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on October 14, 2013
 HP's Chromebook 11 is my second Chromebook because, after one year with Samsung's Chromebook I came to realize that not only a Chromebook does almost everything a laptop or a PC or a tablet would do for me but it does it cheaper, usually faster and better, almost always worry-free and very much in style.
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UPDATE (Oct 26, 2014): I placed the HP Chromebook 11 next to the new Acer Chromebook 13 CB5-311-T1UU (13.3-inch Full HD, NVIDIA Tegra K1, 4GB) as I was reviewing it. My goal was to compare looks and display quality and HP's incredible near-180-degree viewing angle and bright picture still outshines that of a newer, more expensive machine with a 1080p display. I thought I'd share this. The HP is the smaller Chromebook, the one on the left.
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UPDATE (Dec 26, 2013): I am glad to see HP's 11-inch Chromebook available again. We've been using ours all throughout the charger 'crisis' and we are as happy with it today if not happier than we were on 'day one'. More than two months later, HP's Chromebook 11 continues to be a beautiful little device with a great display that continues to do most of what I require during my off-work hours. It traveled with me on my vacation and will travel with me again and it's there (on couch or on my bedside table) when I need it.
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WHY A CHROMEBOOK?

There's so much to say here but let me make a quick summary. And never forget that we are talking about an 'under 300' device here because, yes, anything that costs 3-4-5 times as much should do better most of the time.

˕ My Chromebook is my most used computer excluding work hours and by 'computer' I mean PCs, laptops and tablets.
˕ Malware, spyware, adware-free. Since nothing is really 'installed' on the Chromebook, I can't see how one would ever be infected. I am now using my Chromebook to open suspicious emails or click on dubious URLs that I don't dare touch from a laptop.
˕ Extremely safe OS. I don't know if this is common knowledge but Google is constantly challenging hackers to crack their OS. As far as I know, Chromium wasn't cracked yet.
˕ Easy to share among any number of users without any concerns of compromising privacy. If you have a Google account, you simply sign in and you are going to be within your own, personal environment.
˕ Constantly updated and upgraded. Google updates Chromium every few weeks and I found my Chromebook actually getting better all the time rather than slowly fall into obsolescence. HP's Chromebook will not replace Samsung's, it will be used by another family member who really, really wanted one after watching my happy relationship with our first one.
˕ Nearly maintenance free. Whenever I don't use a tablet or even a laptop for a while, they tend to get very busy for a while once I turn them back on. Tablets, especially, are almost impossible to use until all those dozens of updates/upgrades process. Not the case for Chromebooks. Whatever upgrades may take place don't hit my Chromebook. Whenever I call up an app, I get it in its latest version.
˕ The attached keyboard helps a lot. Yes, you can pair a keyboard and even a mouse to a tablet but the Chromebook's keyboard is always there, it negates the need of a stand or even some protecting case.
˕ Chrome OS is streamlined and efficiently focused where it matters, on the everyday uses most of us need a 'computer' most of the time.
˕ Chrome OS being such a streamlined OS, browsing and running apps on a Chromebook is in fact faster than off a PC/laptop/tablet of equivalent specs.
˕ Relatively low prince, 11.6" display and light weight seem to be just about right for something that typically you'd be using to browse the Web while watching TV or take to and from school.

WHY NOT A CHROMEBOOK?

Yes, Chromebooks can't do everything. Google's productivity suites notwithstanding, they are mainly and they are best at media consumption rather than production. Nobody should buy a Chromebook and expect to be able to edit video or perform some heavy word processing or do some hard-core gaming. There are other machines and devices for such tasks. My experience is that a Chromebook can't do 'everything'. Tablets are more portable, PCs and laptops are more powerful but, to me, my Chromebook is the most fun to use and it's likely to stay this way. I am not going to call it my 'second' or 'third' or 'first' computer but, objectively, it's the one most use outside business hours if what we measure is 'hours'.

HP's CHROMEBOOK 11

I haven't spent a lot of time with HP's but, from the start, it was a very familiar feeling. HPs is not 'exactly like' Samsung's but it's easily recognizable as a Chromebook.

