Acer Chromebook C720 (Core i3)

81
Engadget
Score
There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.
81

There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Summary

It seems we end almost every Chromebook review with the same disclaimer: They're not for everyone. And we stand by that: We cannot, in good faith, recommend a Chrome OS device to everyone. There will always be people who need to do more offline, and who need the flexibility to install whatever apps they want (Skype and iTunes come to mind).

But for folks who can get by doing everything in the browser -- and using Google services like Hangout -- Chromebooks are getting cheaper, more functional and more powerful. The refreshed C720 in particular is a bit snappier than older-gen Chromebooks, thanks to a Core i3 processor, and yet the battery life doesn't really take a hit on account of that heavier-duty CPU. And despite the improved processor, it's still reasonably priced, at $350. Good luck finding a Core i3 Windows machine at this price, especially one this portable.

Our main reservation in recommending this is that other PC makers are on the cusp of coming out with Core i3 Chromebooks, and in the meantime, Acer's is held back by a poor-quality display and cheap, netbook-like design. We're curious to see what other companies have to offer -- perhaps someone else will present us with something a little more well-rounded. Even then, the price would have to be fairly low -- the performance gains here aren't so huge that laptop makers can get away with price gouging. And as the price does get higher, you'll have to work harder to justify buying a Chrome OS device instead of a Windows machine. In any case, until those other models go on sale, the C720 remains a good value. And if its performance is any indication, we should have high hopes for everybody else, too.
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Scores

Engadget

81
 

User Reviews

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7.5
Average Critic Score

Speed and features

8.8
 

Expandability

8.0
 

Noise

8.0
 

Design and form factor

6.0
 

Display

6.4
 

Durability

6.7
 

Battery life

7.6
 

Portability (size / weight)

8.0
 

How It Stacks Up

87

Engadget

87
 

Critic

85
 

User

90
 
84

Engadget

84
 

Critic

75
 

User

87
 
81

Engadget

81
 

Critic

78
 

User

90
 
89

Engadget

89
 

Critic

86
 

User

80
 
Similar Products

How It Stacks Up

87

Engadget

87
 

Critic

85
 

User

90
 
84

Engadget

84
 

Critic

75
 

User

87
 
81

Engadget

81
 

Critic

78
 

User

90
 
89

Engadget

89
 

Critic

86
 

User

80
 
Video

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