Chrome OS has become increasingly capable since its launch back in 2011. The addition of offline features, access to the Google Play Store, and support for Linux apps are great indications of how far Google’s OS has come. Chromebooks have had a similar journey too, going from the ultra-affordable and extremely niche to powerful laptops in their own right. There are also numerous options to choose from.
These days you’ll find Chromebooks ranging anywhere from around $200 to $1000 or more, catering to all types of users. While there’s a ton of different models out there, below are six of the best Chromebooks available right now.
Just looking for a great deal? Check out the best Chromebook deals available.
Editor’s note: We’ll be updating this list of the best Chromebooks regularly as new devices launch. Additionally, several new Chromebooks were announced at CES 2020 and will be arriving over the next 1-3 months, so stay tuned to potentially major updates to this list.
1. Best overall: Asus Chromebook Flip C302CA-DHM4
High-performance specs and a beautiful aluminum body are the name of the game with the Asus Chromebook Flip. As you’d guess, you also get a 4-in-1 design that lets you choose between laptop, stand, tent, or tablet modes. In many ways the Chromebook Flip compares similarly to Google’s new Pixelbook at the entry-level, but it packs less RAM and obviously has a more flexible design.
The Asus Chromebook Flip C302CA starts at just $479, though the M5 and M7 options bump the price tag up to $549.99 and $599.99 respectively. Overall the Flip is probably a better value than the Pixelbook Go but it’s also a little less powerful (especially when it comes to the higher-end Pixelbook Go models.)
Asus Chromebook Flip C302CA-DHM4 specs:
- Display: 12.5-inch Full HD TN display
- Processor: Intel Core m3-6Y30 (m5 and m7 options available)
- RAM: 4 GB
- Storage: 64GB
- Ports: 2x USB-C, 3.5mm jack
- Battery: 39Wh Li-ion, up to 10 hours
2. Best for power users: Google Pixelbook Go
Historically Google’s in-house Chromebooks have been superpowered monsters, with frighteningly high price tags to match. The Pixelbook Go is Google’s attempt to appeal to more users thanks to a much lower starting price of $649.99. For those that enjoyed the maxed out nature of the older Pixelbook, the good news is there are high-performance models that go all the way up to $1399 — though you might be better off just buying a used Pixelbook if you are preferred the older 4-in-1 design.
The Pixelbook Go is a traditional clamshell forgoing the more exotic designs of its predecessors in favor of something simple yet refined.
Learn more: Google Pixelbook Go review
The Pixelbook Go is available in multiple configurations with processors ranging from the entry-level Intel Core M3 all the way up to a Core i7. Most models pack a 13-inch 1080p display, but the most expensive variant does feature a 4K panel. You’ll also find options with RAM as high as 16GB and storage as high as 256GB.
So who is the Pixelbook Go for? If you’re looking for a well-rounded clamshell with plenty of power, this is a great option. That said, there are cheaper options that offer similar performance from brands like Acer and HP.
Google Pixelbook Go specs:
- Display: 13.3-inch touch IPS panel, 1080p (4K option)
- Processor: Intel Core M3, i5, or i7
- RAM: 8 to 16 GB
- Storage: 64-256GB
- Ports: 2x USB-C, 3.5mm jack
- Battery: battery life up to 12 hours
3. Best budget Chromebook: Acer Chromebook Spin 15
Now let’s be honest, the Acer Chromebook Spin 15 isn’t necessarily the cheapest Chromebook but it’s the best for budget buyers due to a combination of performance, flexible 2-in-1 form factor, and pricing. The Acer Chromebook Spin 15 flips into a tablet, as you might guess from the namesake. It’s also usable as a traditional clamshell device.
Under the hood, you’ll find a dual-core Intel Pentium N4200 and 4GB of RAM. While this isn’t the highest-end chip or even that much RAM (especially as Android phones now have hit 16GB of RAM), Chrome OS is an efficient operating system and this should be more than enough for the average user. There’s also a great battery life that can easily make it through a whole day’s use, and the 15-inch display gives you plenty of screen real estate and yet isn’t extremely bulky either.
While the Spin 15 isn’t probably best suited for regular travelers due to its almost five-pound weight, it’s a great machine to use around the home or take with you on occasion.
