The Google Pixelbook 12in is one of the most premium Chromebooks available today. It was Launched in 2017, this versatile 2-in-1 combines a laptop’s portability with a tablet’s flexibility. With its stunning display, sleek design, and powerful hardware, the Pixelbook provides an exceptional Chrome OS experience.
In this detailed review, we’ll explore the Pixelbook’s standout features, specifications, pros and cons, ideal use cases, and frequently asked questions. Whether you’re considering the Google Pixelbook as your next laptop or want to understand if it’s the right fit, read on for an in-depth look at this impressive yet pricey convertible.
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Google Pixelbook 12in – Key Specifications
The Google Pixelbook 12in has 7th Gen Intel Core i5 or 8th Gen Intel Core i7 processors. Even the base Core i5 model provides excellent performance for chromeOS along with 8GB RAM and 128GB SSD storage. The top-end model uses a Core i7 chip, 16GB RAM, and 512GB SSD for maximum multitasking capabilities.
|12.3″ Quad HD LCD touchscreen display (2400 x 1600), 235 ppi, 400 nits brightness
|Intel 8th Gen Core i5 or i7 (Kaby Lake)
|8GB or 16GB LPDDR3 RAM
|128GB, 256GB or 512GB SSD
|Intel HD Graphics 615
|Up to 10 hours of mixed usage
|2x USB-C 3.1 Gen 1, Headset jack
|Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, 2×2 MIMO, Bluetooth 4.2
|720p HD webcam
|Dual front-firing speakers
|11.4 x 8.7 x 0.4 inches
|2.4 lbs (1.1 kg)
The 12.3” touchscreen QHD display looks incredibly sharp, with accurate colors and great viewing angles. At just 0.4 inches and 2.4 lbs, the aluminum Pixelbook chassis has a slim yet durable profile. Integrated Intel HD graphics allow for light gaming and photo editing. Overall, the hardware makes the Pixelbook a highly capable and portable productivity machine.
Google Pixelbook 12in – Detailed Review
Look deeper at the Google Pixelbook’s design, display, performance, battery life, features, and experience using Chrome OS.
Design – Thin, Light & Convertible
The Pixelbook boasts a slim, attractive aluminum design measuring just 0.4 inches thick and weighing 2.4 lbs. It looks like a premium laptop with clean lines and smoothly rounded corners. The silver or dark gray color finishes have an elegant aesthetic. Despite the thin chassis, it still feels extremely solid and rigid.
As a 2-in-1, the display can rotate 360 degrees thanks to the versatile hinge. This allows easy switching between laptop, tablet, tent, or stand modes. Tablet mode makes the Pixelbook comfortable to hold while standing or lying in bed.
Tent and stand modes are great when space-constrained, such as in airplane seats. Overall, the Pixelbook is engineered for maximum portability while retaining a high-quality look and feel.
Display – Vibrant QHD Touchscreen
The 12.3” Quad HD LCD touchscreen display looks stunning. Images and text appear extremely sharp, with 235 pixels per inch and 400 nits brightness. Everything from web pages to videos looks brilliant, and colors pop, thanks to the vibrant IPS panel.
Touch responsiveness allows you to navigate Chrome OS smoothly using gestures and taps. The Pixelbook Pen stylus can also leverage the touch input for writing, sketching, and annotating. Whether using it as a tablet for apps or a laptop for productivity, the display checks all the boxes.
Performance – Speedy Productivity
Chromebooks don’t require cutting-edge specs, but the Pixelbook’s 7th and 8th Gen Intel Core processors provide plenty of power. Both the Core i5 and Core i7 models handle demanding productivity workloads, extensive multitasking, and quick app launching with ease. Even having 20+ browser tabs open causes no slowdown.
The 8GB or 16GB of RAM gives you plenty of breathing room for Chrome tabs and Android apps. Storage ranges from 128GB to 512GB, which is generous for a Chromebook. The fast SSD results in bootups that take just seconds. Overall, the Pixelbook performs extremely smoothly for almost any typical usage scenario.
Battery Life – All Day Endurance
The slim Pixelbook chassis still squeezes in an impressive battery rated for up to 10 hours of mixed usage. In real-world conditions with mid-brightness, you can expect 8-9 hours of work or playtime. Standby battery life is equally strong, allowing the Pixelbook to retain charge for several days when sleeping.
Quick charging support tops up the battery rapidly. Google says you can gain 2 hours of use from just 15 minutes of charging. This is invaluable for topping up during layovers or coffee breaks for professionals on the go. Overall, the Pixelbook delivers excellent all-day battery life.
Features – Google Assistant, Pen Support & More
Some extra features help the Google Pixelbook stand out from other Chromebooks. The integrated Google Assistant allows for convenient voice commands. Just say “Ok Google” to get answers, set reminders, dictate emails and more hands-free.
The optional Pixelbook Pen enables natural writing and sketching with pressure sensitivity, tilt support, and low latency. Great for note-taking, marking up PDFs, or drawing. Other features include a 720p webcam, dual stereo speakers, and Android app support via Google Play. Chrome OS offers built-in virus protection and updates itself automatically in the background.
