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Best Chromebooks for kids in 2022

One of the cool parts of ChromeOS, which powers Chromebooks, is that it is simple and easy to learn when compared to Windows and even MacOS. Chromebooks are also fairly inexpensive, which makes them the perfect option for a younger child. Other than that, Chromebooks are very secure, and you can even add parental controls easily.

So, if you’re looking for a new computer for your kid, a Chromebook is perfect for just about everything. In this guide, we’ll pick out some of our favorites for kids. We’ll be looking at various categories, price ranges, and features. There’s a Chromebook for just about every child. Here’s the full list, and be sure to navigate using the links below.

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The best for older kids: Acer Chromebook Spin 714

If you’re looking for the best Chromebook for an older kid approaching tween years, then we suggest the Acer Chromebook Spin 714. This Chromebook is one of the best Chromebooks you can buy right now for your money, and it’s sure to impress them. The specs are modern, and there are a lot of ways they can use this Chromebook (tent, stand, laptop, or tablet.) Let’s dive a bit deeper as to what makes this $730 Chromebook worth it.

An older kid typically won’t want a slow Chromebook, and this one will be anything but. It has the latest CPUs from Intel, the 12th generation Intel Core i5-1345U. That’s what you’ll usually find in Windows laptops, which makes it even a better buy. No matter what your kid will want to do on this Chromebook, be it installing Roblox, playing Android games, or even web browsing and social media, it will work just fine. The 8GB of RAM and the traditional SSD will help them out, too as both make the system speedy when compared to others on our list that come with 4GB of RAM or slower eMMC storage.

The other great thing about this Chromebook is the display as well as the keyboard. This Chromebook sports a 16:10 aspect ratio 1920 x 1080 display, which is great for multitasking and opening a lot of apps on the screen. When using the device and converting it into various modes, the content will come to life. As for the keyboard, it’s backlit, so if your kid likes to sneak in social media before bed, they’d be able to type up tweets without turning on the lights.

And let us not forget the garaged stylus! Older kids can draw on the screen and send notes to friends, take notes during virtual classes, and even draw pictures to share with friends. The stylus sits right inside the side of the device and won’t ever get lost.

Of course, an older kid might end up traveling with a Chromebook to a friend’s house, or even school. and for this, this Chromebook will exceed standards. It’s plenty portable, coming in a 3.04 pounds. It’s also quite thin and 0.70 inches so it can slide in a bag without issue. We do like the selection of ports, too, as it included USB-A, Thunderbolt, as well as HDMI. No dongles will be needed.

    Acer Chromebook Spin 714

    The Acer Chromebook Spin 714 is perfect for older kids, as it has the latest and greatest features we look for in Chromebooks

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Best tablet for younger kids: HP x2 11

HP Chromebook x2 11 on light blue background

Our top pick is for older kids, but for younger children, we suggest the HP x2 11. This tablet is compact, portable, and really cheap. For about $400, here’s what we like about it, looking at performance, design, and so much more.

This ChromeOS tablet is one of the smallest out there right now. It measures just about 10 inches and weighs in at 1.05 pounds. That makes it perfect for a child to hold in a stroller, or when out and about. It’s not too heavy. The included keyboard also means you can protect the screen when the tablet is put in a bag or is kept away from your child.

Another reason this tablet makes our pick has to do with the display. A kid might not really need a big screen at a young age. This 11-inc display hits the sweet spot, as it is not too big nor is it too small. It also packs a high 2.1K resolution and can hit 400 nits of brightness. What that means is that movies or saved content will end up looking great on the screen, for when your kid is traveling with you or on the go. You can save a movie to the tablet and just hand it to them to watch. They won’t complain that the screen is to dull.

And speaking of traveling. A way to keep a kid busy is by handing them a coloring book. Well, with this tablet, HP includes an HP Pen. You can download drawing apps or a coloring book from the Google Play Store and have your kid color using the pen on the screen. It’s similar to the display on the iPad Air, and the pen on the iPad Air. It just sticks to the side of the device and can’t easily get lost.

