Chromebooks offer much more than just a web browsing experience in 2023. Just like Windows laptops, Chromebooks now come in all shapes and sizes and are solid options even against MacBooks. There is an excellent choice of ChromeOS clamshell laptops, convertibles, and even desktop mini Chromeboxes. In some cases, these Chromebooks might even be cheaper in price, too.
Other than all those types of great hardware, Chromebooks also have a lot to offer in the software powering the experience. Similar to how Windows and macOS have always evolved, Google has really moved ChromeOS, which powers Chromebooks, beyond just a simple web browser. You can run Android apps from the Google Play Store, install Linux apps, and even get away with gaming (in beta) in select higher-end Chromebook models. Thanks to new partnerships Google has come up with, and integrations in ChromeOS, you even can enjoy cloud gaming services like Nvidia GeForce now and Xbox Cloud Gaming on new specialized Chromebook models.
Chromebooks will even play nice with your Android phone via Phone Hub, so you can see your notifications and even your favorite photos on your device. A Chromebook can do so much for you in 2023, and here are some of our picks for the best ones you can buy right now.
Best overall: HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook
We'll get right to the point with the best Chromebook you can buy right now for your money. It is the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook, which we recently reviewed. This is a very premium Chromebook that comes in close to $1,900. Don't let that scare you though as, for the price, there's a lot that you might like. If you're after something cheaper, then check out the other picks on our list, but hear us out on why this is a good buy first.
Like what you get when buying a MacBook or a Surface, HP cut no corners with the Elite Dragonfly Chromebook. You'll even be investing in a system that's designed to last for years.
We say that because one of the areas where HP focused the most is the CPUs powering the device and the overall specs. As you'll find in most Windows PCs this year, HP opted for 12th-generation Intel CPUs. These are all U-series chips, including the Intel Core i3-1215U, Intel Core i5-1235U, Intel Core i5-1245U, or Intel Core i7-1265U. It was once rare to find these Intel processors in a Chromebook, as most times, Chromebooks are a generation or two behind in CPUs. We loved the performance of this chip in our review, finding that Linux ran great, Android apps were fast, and webpages loaded up quickly when multitasking. It really outdid the Chromebook we used for our daily driver, with an AMD Ryzen 5 processor.
What's even better is that to pair with those U-series CPUs, which have both performance cores and efficiency cores for better multitasking, RAM can be configured to 8GB, 16GB, or 32GB. This means you'll always have enough performance in this device to get you through your days of work or school. As for storage, you can get either 128GB, 256GB, or 512GB, which is more than enough for storing files locally. The only downside to the CPU and specs choice, though, is the battery life, which was decent, but not outstanding in our tests.
Another thing that makes this Chromebook special is the haptic touchpad. As of right now, it is the only Chromebook that has one. This once MacBook-exclusive feature is becoming more common, so it's great to see it expand to Chromebooks, too. In the Windows space, you'll even find that a haptic trackpad is on the Surface Laptop Studio, ThinkPad X1 Titanium, ThinkPad Z13 or Z16, and Dell XPS 13 Plus. ChromeOS, though, has its own tricks for this haptic trackpad. You'll get great feedback for common tasks as you use your Chromebook like dragging windows into place. You can even tap anywhere you want on it to click since the entire surface is clickable.
Of course, the display matters here, too. On this HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook, you'll be getting a fully convertible display that you can use in multiple modes — either tent, stand, tablet, or laptop. Just as what you'll find on most modern Windows laptops, the display houses a 13.5-inch slim-bezel panel turned to a 3:2 aspect ratio. Paired with support for the optional HP Digital Pen, this means more vertical viewing room for web-based content and inking on documents on the screen. Options include Anti-Glare WLED (1920 x 1280 resolution), 400 nits, BrightView LED (2256×1504 resolution), 400 nits, BrightView WLED (1920×1280 resolution), and 1,000 nits.
