Home How To’s & Guides What is Google’s Chromebook Plus initiative?

What is Google’s Chromebook Plus initiative?

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What is Google’s Chromebook Plus initiative?

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Lanh Nguyen / Android Authority

Recently, Google announced a new category of Chromebooks — the Chromebook Plus. These new, more powerful Chromebooks promise superior power and reliability for users, with support for more applications and use cases. In this brief guide, we will break down what exactly defines a Chromebook Plus, general specs and features, pricing, and more.

What is a Chromebook Plus?

Google itself has gone on to define the Chromebook Plus as a “new category” of Chromebooks. In short, it is a more powerful version of the Chromebook laptop, with around double the performance, according to Google.

Chromebook Plus refers to all devices that run Chrome OS that meet a set of minimum hardware requirements, with various options available to consumers from various manufacturers. The “Chromebook Plus” branding will be given to laptops that meet Google’s minimum hardware requirements. The idea behind this is even less tech-savvy consumers who see the “Chromebook Plus” label can be guaranteed that it is a good product.

Chromebook Plus specs

Chromebook Plus devices must have the following minimum specs:

  • An Intel Core (i3 or higher) or AMD Ryzen 7000 CPU or higher
  • 8GB of RAM or higher
  • At least 128GB of storage
  • An IPS panel with at least 1080p resolution
  • A 1080p webcam or higher

One noteworthy absence from Google’s list of minimum specs is battery life. When asked regarding the status of Chromebook Plus battery life requirements, Google did add that all Google Chromebooks — including Chromebook Plus models — are required to meet a 10-hour battery life minimum.

Chromebook Plus features

Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i Chromebook Plus 20

Lanh Nguyen / Android Authority

Chromebook Plus devices also come with a host of brand-new features. These include a Magic Eraser tool with Google Photos (which automatically removes unwanted elements from photos), improvements to noise cancelation in video conferencing, an Offline File Sync (downloads files from Drive onto your device automatically), and even a built-in personal AI writing assistant.

With this said, much of the on-device AI features are still in development. The device is planned to add Android 14’s generative wallpaper feature in a future update, as one example.

How much does the Chromebook Plus cost?

The starting price of Chromebook Plus laptops is currently $399. Prices will vary from model to model, however. So far, prices of these devices all range between $399-$749. This makes them more expensive than standard Chromebooks, but still much cheaper than high-end Windows laptops or Macbooks. With this said, prices of these devices are subject to change, and this price range only refers to Chromebook Plus devices that are currently on the market at the time of writing. We expect that we’ll see more expensive Chromebook Plus laptops hit the shelves in the near future.

Chromebook vs Chromebook Plus: Which one should you buy?

Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5i Chromebook Plus 04

Lanh Nguyen / Android Authority

Consumers who are deciding between a standard Chromebook and a Chromebook Plus need to assess the pros and cons associated with both options.

Price

Obviously, Chromebook Plus laptops are much more expensive than standard Chromebooks. While offering great value-per-dollar, most Chromebook Plus laptops are around double the price of an average Chromebook. Those who are on a budget and only looking for simple work laptops without the need for GPU or CPU-demanding tools may want to stick with a standard Chromebook.

Power & performance

If you’re looking for a reasonably priced device that also delivers decent power and performance, then there is no comparison: Chromebook Plus laptops are easily the superior option, despite costing more. Standard Chromebooks simply lack decent hardware power, with very low-end specs that hardly provide any real level of performance beyond the bare minimum.

Anything beyond word processing, surfing the web, video chatting, and other standard work-related tasks are out of the question. Video editing, gaming, photo editing, live streaming content, and other highly demanding programs aren’t well-suited for Google Chromebooks and are better fit for Chromebook Plus devices instead.

Use case

Your primary use case should be a large factor when deciding between a Chromebook and Chromebook Plus. If you want to use programs that utilize a significant amount of CPU power, such as video processing tools, live streaming software, and video games, then we recommend buying a Chromebook Plus laptop. If you are a student or work primarily with less demanding tools such as word processing programs, then a standard Chromebook will probably be more than enough.

Overall, the Chromebook Plus is a massive upgrade over standard Chromebooks and is a great mid-range device for those looking for a good laptop on a budget.

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