So now that I’ve found the motivation to write again, I thought I would get a new tool to do that with. I started researching Chromebooks. Since I had recently switched over to an Android phone (Moto X) and I was already firmly entrenched in the Chrome web browser I thought I would try a Chromebook. I’ve got a Surface Pro for work that I use as my PC. I like it. I have other windows machines at home as well as a Mac Mini. I love all of them and bounce from device to device depending on my mood.
But I’ve made the move to the Google Ecosystem, so I thought I would dive all in. I wanted something lightweight, portable, inexpensive and relatively quick. I didn’t want or need all of the functions of a full blown laptop. A Chromebook seemed intriguing. I started researching, reading reviews, and watching video after video. How did we survive before YouTube? I also just recently added the ability to do mobile hotspot on my phone, so having a constant internet connection was not going to be a problem. Another reason to look at a Chromebook.
I quickly decided that I wanted a netbook size device. I settled the debate down to two devices, the HP Chromebook 11 and the Acer C720. Not an easy choice. I listed out the pros and cons of each device and tried to really pin down what was important to me. The HP was the better looking device. It offered the better screen and it used a micro usb port for charging, the same as my phone. Although the standard car charger didn’t have enough amperage to charge the HP, still it would’ve meant only carrying the chromebook charger as it would’ve charged my phone.
The Acer had the better performance specs, by a long shot. The Haswell chip when I compared it side by side against the Exynos was noticeably faster. It also boasted the better battery life. It claims 7.5 to 8 hours. We’ll see on that.
The keyboard on the HP was better in my opinion, but not substantially. The trackpad on the Acer was better in my opinion, but once again, not noticeably. Both offered the same 100GB of Google Drive space for 2 years. What that means to me is I can move my files from Dropbox to Google, close my Dropbox account and in that two years just about pay for the Chromebook I chose.
The other big difference between the two devices was price. At $199, the Acer was $80 cheaper. That’s a pretty significant amount on a device that is under $300. So the choice came down to performance vs. aesthetics, with aesthetics costing more. Once I played with the HP the choice became much clearer. I chose the Acer C720. I just didn’t feel the HP was powerful enough even though I’m not a really heavy user.
Now comes the real question, will I actually use it?