We'll end with the ports on the machine. Ports are important on a Chromebook, and in this area, the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook does not disappoint. You'll get two modern Thunderbolt 4 ports, a USB-Type A port, an HDMI port, and a headphone jack. HDMI and USB-A mean you can leave your dongles behind.
HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook
The HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook is the best Chromebook you can buy with the latest CPU, an amazing haptic trackpad, and a 3:2 aspect ratio display.
Best ChromeOS tablet: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook
One of our favorite ChromeOS tablets is the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5. Priced decently at $500, it is the ideal travel companion. The market for Chromebook tablets is packed, but this is one of the most flexible and premium-feeling with a detachable keyboard and support for an optional stylus. The SoC under the hood of the Duet 5 is also great when put up against similarly priced devices. The OLED display is the other bonus, making this great for multimedia.
What really makes the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 a great device to own over a competing Chromebook tablet like the HP Chromebook x2 11 is what's powering the package. Lenovo opts for the second-generation Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c processor. This brings a lot of improvements over the first generation, and we found it quite pleasing to use during our review period. There was no lag when gaming in Asphalt 9, and day-to-day web browsing worked smoothly. Even Android apps ran brilliantly, a huge plus if you want to enjoy portable gaming on this machine.
Even better, that choice in SoC also helps with battery life, as we managed to punch out an entire day's worth of work when we used the device, despite the power-hungry OLED display. So, if you need a solid-performing Chrome tablet to last you all day at work, then this is the one.
Now, for the included keyboard. Typically, you'd expect a Chromebook tablet to have a flimsy and cheap keyboard. Usually, the keyboard is an optional purchase, too. But in this case, that's not what you get with this package. Right out of the box, you actually can attach this keyboard to your IdeaPad Duet 5 display, pull out the stand from the back, and get to work. When we typed on it in our tests, we could comfortably use the IdeaPad Duet 5 on our lap without frustration and even complete long blog posts. Compared to the HP Chromebook x2 11's small keyboard, this Chrome device is sure to get you through the workday fine without causing cramps in your fingers.
Tablets are also great for multimedia and drawing, and the IdeaPad Duet 5 makes these tasks quite fun. Lenovo doesn't include a USI stylus for you in the box, but when we used one, we found it really excellent for taking notes in one of our class lectures in Google's Cursive app. Other than that drawing aspect, the IdeaPad Duet 2 comes with a 16:9 OLED panel. This ratio makes it great for viewing movies and consuming media. It's something you might want to do, too. In our tests, the display had off-the-charts brightness, great viewing angles, and accurate color reproduction. Even the speakers were great since it's a quad-array setup.
But for all the good things we've said about the IdeaPad Duet 5, it is limited in some areas. There is no headphone jack on board, so Bluetooth headphones or a USB-C to 3.5 mm headphone adapter will be your option. There are also only 2 USB-C ports, so you'll need to invest in a dongle for connecting to displays and USB drives.
Lenovo Chromebook Duet 5
With a vibrant OLED display, spacious keyboard, the Lenovo Chromebook Duet is a road warrior of a ChromeOS tablet
Best display on a Chromebook: Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2
If you're after a Chromebook with the best display, then the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 is our pick for that. This is one of the best options if you're looking to make ChromeOS your go-to platform for drawing. The Galaxy Chromebook 2 continues the overall design of the original Galaxy Chromebook but reduces some of the premium features to attain a more reasonable price. The most impressive feature here is definitely the display. You'll be awestruck by every image with the world’s first jaw-dropping QLED display on a Chromebook, which produces 100% color volume.
The processor options here are not quite as high-end as the original Galaxy Chromebook, but the Intel Core i3 should do the job for most users. Starting options include the Intel Celeron, for $400, with an upgrade to the Intel Core i3 being $550. Storage on this device tops out at 128GB, but this is still ultra-fast SSD storage we’re talking about. You also retain 8GB of RAM and get improved battery life. While the S-pen is still supported, it’s not bundled with the laptop, so you’ll need to buy it separately. This also means there’s no slot for storing the SPen in the body of the Chromebook.
