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Flip Open the Best Chromebooks for Less Than $200


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When you’re shopping for a laptop, you may find the search for the right device for your budget a near-impossible undertaking. Compounded with inflation, recent advancements in technology and chip shortages have caused laptop prices to increase dramatically over the years, making it hard to secure even the most tattered secondhand clunker. 

The best Chromebooks under $200 solve this problem by delivering a smooth, reliable computing experience for less than the price of an iPad. But because high-quality laptops are in such high demand these days, chances are you’ll have to either compromise a little on your budget or buy refurbished to stay under that price ceiling. The good news is that most retailers offer extensive return policies, up to 90 days in the case of Amazon. Buying refurbished is better for the environment as well, as it reduces the proliferation of e-waste.

Whether you purchase it new or pre-owned and revamped, the best Chromebook for under $200 is one that can run the apps you need without delay. It is one that boasts a sleek design, punching above its weight in terms of appearance. It is functional, flexible, and focused on providing the features you need to make it through the work (or school) day.

Best Chromebook Overall: HP Chromebook 14 ($249, $199 Renewed)
Best Chromebook for Kids: HP Chromebook 11a G8 EE ($191, $150 Renewed)
Best Chromebook for Students: Samsung Chromebook 4+ ($231, $162 Renewed)
Best Touchscreen Chromebook: HP Chromebook 11 ($199 Renewed)
Best 2-in-1 Chromebook: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook ($206, $200 Renewed)
Best Chromebook for Gaming: Acer Chromebook 315 – AMD ($379, $190 Renewed)
Best Chromebook for Linux: Acer Chromebook 315 – Intel ($297, $170 Renewed)

Best Chromebook Overall: HP Chromebook 14 ($249, $199 Renewed)

Image credit:
HP

Ever since Google added support for its Play Store app marketplace, Chromebooks have increasingly taken advantage of their expanded capabilities. Available new or renewed, the HP Chromebook 14 is no exception. Complete with four-finger, multi-touch gesture swiping on the touchpad, an Intel Celeron processor, and B&O-engineered stereo speakers, the Chromebook 14 can display content from streaming services and productivity tools alike on a 1,366 x 768 HD screen without the massive bezels paraded by its predecessors. 

Best Chromebook for Kids: HP Chromebook 11a G8 EE ($191, $150 Renewed)

Best Chromebook for Kids: HP Chromebook 11a G8 EE ($191, $150 Renewed)

Image credit:
HP

Children have different needs than adults when it comes to laptops. Built with educational environments in mind, the HP Chromebook 11a G8 EE (the EE stands for Education Edition) brings serviceable specs to a rugged notebook capable of withstanding a 2.5-foot concrete drop or 4 feet on hardwood floors. Messier kids will benefit from spill resistance up to 12 ounces, and those who aren’t keen on looking where they’re going don’t have to worry about the device breaking from careless tugs at the power cable. Get it new or renewed at a discount.

Best Chromebook for Students: Samsung Chromebook 4+ ($231, $162 Renewed)

Best Chromebook for Students: Samsung Chromebook 4+ ($231, $162 Renewed)

Image credit:
Samsung

For older students in high school or college, the Samsung Chromebook 4+ (available under $200 renewed) is an attractive option. The laptop has a 15.6-inch screen, much larger than most in its class, in addition to an aluminum lid that feels premium to the touch. However, while its bottom half is unfortunately made of plastic, it still boasts military-grade durability. It steps it up in the screen resolution department, too, with 1,920 x 1,080 pixels, perfect for binge-watching your favorite shows between studies. You can also purchase the Chromebook 4+ from Samsung directly

Best Touchscreen Chromebook: HP Chromebook 11 ($199 Renewed)

Best Touchscreen Chromebook: HP Chromebook 11 ($199 Renewed)

Image credit:
HP

Finding any touchscreen laptop under $200 is a hurdle to overcome, much less a good one. The renewed HP Chromebook 11 subverts expectations with an 11.6-inch IPS display you can touch to open and close windows, sign documents, play Android games from the Google Play Store, and more. Although the screen resolution is only 1,366 x 768, at this price point some concessions do have to be made. 

Best 2-in-1 Chromebook: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook ($206, $200 Renewed)

Best 2-in-1 Chromebook: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook ($206, $200 Renewed)

Image credit:
Lenovo

A convertible laptop comes in handy if you’re hoping to use your Chromebook on the go, as it allows you to switch between a tablet and a laptop mode. For $200 renewed or just $6 more new, the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet in particular has a detachable keyboard you can snap on or off on a whim. Need to hop into a meeting and take notes? Or how about you read that book you’ve been meaning to finish? Simply remove the top of the Duet from its base and go portable. Then, when you’re ready to catch up on emails or write that proposal, reunite the two for the complete laptop experience.

Best Chromebook for Gaming: Acer Chromebook 315 – AMD ($379, $190 Renewed)

Best Chromebook for Gaming: Acer Chromebook 315 - AMD ($379, $190 Renewed)

Image credit:
Acer

Gaming on a Chromebook is very different from that of a Windows laptop or even a Mac. More akin to mobile gaming such as that on a smartphone or tablet, you have hundreds of titles at your fingertips, courtesy of the Google Play Store. New and renewed alike, the AMD A-Series processor-fueled Acer Chromebook 315 is powerful, with plenty of screen real estate to bring your favorite games to life. An HD touchscreen makes it compatible with a wide range of games, not limited to those playable using only mouse and keyboard.

Best Chromebook for Linux: Acer Chromebook 315 – Intel ($297, $170 Renewed)

Best Chromebook for Linux: Acer Chromebook 315 - Intel ($297, $170 Renewed)

Image credit:
Acer

While the Acer Chromebook 315 is also the best Chromebook under $200 for Linux users, those looking to install the open-source operating system might prefer an Intel processor for optimal software compatibility. The Celeron-based Chromebook 315 is also more affordable than the AMD version, in both its new and renewed iterations. No matter what distro you’re using, the Acer Chromebook 315’s Intel edition packs more than enough performance to meet the minimum requirements of Ubuntu, Mint, and Fedora alike.

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