Here are some changes:

˕ USB-based charging. This is a BIG thing. The biggest negative in the case of Samsung's Chromebook was the proprietary charger. HP's USB-based charging allows the use of most off-the-shelf chargers so there's a lot less to worry.
˕ Better quality display. When compared to Samsung's the colors are sharper and brighter and you can view the screen from almost any angle left/right or up/down.
˕ Nicer keyboard. It's the same layout but the keys seem to have a little more travel. As a touch typist I am comfortable with both but, on a blind test, I would probably pick HP's over Samsung's.
˕ Somewhat more stylish design. I got the black model and I like both the color and the color accents. Some prefer 'silver' but they are both Okay as far as I can tell.
˕ Fewer ports. There are no USB 3.0 or HDMI ports on the HP's even though my understanding is that you can, in fact output HDMI through the Micro USB. This may be a big deal for some and they should get Samsung's if that's the case. Speaking for myself, I never felt a need to output HDMI off my Chromebook, ever. Same for USB data transfers.

Overall, I am very pleased with HPs device. The lack of USB 3.0 and HDMI ports amount to a big 'nothing' to me and their absence is balanced and surpassed by the non-proprietary charging method, much nicer display and better keyboard.

RATING

I am not going to compare HP's Chromebook with the Pixel or some top of the line laptop. I noticed that many 'pro' reviewers are complaining because Chromebooks and this particular one are not 'high end' and aren't as nice as the Pixel and such. Well... did anyone check the prices? So, yes, let me make a 'duh' statement: this Chromebook is not as good as devices that sell for 3 times or 4 times as much so anyone who doesn't mind paying more should pay more and get one of those. Even though... look at some reasons above for why one my prefer a Chromebook to a laptop or a tablet, regardless of price.

HPs is a five-star to me because it's at least as good and in some way better than my now one year old, often used and much trusted Samsung. The thirty dollars price difference between the two can be justified by HP's supporting USB charging, its much nicer display and its marginally better keyboard. As far as performance, they both appear to be up to the task and they both played Netflix movies flawlessly over Wi-Fi and cast them to the big TV through Chromecast (no need of an HDMI cable for that) - I mention it because I just tried that.

Chromebooks are not for everyone and they are not a universal computing device but, if used for what they are meant to be used, they are as good and as revolutionary as tablets.

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CHROMEBOOK vs. CHROMEBOOK (HPs vs. Acer C720

I had the opportunity to play with Acer's Chromebook for a day and was therefore able to compare them side by side.

- Advantage HP -

˕ Looks and design. HPs looks much better in my view, you have color choices and that's that.
˕ Display. Same size, same resolution but HPs display is brighter, sharper and, most importantly, can be viewed from almost any angle. Not the case with Acer's.
˕ Charging. The ability to charge HPs Chromebook through almost any USB charger is very important to me. Acer's charger is proprietary.

- Advantage Acer -

˕ Horsepower. Acer's appears to be faster and it should be given its faster processor.
˕ Ports. You get HDMI out, USB 3.0 and SD card slot, all of them missing on HP's machine.
˕ Price. At least at launch, Acer's was selling for less.

I would say it's a tie when it comes to the keyboard and track pad's feel.

Acer's machine has the advantage if you are more 'productivity oriented' and need expansion capabilities (ports) and more raw CPU power. You would prefer the HP if you want a Chromebook mainly for fun and casual activities where looks, the availability of a charger and, very importantly, the quality of the display count more.

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NOTES:

- Like most Chromebooks, this one too comes with a free 100GB in Google's cloud for two years. I didn't take advantage of that offer and I'm not going to go for this one, simply because I have no use of 'cloud' storage that goes beyond Gmail at this time.
- While Chromebooks are immune to viruses and other forms of malware, you are as tracked and 'monetized' while on a Chromebook as you are when browsing from your laptop or tablet or phone. However, there are ways to disrupt and confuse the trackers and my two favorite extensions these days are Disconnect Search (or Disconnect.me) that makes it impossible for Google to log your search activities and DoNotTrackMe which does what the name implies. Worth trying.
2626 comments| 626 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
Well, this Chromebook worked fine for the first month of use. I haven't downloaded a lot of apps, nor have I used it for anything other than accessing the internet. When this HP Chromebook was about 30 days old, it developed a blinking problem that is impossible to fix. I have read this is a Chrome Software problem and that it is a known issue. I have also read that this product has been pulled from shelves in the past due to other problems.

What I really don't understand is that there are a lot of issues with this Chromebook by HP, yet you can go on Amazon and purchase this with no problems. Most of the reviews are very good, however, there are some negs. If you don't scrutinize the negative reviews and buy into the positive reviews, like I did, you are stuck with a very inferior product that is a real drag to use.