Design is another strong point for the Galaxy Chromebook 2, particularly in the Fiesta Red color. If you’re looking for a Chromebook that matches your personal style, then this is an excellent option to consider. Friends and family will definitely be impressed with how this Chromebook stands out in the crowd. The chassis is also durable and doesn’t have too much give when pressing on the screen with a USI pen while drawing.
In terms of design, the aluminum chassis feels sturdy and substantial, and it's a pleasure to carry around. There’s something about the feel of cold metal that makes a plastic-bodied Chromebook feel less desirable. If you like to stand out in a crowd, the Fiesta Red color on the Galaxy Chromebook 2 is a head-turner for sure. There’s nothing wrong with a great cheap laptop, but nothing about this device feels cheap.
Beyond the look, the device is functionally designed as well. Samsung kept the profile slim and rigid, opting for only two USB-C ports (one on each side) and a micro SD slot.
Overall, this is the best Samsung Chromebook for you if you can live with the removal of the 4K display and fingerprint sensor. The highly attractive price will sway most users to choose this 2nd-generation device. If you need a high-quality laptop for watching media, this is one of the best Chromebooks for drawing.
Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2
With the Galaxy Chromebook 2, Samsung removed a few premium features but also drastically reduced the price. As the first Chromebook with a QLED display, this machine still packs plenty of power and style for most users.
Best 2-in-1 convertible Chromebook: HP Chromebook x360 14c
One of the benefits of having a Chromebook that's a 2-in-1 convertible is that you can use it in different modes without worrying about detaching a screen or a keyboard. For this, the HP Chromebook x360 14c is our favorite pick. It's great to use as both a tablet for inking, a laptop for typing, in a tent mode for movie watching and so much more. All of this comes at a decent price of $700.
Powering the Chromebook x360 14c is an 11th-generation dual-core Intel Core i3-1125G4 CPU. This is the lone option, as is the 8GB of RAM and the 128GB of NVMe SSD storage. That's not to say that these are bad specs, though. An Intel Core i3 CPU is typically one of the base options on mid-range Chromebooks like this one. It should be great enough to power you through a full day of web browsing for work or school or play without lag and other issues.
One of the highlight features of this Chromebook, though, is the design. Made out of aluminum, this is a study machine. HP even rounded the corners of the device to make it comfortable to hold in the hands. What's even better about this design is that it carries over to the display, which has some pretty slim bezels on the side, rounded corners, and a narrow chin that makes it comfortable to hold as a tablet. This reminds us, that the Chromebook supports an optional HP stylus, which can be used for drawing and taking notes.
Another reason you might want to consider this Chromebook has a lot to do with the webcam. Unlike most Chromebooks, HP opted for a special wide-angle lens with an 88-degree field of vision. This lets you fit more people, and more of the surrounding room on your call. And, when you want some privacy, there's a switch on the side of the Chromebook that can kill your webcam and disable it. For even more privacy, there's a fingerprint sensor on the bottom of the keyboard deck, helping make logins seamless and easy.
With the display, there's nothing too fancy to talk about. The base for most mid-range Chromebooks is FHD and 1920 x 1080 resolution, which is exactly what you'll get with this model. With brightness rated at around 250 nits, it is decent enough for watching movies and streaming, as your content won't be letterboxed. Two speakers to the side of the keyboard help with that immersive feeling when using the Chromebook in stand mode.
Finally, if it's ports you're worried about, then worry no more. HP is very generous on the Chromebook x360 14c. You get a Micro SD card reader, a SuperSpeed USB Type-A, port, a headphone jack, and a SuperSpeed USB Type-C port. The addition of USB-A helps with not worrying about dongles for file transfers, but you'll still need one for connections to external displays.
HP Chromebook x360 14C
The HP Chromebook x360 14c offers up a great design, a unique wide-angle webcam, and decent performance
Best value Chromebook for gaming with Steam: Lenovo 5i-14 Chromebook
Google recently partnered with Steam, so you can play select PC games on your Chromebook. That said, you might be looking for an affordable device for this.
