is more limited without an Internet connection than a standard PC, but Google has been working to change that by adding more apps to its Chrome OS store that work in offline mode.
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