Google Pixelbook Review: More Than Just An Expensive Chromebook

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Who is the Pixelbook for? We’ve heard that question quite a bit.

Well, as it turns out, the answer seems to be for a lot of people, just not all the ones you might think.

Pixelbook is the answer to the lament from the Chromebook faithful and enthusiasts asking for a high-end machine and a proper follow up to the 2015 Chromebook Pixel.

On the other hand, it’s the halo device Chrome OS as a platform needs to bring Android apps fully into the fold – out of Beta status – and push other hardware makers to up their game.

From another angle, it is also the first Chromebook many consumers will actually pay any attention to and interact with. Between its wide availability across many retailers and the sheer marketing budget Google likely has in store for this device, many people who have never heard of or considered a Chromebook will find their first Chromebook and Chrome OS experience in the Google Pixelbook. Sure, it may just be seeing one in a coffee shop after being intrigued by a commercial or touching one in a local Best Buy or B&H, but the experience could be enough to actually cause many of those who’ve never given Chromebooks a passing thought to actually consider what the platform could offer.

The truth is, the Pixelbook is many things to many people, and if you are watching this review, you may just be one of those people. And if you are one of those people, you need to know that the Pixelbook is – unsurprisingly – quite good at being all these things and more.

So, let’s look at all these ways the Pixelbook finds its place and see, after everything, if one of those places is in your shopping cart at the end of the day.