Currently, Steam is only supported on select Chromebooks with a very specific set of specifications and only in a very early and unstable beta experience that requires you to switch to the ChromeOS Beta Channel. Eventually, though, the experience will launch to everyone, and you'll want a Chromebook for it. The good news is that one of the best Chromebooks for gaming is the Lenovo 5i Chromebook which starts at $360.
While it's not the fanciest when compared to Windows gaming laptops, this Chromebook is powered by Intel's 11th generation Core i5-1135G7 processor and comes with up to 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. That's the most important part, as Google requires an 11th-generation Intel Core i5 or i7 processor for Steam, and at least 8GB of RAM. You'll also need Intel Iris Xe graphics, which this Chromebook supports. That new processor is one box to check for gaming and another bonus for expanded performance for web browsing and using Android apps.
Another box to check off for gaming is a decent display, which this Lenovo device also has. It comes with a basic FHD resolution display. It's not the highest resolution and doesn't have touch support (especially when compared to other options like the 2k resolution panel on the now discontinued Acer Chromebook Spin 713, which also supports Steam) but it will get the job done for most games. That's because Google suggests changing the resolution and toning down the settings on most games that are currently in beta testing in Steam. Most of these games also don't support touch controls, either, so the lack of touch isn't a loss.
Of course, you can't count out the ports for gaming, either. There are 2 USB-C 3.2 Gen 1 ports and a USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 port, which is great for connecting an external keyboard or mouse. There's even a MicroSD card reader if you want to store games or other content separate from storage on your device. That's not to forget the headphone microphone and combo jack, which will be useful for headsets and other gaming accessories.
We'll touch on the keyboard here, too. This Chromebook has a similar keyboard to what you'll find on Lenovo's IdeaPad gaming laptops. It's not up to snuff in terms of tactile and responsiveness for gaming quality, but for day-to-day typing, it will work out fine.
Bonus features on this Chromebook include a LED light bar that changes color to track battery life, which might look cool when gaming. There's even a webcam privacy shutter to turn off your webcam and focus on other tasks. Battery life is rated at 10 hours on this Chromebook, and the FHD screen likely helps bump up that number.
If you want to be a little unique with your Chromebook, you can choose different color options. Lenovo includes both a Sand color and Storm Gray. The Sand color is more attractive if you want to stand out, but Storm Gray is the basic.
Lenovo Chromebook 5i
The Lenovo 5i Chromebook is ready for Steam games thanks to the 11th-generation Intel processor and a massive 120Hz display.
Best Chromebook on a budget: Samsung Chromebook 4 +
Not everyone has more than $1,000 to spend on a Chromebook and that's where the Samsung Chromebook 4+ tops our list. This is a no-nonsense Chromebook that looks a lot like an older MacBook and comes in at a really low starting price of $300 You also can upgrade to 64GB or 128 GB of storage for $350. It strikes a decent balance when it comes to the display, keyboard, design, and performance.
Powering the all-plastic Samsung Chromebook 4+ is an Intel Celeron N4000 processor. This is a much lower-end processor found in most Chromebooks of this price range, so things like Android apps might not perform the best. Paired with 4GB of RAM, though, it is enough to get you through web browsing just fine, as ChromeOS is heavily optimized for lower-end hardware. Note that Samsung also includes a MicroSD card reader, too, which can be used for expanding the base (and slower) eMMC storage. This is if you want to save $50 and get the introduction model.
As for the display, you're getting a Full HD 1920 x 1080 resolution 15.6-inch panel. This screen size is usually an expensive upgrade on most other Chromebooks. The panel has an anti-glare coating and should hold up great when being used in office settings. Samsung even slimmed the side bezels of the display down a bit, to make it seem more like what you get on a MacBook. There's still an ugly chin, though, which you can't blame Samsung for at this low price. If you want a Chromebook with slimmer bezels, try something else on our list.
