The Acer Chromebook 14 for Work's dim screen and subpar inputs are certainly not ignorable faults, but great hardware, a sleek-yet-durable design, and speedy performance ultimately make it an excellent value laptop. Unfortunately the 14 for Work's target market, enterprise users, may not be able to see past its operating system.
You can't overemphasize the importance of performance and the 14 for Work delivers one worthy of an Oscar. It is one quick laptop. Furthermore, it never seems to struggle, staying lag free and cool even when YouTube, Spotify and 10 open tabs are simultaneously demanding resources.
The 14 for Work's inputs need, well, work. Acer paid a lot of attention to external design and durability features. However, it forgot about the simple stuff like the trackpad and keyboard usability. Although Acer went the extra mile to make sure the keyboard was backlit, the 14 for Work's surprisingly dim screen hinders its efficiency in low-light areas.
The biggest knock against Acer's enterprise Chromebook is the fact that it's a Chromebook. More and more businesses are utilizing Chrome OS, but the limitations of its applications may keep the 14 for Work from ever making headway into certain verticals.
Chromebooks also have a not unearned reputation for cheapness and simplicity. This reputation works against high-performance – and high price tag – Chromebooks like the 14 for Work. Such laptops may never get to strut their stuff for IT Managers who have preconceived notions of how a Chromebook can, or should, be used.
Finally, the 14 for Work not only has to compete with other Chromebooks, but all portable enterprise devices as well– and there are plenty of equally priced Windows laptops on the market with 1,080p screens and Core i5 processors (and loads of internal storage). In this sea of already-trusted options, a newcomer like the Acer Chromebook 14 for Work may struggle to find a home.