Since their debut in 2011, Google Chromebooks have come a long way and have slowly but surely infiltrated the market of portable PCs. This is partly thanks to collaborations with PC-makers like Samsung, Acer and Dell that have pushed Chromebooks onto the list of high-end PC’s and now see them becoming potentially serious competitors against Apple’s well-established MacBooks.
Due for its release in late April, the new Samsung Chromebook Pro boasts a plethora of very attractive features including an impressive 32GB of storage alongside 4GB of RAM both ran by an Intel core m3-6y3o processor. The hybrid design gives users the option to use the device as either a tablet or a laptop, with a high quality Quad HD 2400 x 1600 LED display that gives MacBook’s Retina display a run for its money. The 360 degree hinge makes it easier for video viewing and the user-friendly interface can be controlled with an embedded stylus that you can use to draw, doodle and make notes just like you would with the Galaxy Note phone.
In recent years we’ve seen Chrome and Android move closer together. Initially, by combining Android and Chrome OS, software tests of the Chromebook Pro were found to be lacking in versatility but this is something that Samsung have guaranteed to be running smoothly by the time it is officially released. Samsung are using this release to showcase a new feature, one that will provide compatibility with the Google Play Android app store, allowing you to download and use millions of apps just like you would with any other Android phone or tablet.
Portability plays a huge role for most laptop buyers and the Chromebook pro will be a hard one to ignore due to its 0.55” thickness and 2.5 pound weight that make it a perfect backpack companion. It also gains its charge from a USB-C port, meaning the charger is more compact and lighter to carry around with you than previous laptop chargers. These dimensions mean that this is now the smallest non-MacBook laptop on the market even if it arguably fails to deliver on style. The black magnesium alloy body is not as eye-catching as the smooth-edged silver finished MacBook style but this version certainly shows how the Chromebook has managed to evolve over recent years despite some minor compromises. Reviews have hinted at certain things such as a misplaced power button, a cramped keyboard that isn’t back-lit and a jack that makes headphones awkward to use in any mode that isn’t laptop.
Then comes price. As standard, a MacBook Pro can set you back anywhere between $1, 299 and $2,799 depending on specifications whereas the Chromebook Pro will come in at around $550. The Chromebook Plus (released February 12) has slightly lower specs starts at $450. Although definitely at the high-end of the scale when it comes to laptops, this is still a huge incentive for buyers that are looking for a device that can perform as well as a Mac.