Dell’s fresh student and teacher-focused Chromebook 11 has almost everything it takes to make waves in the educational PC niche, but it’s still a bit pricey for some. Also, due to running Google’s Chrome OS out the box, it has limitations that can prove quite challenging. Basically, it’s unusable when not connected to the Internet, so it’s more of a desktop PC than a laptop.
Looking for something to lower the pricing bar and be ideal for on-the-go computing? Meet HP’s Classmate 10, based on Intel’s Classmate reference design.
No pricing specifics have been announced yet, but it’s unlikely you’ll need to pay an arm and a leg for this little thing. Sure, it’s rugged up to a point and thus truly perfect for clumsy kids, however it’s tiny and not at all technically impressive.
An Intel Celeron “Bay Trail” chip runs the hardware show, hence the raw performance is not exactly what you’d call mind-blowing. On the bright side, the CPU should greatly help autonomy, and chances are you won’t need to plug the bad boy in for up to 10 hours of continuous use.
The big selling point has little to do with hardware, as the Classmate 10 runs Windows 8.1 on the software side of things, with special pre-loaded content such as the Intel Educational Software suite on top. There’s also a design gimmick allowing the screen to tilt all the way back, though I personally don’t see the point in that as you’re looking at a non-touch panel.
Expect the HP Classmate 10 out and about in January for an “affordable” price.