I was able to have about eight tabs open in Chrome, including a streaming HD video, with Instagram, Slack and Spotify apps open in the background before slowdown and lag started. Most cheap Chromebooks can do about a third of that activity before significantly slowing down.
Propping the laptop into a stand or tent makes it easy to watch video without that pesky keyboard getting in your way. Screen resolution isn't high, but HD video still looks sharp with life-like colors.
- 10.1-inch touchscreen
- 1,280x800 IPS display
The screen was brighter than I expected and had good viewing angles. Occasionally, glare on the glossy screen caused visibility issues in bright environments.
The laptop's speakers were surprisingly loud, though quality suffered at high volumes. Audio sounded unattractively harsh and tinny when pushed to the max.
The laptop charges via USB-C and Asus estimates nine hours of battery life per charge. In our testing it lasted seven hours and 36 minutes.
Since it's such a small laptop, the touchpad and keyboard felt cramped. However, the keys are well-spaced considering the tight parameters and travel well. Kids will feel right at home using the keyboard, but anyone with large hands might feel awkward.
Though the Asus can be used as a tablet, I wouldn't recommend it. When the screen and keyboard fold over to transform into a tablet, the edges flare out and dig into your palms, making it uncomfortable to hold. It's fine if set on your lap or a table, but I wasn't able to hold it as a tablet for more than a few minutes before switching to another configuration.
Bigger is better
The Asus is a good bargain if you're interested in a very compact laptop for casual use. If you don't mind spending extra, the 12-inch Asus Chromebook Flip isn't that much more expensive, yet it features a bigger, sharper screen, a backlit keyboard and better performance.
There are other small Chromebooks in the same price range, like the durableand slim , but the Asus Chromebook Flip is the smallest and lightest of them all.