Chromebooks, known for their affordability and portability, are all set to make a mark in the education sector. Google has partnered with Asus and Acer to launch two student-friendly Chromebooks as a viable alternative to iPads and Windows devices at the education technology conference in Bett.
The two new Chromebook models — the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 and the Asus Chromebook C213 — are convertible laptops that can be used as tablets, as traditional notebooks, or in tent or display positions. Both are built to military standards for drops, with the Acer featuring a spill-resistant keyboard and touchpad and the Asus, a modular design for on-site repairs. They can both be flipped all the way up to 360 degrees.
On the specs front, which are not expected to be top of the class hardware, the Acer Chromebook includes an 11.6-inch HD IPO display, an Intel Celeron N3450 quad-core or Celeron N3350 dual-core chip, 4 to 8GB of LPDD4 RAM, 32 to 64GB of eMMC flash, up to 10 hours of battery life, two USB-C ports, two USB-A ports, and a microSD card slot. The whole setup weighs just around 3.08 lbs.
On the other hand, the Asus model comes with an 11-inch display with Gorilla Glass 4, dual HD cameras, a modular design that supports component replacement and a sweet 11 hour battery life.
Both companies have refused to divulge pricing details at this point, but we know the chromebooks are going to be relatively inexpensive, considering the target audience is college students. The expected release date is late spring.
The chrome books are perfectly optimized for touch sensitive gestures, and that means the OS’s Play Store will probably render itself useful — especially since the device can be converted into a laptop. Google is already working with major developers (yep, including Adobe) to scale up apps to suit the display sizes of chromebooks.
It’s worth mentioning at this point of time that a convertible Chromebook is not entirely a novel concept. 2015 saw Asus’s Chromebook flip, which flopped in the consumer market despite having a sturdy build.
Google has been making deeper inroads into the education sector since quite some time, with it’s educational products updated regularly to promote learning inside and outside the classroom. It’s G suite for education now boasts of a significant 70 million users. In October last year, it facilitated the use of machine intelligence to facilitate and add more functionalities to Google Apps like creating smarter spreadsheets and filtering results based on Safe Search and approved by Creative Commons.
With these new student-friendly chromebooks, Google hopes to capitalize upon the market even further.