HP’s new 11″ Chromebook is such a departure from the company’s first “mega-Chromebook” in many ways, including that it’s not even really an HP product. As with the Nexus products on the Android side of Google, it has taken a central role in the presentation , marketing and branding of Chromebooks. The new HP Chromebook marks a return to the value end of Chromebooks after the Pixel diversion. But that wasn’t so long ago that Google or others should have forgotten about the Samsung 11″ Chromebook.
Compared to that product, there seems to be little to differentiate the new oHP offering. Yes, it comes in a choice of colorful trims, is built more sturdily, and can charge from a standard USB connector. The latter is a welcome trend that we can expect to increasingly appear on notebooks as their power needs continue to shrink. Beyond that, though, it has similar specs to the thinner Samsung device at a higher price. Despite Google’s involvement, some of the differentiation may be in the HP brand itself, which is far more strongly identified with PCs than the Samsung brand.