Acer’s new Chromebook is a tough 2-in-1 with a slick stylus

Acer has revealed a new convertible Chromebook for students, designed to be tough enough to survive the knocks and bumps it might take in the classroom.

The Chromebook Spin 11, as the name denotes, has a 360-degree hinge which allows you to use the device as normal in laptop mode, or ‘spin’ the 11.6-inch display partially around into tent/stand mode, or fully around so the back of the screen is flat against the keyboard and the device essentially becomes a thick tablet.

The notebook is bundled with a Wacom EMR stylus which provides a natural pen-and-paper-style writing experience on the touchscreen – and incidentally that screen is made from Gorilla Glass and has ‘antimicrobial properties’, no less.

The stylus doesn’t require a battery, saving on costs, and it’s built to be tough enough to survive being dropped on the floor.

Speaking of ruggedness, the laptop itself offers military-grade durability, being designed to the MIL-STD 810G spec. It has a reinforced chassis and a rubber bumper around the keyboard, meaning it can survive being dropped from a height of around 120cm.

Shrugging off spills

The convertible is also spill-resistant, with a specially crafted drainage system that channels up to 330ml of liquid away from the internal hardware components, hopefully keeping them safe.

The 11.6-inch IPS display is HD resolution, and the laptop is driven by a choice of either an Intel Celeron N3450 quad-core processor or Celeron N3350 dual-core. That’s backed up with 4GB or 8GB of LPDDR4 system memory and 32GB/64GB eMMC flash storage.

In terms of connectivity, on the wireless front you get 2x2 MIMO 802.11ac Wi-Fi plus Bluetooth 4.2. Ports include a pair of USB Type-C (USB 3.1 Gen 1), and a second pair of type A USB 3.0 connectors, along with a microSD card slot.

The Spin 11 is 20.5mm thick and weighs 1.4kg, with Acer saying that battery life is up to 10 hours. The launch date and pricing are still to be confirmed.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).