Capping things out about why this tablet is great for kids has a lot to do with the battery life. When we reviewed it, we found that it can last for the entire day. That’s thanks to the Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c SoC that’s being used inside. That ARM-based SoC also means that Android apps will run great, too. Your kid will be able to download any app they please and not complain to you about the app not performing well. Of course, web browsing should work fine, too, if you want your kid to watch YouTube and other online content when at home. ChromeOS is really optimized for ARM-based chips as it’s common in lower-end hardware.

    HP Chromebook X2 11

    The HP Chromebook x2 11 is great for childen thanks to the compact design, as well as the keyboard and included pen

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Best for all education: Lenovo Flex 3 Chromebook

Chromebooks are popular in education, which is why our third pick for the best Chromebook for kids is one that’s in use in many schools, and a popular buy with parents. It’s the Lenovo Flex 3 Chromebook. This sub $200 Chromebook packs a convertible form factor, lots of ports, is portable, and is overall a great buy.

For education, what matters most is portability and style, as you don’t want a kid carrying a heavy laptop in their bag, or even taking up a lot of desk space at home. This Chromebook measures in at 11.5 x 8.48 x 0.77 inches, and is just under 3 pounds at 2.64 pounds. If you’re keeping track, that’s about the size of a college-ruled notebook that’s used in many schools. On the style aspect, this Chromebook comes in “Abyss Blue,” which is a light blue color mixed with gray. It’s really good-looking, and your kid will likely love it.

The other thing that’s important in education is keeping a kid very focused. For this, the Lenovo Flex 3 is amazing. It’s not that high power of a device, as it comes with a Mediatek MT8183 SoC along with 4GB of RAM and 64GB eMMC storage. This CPU is popular in lower-end Chromebooks and is great for powering the web-based work a kid in elementary school or middle school might have. Webpages and Google Workspace apps will load up just fine, The 64GB eMMC storage is also a plus, as it allows some room for storing school-related or personal files off the cloud.

We do want to note that this Chromebook can be used in many ways, too. It’s one of Lenovo’s Flex devices. So, a kid can pull back the screen from the hinge and fold it over and place it on the table to watch lesson replays or their favorite movies. They also can fully fold it over as a tablet, and interact with images and photos that a teacher might share. The 11.6-inch HD display is great for this, as it comes in at 1366 x 768 resolution. It’s not that sharp, but it’ll make sure that your kid stays focused on the task at hand.

On ports, kids usually like connecting things to share files with friends or family. There are a lot of ports for that, as well as a modern USB-C port for connections to newer SSDs. The ports include USB-C, and USB-A, as well as a headphone jack and microSD card slot. There’s even a volume rocker, which makes it easy for a kid to control the volume when listening to a class lesson.

    Lenovo Flex 3 Chromebook

    The Lenovo Flex 3 Chromebook is the perfect size for a kid and is really portable

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Best clamshell for kids: Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 4+

Samsung Chromebook 4+ on orange background

So far we’ve talked a lot about tablets and 2-in-1s, but kids might put those devices through abuse. If that’s something you’re worried about, then a traditional clamshell laptop is probably better for your kid. In this category, we suggest the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 4+. It has a big screen, decent specs, and looks fancy, without going over the price.

You probably know how durable plastic is when it comes to laptops. On this front, the Galaxy Chromebook 4+ is great for that reason. On the surface, it looks a lot like a MacBook Pro might with a silver finish and a screen with slim bezels, but it’s quite better for kids since it’s primarily plastic which can take a lot of wear and tear. And do note that this is a 15-inch laptop, too. It’s quite compact for what it is in the class. It measures 14.16 x 9.64 x 0.65 inches and weighs 3.75 pounds.