The keyboard and trackpad are also great on this device. With nice key travel, the island-style chicklet keyboard is good enough for getting through a day's work. Only the plastic coating of the keyboard deck and trackpad might bother some people. We've used this before and found it has a little too much flex when typing too fast, but the added bonus of being spillproof saves it from dying if it comes in contact with liquids. There's also no backlighting either, so you'll have to stick to using this in the daytime or work under lights at night.
Just like a MacBook or a more premium Chromebook, Samsung includes two USB-C ports for charging onboard the Chromebook 4+. This is in addition to a headphone jack and a single USB-A port. Older USB drives or peripherals should work fine on this system thanks to that bonus USB-A port.
Overall, though, 15-inch Chromebooks are typically heavy. Samsung's option is one of the lightest and thinnest, which makes it great as a first Chromebook. It measures 14.16 x 9.64 x 0.65 inches and weighs 3.75 pounds.
Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 4+
The Samsung Chromebook 4+ is a great Chromebook for those on a budget thanks to the low price, as well as the Intel Celeron CPU, and MacBook-like design.
Best Chromebook for cloud and Steam gaming: Acer Chromebook 516GE
There's a new thing that you can do with Chromebooks in 2023: cloud gaming. There are actually three new Chromebooks designed just for that, including the Acer Chromebook 516GE. We recently spent some time with this Chromebook and found it hard not to suggest it as one of the best in 2023 thanks to its CPU, display, keyboard, and design.
This is another Chromebook powered by Intel's greatest chips from 2022. This device has the 12th generation Intel Core i5-1240P processor, a CPU that's overkill for cloud gaming but great for doing tasks locally. You'll be able to run any Linux app you want with ease, along with any Android games. Web browsing should also be a breeze. We used our device during our review time for web browsing and playing the latest Android games, and had no issues.
As for the overall design, this is one of the newest 16-inch Chromebooks that you can buy. You might think that makes it a heavy device that you can't manage, but think again. This Chromebook comes in at 14.04 x 9.83 x 0.84 inches and 3.75 pounds. We found it great to carry around and use in our lap. Plus, Acer even uses premium materials that make this worth the midrange price. The top lid is made of aluminum, and only the palm rest and display are made of plastic.
Usually, Chromebooks have displays that max out at 60 Hz, but this panel maxes out at 120 Hz. This makes it great for gaming, as cloud games from services like Nvidia GeForce Now will feel more alive. Other than that, this Chromebook also has a 16:10 aspect ratio. It means you can fit more on your screen without running out of room. We loved stacking our Chrome browsing sessions side by side, and even having enough room left for an Android app or two.
And that keyboard? Well, it's actually an RGB keyboard, which used to be something you'd only find on Windows laptops. You can light up this keyboard on this Acer in several colors through ChromeOS' settings. The keyboard even has soft, quiet action, so you won't bother those around you when typing.
The last thing to mention is the ports. There are a ton of ports here, including one USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 port, one HDMI port, one Ethernet (RJ-45) port, one 3.5 mm headphone jack, and two USB C 3.2 Gen 2. We never had to worry about using dongles with this Chromebook.
This is just the first of three cloud gaming Chromebooks to come out to the market, but it shows things are already looking up for those who want to take gaming on the go. But even if you're not into cloud gaming, this Chromebook packs the highest-end specs that Google suggests for running Steam on ChromeOS. So you'll be able to get away with actual non-cloud gaming, too.
Acer Chromebook 516 GE
The Acer Chromebook 516 GE is a fantastic Chromebook for cloud gaming and beyond with a 120Hz display, 8GB of RAM, and more.
Most customizable Chromebook: Framework Chromebook
A lot of the Chromebooks we've mentioned on our list so far are powerful, affordable, or midrange devices. A special Chromebook we want to mention, though, is the Framework Chromebook. This Chromebook is a lot like the Windows-based Framework Laptop. You can upgrade the RAM, solid-state drive, and other critical parts of this Chromebook by following easy-to-understand online guides. Even the main board is user replaceable!
