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HP's Chromebook 14 is our third Chromebook because, after one year with Samsung 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. We've ordered a nice HP Chromebook 11 since and now, because someone in our household wanted a one that was 'bigger', we went for the '14'.

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.

˕ Our Chromebooks are our most used computers 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.
˕ Chromium is streamlined and efficiently focused where it matters, on the everyday uses most of us need a 'computer' most of the time.
˕ Chromium 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 14 vs. Chromebook 11

Having owned two other Chromebooks already, from the start, it was a very familiar feeling. HP's 14 is not 'exactly like' Samsung's and this big HP is quite different from HP's Chromebook 11 but it's easily recognizable as a Chromebook.

Here are some changes:

˕ DISPLAY: HP 11's colors are sharper and brighter and you can view the screen from almost any angle left/right or up/down. HP 14's is not as bright and the larger size doesn't come with better resolution.
˕ KEYBOARD. It's a draw. I like both keyboards as they have a good layout and nice travel. As a touch typist I am comfortable with both.
˕ DESIGN: HP 11's is more stylish design but they are both Okay as far as I can tell. HP 11 is nicer though.
˕ PORTS: This is where the HP 14 wins big time. It comes with USB 3.0 ports vs. HP 11's USB 2.0 and full HDMI.
˕ POWER: It's not too obvious but yes, the HP 14 is sometimes faster refreshing screens. Videos play equally smoothly on both.
˕ SIZE AND WEIGHT: HP 14 is a lot heavier so if you travel and size and weight matters then HP 11 is the right choice. If your Chromebook is mostly homebound and most of your computing and media playing takes place in a room shielded from direct or indirect sunlight then the HP 14 gives you the bigger display advantage.

Overall I like HPs larger Chromebook. It has better ports options than the HP 11, it's faster and you get a bigger screen on a body that's not as light and pretty.

RATING

I am not going to compare a 300 dollar HP 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.

HP's 14 is a four-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 but I personally prefer the HP 11. 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.

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.
1919 comments| 755 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 28, 2014
After loving this chromebook for every reason you buy a chromebook for 6 full, glorious months.... it turned around and screwed me.

This morning, I woke up after not touching my chromebook for a week. It hadn't been plugged in, and the battery was dead. No big deal. I plugged it in. It showed the charging lightning bolt, but wasn't actually charging. It stayed at 1%. Hours go by. I tried other plugs. I tried jiggling it. I tried a powerwash, a hard reset, a restart, etc. Nothing. The second I pull the power, it dies. It won't go past 1%. I AM FURIOUS. I tried to look up warranty rules for a return or replacement... and nothing is available online that I can find. I've found 14 other forums listing the same problem, and no one had a solution. HP - HELP!
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on March 13, 2017
I have had a love hate relationship with this chromebook since I got it. I have had it about 2.5 years now, but some problems I have had since the day I got it and some problems starting showing up within the first year and some are now just showing up.
First, one of the keys was cockeyed when I first opened it. I snapped it into place but it would always come back loose again. I sent it to HP and was without it for about 2 weeks, but when I got it back, the key was fixed and I never had another issue with that. I do have issues whereas some of the keys have become blank from the letters rubbing off. If I had to depend on looking at the letters to know where the keys were, I would be in big trouble. I have 3 keys that are completely blank and a couple more that are almost blank.
After about a year, maybe less, the mouse would start freezing. I called HP and was told to do a powerwash. Well that suggestion sucked. I didn't want to lose my photos and such but I did it. And it did not fix the problem. So I youtubed it and saw where many people have this issue and they have to unplug the battery and replug it back in. This involves taking the chromebook apart.Luckily I have someone that can do that but many don't.
That would seem to work for a few months but then it would do it again. After doing this about 4 times over a years time, I just accepted the fact that I have to do a hard reset when that happens and I lose whatever I am working on.
Now my latest frustation is the sd slot. I take a lot of photos and I upload them using the slot. Now it will not recognize the sd card being inserted. I have yet to research that but it is annoying. I have to dig up my camera cord.
You might wonder why I gave it a 3 instead of a lower rating, with all these issues. I use my chromebook daily. I use it for both personal and business. I love it, when it is working. As much as I have had issues with it, I would take a chance on another one, but the price would have to coe down. I can't buy a new one every 2 to 3 years.
Maybe I got a bad chromebook.
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on September 3, 2014
I have been thinking about getting a new laptop for several years and when I finally decided to actually get one, the chromebook have gotten positive reviews from friends that I've asked for recommendations. Now, I can see why they love their chromebook.

This fits perfectly for what my online browsing and watching movies and shows. I have found this easy to use. The touchpad takes some getting use to, but once you get the hang of it there's no issue there. Although if you want to use a mouse it's feasible but for myself, I found it didn't work as well even when I changed the speed of the mouse. I don't have any issues with the keys. They're perfectly fine for me. The screen is a great size and the images come off beautifully.

I have read some other reviews speaking about the speakers and how they're average or not the best quality. So I was quite surprise at how clear and loud the sound came from them. They're actually better than what was on my last laptop.

The only issue I had was during the first couple of days upon getting the chromebook, the screen would freeze and then shut down and start up with a message saying that the Chrome OS is damaged or missing and I had to reboot the system. For a time there, this kept occurring. It got to the point where I thought I would have to return/exchange this for another one. It got to be a little frustrating especially considering I just got it. But I'm glad to say that since then I haven't had the issue again. If it happens again it wouldn't be a big deal to reboot it again.

