Chromebook recently celebrated its tenth birthday, with Google marking the occasion by announcing several new features. It’s been an interesting decade for the range of affordable, mid-range laptops. Several companies have all brought their own vision for the range to the market, and we’re not at a point where there is more of a diverse range than there has ever been.
Originally designed as a tool for word-processing and web browsing, Chromebooks have been positioned as the perfect work tool for students across the world. The compact design, ease of use and affordability are three things all students need while battling through assignments and deadlines.
With this in mind, we wanted to list some of the best Chromebooks for students in 2021.
Student living requires a lot of budgeting, as there’s lots of costs associated with studying and living in university accommodation. With this in mind, a lot of students will want to find a Chromebook that offers the best value for money, while providing a suitable level of performance.
Samsung Chromebook 4 - £299 for 32GB £349 for 64GB
A great all-rounder
The Samsung Chromebook 4 is a solid, no-thrills all rounder which prioritises performance and value over more exciting features. It’s sleek design makes it the perfect Chromebook for taking on the go. And with an average battery life of around 10 hours, you’ll be able to use it throughout the day without needing to charge.
That long battery life is also backed up by solid performance from the Chromebook 4’s Intel Celeron 3000n processor and 4GB of RAM. Working together, the pairing should give you more than enough horsepower for multiple tabs while working without lag or freezes.
File storage is also an important part of studying, which is why the 32GB hard drive should provide ample space for all your files. If you think that isn’t enough, you can spend an extra £50 for a Chromebook 4 with 64GB of storage and 6GB of RAM.
The Samsung Chromebook 4 is a solid performer for the cost, and should give any student all the performance they need for day-to-day work.
Lenovo Chromebook Duet - £299 for 32GB or 64GB
The Lenovo Chromebook Duet is one of the most interesting Chromebooks on the market. its detachable kickstand and keyboard place it somewhere between a Chromebook and a tablet, but at a much more affordable price than the Microsoft Surface range of tablets.
With an 8-core 2GHz processor and 4gb of RAM, the Lenovo Chromebook Duet will provide all the performance you need for basic day-to-day use. This is coupled up with 32GB or 64GB, depending on which model you purchase. Both model types currently cost exactly the same on Lenovo’s website, so we’d recommend purchasing the 64GB.
The Duet’s biggest appeal is undoubtedly it’s small size. With the detachable kickstand and an included touch screen stylus, the Duet will easily fit in any backpack or suitably sized handbag, making it the perfect go to for working on the move or between lessons/lectures. The Duet also provides incredible value for money, with many 2-in-1 devices costing far above the £299 range.
If you’re looking for versatility from your Chromebook, along with something that’s easy to carry around, you could certainly do worse than the Lenovo Chromebook Duet.
ASUS C523 Chromebook - £269
Performance meets affordability
The ASUS C523 Chromebook is another no thrills option that focuses on solid performance and affordability. What makes the C523 a great option for students is that there’s plenty of screen estate. Its generous 15.6 inch display provides space to work and play in, placing it ahead of almost every other Chromebook in this price range.
On the performance front the C523 has an Intel Celeron N3350 processor, 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage. This should provide students with plenty of power for daily browsing and word-processing needs, and a little extra for those who might want to play some basic video games.
The C523 Chromebook also has one of the largest keyboards at this price range, offering plenty of space to type with large, ergonomically designed buttons. The C523 is a fantastic choice for those who intend to do a lot of writing.
Sporting a large screen, comfortable keyboard and solid performance, the ASUS C523 Chromebook is a fantastic option for students and is one of the cheapest on this list.
While the best value laptops above will fit the bill for the majority of students, there are those studying subjects which might require something a little more powerful. Fortunately, there are a number of Chromebook models which sport some seriously competitive specifications. Here are some of the best-performing Chromebooks books for students within a resonable price range.
Acer Chromebook Spin 713 - £700
A unique, but powerful workstation
The Acer Chromebook Spin 713 is a 2-in-1 device with a 3:2 ratio screen, making it the perfect companion for students. The 2-in-1 functionality means users can swap between using the Spin 713 as a Chromebook or as a tablet.
The Spin 713 has some serious horsepower under the hood, sporting a Core i5-10210U processor and 8GB of RAM, along with a 128GB NVMe solid-state. This processing power makes the Spin 713 a perfect companion for anyone who might need to use tools like Adobe InDesign or Photoshop. The large 3:2 screen also makes it a solid choice in this regard, providing plenty of working space for students.
A range of ports also make the Spin 713 a solid choice, with two USB Type-C ports, a USB Type-A port and most impressively, a HDMI out. The HDMI port enables users to hook the divide up to TV screens and monitors, making it the perfect choice for students needing to present or work across two screens at once.
The Acer Spin 713 isn’t cheap, but it’s a fantastic choice for any student who might need to perform demanding tasks. With it’s unique 3:2 screen, 2-in-1 design and impressive performance capabilities, the Spin 713 is one of the best Chromebooks on the market.
Google Pixel Go - £599
Simple and reliable
The Google Pixel Go condenses the many of the premium features of the Google Pixel Chromebook down to a more affordable package. The Pixel Go is one of the most impressive Chromebooks on the market, featuring a 1080p touchscreen, an impressive 12-hour battery life and Google’s impressive Hush keyboard technology.
The Google Pixel Go is a little more expensive than similar Chromebooks on the market, but what it does bring to the table is solid performance and simplicity. Rather than proving a 2-in-1 experience like many Chromebooks at this price point, the Google Pixel Go instead focuses on simplicity and reliability.
There are four different models of the Google Pixel Go, but the base model comes with an 8th-generation Intel Core m3 processor, 8gb of RAM and 64GB of storage. While this certainly doesn’t match up to the Acer Chromebook Spin 713, the Google Pixel Go provides more than enough horsepower for day-to-day tasks with no slowdown.
The Hush Keyboard is one of the biggest draws of the Pixel Go, featuring touch feedback with silent usage, making it one of the most pleasant typing experiences on the market. The Pixel Go will be a great asset for any student studying a course which involves lots of typing.
The Google Pixel Go is one of the more expensive devices in the market at this performance level, but what customers do get is one of the most reliable Chromebooks in the market, making it the perfect option for a student who wants a device which just works.