Acer Chromebook Spin 15 specs:
- Display: 15.6-inch Full HD LED touch IPS
- Processor: 1.1GHz Intel Pentium N4200
- RAM: 4 GB
- Storage: 64GB
- Ports: 2x USB 3.0, 2 USB 3.1, 3.5mm jack, microSD card reader
- Battery: Battery life up to 14 hours
4. The best Chromebook for Students (or value buyers): Samsung Chromebook 4
Depending on the age of your student, you probably don’t need much from a Chromebook — just a simple device for getting online and doing homework. Teenagers and children also tend to be less than careful with their electronics, so you’ll want something that won’t break you into tears if the kids happen to destroy it. Enter the Samsung Chromebook 4.
The Samsung Chromebook 4 comes in well under $300, sporting great battery life and above-average performance for the price. On the downside, the display is below average with poor brightness and washed out colors so if you’re looking for something for heavy media consumption, the Chromebook 4 might disappoint (until you remember how cheap it is).
The Samsung Chromebook 4 is powered by an Intel Celeron Processor N4000 with either 4 or 6GB of RAM depending on the configuration. You’ll also find storage sizes between 16 and 64GB, and your choice of either an 11-inch or 15-inch display. Regardless of your pick, not a single option will cost more than around $300.
Bottom-line, this is a great device if you’re looking for a simple Chromebook that can serve as a gateway to social media, Docs, and basic gaming. Just don’t expect a powerhouse.
Samsung Chromebook 4 specs:
- Display: 11.6-inch or 15.6-inch display with 1366×768 resolution
- Processor: Intel Celeron Processor N4000
- RAM: 4 or 6GB
- Storage: 32 to 64GB
- Ports: 1x USB A, 1x USB C
- Battery: 5070mAh battery, 10+ hours battery life
5. Best Chromebook tablet: HP Chromebook X2
The HP Chromebook X2 is perfect if you’re looking for a device that can function as both a tablet and a laptop. The design is similar to the ill-fated Google Pixel Slate, meaning it’s a tablet but can be docked into a keyboard. It’s worth noting the HP Chromebook X2 has been on the market for a while, so if you want something newer with longer update support, you might want to hold off fro something like the Lenovo Duet (arriving later this year).
The HP Chromebook X2 offers fairly decent specs, including an Intel M3 processor with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. You’ll also find a 12.3-inch IPS touch panel with a resolution of 2,400 x 1,600.
HP Chromebook X2 specs:
- Display: 12.3-inch IPS panel, 2,400 x 1,600 resolution
- Processor: Intel Core M3 processor
- RAM: 4GB
- Storage: 32GB
- Ports:2 USB 3.0 Type C, headphone jack
- Battery: 12 hour battery life
6. Best Chromebook for travel: Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 (LTE)
The two year old Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 might not be the newest or most powerful Chromebook, but if you’re a frequent traveler it is basically one of the only options with LTE baked in. With 5G picking up steam this year, hopefully something better will come along to occupy this space soon. In the meantime, the Chromebook Plus V2 still has a lot going for it, including a built-in stylus, a touch display, and — obviously — a built-in LTE modem.
The Chromebook Plus V2 is powered by an Intel Celeron 3965Y with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. There’s also a 12.2-inch touch display with a 1920×1080 resolution. Unfortunately one area that is less great for travelers is battery life, at just 7 hours. While this isn’t bad, many Chromebooks hit 10+ hours, so while it’s great for travelers that need constant access to the Interent and can’t rely on Wi-Fi, you’ll need a compatible power bank or access to a wall outlet.
Overall the Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 is a solid machine and these days can be yours for around $300 typically. Considering the specs and built-in LTE, this is a good deal. For those frequent travelers that can live without LTE however, we’d recommend the Chromebook Flip or Pixelbook Go (listed above) as alternatives.
Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 (LTE) specs:
- Display: 12.2-inch display, HD resolution
- Processor: Intel Celeron 3965Y
- RAM: 4GB
- Storage: 32GB
- Ports: 2 USB-C, 1 USB-A 3.0, headphone jack
- Battery: 7-8 hour battery life
Those are the best Chromebooks money can buy! Is there another Chrome OS device you feel deserves a place among the best? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
Couldn’t find the right Chromebook? Here are more great resources to check out: