HARDWARE DESIGNER Google has launched an update to its lineup of Chromebook notebooks, this time made by US computer maker HP.
Priced at just £229, the HP Chromebook 11 brings a new fanless model to Google's range of Chrome OS powered laptops measuring 18mm thick and weighing just over 1kg. If the name hasn't already given it away, the machine's screen size is 11in, and the display uses IPS technology and has 300nit brightness for better viewing in bright conditions.
This is only HP's second Chromebook, and its first 11in Google device. It will be available in black or white with a blue rim around the keyboard.
However, what really makes the Chromebook 11 unique is that it is charged via a microUSB port, which means it can be powered from the same mains adapter as many other popular devices, such as most Android smartphones and tablets as well as other types of portable technology.
Google's decision to power its new Chromebook via a standard microUSB connection could be a hint as to the way the notebook industry is going. When we spoke with USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) at the Intel Developer Forum in September, the group told us that a USB charging standardisation like we saw in smartphones only a few years back will also arrive across notebook platforms very soon, so we can assume that Google is attempting to get ahead of the game here with the HP Chromebook 11.
It's also really handy, as most households probably have a USB cable laying around already, which takes a bit of pressure off those who are prone to losing things. Battery life for the HP Chromebook 11 is expected to be six hours on one charge.
Currys and PC World is selling the HP Chromebook 11 in the UK. It is available to pre-order from the retailer's online store today for £229, and will ship on 21 October.
As you'd expect for such a low price point, Google's HP Chromebook 11 isn't the most powerful device on the market, but it is certainly powerful enough to perform all the tasks on the Chrome OS with ease. The CPU is an Exynos 5250 GAIA application processor, and there's 2GB of DDR3 RAM with a 16GB SSD for internal storage. Google also bundles 100GB of free cloud storage with the Chromebook, free for the first two years.
HP has designed the Chromebook 11 with rounded edges, which Google claims will help wrists stay comfortable while typing. It has a "durable plastic shell" bonded to a magnesium frame to "help protect against everyday bumps and bruises", Google said.
HP's first Chromebook hit the shelves in April this year, retailing for a slightly higher price of £249. However, the HP Chromebook 14 featured a 14in screen, if you're in the market for a larger laptop.
Check back later for our HP Chromebook 11 hands-on review. µ