In the form of a group, Chromebooks rank notably as among the least expensive laptops you could get, but even in this segment very sensitive to the health of your budget, Lenovo’s 100S Chromebook makes its mark by presenting a lot of laptop for very little money. Beginning at a starting price of $179.99, you could buy a lightweight 11.6-inch laptop with very staunchly performance boasting an amazing battery life excess of 11 hours.
Just as to your expectations, lenovo slashes a few corners to realize this, but then if you will have to do with shortcomings like an unimpressive display and weak audio, the 100S Chromebook is a very convincingly a good buy.
Design: All Black Everything/
From an angle of beauty, the Lenovo 100S Chromebook is entirely simplistic yet wonderful. The laptop’s outer casing is designed wholly from black plastic and a cool textured pattern. On the interior, the Chiclet-style keyboard and bezels are built of a black matte plastic.
The palm rest is (just as you could have thought it) black, and is very responsive to fingerprints. This is as easy as it gets, and it is suitable for any environment from dorm room down to a boardroom. A metallic frame located around the touchpad brings in its added its feel of class.
While the mostly plastic build contributes the Chromebook’s lightness as well as portability the same can’t be said of its durability. It pretty feels light , it could even occur to you that you could break it with your hands, and then we have the hinge which is quite floppy.
If you get to embark on a journey with it, it would be desirable to spend on a laptop bag or sleeve to protect it. You can take the 100S anywhere- no restrictions. It has a measurement of 11.81 x 8.23 x 0.78 inches — pretty petite enough to get well in nearly any bag — sporting a weight of just 2.52 pounds.
These figures which it measures is in accordance with those of other latest ultraportables. The Asus EeeBook X205TA (11.2 x 7.6 x 0.6 inches and 2.16 pounds) as we know it is slightly smaller and lighter . The Dell Chromebook 11 on the other hand is distinctively thicker and heavier, coming at 11.6 x 7.9 x 0.91 and 2.8 pounds, and then we have the HP Stream 11 (12 x 8.1 x 0.78 inches and 2.74 pounds) which is just heavier and larger.
Keyboard and Touchpad
The keyboard of the Lenovo 100S Chromebook is kind of stiff but then if we bring the cheap cost of the device to mind, you wouldn’t be upset. On the greener side of the fence, there is almost no flex — something we often come across when using the cheaper notebook keyboards.
Just everything is the tiniest bit cramped in the 11-inch body, but then it is relieving that it is at least serviceable. Using 10fastfingers.com, I was able to keep pace with my usual speed of typing which I have come to be accustomed to with a Dell office keyboard: on a rate of say 100 words for every minute. On the 100S, however, I came across an alarming error rate of 4%, I didn’t really commend this rate as my usual error rate is say a percent or two.
The buttonless touchpad is really accurate but it needed a fair amount of force to click. Clicks took in better on the bottom half of the touchpad more than they did on the top half, this brought about a disturbing number of unresponsive clicks and eventually I came to make do by only pressing the very bottom.
The 100S’ 11.6-inch, 1366 x 768-pixel resolution is fairly appropriate for budget notebooks. The Dell Chromebook 11, the Stream 11, EeeBook X205TA’s screens possess similar resolution and size. The Asus Chromebook Flip, a Chromebook with a 10-inch touch screen which supports a flip back into a tablet, comes with a resolution of 1200 x 800 pixels.
Really I would have applauded more if the display was any brighter, but then at 244 nits, it is sure to be higher than that of the screens on the HP Stream 11 (165 nits) and the Asus EeeBook X205TA (217 nits). They are all well under the ultraportable class average of 294.7 nits. The 100S will also bring up just 57.5 percent of the sRGB color gamut, but when we look to the X205TA and the Stream 11, they can reproduce 64 percent and 68 percent, respectively.
The Lenovo 100S Chromebook brings out hollow, distastefully thin sound emanating from two small speakers on the bottom of the laptop. From the way I saw it, it kind of disperses sound down and in the direction of your lap, table as well effectively away from you, so in this manner, the clarity of the audio reduces as the volume rises.
The Lenovo 100S Chromebook while in operation is a little warm on the bottom. From the way I saw it, the 100S’ touchpad was relatively cool, tipping at at 76 degrees, and then the space between the G and H keys on the keyboard measures up to 85 degrees.
