Chromebooksare known as cheap alternatives to laptops since they aren’t powered by any high-tech processors. You cannot install any software on them (you can download apps though), and they’re used primarily for web browsing. Most come with Word so you can create and edit documents and reports, making it the perfect computers for students, especially now that school is about to start.
Then along came Google’s Pixelbook, a so-called premium laptop/tablet hybrid that runs with Chrome OS like any other best Chromebooks. But why does it come at a hefty price tag? Turns out, there’s a lot of reasons. Its design is sublime, it boasts full Android app support, it’s surprisingly fast for a Chromebook, and the battery can last an entire day. You can get the Google Pixelbook that runs on the latest Intel processor for a whopping $359 off on Amazon. instead of its typical price of $1,649.
Right off the bat, we noticed that the Pixelbook is incredibly good-looking. Like the Pixel smartphones, it has a two-toned brushed aluminum frame in silver and white that is positively eye-catching. Besides its pleasing aesthetic, the Pixelbook is only four-tenths-of-an-inch thick. It may be extremely thin and compact, but it feels sturdy and solid.
Its 2,400 × 1,600, 12.3-inch touchscreen display folds back 360 degrees, turning the laptop into a tablet. At 2.4 pounds, it is relatively featherlight for a laptop. As a tablet, though, it can be a little unwieldy and heavy for one-hand operation.
When it comes to connectivity, the Pixelbook follows the lead of Apple’s MacBook by ditching most of its ports. You can only find two USB-C ports aside from a headphone jack on it.
Since this is an ultra-thin device, we were cautious about how well its keyboard performs. We’re happy to report that the keystroke feels very responsive and precise, with a layout that is nicely arranged and brightly backlit. The glass touchpad is a bonus. While laptops are normally outfitted with a rubberized plastic touchpad, the Pixelbook’s touchpad looks extra luxurious and is wonderfully responsive to boot.
Its seventh-generation Intel Core i7 processor and 16GB RAM ensure that the Pixelbook runs super-fast regardless of the number of tabs you have opened on the browser. You can even play online games on the Pixelbook with no noticeable lag, something that you can’t do with normal Chromebooks. Finally, despite its small battery, the Pixelbook was able to last for four hours in our continuous web-browsing test, which is a very good number. When used just for document writing and film-viewing, it was able to easily last the entire day.
With a sleek and solid build, a lightning-fast processor, and loads of features, the Google Pixelbook justifies its premium price tag with panache. For more options, check out our best laptops for 2020, and for more awesome deals, visit our curated deals page.
Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.
- The best laptops for 2020
- The best Chromebooks for students in 2020
- The best Chromebooks for 2020
- The best laptops under $500 for 2020
- What is a Chromebook, and should you buy one?