When I was sent the Pixelbook Go from Google, I expected a glorified Android tablet with a keyboard. I mean it just runs Chrome OS so what can it really do? Can it really be used for work, social media, blog posts, presentations or in other words, is the Pixelbook Go a real laptop?
Well, let’s find out
The Pixelbook Review Test
Before I jump into the device, I need to tell you that I used the Pixelbook Go as my only laptop for over two weeks. That means I used it for everything. Emails, blog posts, work presentations, video conference sessions, spreadsheets, social media and of course Netflix and YouTube.
The only time I switched back to my PC was when I wanted to edit a video for this YouTube channel as I simply didn’t have time to learn one of the Android video editing apps of which there are many.
What is Chrome OS?
Let’s start at the factor that scares most people: the operating system on the Pixelbook Go is Chrome OS.
For those not familiar with that, it is a complete standalone operating system from Google, that while being heavily cloud-centric, it does not require internet access for it to operate.
Those who say it is just a simple web browser in a box couldn’t be more wrong as when Chrome OS added support for Android apps, it changed the game!
However, with Android App Support, now you can open the Google Play Store and install virtually any apps that you can on your Android phone. This includes the Android versions of Word and Excel.
So unless you are using things like Twitter, Web, TikTok, or streaming YouTube, the Chrome OS doesn’t need to be permanently connected to the internet. Many apps even have an offline mode, so you can grab your Netflix show and watch it on the plane.
If you think about your own daily PC usage, how much of it is really “offline”?
Pixelbook GO – What you need to know
The Pixelbook is light weighing at about 2.3 pounds, easily carried around all day and has this new wavy ridge which makes it easy to grip. I haven’t dropped any other laptop and not sure how much of a problem that is, but nonetheless, I do like that it is different.
You will find a cute little G on the back of the screen in the corner and that is. This, together with its magnesium case make it very sophisticated looking.
The 13.3 inch LCD touchscreen screen is nice and bright with a 16:9 aspect ration on the Full HD screen. The HD version that I have is stunning so I can imagine that the 4K model must be exquisite!
It has a touchscreen but does not fold backward into a tablet mode and doesn’t have a pen that you can draw on the screen.
There are various storage options but all are solid-state hard drives starting at 64GB and up to 256GB to store your various files and documents. Since its Chrome OS, the updates are taken care of, there are no huge download setup files that take up space.
It has 2 USB C ports for charging and display output, Duo Cam at 1080P at 60 fps, 2 mics built-in for improved noise cancellation and even a headphone jack!
While we are talking about audio, the dual front-facing speakers are superb. Nice and loud and have that beautiful deep base thud to them.
Pixelbook GO – Keyboard is superb
Typing on the Pixelbook Go is really magical and something I struggle with on laptops as a whole. It has proper keys with just enough travel and clickiness allowing you to word-vomit with ease. And the trackpad is great and just works with zero complaints.
Back in the office, I connected it to an external screen, a keyboard, a mouse via Bluetooth. You can also use a Bluetooth headphone to complete the experience!
Pixelbook Go – Battery
What do we want out of a portable laptop? A decent battery life.
This one has one. It has a 47 Wh battery which gives you 12-hour battery life. In my travels, I could easily get to 10 hours with no problems. If you need to get it to 12 hours, you would have no problem. The Pixelbook Go is charged with a USB C means I could double up and use the same charger for the Pixelbook Go as I do for my Pixel 4 phone.
So in summary:
Anyone who doesn’t have a customized work app that only works on your PC or MAC, should look at the Pixelbook GO as an option. If you value portability, functionality, and productivity and want the power of the cloud at your fingertips, then this is an option.