Acer continues to pump out Chromebooks, following up on its Chromebook R11 convertible with its first 14-inch model. The Acer Chromebook 14 is not only the company’s biggest laptop running Google’s Chrome OS, but also the first with a couple of premium specs that boost its starting price tag a little higher than the cheapest Chromebooks.
Acer is certainly not the first manufacturer to offer a 14-inch Chromebook — that honor belongs to HP, which debuted its Chromebook 14 way back in 2013 — though it’s still pretty rare despite offering 30-percent more screen real estate than the 11-inch screen on many Chromebooks. However. Acer says its Chromebook 14 is the first on the market to offer 14 hours of battery life, albeit only with the base 1,366×768 screen. If you choose the full HD display (1,920×1,080 resolution), the battery life dips to 12 hours. Nonetheless, that would appear to offer a full day’s worth of computing with need for recharging, though we’ll need to wait for real-world testing to compare to the company’s stated claims.
The new Chromebook 14 is also Acer’s first to be decked out in an all-aluminum chassis, which weighs in at 3.42 and measure 0.67 inches thick. It’s also the company’s first Chromebook to sport a pair of USB 3.1 ports, which provide significantly faster throughput than older USB 2.0 connections. Other specs include an Intel Celeron N3060 processor (available in either dual-core or quad-core flavor), 2GB or 4GB of RAM, 16GB or 32GB of built-in storage, and 802.11ac Wi-Fi.
Given its higher-end features (at least for a Chromebook), the Acer Chromebook’s 14 higher price tag should come as no surprise, though it’s higher mostly in comparison to other budget-friendly Chromebooks. The model with the higher-res screen, 4GB of RAM, and 32GB of solid-state storage comes in at $299.99, while pricing for the version with lesser specs hasn’t been announced yet. The pricier edition is already available for pre-order on Amazon.com, and Acer says it will also be available through Best Buy starting next month.