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so there's this question that's been going around the internet for a few weeks now and it goes something like this who the world did Google build the pixel book for the answer as it turns out is quite a few people just maybe not the ones that you're thinking of Sheriff for the entrenched Chromebook crowd this is an answer to the lament for a follow-up to the Chromebook pixel in 2013 and 2015 with its high price tag and premium build but it's also an answer to the need for Chrome OS to have a halo device of sorts to bring Android apps out of their beta status to introduce the Google assistant and to force other manufacturers to continue upping their game to meet the pixel books lofty status but lastly and maybe most importantly this device could be the first Chromebook general consumers actually interact with and whether that's in many ways across a Best Buy or a B and H in a storefront somewhere or seeing it online or seeing in a commercial or at a coffee shop this could be the first Chromebook that causes the general consumer to actually perk up and take notice and see what a Chromebook actually has to offer and what it can do so if you're watching this video you could be one of the people that Google is aimed the pixel look at and if you are one of those people it might be worth giving the pixel book a chance and thinking through what Chrome OS can do as a platform and how it might benefit you as a consumer let's get this out of the way right off the bat the pixel book is expensive it is there's really no escaping that fact and there's no real need to explain it all away the hardware is absolutely top-notch specs are everything you'd expect in $1000 plus device and it's got an iconic design that's appealing and status bearing this thing is beautiful and it's an absolute joy to use but when we're talking dollars coming out of your bank account the real question becomes value and value is the worth and usefulness of a device and what price you're willing to put on those functions for some of the pixel book is of great value for others it isn't well get into all that I promise first let's talk about what those precious dollars get you in terms of raw hardware and specifications so yeah that's a pretty sweet spec sheet Chromebook user or not there's a little something there for everyone fast processors tons of RAM massive storage options in a great build this devices deceptively light beautiful and invites the user to engage it at every turn I found myself simply wanting to do more stuff on the pixel book than other Chromebooks the custom silicon palm rest and that perfectly mirror the glass shade on the lid and the rubber feet on the bottom are just nods to how well this device was thoughtfully put together and it's just 10 millimeters thick the pixel book remains firm as you pick it up to move thin light devices are great until they bend and flex and creak the pixel book is not one of these it's solid as a rock the screen which I'm leaning towards the inclination that it could be exactly the same panel in the Samsung Chromebook pro and Plus is fantastic just like those devices its colorful vibrant stands up to any lighting situation even outdoors the keyboards minimum Travels pair of a fantastic mechanical build making the typing experience solid and enjoyable though they've made it fit in such a thin package backlighting is a fantastic add-on in low-light conditions as well with the etched glass trackpad and it's perfect click I find using peripheral keyboards and track pads at my desk honestly a bit of a step backwards the input setup here is just second to none and I want to use it all the time in performance exactly as you'd expect lightning fast you wait for nothing nothing lags nothing stutters nothing is slow multi-monitor setups are met with a shrug as the pixel book never really feels like it breaks a sweat doing anything games like modern combat 5 cranked up to the highest settings see consistent smooth frame rates with really no lag in multiplayer you can edit photos and videos with Photoshop mix and kimi master leave tons of tabs open at the same time nothing slows the pixel book down it is without doubt the fastest laptop I've ever used what we're testing here is the core i5 model with 256 gigs of storage and 8 gigs of ram I can't even imagine how fast the i7 will be especially with that nvme store but as we've already discussed the raw power of this device makes me wonder if you'd even be able to tell a difference additionally all this stuff happens and it keeps the battery life between eight and ten hours without a need for a fan let's talk pricing options real quick and $999 you get an i5 eight gigs of ram 128 gigs of storage 1199 gets you 256 gigs of storage on the same setup and 16 hundred and $49 moves you all the way up to an i7 with 16 gigs of RAM and 512 gigs of nvme storage if you're a Chromebook user looking for the best possible Chrome OS experience this device is for you if you're a Chromebook user who wants a device to be proud to carry into a coffee shop classroom or meeting this device is for you if you're a Chromebook user who needs a bit more power to run certain Android apps so you like running Linux via a dual boot or crouton well this device is for you for already initiated chrome ease this is a no brainer if you just want the best all out without sacrifice experience but let's be honest of the broad sweep of consumers in the market who are looking to buy a laptop invested chromebook users aren't really a huge portion of that we're actually a sidebar so let's talk about how the pixel book could affect other portions of the market for instance right now in schools there are more kids using Chromebooks than any other device in the classroom however those kids aren't making purchasing decisions and it'll be a few years before they do so Google really needs a way to introduce this platform to people who really haven't cared about it in the past you know people that don't care that much about the difference between a MacBook or a Chromebook or a Windows device or surface or Android tablet or an iPad they simply don't care to do the research and they're not that interested in it and they're not that worried about it and you'd be forgiven if you've never worked in retail before and really think that that these consumers care that much about all these different platforms and all these different devices but you'd be wrong when we start looking at the consumer base as a whole not people who read tech blogs people are way less concerned with the OS and way more swayed by branding or customer loyalty or marketing or good old personal recommendations many times buying decisions are made at the store when hands go devices and potential customers like the look and feel or performance of a device add to that a commercial a strong branding or maybe a recommendation from a friend or colleague and you have the basic equation for a sale this place is where Google is looking to insert the pixel book right alongside MacBooks surfaces Windows laptops iPad pros the pixel book will be on store shelves on the television and all over the Internet in six to nine months people will know the name and they'll know that a strong brand Google is behind it they'll know it has apps they'll know it has a touchscreen they'll know it has a pen they'll know it can act as a tablet they'll know it looks great and it feels fantastic and if they wonder buy it in the Best Buy or B&H they might stop and take a look surrounded by other great-looking great performing hardware the price point won't be as much of a consideration as we think it is now what will be a consideration are all the things a pixel book can do and do well full desktop browsing all your favorite apps full file management great input methods real multi window multitasking pen input Google assistant all of a sudden when you stop talking about all the things that Chromebook can't do you actually see all it can do in a less informed body of consumers this is Google's bet left to their own devices consumers can see all the pixel book does and make a purchasing decision based on those facts alone forget all the conversation around it's just a browser or there are all sorts of cheap Chromebooks out there from the observation of a non tech person the Chromebook pixel can actually do quite a bit and that's really the point of this device from this point of view the second group of people this device is for is for the uninitiated it's for the tech agnostic pixel book is the face of all that's possible with Chrome OS both now and in the future it is perhaps the only Chromebook experience many people will have and for that group of people they're getting to see the best possible device on offer there's still another function the pixel book will serve and that's as the halo device now a quick summary of what a halo device is for those of you who are unaware of this term take Samsung for instance they released the galaxy s 8 and si plus back in March this at the time was samsung's best attempt at making a mobile piece of hardware it's their best technology their best screen also very high price as well so not everyone's gonna go by that high-priced phone because some people frankly don't want to spend that much money on a phone but they create a desire through marketing for that piece of hardware and people then decide am I gonna spend that much money on the phone or am I gonna spend a little bit less money on one of their other models and Samsung has tons of models of phone more than I could list right here but they have tons of them that are much cheaper but still kind of have the same aesthetic and some of the same features and some of the same feel and some of the same clout that you would get if you carry around a Samsung Galaxy s8 and that's the point right instead of going and buying an LG or an HTC device people still will buy the Samsung device the ones that cost a little bit less that's the role of the halo device and the same goes for Chromebooks the pixel book is the halo device for Chrome OS it is the vision of all that's possible from Chrome OS if manufacturers decide to go all in the original Chromebook pixels had the same effect to some degree those two devices are why we see things like the Samsung Chromebook pro and Asus flipsie 302 they move the market forward the difference this time around is the high visibility that the pixel book will have you'll see it everywhere and that matters because the pixel book will be the device to shine a spotlight on all the great things Chromebooks can do across the board most notably you have Android apps on Chromebooks getting the most public recognition they've ever seen front and center in the setup process is the fact that Google Play is available and working outside of beta status right out of the box sure the app market is hit or miss right now when it comes to big screen apps but Google is trying to push that forward and we're seeing companies like Adobe and Microsoft already making compelling desktop experiences possible with their Android offerings hopefully more will follow and soon keep in mind it'll take months before Google really gets marketing in place to where app developers will be forced and coerced to do something about their apps for pixel books bigger screen then we have to talk about Google assistant it has a dedicated key right on the keyboard for pixel book Google assistant is in the center of everything made by Google and they want it to be at the center of this Chromebook experience as well you can call it up via that key you can long press the circle button right on the home screen or you can just simply utter hey Google and the device will come to life and be ready to answer your questions it's exclusive right now for pixel book we've already seen signs that assistant will be coming to all Chromebooks in the future was just a simple keyboard shortcut pixel book will simply be the torchbearer for this effort and consumers will inherently begin knowing that Chromebooks are another home for the Google assistant and that's the power of a halo device though other Chromebook devices have offered pin support none of ahead pins quite like the pixel book well that's angle awareness and the button on the side the pixel pin is a bit of a different beast the main trick up its sleeve the ability to hold the button circle anything on the screen and get Google assistants input immediately sure it's a little hit or miss for now but eventually this function could really be a huge deal with all the input and information Google is about to gather now that Google lense has launched this feature will simply become better and better as time goes on additionally the pen gives away two great note-taking experiences with apps like squid and amazing artistic creations with things like infinity painting Adobe Illustrator sketch and more while I'd like the pen in a more stowable fashion similar to Samsung's I appreciate all that it can do and how well it puts a virtual ink on virtual paper these advances again will serve to push device manufacturers forward with pen input on Chrome OS and that's the purpose again of a halo device lastly let's talk aesthetics the pixel book is drop-dead gorgeous and unique looking it won't be mistaken for a PC or a MacBook anytime soon and that's a good thing it's a device people will be proud to carry it is like other Halo devices a benchmark for stunning design that will drive the segment forward the attention to detail is prolific as you look at the device from every angle forget the notion of a cheap Chromebook the pixel book isn't about any of that instead the user is met with thoughtful flashes of design like the silicon palm rest that are identical in color and size to the feet on the bottom and the glass shade on the lid additionally those same pads act as feet for the device when it's in presentation mode that identifying glass shade on the top well that's where all the antennae are housed so they aren't weakened by the aluminum you also notice the bezel around the screen being symmetrical from left to right top to bottom when in tablet mode this is the first Chromebook that actually feels a bit like a tablet a squared off boxy sides meet with a magnetic click and feel flush solid and not very much like a convertible sure it's large and heavy for a tablet but I found myself using the set up more and more on the pixel book than any other convertible I've used and that's saying something as a halo device it's showing other manufacturers how to thoughtfully make a foldable design that just feels good both in laptop and tablet mode so we've talked a lot about who the Google pixel book is built for is it for you well I can't answer that for you of course and if you're a gamer or heavy into video editing or color grading stuff in Photoshop then sure maybe the pixel books not right for you but for all of the rest of you out there anyone else watching this that's thinking hey this could be a device that would work for me let me tell you from using it it is an awesome piece of hardware it is so well built it feels great it's great to carry into coffee shops and it's one of those devices you feel proud to own so if you're ready to spend some money on some high-end hardware I would say consider this device it can do a lot more than most people give it credit for and we're only at the beginning between Android apps and the Google assistant and Chrome OS is a platform the sky's the limit with this thing and it's going to be an awesome contender for a few years to come for sure guys if you like this video please give it a thumbs up subscribe to the channel and until next time we'll see you