Chrome OS Experience
Chrome OS feels snappy and responsive on the Pixelbook’s premium hardware. The operating system boots up in seconds to get you right into the browser or your Android apps quickly. Setting up is easy, with your Google account automatically syncing settings, apps, and files to the cloud.
The browser-centric interface keeps things simple if you rely mainly on web apps like Gmail, Google Docs, and web-based tools. Chrome OS handles web browsing, email, documents, video conferencing, and media consumption exceptionally well.
With Google Play integration, you can access millions of Android apps to expand your capabilities. While some Android apps don’t scale perfectly to the large screen, the variety is unmatched.
Google Pixelbook 12in – Pros & Cons
Here are some of the biggest advantages and potential downsides of the Pixelbook:
- Sleek and high-end design
- Stunning 3:2 touchscreen display
- Excellent performance and battery life
- Built-in Google Assistant
- Pixelbook Pen support
- Speedy and secure Chrome OS experience
- Access to the Google Play app library
- High starting price over $1000
- Limited I/O ports (2x USB-C only)
- Chrome OS limitations compared to macOS/Windows
- Battery not removable or replaceable
- The stylus and keyboard are sold separately
- Mediocre webcam and speakers
The Pixelbook certainly comes at a premium price but delivers a standout experience. For the right buyer, the pros, like the gorgeous display, mobile productivity, and Android app support, outweigh the cons.
But budget-focused buyers may want to consider lower-cost Chromebook options that sacrifice performance and build quality.
Ideal Users & Use Cases
The Pixelbook works great as a primary device for:
- Mobile professionals and business users
- Students and teachers
- Useful For Freelancers
- Frequent travelers/commuters
- Chrome power users
- Artists, illustrators, and creatives
- Casual gamers
- Existing Mac or PC owners
- Tablet users who want a 2-in-1 upgrade
Here are some typical use cases where the Pixelbook makes sense:
Mobile Business Users
With its slim chassis, long battery life, and built-in security, the Pixelbook is easy for traveling professionals to take to meetings, conferences, and client sites. Flip it into a tablet or stand mode for presenting.
Students & Teachers:
For note taking, homework, and reading eBooks, the Pixelbook offers tablet, touch, and stylus benefits. Portable and powerful for carrying to classes all day. Access apps and content offline when internet connectivity is limited.
Useful For Freelancers
Google Pixelbook is very helpful for freelancers. Instead of carrying heavy laptops or sitting in front of desktop computers, the smart and easy-to-carry design of Pixelbook let you to perform your freelance tasks, either you are doing Digital Marketing For Small Businesses, graphic designing, or anything
The lightweight 2.4 lb Pixelbook combined with 10+ hours of battery life is ideal for air travel, commutes, or anywhere. Whether you need to catch up on movies, work on documents, or browse the web, the Pixelbook has you covered.
Power Chrome Users
Chromebook enthusiasts will love the Pixelbook for providing the best-in-class hardware, display, and build quality. Performance handles intensive Chrome workloads like a champ. Experience Chrome OS to the fullest.
Artists & Creatives
The availability of the Pixelbook Pen makes creating digital art, illustrations, designs, and animations smooth and intuitive. Bring your creative ideas to life wherever inspiration strikes.
Secondary Device Users
Complement your desktop or laptop with the Pixelbook for enjoying the web, apps, and content in more casual environments like the couch or backyard. It also serves as a tablet replacement while retaining laptop productivity.
Frequently Asked Questions
The Pixelbook uses Intel 7th Gen Core i5 or 8th Gen Core i7 processors. Even the Core i5 provides excellent performance for Chrome OS. The Core i7 is best for heavy multitaskers.
The base 128GB SSD is likely sufficient unless you plan to store lots of large local files or install many large Android apps. 256GB or 512GB provides extra breathing room for photos, videos, games, etc.
Yes, Chrome OS allows full functionality without an internet connection. You can access Google Drive documents, emails, notes, calendars, Android apps, and more offline. Media and files stored locally are accessible.
The Pixelbook uses Android apps to handle minor photo and simple video editing. But it’s not well-suited for intensive creative work requiring full desktop-class Adobe Creative Suite.
The $99 Pixelbook Pen provides a great drawing, writing, and navigation experience. But it’s not essential and can be purchased later. For artists, note-takers, or digital creative types, it's a worthwhile add-on.
Google guarantees Chrome OS auto-updates until June 2024. Expect to receive software and security patches until at least that date. The lifespan often extends a few years beyond Google’s official support window.
The Google Pixelbook remains one of the best premium Chromebooks 4+ years after its release. While the high price tag may deter some buyers, it delivers excellent hardware and performance for the cost. For mobile users who rely on the cloud, web, and Android apps, the Pixelbook removes compromises compared to cheaper Chromebook models.
From its stunning high-res touchscreen to long battery life and 7th/8th Gen Intel processors, the Pixelbook provides a top-notch experience. Google Assistant integration and stylus support expand functionality. The slim, convertible design offers maximum portability. For the right customer seeking a versatile Chrome OS laptop, the Pixelbook ticks all the boxes.