Google’s background with laptops and slates has been uneven. Last year’s Pixel Slate was an excellent little bit of hardware crippled by poor software choices. The 2017 Pixelbook was but still is a high-end beauty that appears to get everything right. This season, the business is back with the Google Pixelbook Go, a scaled-back Pixel Chromebook. Will this product help set a fresh bar for mid-range Chrome OS laptops, or get lost in a sea of mediocrity?
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Google Pixelbook Go review: The picture as a whole
The sweet spot for Chromebooks falls between $200 and $500. While entry-level fare are certain to get you a computing device for basic browsing and media consumption, the Chromebooks priced over $400 are better options for many who have to be productive. The 2018 Pixelbook remains a lonely person in the Over-$1,000 Chromebook Club. That’s why is the Pixelbook Go so perplexing. These devices slots in between the center and high-end of the marketplace for Chromebooks, where it could have trouble competing with the devices that cost a lower amount.
Instead of go head-to-head with the rugged, economical models open to students, the Pixelbook Go tempts users seeking an event that’s a cut above. Let’s see if Google delivers.
What’s in the box
Precious little: The Pixelbook Go, the 45W charger and USB-C cable, plus some documentation. The box is absolutely nice, though, if you care about that type of thing.
311 x 206.3 x 13.4mm
Corning Concore Glass
USB-C x 2
3.5mm headphone jack
Many affordable Chromebooks are made of low-cost materials and so feel inexpensive to hold and use. The Google Pixelbook Go feels not cheap. An attractive magnesium shell forms the Chromebook’s profile. Where in fact the top is flat metal with gently rounded corners, underneath is a ridged plate. Google says the ridges are designed to make the Pixelbook Go much easier to grab and hold. I must wonder if heat dissipation can be a factor.
There are always a million black laptops out there, however, not every one of them have the Go’s matte-paint-on-metal finish. The texture is fantastic. While I generally find black to be boring, the Just Black Pixelbook Go is easy yet sophisticated. The Not Pink colorway will certainly appeal for some people, but I’d have loved to visit a rich blue or matte white model instead. You can dream, I suppose.
Google kept the Pixelbook Go’s profile no more than possible. The 13.3-inch display allows the Chromebook to reign in the dimensions. It’s smaller and lighter than my Apple MacBook Pro, which includes the same screen size as the Pixelbook. My shoulders can concur that the Go weighs significantly less than the MacBook, too, because they were less fatigued after lugging the Pixelbook around Manhattan for a day.
The ports could possibly be better. The Go has just two USB-C ports, one on each side. As the Chromebook charges via USB, you’ll have to reserve among those ports for the energy cable sometimes. There’s also a dual 3.5mm headphone jack. There are no USB-A ports, nor will there be a memory card slot/reader.
A notch helps your thumb snatch the lid and push it open when the Chromebook is seated on a table. The weight of the low half means you don’t need two hands to open the Pixelbook Go, and I appreciate this. The hinge is strong and holds the lid wherever you set it. (FYI, the Pixelbook Go is a typical clamshell; the lid will not swing completely around.)
The 16:9 screen fills almost all of the display area. Bezels could possibly be thinner, nonetheless they really aren’t too bad.
A full-sized keyboard, oversized trackpad, and stereo speakers fill the low deck. Google selected the proper options for the function keys, such as controls for volume and brightness, back/reload, multitasking screen, and music playback. The keyboard includes a dedicated Google Assistant button, together with fast access to the software drawer.
Talking about the keys, Google calls the Pixelbook Go’s keyboard Hush Keys. Minimal travel is intended in reducing the noise made when tapping away at the keys. I must say, I like this keyboard. It’s superior to the keyboard of the Asus C434 Flip, which felt mushy compared. The Go’s keys were immediately comfortable if you ask me, and my fingers didn’t become fatigued despite hours of typing. I’d say this keyboard is second and then the wonderful Pixelbook in the Chromebook space. The keyboard is backlit, in order to see the keys at night.
The trackpad is decent, however, not the very best I’ve used. For me personally, an excellent trackpad is tricky to find; it’s the single biggest pain point with Chromebooks if you ask me. The Pixelbook Go gets it mostly right. First, it’s large so that it feels natural to use. Speed and response time could be set high, and you have the choice to choose a gentle tap or a complete click to connect to items on the screen. The tap option is a touch too sensitive, but it’s much better than the strong clacking made when you press the trackpad down.
In every, the Pixelbook Go is a much better-looking, higher-quality option than almost every other Chromebook out there – but you’ll shell out the dough.
1,920 x 1,080 Full HD
16:9 aspect ratio
Nothing about the Pixelbook Go’s display truly sticks out. It’s a common size, shape, and resolution. However, it’s an excellent display, if nearly a great one.