I'm not really technologically savy. I basically just browse the internet and watch movies and shows. So with that said, this chromebook is perfect for me. I enjoy its easy use and how light it is. I also like the color options available. All in all, I am very happy with my first chromebook.
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on August 17, 2014
Bought this for my father who wants to use latest technology but has trouble with understanding a regular computer because of all the popups, updates, etc. This Chromebook allows him to do what he wants (check email, check facebook, watch youtube, go to favorite web sites). The Chromebook starts rapidly and everything responds to commands very quickly. This is the perfect item for the occasional computer user who just wants the experience without having to be a knowledgeable computer user. Also, it can be used while sitting in the living room while watching TV and a question comes up like, 'When did John Wayne die?" Just open the Chromebook and voila! within moments you'll find your answer. I've already bought a second for myself and I am planning to buy a third, to give to my husband. Who knows, maybe I'll even get one for my mother-in-law!
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on September 6, 2014
The battery on my Kindle Fire is nearly incapable of holding a charge any more, so I began looking at alternatives. My eyesight has changed a lot in the past few years and I wanted something bigger. I decided on the Chromebook because all I really needed was something I could tote around the house with me. I'm done with little tablets. I need something I can see. The price was extremely reasonable.

I had not anticipated how much I would love this format. It has been a long time since I accessed the software and files stored on my desktop. Almost everything I do is web based. In addition, I've been using Chrome for years, so I already have a base from which to start. My experience using it is nearly identical to the experience I enjoy using my desktop - except that it's portable.

The HP is attractive and the build quality seems quite high. It's pretty lightweight and the screen is sufficient for the tasks I ask it to perform. I can access all of my Amazon content from it as well - which is why I had the Fire in the first place. It is much more comfortable to use. There are some ports that I haven't had the need to use yet. With the Bluetooth on board I can do all kinds of things. It's been really flexible.

In terms of performance, I have had no issues. Set-up was quick and easy. The battery holds a charge for days (if you're a moderate user). I have had no need to turn it off or reboot it.
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on November 28, 2014
Everything seems great about this Chromebook. It looks wonderful, is lightweight, screen produces sharp, vivid picture with natural colors. Touch pad is also perfect. Tested all ports - USB, HDMI, headphone, SD Card reader - all are working without a glitch. Camera is also pretty good, I'd say it's perfect for video chatting on Google Hangouts (Skype is not available on Chromebooks).

Things you can do with any Chromebook are: browsing Internet, watching videos and photos online or from an internal 16 GB SSD Drive, or your removable media, such as USB drives and SD Cards. Most, but not all popular photo formats and video codecs are supported. You can install many Chrome browser extensions and applications, including some games from Google store, where many of them are available for free, others require some payment. Online basic Office suite - Google Docs is available for a free use. Google play is also accessible. NOTE: you can not install any Windows or Apple applications on this device, but if your are not a user of heavyweight programs, such as Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft Office, etc., you will be happy with this very fast, smooth running, maintenance-free, Chromebook PC.

Important Note: If you buy a used, open box or refurbished Chromebook, chances are pretty high that you won't be able to sign up for free 100GB cloud space on Google Drive, offered by Google to all owners of new Chromebooks. The reason: only one free account available per each machine, and if the box has been opened, someone likely already used this free benefit, offered only once for each particular Chromebook device. I don't think this is fair. It should be at the very least stated clearly that this important feature ir probably unavailable on any open box, used, or refurbished Chromebooks.
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on February 3, 2015
so, after carelessly not listening to anyone who told me hp was garbage i purchased this because i didn't need anything expensive or fancy.
i had it for a couple months & then outta nowhere it turned on & said "chrome os is damaged or missing". i went through all the recovery steps & it tells me an unexpected error has occurred. well i contacted hp who said the laptop was out of warranty & that the harddrive was failing.
it's a $300 fix for a $200 chromebook.
will never purchase an hp again.
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VINE VOICEon September 8, 2015
We bought this as a gift for my grandfather. He only needs a computer for internet browsing and very little word processing. The HP Chromebook is perfect! It is very intuitive, which is especially advantageous for users who are not very familiar with computers in general. We set it up for him and have used it when visiting--I think we will be ordering one for ourselves soon. It is very lightweight and, after a year, the white has not gotten discolored from use. Being a chromebook, there are some features that are different from your standard laptop (i.e right-clicking, dragging, and scrolling down a page), but a quick Google search and you'll know exactly what to do! The only thing we had some issues with is installing a printer. Only certain printers are capable of connecting to a Chromebook and the one we had could not connect. So, we've had to buy another printer. Not a big deal, but it was frustrating the first time we wanted to print.
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on December 28, 2014
When I first bought and received my chromebook, I was in love. I wanted something lighter and simpler, to take to coffee shops and such for homework and facebook. It was exactly what I needed. I have gotten many compliments on the color and cuteness.

However, I have been dissapointed in how many issues I've had. Since buying it in September (4 months), I have had 2 issues that have been frustrating for me. The first time, the screen just didn't turn on when I opened the computer (as it normally does).. and so I couldn't use my chromebook for a few days until one day it magically worked again. Now, I am having an issue with an error, and the suggested recovery not working. Again, I have now not used it for weeks and I might need to ship it back. Also, you cannot simply remove the batter, you have to unscrew and un-attach the whole back (which I have not yet attempted b/c I'm nervous to mess something up).

Also, my brother, who works with computers, now tells me I should have never gotten a chromebook and I would have asked him originally he would have discouraged me from buying one. I was lured in by the cute color and price, and now I'm dissapointed and frustrated. Thankfully, I still have my clunker laptop that I can depend on for now.
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