So, you’re left with mere days before Christmas and one of the few people left on your shopping list has simply asked for ‘a laptop.’ With so little information and a budget to consider, we’d suggest fulfilling that wish with one of the best Chromebooks on the market.
These laptops run the gamut from affordable and sufficient to impressive and luxurious, with Google’s lightning-fast Chrome OS powering the experience.
Since you’re left with little more than knowing your loved one wants a laptop, much less whether they'd prefer it run on Windows or Mac, Chrome OS is a good choice. It's based on Google’s Chrome web browser, so it should be easy for folks of all backgrounds to use a Chromebook.
With that, here are three Chromebooks we heartily recommend – across price points – for gifting to your loved ones this season.
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Affordable: Dell Chromebook 11
The best Chromebook to gift
CPU: Intel Celeron N2840 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics | RAM: 2GB – 4GB | Screen: 11.6-inch, HD (1366 x 768) touchscreen | Storage: 16GB SSD
The Dell Chromebook 11 is about one thing first and foremost: value. Reinforced by a 180-degree hinge, hardy design and a water-resistant keyboard and trackpad in addition to a hearty typing experience, this Chromebook is a pleasantly portable package. Not only properly equipped for education and work, the Dell Chromebook 11 even includes a set of booming stereo speakers for listening to tunes or watching movies. Don’t worry about banging it up, either, as this laptop remains the most rugged Chromebook we've reviewed.
Read the full review: Dell Chromebook 11
Mid-range: Samsung Chromebook Pro
Both a Chrome laptop and Android tablet
CPU: 0.99Ghz Intel Core m3-6Y30 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 515 | RAM: 4GB | Screen: 12.3-inch, QHD (2,400 x 1,600) touchscreen | Storage: 32GB eMMC
When Android apps arrived on the best Chromebooks, it wasn't long before Samsung took its mastery of the two operating systems and produced something truly amazing. With a 12.3-inch QHD touch display and a 360-degree hinge, the Samsung Chromebook Pro is lauded for its built-in stylus – the first of its kind to appear in a Chromebook. Not only does this laptop trump a majority of those in its own category, but it’s better than most Android tablets as well. Whomever you gift this to would be a happy camper for a long time.
Read the full review: Samsung Chromebook Pro
Ultimate: Google Pixelbook
The most luxurious Chromebook to date
CPU: Intel Core i5 – i7 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 615 | RAM: 8 – 16GB | Screen: 12.3-inch, QHD (2,400 x 1,600) touchscreen | Storage: 128GB – 512GB
This is – bar none – the best Chromebook that money can buy. Not only can it run Android apps natively, it's almost the most powerful and capacious of its kind. (It's also by far the most attractive and pleasant to use.) When you throw in the impressive stylus and deep Google Assistant integration, it is no surprise that the Pixelbook is the best Chromebook of 2018 – even this long after its 2017 launch.
Read the full review: Google Pixelbook
If you didn’t find any of these Chromebook recommendations to your liking, then we invite you to check out our ranking of the best Chromebooks we’ve tested all year long.
Finally, check out this guide on how to run Android apps on your Chromebook – you know, for your giftee.
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Joe Osborne is the Senior Technology Editor at Insider Inc. His role is to leads the technology coverage team for the Business Insider Shopping team, facilitating expert reviews, comprehensive buying guides, snap deals news and more. Previously, Joe was TechRadar's US computing editor, leading reviews of everything from gaming PCs to internal components and accessories. In his spare time, Joe is a renowned Dungeons and Dragons dungeon master – and arguably the nicest man in tech.