HP had abusive students in mind when designing its rugged Chromebook x360 PCs

HP added four new models to its Chromebook x360 portfolio on Tuesday, September 19. They follow the Chromebook x360 11 G1 Education Edition released in March, and are the company’s first rugged touch-enabled Chromebook x360 solutions for the mainstream market. They’re designed to handle all the drops, spills, and scratches stemming from abusive young students.

For starters, there are two base configurations, but the only difference between them is the amount of internal storage: One sports 16GB while the other packs 32GB. HP also provides two different colors — Smoke Gray and Snow White — totaling four individual models in the overall rugged HP Chromebook x360 family.

Take a look at the specifications:

11-ae010nr 11-ae020nr 11-ae030nr 11-ae040nr
Screen size: 11.6 inches
Screen type: In-Plane Switching (IPS) technology with Touch
Screen resolution: 1366 x 768
Processor: Intel Celeron N3350
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 500
Memory: 4GB LPDDR4
Storage: 16GB 32GB 16GB 32GB
Camera: Front-facing HP TrueVision HD webcam
Connectivity: Wireless AC (up to 867Mbps) / Bluetooth
Audio: HD Audio with stereo speakers
Ports: 2x USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-C
2x USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A
1x Headphone/microphone jack
1x Micro SD card reader
Battery: 47.36WHr Lithium-ion
Up to 11 hours and 30 minutes (mixed usage)
Size: 8.18 (W) x 12.04 (D) x 0.76 (H) inches
Weight: 2.98 pounds
Color theme: Smoke Gray Smoke Gray Snow White Snow White
Price: $300 $330 $300 $330

As the specs show, the new Chromebooks are extremely thin and light for easy mobility. They also have a great battery life according to HP’s numbers, lasting up to 11 hours and 30 minutes on a single charge. What helps is the 11.6-inch screen that doesn’t draw as much power as a 15-inch screen, and the power-sipping Celeron dual-core processor packed inside.

What’s notable about these four Chromebooks is that they include four USB 3.1 Gen1 ports. These can be used to expand the student’s desktop across two additional external monitors. There’s no speed difference between the Type-A and Type-C versions, but at least with the latter, students aren’t required to remember which side of the connector faces up.

The Chromebooks also sport touch-based screens, and a special 360-degree hinge to convert them into four cool form factors: Laptop, stand, tent, and tablet.  Other features include Wireless AC networking, Bluetooth for connecting wireless peripherals, and a full-sized island-style keyboard that’s spill-resistant, although don’t expect a hardware miracle if the laptop is completely drenched at the water fountain.

Finally, the Chromebooks are based on the latest version of Google’s Chrome OS operating system that provides access to millions of Android-based apps on the Google Play store, along with everything listed in the Chrome Web Store. Chrome OS is an ideal platform for students, as it’s easy to use, fast, and highly secure. Chromebooks typically have low price tags too, and HP’s new rugged x360 convertibles are no different.

All four are available now with a starting price of $300 at Amazon, Costco, Micro Center, Sam’s Club, Target, and Walmart.


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