Google Pixelbook Review: More Than Just An Expensive Chromebook

21 thoughts on “Google Pixelbook Review: More Than Just An Expensive Chromebook”

  1. Someone recomended Chrome as a perfect deliverer for my Android, Chrome had no costs asociated with it; but Google has attaachunknow costs I am eginning to oubt. Not easy the silent partner keeps me ignorant nd more in doubt. Always requesting another link but not explaing why. nor do I desire aothe undesireable advertisement. Thanks Tarry masters. experience made less complicated. I purchase had brought me to doubt about the tool and Android its links are wanted not more doubt. Google supports Android but not open from tis tool. LG Stylo 4.

  2. Great review, and like other commentators mentioned, the best one too! I will probably switch to Google Chrome from Mac since the latter is the new old Microsoft in many ways. Apple actually bought back 150 billion dollars of its shares instead of distributing it to its shareholders. I don't own any Apple shares, so that's not the issue. I just despise corporations where every S that they use actually spells $. Google is no better, but we need a computer, and for now, it may be less offensive than Apple or Microsoft. I forgot to mention Amazon who should become a movie studio instead of ruining every other mom and dad business.

  3. Have you ever heard of tailosive tech? He has very….. different views on the pixel book, and I’d love you to have a look at his videos and respond to them if you have anything to say in response

  4. Chromebook said that it would never be obsolete because they would keep updating the chromebook. But lo and behold they quit supporting it after 5 years and now i have 2 useless. chromebook which are working perfectly except no updates. Get lost google!

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