Lenovo has released the Duet Chromebook, a 10-inch 2-in-1 that runs Chrome OS. The base model, which has 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, and a MediaTek processor, costs $279, but only the $299 model, which has 128GB of storage, appears to be listed at Best Buy right now.
That’s an attractive price, especially when other highly anticipated Chromebook releases this year have asked over $700. We have the Duet’s size (10 inches is pretty small) and underpowered processor to thank for that. But Chrome OS doesn’t require as much horse power as Windows — and it’s possible we’ll see a battery-life benefit from the weaker chip as well.
I’ve spent a few days with the new Chromebook, and it’s been fun to use so far. The device is easy to flip between laptop and tablet use — it ships with a kickstand, keyboard, and touchpad, which are a breeze to fold, attach, and detach.
The keyboard and touchpad are (understandably) cramped, but they’re usable, and I’ve gotten used to them after a few days. The compact display will be limiting if you really want to multitask, but if you’re just browsing and YouTube watching, it renders a nice, crisp picture. And at just over two pounds, it’s quite a light product and quite easy to carry around in a backpack or purse.
Essentially, don’t expect to use the Duet Chromebook as a primary workstation, but it is shaping up to be a solid secondary browsing device or a nice choice for kids. Stay tuned for our full review of the product later this week.