Chromebooks have a bizarre historical past. Prior to now, they’ve typically been considered lower-end low cost laptops match for training and informal web-browsing. Nonetheless, in a post-Pixelbook world, do they nonetheless fill the identical function? Effectively, because the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 proves, they definitely can.
Now, the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 isn’t a horrible machine, nevertheless it appeals to a selected viewers – mother and father with younger kids that want a laptop computer to do schoolwork with. It’s sturdy, has respectable sufficient efficiency, has an included stylus and carrying case – and it’s cheap contemplating all that’s within the field.
Nonetheless, that’s the place the attraction ends, particularly in comparison with the similarly-priced 2018 iPad. So, is the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 price your hard-earned cash?
Right here is the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 configuration despatched to TechRadar for overview:
CPU: 1.1GHz Intel Celeron N3350 (dual-core, 2MB cache, as much as 2.4GHz)
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 500
RAM: 4GB LPDDR4
Display screen: 11.6-inch HD (1,366 x 768) IPS contact
Storage: 32GB eMMC SSD
Ports: 2 x USB Kind-C, 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x microSD, audio combo jack
Connectivity: 802.11ac wi-fi LAN, Bluetooth 4.2
Digital camera: 720p webcam
Weight: 2.96 kilos (1.36kg)
Measurement: 11.65 x 8.11 x 0.79 inches (295.91 x 205.99 x 20.07mm; W x D x H)
Worth and availability
There’s just one configuration of the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 accessible for buy. Simply $349 (£329, about AU$470) will internet you the laptop computer with the whole lot you see to the best. These are pretty common specs for the class, and the Spin 11 sweetens the pot by together with a fairly respectable stylus and carrying case.
In comparison with comparable Chromebooks with comparable configurations, the Dell Chromebook 11 3180 is $319 (£182, AU$903) with a barely lesser CPU and the identical reminiscence and storage. Likewise, the Acer Chromebook R11, with a quad-core Intel Celeron chip, will set you again about $329 (£279, AU$548).
So, the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 typically falls according to comparable gadgets within the US. And, once you take the included stylus and carrying case into consideration for simply an additional $20, it truly begins to seem like a cut price. For the cash, you’re not going to get a greater deal in terms of a Chromebook for training functions.
Nonetheless, once you have a look at the Asus Chromebook Flip C302, for simply $150 extra at $499 (£599, about AU$650), you’re getting an enormous bump in efficiency with an Intel Core m3 processor and double the storage – you’re additionally getting bumped as much as a Full HD show. Should you’re shopping for a Chromebook for something apart from faculty, we’d advise going with the Asus, because the bump in efficiency and display screen decision is price the additional money.
Then, check out the 2018 iPad. On the barely higher worth of $329 (£319, AU$469) you’re getting a greater show, higher audio system, a extra highly effective processor – however much less RAM and no keyboard. It is determined by what you’re searching for, however in the event you’re searching for a multimedia machine, the iPad is usually the higher purchase – however you’ll lose out on the comfy keyboard and sturdy construct.
On the time of writing, the Acer Chromebook Spin 11 is on the market within the US and UK, however in the event you stay in Australia, you’ll need to import it – possible detracting from the worth proposition.
Much like the Acer Chromebook R 11, the Spin 11 options an all-plastic construct. Don’t let that deceive you although, as this Chromebook is likely one of the sturdiest laptops we’ve ever used. Irrespective of how laborious we attempt, we are able to’t get the laptop computer to flex even just a little. Even the display screen – it solely wobbles once we attempt to wobble it.
For the meant viewers (learn: faculty kids), this laptop computer goes to have the ability to survive virtually any trial it has to endure.
The advantages of the construct don’t finish there. On paper, the keyboard would appear shallow, with simply 1.1mm of key journey, nevertheless it feels comfy and we don’t really feel the keys bottoming out in any respect whereas engaged on it. We would like a wider keyboard, however that’s a constraint of the 11-inch kind issue greater than something.
It’s not the lightest Chromebook within the store although, weighing in at 2.96 kilos (1.35kg), making it noticeably heavier than the Asus Chromebook Flip. Nonetheless, its skinny 0.78-inch body with rounded corners makes it nice sufficient to carry, and we’re positive that it was troublesome to make it a lot lighter with out giving up on among the sturdiness.
Ports are additionally an enormous win right here – you will have two USB-C ports, which deal with knowledge switch and charging. In a Chromebook at this worth vary, we’d have been proud of simply considered one of these ports. You’ve additionally obtained two USB3.Zero ports, a microSD card slot and a headphone jack. This can be a full package deal so far as ports go, and much more than we’d count on on a Chromebook at this worth level a lot much less this dimension.
The display screen additionally displays the sturdy nature of the remainder of the Acer Chromebook Spin 11, because it’s lined by Corning Gorilla Glass, so it must be fairly proof against cracking or shattering – in all probability not one thing it’s best to check, although.
The touchpad is a bitter level, nonetheless. The floor is competent, nevertheless it’s extraordinarily delicate, to not point out the plastic end and hard center-click turned us off. Nonetheless, it does assist gestures, so it’s not all unhealthy.
Display screen and audio system
Issues begin to take a flip once you have a look at the show. It contains a 1,366 x 768 IPS show. And, whereas viewing angles are, properly, fairly good – it’s not very vivid, leaving us squinting whereas working in a brightly lit room. Even at 11 inches, the show appears to be like grainy and pixelated. And, yeah, at this worth level and kind issue an HD show isn’t precisely out of the unusual, however we’d have appreciated a brighter panel, if not a Full HD decision.
The audio system, additionally, are a bit lackluster. Whereas they do handle to fill the room, there’s not all that a lot in the way in which of element within the sound. Listening to Papi Pacify by FKA Twigs, we might make out a touch of the bass, although it was watered down. And, loads of the extra discrete particulars within the tune have been frankly misplaced within the muddy audio.
So, the Spin 11 is ok for watching some youtube movies in between lessons, simply don’t count on a pleasing expertise whereas listening to music or watching motion pictures. Should you’re going to be doing any sort of heavy media consumption, we’d suggest going with the 2018 iPad. You’ll get a significantly better audio and visible expertise.