New HP Chromebook 15 laptop is a straightforward work machine

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HP has a new Chromebook coming to sit atop its lineup of Chrome laptops in terms of size, at least. The new device is the HP Chromebook 15, and it will come starting at $449 (about £345, AU$630) in the US.

The new HP Chromebook 15 is a no-nonsense affair. It doesn’t have any of the flourishes that some of HP’s other Chromebooks do. No 360-degree hinge, like the HP Chromebook 14 x360, and no HP Active Pen support, like the HP Chromebook 12 x2.

Instead, the HP Chromebook 15 gets a classy design with metal lid and keyboard deck, a larger display with slim side bezels, a 17.9mm thin construction and a full keyboard with number pad and backlighting.

Into the specs

The 15-inch display has a Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) resolution and uses an IPS panel for wide viewing angles. The bezels around the display aren’t as slim as we’ve seen on some premium laptops, but they’re still beating the thick bezels many budget devices get. Above the screen, there’s a wide-angle HD webcam as well.

In terms of inputs and outputs, the Chromebook 15 gets dual B&O-tuned speakers, two USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C ports, capable of 5Gbps data transfer and display connections, as well as one USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A port. There is also a microSD card reader, which can be handy for expanding the storage of your device affordably.

There are multiple configurations available, with the machine coming powered by either a dual-core Intel Pentium Gold 4417U processor and 4GB of DDR4 RAM or an 8th-Gen Intel Core i5 processor, but it’s unclear which Core processor and how much RAM is included in that version. We’re seeking further details.

The laptop’s base storage is 64GB, and HP mentions it’s available with up to 128GB of SSD storage. But, that’s eMMC storage, which is flash storage, which is not on the same level as the kind of storage you might expect from an SSD. Simply put, you can think of eMMC as SSD lite.

All told, these are fairly high end specs for a Chromebook, as many feature low-power Intel Celeron processors and as little as 2GB of RAM and 16GB of eMMC storage. To top it all off, HP is packing all of this into a 3.99-pound package with up to 13 hours of battery life and full access to Google Play’s Android app ecosystem.

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