Hopefully with a better keyboard —
We never got a new Pixelbook last year, but this year the Chrome OS laptop is back.
NEW YORK—Google is finally making premium Chrome OS laptops again. The company’s flagship Pixelbooklaunched in 2017and didn’t really get a follow-up last year. Instead, the company launched thePixel Slate, a surface-style tablet-plus-keyboard combo that flopped so hard that Google decided tostop making tablets.
Meet the new laptop, thePixelbook Go. Google nailed a unique and interesting laptop design with the original Pixelbook, but this new update more or less looks like a MacBook. The inner deck of the magnesium notebook features a normal keyboard layout, a large trackpad at the bottom, and a strip of speaker grills flanking either side of the keyboard. The details all look like a carefully traced MacBook layout, with a similar hinge setup for the screen and a groove cut out of the front edge to allow users to lift the lid.
One big design difference comes in the large, ribbed pad on the bottom, which covers the bottom in a grippy surface in lieu of feet.
Two hardware features of the Pixelbook Go aim to cover some long-requested MacBook additions: a touchscreen and a keyboard that doesn’t die at the first sign of dust. Google promised a keyboard that is both comfortable and even more quiet than the original Pixelbook keyboard.
The display is a 13.3-inch panel, and the entire Pixelbook Go weighs just about two pounds and measures 13mm at its widest point. That makes it lighter than the original Pixelbook, but even so, Google stuck a 15-percent larger battery inside the Pixelbook Go. The company promises up to 12 hours of battery life, and with the included charger, the Pixelbook Go can get two hours of battery life with just 20 minutes of charging.
The Pixelbook Go has one headphone jack and two USB-C ports—a limited selection of connectivity, but not unusual in the realm of thin-and-light notebooks (and very MacBook-like). The notebook starts at $649 for a model with an 1080p display, Core m3 processor, 8GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage. It can be configured to have Core i5 or i7 processors as well, along with up to 16GB of RAM, up to 256GB of storage, and a 4K display. A specced-out Pixelbook Go will set you back $1,399.
The $649 starting price for the Pixelbook Go is notable because the original Pixelbook was designed as a “premium” Chromebook with a starting price of $999. Last year’s Pixel Slate was also billed as a premium, convertible Chromebook, and that combination didn’t prove successful for Google. While $649 is still more expensive than most Chromebooks available today, it’s in line with plenty of high-powered Chromebooks made by manufacturers including Acer, HP, and Dell.
The Pixelbook Go will be available in “just black” and “not pink” color schemes. It’s available for preorder today fromGoogle’s online storestarting at $649.
Listing image by Google