This blinking, goes from your screen, to black. Sometimes it flashes fast, non stop and other times it changes it's rhythm like morse code or something. This product is a waste of 244.00. The manufacturers know that this is a problem item, yet they keep selling them. DO NOT BUY this version of a Chromebook. There are many other Chromebooks that will perform better for your needs.

I've always been a big fan of HP. I would choose HP over Dell any day of the week, but not anymore. The fact that they are still selling this piece of garbage and sellers are selling this junk knowing that issues haunt this model is highly unethical and will cause this buyer to rethink ever buying HP again. I loved my HP Envy, but this Chromebook is by far the worse electronic device I have ever spent money on.
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on November 29, 2016
As a college student, I didn't want to carry my heavy laptop everywhere so this was such a great replacement. It was so light and fit great in my pack bag or even handbag. I only used to to surf the web and sometimes do online homework since it didn't have many functions as a laptop. But it stopped charging after a couple months, I bought another charger thinking the old charger was broken but still didn't charge so I figured it was the chromebook itself that was not working. I'm kinda disappointed of how long it lasted but for when it did work, it was such a great device to have.
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on June 4, 2014
I went from loving this thing to hating it intensely in a very short time. This review covers the hardware itself, not Chrome OS. Chrome OS is great, and I think it's a wonderful OS for home use. In short, if you want a Chromebook, you can find a better device than this one.

The biggest issue I found was that when I opened the lid after 30+ minutes of no use, the machine would turn back on, but the display wouldn't. For example, if I had been previously listening to music when I closed the lid, the music would come back on, but the display would be totally off, even after opening & closing multiple times, pressing the brightness keys, or tapping the power button quickly. Each time I would have to force shutdown the device and then power it back on, which was always a very slow startup.

Another major issue was with the power charger. This device uses a micro USB charger, which at first seems great because hey I have tons of Micro USB cords! Maybe I could even charge my Chromebook in my car! Right? Wrong. Unfortunately only the Chromebook's charger will work as normal micro USB chargers (e.g. for phones) are too "low power", as the message that pops up says when I plug it in. Also, the physical connection itself is flimsy and janky. Inexplicably, sometimes when I connected the charger the machine simply wouldn't charge... at all, with the indicator light remaining off.

About me: I'm a software developer and I've been using computers since I was 10 years old.
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on March 30, 2014
We love our chromebooks & this would be the perfect web surfing device if it just had a touchscreen like my Acer c720p. This little chromebook looks much more expensive than it is & makes a great 2nd computer. The IPS screen on it coupled with the outstanding keyboard & good trackpad is a step above most other chromebooks I've tried. However, I prefer my Acer slightly to this one due to the lack of a touchscreen. I use a smartphone & am use to tablets so that may matter to me more than most people. This is still a great device at the price.

Update - I've had a lot of keyboard problems with the Acer c720p in the form of some keys not working or only working now & then. This thing though,works great & I love the ability to charge this thing with my smart phone charger. NICE. As soon as Acer fixes or replaces my C720p I plan to sell it. I now have a high end Chromebook Pixel as my primary Chrome device (it is world class), but because I like this thing so much, I plan to keep it as a backup. Great screen, great keyboard & touchpad, & really attractive form factor. If only it were a little more powerful with a faster chip. Still it is a great device to have on your lap as you watch tv, movies or YouTube. Highly recommended.

Update - May 2014 I've been using both Chromebooks a lot since my last update & as a result of OS updates to Chrome all of my keyboard related issues with the Acer c720p have dissappeared. Why I don't know but they have. At the same time, I still love this thing for it's portability, looks, & keyboard. I find it great for texting & e-mails. However anything much beyond that & this thing slows down quickly or stops. Watching movies or videos on-line is pretty much a no go on this device. I've never managed to watch a two hour movie on this but if I did, my guess is it would take 4-5 hours & the battery would be long gone before that happened. The IPS screen is still great, the keyboard is pretty good, but I"m now finding the track pad pretty weak. If this thing had a Haswell processor & a bit better touchpad, & as long as I'm wishing, a touch screen, then it would be an Ideal Chromebook. But now that I've had time to use it for a while, I plan to sell it or downstream it to one of my kids. The processor makes it's ongoing use just too frustrating. Get a Dell or a Acer c720p if you like a touchscreen as much as I do. If you can, I might wait for the summer to see how the newer models turn out. Faster processors & more ram have to help the Chrome OS experience.
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on September 29, 2014
UPDATE: Seems there is NO available mini USB charger which will charge this, available anywhere to purchase, from anyone on the planet. All cords saying they will charge a Chromebook 11 for sale here on Amazon will NOT charge your Chromebook past 15% or if you find one that will, it will take HOURS AND HOURS to charge will NOT charge while you are using the Chromebook. So... basically, you can't plug this in and use the power coming from the outlet. You have to quit when the battery runs out, and wait for half a day or more to use it again. HP is fully aware there's a big problem, won't admit it, and won't give anyone any real help. I might as well have taken $240 and lit it on fire. TOTAL RIPOFF I AM NEVER PURCHASING AN HP PRODUCT AGAIN, EVER.