Ports and Webcam
An 11-inch computer will only present not too numerous number of ports, and the 100S Chromebook can be as well as said to have the vitals.
When I went over to the right side, I met just a single USB 2.0 port as well as a Kensington lock slot. Then coming to the left, I came across the charging port, a USB 3.0 port, an HDMI port, as well as a SD card slot alongside a headphone jack. Well I will put in here that the webcam’s photos are noisy, most particularly when operating in low light; quite blurry, and then you would barely tell the correct colour of my teeth when I smiled.
The 100S sources its operational power from a 2.16-GHz Intel Celeron N2840 processor with 2GB of RAM. It is pretty snappy for light loads, but then I noticed that it reached its limit the moment I really got to work on it.
With a Google Doc and 10 Chrome tabs open and Spotify streaming in the background, I noticed significantly that the tabs lagged when I tried to dance between them. I feared when you prospectively add a PES game on the background, it would be very evident that the lag is pronounced.
Now moving over to the Oort Online WebGL benchmark, which tries to measure the efficiency at which a computer can render graphics in a browser, the 100S recorded a score of 1,430. In a test where higher scores are more commendable, it was was thrown off the ring by the Dell Chromebook 13 and Toshiba Chromebook 2, which made a sparkling 5,050 and 5,070, respectively.
This Chromebook has a very commendable battery life The Lenovo 100S Chromebook lasted a very commendable 11 hours and 19 seconds on the Laptop battery test, this was in face of intense Web surfing over Wi-Fi at 100 nits of brightness, which beats the Asus Chromebook Flip (9:19) and the HP Stream 11 (6:34).
The battery life also exceeded the ultraportable category average of 8:02 but then was lagging by approximately an hour behind the Windows-powered Asus X205TA, which would go on to last for 12:05.
If you are acquainted with using the Chrome browser, you should well know how to use Chrome OS. A lot of the interface is the browser itself, therefore you are unlikely to come across difficulty as to getting familiar with it.
The Home menu has a search bar which could really turn in helpful giving you the avenue to get into the browser at once. Google Now is front and center, which is very useful. It kept me informed of how long my commute could be, and then the forecast, so I could work without constricting me indoors. It would also go on to notify me as to the latest news stories and sports scores.
The desktop is kind of spartan. Those who make use of the Windows will come to notice the taskbar (Chrome OS names it the “shelf”) and pinned apps in a similar location at the bottom of the screen. When I went to the right-hand side of the shelf, I found a clock, Wi-Fi status, profile switcher, and a battery.
Software and Warranty
In contrast to the larger number of Windows machines, Chromebooks aren’t presented with third-party software preinstalled. When I got to log in using my Google credentials, I came to the reality that they were the Google apps and extensions I had used sometime before.
What is also included in the package of the 100S is two years of free 100GB storage on Google Drive — well we would commend this. This will serve as reliable storage for your documents as well as media in the cloud. At the ending of the 24-month period, however, you will be required to renew and pay in a way you choose, at a rate of $1.99 for every month. Also included in the notebook is a one-year limited warranty on labor and parts. Can I say the Chrome Web Store hit or miss? Well, it has a lot of apps as well as extensions to give you added functionality and most of them come at no cost.
Among my favorites are Google Docs, Pocket (for the purpose of saving content to read some time later), Spotify (well popular for music streaming). There is a wide range of extensions and apps among which you could choose, let me put in the fact that you could miss some of the apps and extensions to choose from, though you’ll also miss some of the adept productivity programs alongside games available on machines which run on Windows and OS X.
Chrome OS is very dependent on an Internet connection for nothing excluded, for everything from syncing Google Docs, streaming video and music to Web browsing. Available are some offline-capable apps which comprises of a special version of Gmail tagged Gmail Offline.
Some games such as the 2048 and Cut the Rope can be enjoyed offline; some involve text editing number of games, like 2048 and Cut the Rope, are available offline, as are some text editors, like Writebox and Scribe. Google Drive will not present all its features while offline but then it will sync again once you jump on an Internet connection.
So to conclude, if you are buying this for yourself ( for the purpose of social media, email, document editing etc) or even for your kids, then the Lenovo is a great buy. But if you have more money at your disposal, the $279 Dell Chromebook 11 is a better buy sporting a better keyboard and generally a better design. But then of we look at the battery life of the Lenovo 100S Chromebook 11, then it is no bad deal!