HP 14" 16GB Chromebooks (2014 Model)

At a risk of starting an old-fashioned “flame war,” the Chromebook has successfully delivered what Apple attempted to do, “It Just Works.”

It is not meant to be an “enthusiast” unit, even though that group will always modify it to make it “better.”

But, just like digital cameras, makers won’t leave it alone. Trust me on that!

They’ll add more complicated apps, make it generally more complicated and ruin it for average users. Then something else will come along that is simple and “just works.”

I use mine for everything except my audio editing, web page design and some more advanced image editing…and printing. This exposes my “work” PC to less risk and wear.

is it atouch serren

[MOD: Not a touch screen.]

I sooo want to buy this, but to print don’t I need to keep a dedicated pc. I really dont want to have to power a windows pc just to print something. Is there any other alternative?? I already own a really nice printer with plenty of ink. I dont want to buy another.

To address other questions:

It’s pretty straightforward to install Linux on these (Google is your friend), and I believe Minecraft will run in Linux. I’ve got an entire Java development setup running on Linux, which I installed using the method that allows you to flip between OSs with a key sequence (i.e., both are running at once), but you might want the dedicated decide-at-boot-time-which-OS-to-use method for Minecraft. In any event, I recommend using the micro SD slot to back things up (it’s easy, and 16GB micro SD cards are really cheap) in case something goes wrong and you need to redo things (unlikely but possible).

It doesn’t have a touch screen.

Unfortunately, if your printer isn’t Cloud Print-aware, you do need another computer on to act as a go-between. That said, you can buy printers you can use with Google Cloud Print for under $100, which isn’t bad given the price of replacement ink.

The fact that these come with the NVIDIA Tegra K1 instead of the Celeron (I have the Celeron version, which I bought off Woot previously) is interesting, and here’s why: a bunch of Android apps - possibly the majority of them - will be coming to Chrome OS in the relatively near future (some are already available). The chipset on this is significantly better at graphics-intensive apps (games, photo editing, etc.), and so I’m tempted to consider one simply because it’s more future-proof once those Android apps hit (keeping in mind that the 2GB available will likely limit you a bit… but then also keeping in mind that the majority of Android devices have 2GB or less now anyway).

I have two of the previous HP 14" ones, one with 2GB and one with 4GB. The 4GB one can keep even more tabs open, but I’ve never once seen an issue with the 2GB one. Once more apps become available, maybe, but 2GB works surprisingly well within this ecosystem. My daughter uses the 2GB one for all of her schoolwork, Netflix, etc, with no issues.

can i use a wireless mouse?
what is the actual battery life in hours and minutes?

I’ve used a wired mouse and Bluetooth headphones. While I’ve not used a Bluetooth mouse, I think it’s very very likely one works. I’ve just not used one. Certainly external mice and Bluetooth both work.

I don’t tend to measure battery life, but I can say that it feels as good as or better than my other laptops - many hours. That said, I’m not sure how the NVIDIA setup will use battery. I’m going to go out on a limb, based on several previous generations of Chromebooks I’ve used from various manufacturers, and say that the battery life will handily exceed any non-Chrome OS laptop in this price range, including HP’s own new inexpensive Windows line… ChromeOS just isn’t as CPU intensive in general.

I don’t have an HP, but I have an Acer C720 Chromebook so I’ll share my general thoughts on them. For $200, it is the best deal going.

I opted for the 2gb model instead of 4gb, and I’ve really never noticed a performance issue. I generally have a minimum of 5 tabs open and I can switch between them with no lag.

We use ours for surfing and media - streaming Plex and Netflix both through the HDMI hookup and Chromecast. Works flawlessly. I will agree the display is so-so, but it doesn’t bother me very much.

To the detractors, they’ll complain it only works when the Internet is on. I have a Windows desktop and 2 laptops in the house (besides the Chromebook). Other than running plex and converting media, I haven’t used any of those computers for anything non-Internet in about 5 years. So I think the whole argument is silly - I guess if you are someone who loves their apps, maybe a tablet is fine. For me, I could care less.

I am considering this for my daughter as well-- school work, Netflix etc. But she will also want to use Power Point and she currently uses Microsoft word. Can you run Word on the Chrome OS and if not what is the alternative to Word? Can you run Power Point?

Does this one come with the free 4g for life with Tmobile?

Bought a Chromebook a year and a half ago and found it does so little that I haven’t powered it up in almost a year. Won’t play FLAC music files, awful at video, everything has to be in the cloud. I use my Dell 9" mini netbook daily instead of my 11" Chromebook. The weird variation of Chrome is incompatible with many blogs and sites I read, use, and work on to the point where I was embarrassed to work on and show a site update at a meeting. Maybe they’re good for people who just care about Facebook, but if you actually do things, you’re better off with a laptop.

I have this version and I cannot say enough good things about it. Slightly higher stats but it looks like the people with 16GB SSD/2GB RAM are not having any issues with that. If you have a Chromebook, theoretically you should be storing stuff in the cloud anyway.

Start-up is super fast - I almost never have this thing in “sleep” mode, because why would I? It can go from shut down to ready pretty much instantaneously.

Runs really quiet - when the screen is black, I can’t tell whether it’s on or just sleeping. Doesn’t really get hot, either.

Light and easy to lug around the house with you, compared to other laptops.

Battery life is great.

Handles streaming just fine - used mine as my primary Netflix machine for months when I was without a TV.

Only con I can mention is that using non-Chromebooks can be really frustrating after you’ve been spoiled with one of these because UGH WHY IS IT SO SLOW.

Yes, I have a desktop for work/gaming, but honestly 90% of the time I’m home the Chromebook is what I’m using.

Highly recommend.

There are 200 offline apps. I think you did not get the right tool for YOUR job.

Sorry, not at this time. I think this was something the designers should have considered.

Wrong tool for the job if you want to run Windows apps. It doesn’t. There are alternatives, but that is not what Windows users do.

I lurk around on woot a lot looking at these chromebooks when they come up.

I have a tech intensive question - is it possible at all for this model to have extra RAM added?

I know its possible to stick another 2GB into some different model chromebooks, but I believe different models of this HP chromebook had soldered on RAM. I have a huge crush on the idea that for roughly 200 dollars I could have a capable linux machine with 4GB of memory and a SSD. The Nvidia chip on this would make running a more demanding interface such as Ubuntu Unity a nonissue.

Alright, well, I just got one. I really really like the idea of the Chromebook and think it’d be a great fit for me, but again, I’m just a little worried about the display. But for $200, I figured what the heck. If I don’t end up using it, I’ll just give it to my mom.

I don’t know the answer to this, but honestly, for the price Chromebooks are, I would personally just get one out of the box with the specs I prefer.

Dang, I want a cheap laptop that my 16 year old daughter can use for school with Power Point, Word, etc. I thought this was the answer.

I got one of these in August and absolutely loved it. Combines the functionality of a (lightweight) laptop with the ease of use of an iPad. Boots up instantly, the keyboard makes internet usage more convenient than on a tablet. At this price point it was great.

But last week the battery suddenly died and the computer is a brick. The battery is not user-changeable. It appears, judging from past comments, that this is a problem with refurbs of this device (although that was the 2013 model), and that replacement batteries involve sending the device to HP and paying about $100.

I liked the computer so much that I’m getting another one, but I’m buying new this time.