HP has announced a new family of Chromebooks, which  are powered by Intel’s high-performance processors and feature stylish design, aluminum body, high-resolution display and even Bang & Olufsen speakers. The new laptops will not be as affordable as many other mobile PCs running Google Chrome OS and will not be as powerful as Google’s Pixel, however, this is what HP believes to be the right balance between performance, style, portability and price.

When Acer and Samsung introduced their first notebooks based on Google’s Chrome OS in mid-2011, they praised their low price and mainstream computing capabilities. At the time, Chrome OS was a mystery for most people, netbooks were relatively popular and it made sense for the aforementioned PC makers and Google to address the entry-level segment of the market with something very affordable. As Chrome OS gained traction, PC makers began to install higher-performing components into their Chromebooks. However, they were still not ready to address the high-end market segment with such PCs, which is why Google released its Pixel laptop in 2013. The Chromebook Pixel is one the most advanced and stylish Chromebooks ever made because of its Core i7 “Broadwell” CPU, a display with 2560×1700 resolution and 3:2 aspect ratio. But, the Pixel costs $999 and not all users are ready to invest that sum in a Chromebook. Fortunately, different PC makers offer various systems that attempt to replicate some of the Pixel’s features. HP decided to build its own competitor for Google’s Pixel and while the product is not exactly affordable, it has a better screen than most Chromebooks and a number of other advanced features.

The HP Chromebook 13 sports a 13.3” IPS display with 3200×1800 resolution (QHD+), 170-degree viewing angles and 16:9 aspect ratio, which is good for multimedia applications and video. HP’s latest Chromebook comes in brushed anodized aluminum chassis, it is 12.9 mm thick and weighs 1.29 kilograms (2.86 pounds), which is thinner and lighter than Apple’s MacBook Air 13”. Despite the very high resolution screen, the laptop works up to 11.5 hours on one charge of its 45 Wh battery, according to the manufacturer.

To enable long battery life, HP used Intel’s Skylake-Y system-on-chips to build its Chromebook 13. Various versions of the system are powered by either Pentium or Core M SoCs with two cores, Intel’s HD Graphics 515 (Gen9) core with 24 EUs (execution units) as well as 6W or 4.5W TDP. The system will likely be considerably faster than other Chromebooks running Atom, Celeron or Pentium processors because of the high-performance CPU architecture.

HP Chromebook 13 Specifications
Screen Resolution 3200×1800
CPU Intel Core m7-6Y75 Intel Core m5-6Y57 Intel Core m3-6Y30 Intel Pentium 4405Y
Graphics Intel HD Graphics 515 (Gen9, 24 execution units)
RAM 16 GB 8 GB 4 GB
Storage NAND flash storage
Wi-Fi 2x2 MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi module (?)
Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.2 (?)
USB 2×USB-C, 1×USB-A ports
Other I/O Microphone, stereo speakers, audio jack
Thickness 12.9 mm/0.5 inch
Weight 1.29 kilograms / 2.86 pounds
Price $1029 $819 $599 $499

Depending on the model and price, the HP Chromebook 13 can be equipped with 4, 8 or 16 GB of RAM, an unknown amount of solid-state storage as well as wireless connectivity technologies (a 802.11ac Wi-Fi module with Bluetooth 4.2 is likely, but is not confirmed by HP). HP notes that its system has a full-sized backlit keyboard as well as Band & Olufsen-tuned speakers, which is something new for a Chromebook. The system also has a webcam, three microphones, a 3.5 mm audio port, a SD card reader, one USB Type-A port as well as two USB Type-C ports. The Chromebook 13 uses USB-C for charging and is therefore compatible with a variety of third-party chargers.

With its advanced Chromebook 13, HP offers its Elite USB-C Docking Station ($149), which plugs in to a USB-C port on the PC and enables to connect up two Full HD displays, Gigabit Ethernet as well as multiple USB Type-A devices, such as keyboards or mice.

Four versions of the HP Chromebook 13 should hit the U.S. retail shortly. The most basic model running the Intel Pentium 4405Y processor and equipped with 4 GB of RAM will cost $499, whereas the top-of-the-range system featuring the Intel Core m7-6Y75 and 16 GB of RAM will cost $1029, which is even more than Google’s Pixel.

Sources: HP and Engadget.

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  • nikon133 - Monday, May 9, 2016 - link

    Looks like your Chromebook froze in the middle of your post ;)

    Kidding.

    Or am I...?
    Reply
  • HarryHawk - Thursday, May 5, 2016 - link

    Also when comparing the high-end Chromebooks to the Apple line the high-end Chromebooks in terms of build and speed compared well with the Pro Models.

    Yes they do less but for me less is more. I love my Chromebook Pixel 2015 and this high-end model from HP is similar and cheaper with a better display.
    Reply
  • abestic9 - Tuesday, May 3, 2016 - link

    > personal computer
    > practically immune to malware

    no. just no.
    Reply
  • BurntMyBacon - Wednesday, May 4, 2016 - link

    @abestic9: "
    > personal computer
    > practically immune to malware

    no. just no."

    Personal computer? Definitely takes the personal out of the computer.
    Immune to malware? Unlikely, but perhaps less vulnerable by virtue of smaller threat surface.
    Secure? If you take your car out of the garage and park it on the street and replace the garage door with a smaller more secure door (that the car no longer fits it), you could say your garage is more secure. However, if what the thief wants is the car ...

    You don't need to infect a machine with malware when the critical data you are looking for lives in the internet. It's much more straight forward to catch the data in transit than to try to take over a machine that doesn't have the data and try to retrieve it later. With all the transparent https proxies (thanks Lenovo et. al.), SSL vulnerabilities, and the number of servers out there that are still using security schemes with know vulnerabilities, I'd think people would be a little more hesitant to put everything in the cloud.
    Reply
  • damianrobertjones - Wednesday, May 4, 2016 - link

    How many people have I spoken to that have filled their phones storage space? A whole load. Should they stick their personal photos on the cloud? Probably not and if they do they probably don't know that they are.

    These machines with low storage will hit the same limits so all of you 'pros' screaming 'buy this' are not really thinking about the standard user.
    Reply
  • Grubel - Tuesday, May 3, 2016 - link

    Equivalent Mac options cost at least double the price of a Chromebook, must often much more. Reply
  • asendra - Tuesday, May 3, 2016 - link

    Show me one of those "equivalent" Chromebooks at half the cost. Reply
  • taisserroots - Tuesday, May 3, 2016 - link

    look at this article, if you haven't realised there is no hope Reply
  • HarryHawk - Thursday, May 5, 2016 - link

    I love my Chromebook Pixel 2015 and this high-end model from HP is similar and cheaper with a better display. Reply
  • annomander - Thursday, May 5, 2016 - link

    It's very impressive, if I already didn't have a pixel I'd consider it. Reply

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