I like this well enough. I would give it five stars, but I am having issues finding a replacement charge cord. It is supposed to charge with any regular cell phone mini-usb charger, but every one I have tried gives me a "Low Power Charger" message and will not charge the device more than 10%. Still searching for a solution, and chargers aren't available from HP's website.
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on August 6, 2014
I received one chromebook that had charger connection issues and kept restarting. But I started having these problems like a week after having it so I returned it with ease and received a new one. The new one doesn't appear to have the same charger issues.

For the chromebook itself: I really love how lightweight it is. Barely feels like I'm carrying anything at all. I enjoy the ease of use and how fast it starts up. The google docs, sheets, and slides work pretty much like Microsoft office. One thing to note though, you can't start a presentation in PowerPoint and then move it to google slides to continue work. That would be kinda cool if it allowed that but I understand that it doesn't. Another thing, loading web pages can be slow if you have a lot of tabs open or if the web page has a lot of images or gifs.

All in all, I really love its portability and ease of use.
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on December 28, 2014
Maybe my Chromebook is just defective and they aren't all really this bad. I have not been impressed at all with my Chromebook. The first main problem is that everything is just soo slow. It takes about 10-25 seconds to load up Google Chrome and a browser tab. Forget watching Youtube or doing any multi-tasking. If I have multiple tabs open then everything slows down, including typing. There is about a .5 second lag when pressing keys. I thought a Chromebook was meant for fast and speedy internet browser. My brother has a Samsung Chromebook and it works just fine, very fast and snappy. Mine on the other hand, well, I would be better off with a Win '95 computer.

That's the main problem, but there are a few more. The second is the power charging. Something is wrong here as it only charges every once in awhile. Sometimes the charging light goes on and sometimes it doesn't even after I jiggle it and keep trying to put it back it. This is a new charger too, not the ones that start on fire. Also, the computer does not charge if you are using it and charging at the same time, the charger will only keep the battery from going down, but not up. It's too weak for that. The micro-USB port is useful and I thought it was a good idea, but it is not worth the trade off if it causes so many of these problems. I can't believe Google would certify this as a chromebook, unless mine is just a lemon.
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While I understand that when it comes to computers, brand loyalty ranks way up there with favorite foods, beverages and sports teams. I will not argue politics or religion. I believe everyone has a right to his or her opinion...that being said I will add that I have always been a Google user and have become a fan of their search services, OS and devices. They develop things for the common man so to speak...things that actually work the way they are supposed to...mostly for free.
No, I do not work for Google, HP or any of their affiliates. I just know what I need to be done on line in my day to day living. The Chromebook 11 an OUTSTANDING value for web browsing, e mail communication, file and document work and yes...even shopping on Amazon.
It is so easy to set up and begin using in mere minutes. It boots up in seconds and requires no mal-ware or virus protection since everything is done in the Cloud.
Lightening fast and clear as a bell. A joy to watch a movie on and the front facing speakers are phenomenal for a device this size.
Like the ad says... It truly is for everyone.
Highly recommend the Chromebook 11 by Google and HP.
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on June 2, 2014
People have been telling me that you can’t use a Chromebook offline. Well, you can if you get the Chromebook with the Chrome OS and HP is the only making it right now. This little laptop is fast, light, durable aesthetically pleasing to look at. My only issue with it is that there is no ‘End’, ‘Home’ or ‘Del’ keys. The keyboard layout has been change to remove these three needed and very useful keys. I have to be careful that then I go to hit ‘Del’ that I stop because that is where the power button is located. In future version HP please put these keys back into place. I like the automatically updating and ‘asking’ me to apply the updates now or when I shut down. When I compare it to my WIN7 laptop this one runs rings around it. My WIN7 laptop has no applications installed on it and basically a dumb frontend to the web. Yet, its slow as can be with an i7 processor. I can see Google overtaking Microsoft as long as they avoid an antitrust lawsuit.
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