The leaks were all true: Following Samsung, Acer, and Lenovo, HP has decided to build a laptop running Google's Chrome OS operating system. It's called the HP Pavilion 14 Chromebook, and its distinguishing characteristic is right there in the name: unlike the first wave of Chromebooks with 11.6-inch and 12-inch screens, the Pavilion 14 has a 14-inch 1366 x 768 panel, and a correspondingly large laptop frame. HP hopes the larger keyboard and more spacious experience will contribute to improved ease of use. There's also a correspondingly larger array of ports, including three USB 2.0 sockets and an SD card slot so you can expand the included (tiny) 16GB of solid state storage should you so choose.
Otherwise, with a 1.1GHz Intel Celeron processor, 2GB of RAM and integrated graphics, the nearly four-pound laptop has much the same processing power under the hood as the competition — which isn't saying a lot, but it should be fine for the limited scope of Chrome OS. The real problem might be that despite the larger frame, HP says the Pavilion 14 Chromebook's removable battery is only good for about 4 hours and 15 minutes. When we reviewed Acer's C7 Chromebook, which starts at just $199, we found its 4 hour, 29 minute runtime unacceptable for a device that just browses the web and runs web apps, particularly when Samsung's $250 Chromebook delivered well over six hours on a charge. Here, HP's asking for $329.99 for a similar runtime as the Acer.
Didn't netbooks have longer battery life
Still, if the idea of a more sizable, possibly more comfortable Chrome OS laptop has you intrigued, you'll find the HP Pavilion 14 Chromebook on sale today at HP's website and shipping to multiple US retailers.