All of this makes the Framework Chromebook quite a unique device and worth suggesting for the right person, even at $1.000. You can customize it to fit your own needs. And, just like some other devices on our list, the device is premium feeling. It is made of precision-formed aluminum and weighs 1.3kg. The keyboard even offers 1.5mm of travel with backlit keys, and the touchpad has a matte glass surface to make scrolling feel smooth.
Though $1,000 might seem a lot for a Chromebook, this Framework device offers great specifications and customization you won't get on any other device. You get a 12th-generation Intel Core i5-1240P CPU paired with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage as default. As we mentioned earlier, though, you're not stuck with these specifications. Using the included screwdriver, you can loosen the screws at the bottom of the laptop and release the keyboard deck to get inside this Chromebook, allowing you to replace the storage and the RAM. Even so, we think these default specs are great for most people who use Chromebooks for web browsing. Since the system has 8GB of RAM and a 12th generation Intel CPU, it even will work with Steam to run games.
You can actually even customize the ports as you see fit since Framework sells expansion ports. At any time, you can release the ports from the side of the laptop and add another in place. The ports function as Expansion Cards. You can purchase or add USB-A, USB-C, HDMI, Display port, Ethernet, extra storage, or microSD.
The display is also customizable. You can swap out the bezel on the display for various colors beyond just the standard black. All display options, however, are the same: a 2256 x 1504 resolution with a 3:2 aspect ratio display that's great for multitasking. Framework sells the display as a separate part if something were to go wrong with it.
Yet if you dig deeper into this Chromebook, you even can remove components like the battery, speakers, and Wi-Fi card. Framework sells these parts as well. This goes back to what makes this device unique. You can repair and replace parts with ease.
The Framework Laptop Chromebook Edition is not your typical ChromeOS device. It offers the ability to swap out RAM, SSD, and many of the components inside.
Best for business: HP Elite C640 G3
Businesses looking for a specialty Chromebook might want to consider the HP Elite C640 G3, one of our favorite business Chromebooks.
Much like our top pick, this Chromebook comes with options for a 12th-generation Intel CPU. You can get an option for upgrading as high as the 12th generation Intel Core i7 CPU. As we've mentioned before, this specific CPU is a hybrid CPU, with both performance and efficiency cores. This means the CPU can help power this Chromebook through demanding tasks like running Android apps. Combine that with up to 16GB RAM, and businesses can also use this device to run Windows apps with Parallels Desktop for ChromeOS, for access to apps that aren't on ChromeOS. You even can add the option for LTE. Upgrading the parts on this Chromebook, though, brings the price up a bit, but it might be worth it for businesses who don't want to buy a top-end Chromebook like the HP Elite Dragonfly that's convertible.
Speaking of upgrades, you can upgrade the display as high as a 1920 x 1080 resolution, which is perfect for stacking apps side by side and multitasking. HP offers this display with as high as 1,000 nits brightness, which is great for the outdoors. Even the webcam is great, since it's a 5MP webcam, and not 1080p like on other devices. We also want to mention the backlit and spill-resistant keyboard.
Ending with ports, there's more than enough to avoid using a dongle or a docking station, which is important for enterprise scenarios. You'll get two Thunderbolt 4 ports, two Type-A ports, a microSD card slot, a headphone jack, and HDMI.
HP Elite C640 G3
The HP Elite C430 G3 is a great Chromebook for enterprise situations. It is compatible with Parallels for ChromeOS so it can run Windows. It also packs options for 12th-generation Intel CPUs, has options for a great FHD screen, and packs in plenty of ports.
And there you have it! That's the list of all the best Chromebooks we can think of in 2023. We highly suggest picking up a flagship device like the HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook since it offers the flagship Chromebook experience. Of course, if you can't afford that one, other devices like the Acer Chromebook 516GE, or even the HP Chromebook x360 14c are still powerful enough, too. There's a little bit of everything for gamers, students, business folks, and even the average person. Chromebooks are versatile devices, so we're sure there will be something for you to try out and enjoy.