Chromebooks combine affordability and security with some helpful business functionality. But before you dive in, there are a few things you should know. Chromebooks run Chrome OS, an online operating system that’s lightweight, secure and simple to use. These machines update themselves automatically, so you don’t need an IT person to continually make the rounds and check for updates. However, Chromebooks are not made for downloading software and don’t have a ton of processing power. So, if your company requires the use of legacy software, these laptops may not be for you. Google also limits how long it offers support to Chromebooks to 5 years. Regardless, a Chromebook might be all you need for basic business tasks such as email, web browsing and document editing.
The Google Pixelbook isn’t your typical Chromebook. For starters, this laptop is significantly more expensive than most Chromebooks (it starts at $999), but once you take it for a test drive you’ll understand why. The Pixelbook is easily the best-looking of its kind. The slim notebook design, monochrome dip and seamless hinges make even the highest-end Apple laptop look dated in comparison. Impressively, under the hood, the Intel Core i5-7Y57 CPU makes multitasking a breeze, and the 8GB of onboard RAM can be upgraded to 16GB. But be aware that the Pixelbook Pen is not included in the purchase price (it’s sold separately for $99).
Samsung Chromebook 3
The Samsung Chromebook 3 is a fabulously inexpensive ($169.99), lightweight (2.5 pounds) Chromebook that’s ideal for frequent business travelers. This basic Chrome OS device has 4GB RAM and lasts nearly 10 hours on a charge. However, keep in mind that this Chromebook isn’t intended to replace your work laptop, unless you can do 100 percent of your work online and rarely need to store anything on your device. Also, the inexpensive price has some trade-offs, such as a less-than-stellar keyboard and a slightly warm underside.
ASUS Chromebook Flip C302CA
The ASUS Chromebook Flip C302CA is a 2-in-1 Chromebook that can easily transition from a laptop to a tablet as needed. If you find yourself constantly switching between devices on your way from meetings with clients to long invoicing sessions, this might be the machine you’ve been waiting for. In addition to flexibility and a gorgeous HD display, this Chromebook has a beautiful design that’s perfect if you want a high-end feel without a budget-busting price tag. We do recommend spending just $50 more than the base model price to get a faster processor, but trust us, it’s worth it.