PROS / The Acer Chromebook 14 has a large, sleek aluminum chassis that makes typing comfortable.
CONS / It doesn’t have a card reader or USB-C ports, so its connectivity options are limited.
VERDICT / The Acer Chromebook 14 is a very basic laptop, but it’s well-suited to the sort of bare-bones requirements that Chromebooks are built for.
While recent Chromebooks have better processors and fancier functions, the basic idea behind the Chrome operating system has always been that a lightweight, web-focused OS makes it possible to have a good user experience on an inexpensive, low-powered laptop. The Acer Chromebook 14 fits that bill perfectly, with a low price, a relatively spacious 14-inch design and decent performance for such an affordable machine.
This 14-inch model is outfitted with a 1.6GHz Intel Celeron N3160, a low-powered processor that is well-suited to the sort of web browsing Chromebooks are made for. With 4GB of RAM, the overall user experience is fairly smooth, and its performance scores are decent for such an inexpensive machine – it scored 58.74 points in JetStream 1.1 and averaged 30 frames per second (fps) in WebGL Aquarium. The Chromebook is equipped with 32GB of local storage, which is standard for Chrome-based laptops.
In battery tests, the Acer Chromebook 14 lasted nine hours and 25 minutes. While it isn’t the longest-lasting notebook in our comparison, it should still carry you through most of the day without needing to charge.
If the smallest Chromebooks look cramped and tiny to you, then this 14-inch Acer should be a welcome option as you weigh whether to get a Chromebook versus a laptop. Measuring 13.4 x 9.3 x 0.67 inches and weighing 3.42 pounds, it’s the largest model in our review. With a sturdy aluminum chassis, it’s also one of the nicest-looking Chromebooks for under $300.
The laptop boasts a 14-inch display with 1920 x 1080 resolution. There’s no touch option, but the Inter-Plane Switching (IPS) display technology should look good from most angles. Along the left side of the laptop, you’ll find all the available ports: two USB 3.0 ports and an HDMI output. Conspicuously absent is any sort of card reader.
The Chromebook 14 is covered with Acer’s standard one-year warranty on parts and labor. Tech support options include phone and live chat through the company’s website, where you can also find materials like online manuals, FAQs and customer forums that can help you solve many problems on your own.
The Acer Chromebook 14 doesn’t have the high-performance chops or flippable, foldable design of a top-rated Chromebook. Still, it’s one of the best value Chromebooks on the market for anyone looking to get a Chrome-powered laptop on the cheap.