To my eyes, colors looked accurate, the pixel density is merely enough to avoid jagged edges and keep text legible, and the screen can released a respectable amount of light. I had no trouble using the Chromebook in my own sunny office or a candlight Starbucks.
The glossy finish of the Concore Glass is crazy reflective. You should have a concern with lights reflecting on the panel. This meant I often had to put the lid at an angle I didn’t necessarily like. On the other hand, in the event that you touch the display often you’ll cover it in fingerprints that may decrease the reflectivity. Pick your poison Perhaps. The touchscreen is accurate and attentive to touch.
Important thing, the display works just fine.
(A 4K variant will be accessible later this season for far more money, but we were not able to judge that screen.)
Intel 8th-Gen Core i7, Core i5, Core m3
8GB or 16GB RAM
64GB, 128GB, or 256GB storage
Titan-C security chip
Google sent us the middle-of-the-pack build of the Pixelbook Go – which means a Core i5 processor with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. The high-end Core i7 CPU is merely open to the forthcoming 4K model, which costs 3 x because so many other Chromebooks.
The Pixelbook Go ran well. I’ve experienced a good amount of pokey Chromebooks before, and the Pixelbook Go felt quick and responsive compared. Apps opened in a blink, multi-tasking was fluid, and the Chromebook reacted to all or any input immediately.
The only time the Go felt slow was when getting together with physical media cards. I plugged an SD memory card in to the Go with a USB adapter, and the Pixelbook struggled to learn the card and load image previews. Thousands of images were on the card, that is a lot. Still, my five-year-old MacBook Pro loads images from the same card considerably faster.
I’ve tested pokey Chromebooks before; The Pixelbook Go felt quick and responsive compared.
I often ran the Chrome browser with a variety of webpages open, and several Chrome OS and Android software on the run all at exactly the same time. The Chromebook truly had no trouble jumping in one application or window to some other. The few simple games I played on the Chromebook performed well. I also used Lightroom to edit photos. The knowledge was fine.
Basically, the Pixelbook Go bested every Chromebook I’ve tested apart from the OG Pixelbook.
By method of comparison, Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo have a large number of Core i5 Chromebooks with similar RAM/ROM options for well under $600.
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45W charging brick
The Pixelbook Go’s battery provides all of the power I have to complete a day, though not everyone’s day nor workload may be the same. Google claims the battery can hit 12 hours of mixed use (including standby time).
I used the Go at various brightness settings and always with the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios on. Whether I was browsing the net or watching Netflix, the Pixelbook kept running and running and running. My worst result was 10.5 hours, while my best was 11.4 hours. That’s pretty near Google’s rated uptime of 12 hours.
The Pixelbook Go kept me productive and working from 8AM to 6PM.
In any event, the Pixelbook kept me productive and working from 8AM to 6PM on multiple days. That’s sufficient for me personally, as it’s a lot more than double the battery life I’m getting with my MacBook Pro nowadays. Streaming media was about the only activity that squeezed more juice from the battery.
For accelerated charging, plugging the Pixelbook Go in to the included charger for 20 minutes gives you about two hours of battery life. That’s enough to complete a gathering or a lecture.
Chrome OS 78
Chrome OS is Chrome OS, which is to state it’s the same across all Chromebooks. There aren’t manufacturer-created UI skins just how there are for Android phones. As noted earlier, the Pixelbook Go was running Chrome 77 when it arrived and it automatically updated to Chrome 78 after several days. These updates certainly are a good thing, since it means Google is keeping the platform secure. It’s section of the pitch behind Chrome OS, and is the reason why Chrome OS is trusted by schools.
All you have to do is register together with your Google account and you’re all set. If you’ve taken enough time to create the Chrome browser on any other machine, your bookmarks and settings are quickly mirrored on the Chromebook. A small number of Chrome OS apps, including the Google Calendar, are up to speed, though most run in the browser itself. You can edit photographs in Snapseed or Lightroom, or edit Microsoft Word and Excel documents in the browser.
The Pixelbook Go supports Android apps, and the Google Play Store is preloaded. There, you can get apps, games, and other content to download. Generally, Android software run in small, phone-shaped windows on the desktop, making interacting with them significantly less than ideal.
Chrome OS is incredibly lightweight and was designed that way deliberately. The Pixelbook Go does it justice.
Google Pixelbook Go review: The verdict
Despite the lingering selling point of the initial Pixelbook, it remains a too-expensive device right now. The Pixelbook Go is an improved all-around value in comparison with its predecessor, nonetheless it is hard to justify the purchase price taking into consideration the wealth of options available in the market.
The wonderful design, materials, and construction are surely highlights here, as will be the crisp display, and robust performance. If they are worth the purchase price premium to you, you then won’t be disappointed. More budget-conscious buyers will see their needs easily fulfilled by lesser Chromebooks.
This concludes our Google Pixelbook Go review. What do you consider? Are you enthusiastic about Google’s latest Chromebook? Make sure you let us know.