Now, for more details that big screen. The screen is sized at Full HD 1920 x 1080 resolution. It’s not typical to see this in a Chromebook of this size. If you hand this over to a kid, they’ll be able to multitask and open more than one thing on the screen, say a lesson on one side, or a video on the other. Only the ugly bottom chin on this laptop might end up being distracting for a kid, as newer laptops have a 16:10 aspect ratio display which cuts out the bottom bezel.

For the processing power of this Chromebook, it’s the Intel Celeron N4000 processor paired with 4GB of RAM. You might be led to think this is slow, but Google has worked to tweak ChromeOS for CPUs just like this one. ChromeOS is a lightweight operating system, and for the tasks a kid does (school, YouTube, or social media) this is just the fine CPU. We only have one warning, since the CPU isn’t the best for running Android apps. For that, an ARM-based Chromebook might be better, and we have several of those on the list.

We also want to mention one more downside. This Chromebook doesn’t come with a backlit keyboard. Depending on how you look at it, that might be good. Your kid won’t be tempted to use it at night since the keycaps will be hard to see. Or, they can use it with your permission with the lights on in the room.

    Galaxy Chromebook 4+

    The Samsung Galaxy 4_+ looks like a MacBook and has a big screen, making it a good option for kids

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Best cheap for kids: Lenovo Chromebook 11.6

As we hinted at the top of the piece, one of the benefits of Chromebooks is that they’re really cheap. If you don’t want to spend a ton of money on a first Chromebook for a kid, and then upgrade later the Lenovo Chromebook 11.6 is a great option. It is a convertible, has an ARM-based processor that’s a ton battery, and is a little bit stylish.

Starting with the specs first, this Chromebook is powered by the MediaTek MT8183 SoC. It’s a lower-end ARM-based chip, but great for a few reasons. First of all, your kid might want to download and play Android games. An ARM-based chip like this one is great for that. Second, it’s paired up with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of eMMC storage. That makes it decent enough for web browsing. Battery life is also good, too, with Lenovo rating it around 10 hours.

Being a convertible device, your kid can use this Chromebook in various ways.  That includes a traditional tablet, a laptop, or in a tent mode to showcase a video. The tablet mode will be great for playing games, the laptop mode great for everyday school work, and the tent mode for showcasing presentations or sharing things with friends. In all those modes, the 1366 x 768 resolution screen will shine, as the content shown off will be big and clear without looking too blurry or small. This is what low-resolution screens are great for, especially because it is a traditional IPS panel.

If you or your kid plan to travel, then this device is also perfect for use on the go. It’s a really small device. The device measures 11 x 8 x 1 inches and weighs just under 3 pounds. It’s easy to put in a bag and also store with other things like food and snacks. Pair that with the cool “Abyss Blue” color option and this is a Chromebook that’s sure to stand out.

And if your kid is planning to use accessories with this device, then it’s still great. There are USB-A, USB-C ports, and even a microSD card reader that you can store movies and other content on for them to watch.

    Lenovo Chromebook 11.6

    The Lenovo Chromebook 11.6 is an cheap 2-in-1 that can teach your kid the basics of ChromeOS

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Best for kids that love streaming: Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2

Chromebook 2 with Netflix open on table

 

Our last pick might seem out of the ordinary for a kid, but we think it’s a great suggestion for an older kid who might be closer to High School. It’s the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2. This Chromebook is quite expensive, but it’ll be a long-term investment that lasts. Great specs, great display, great value, and great for streaming and multimedia.

We say all that because this Chromebook is unlike any other on the market. It has a QLED panel. The panel is 13-3 inches in size and sports an FHD resolution of 1920 x 1080. QLED is important, as other Chromebooks in class have IPS and LCD panels that aren’t as vibrant. For making streaming content look life-like, QLED is best with better contrast and more color spectrums. Since this is a 2-in-1, flipping the screen around will really show off that display, too. Only the bottom bezel might seem a bit distracting, but other than that, it’s great for Netflix, movie-watching, and things like YouTube. There’s also pen support on the screen, too, though you’ll have to buy that pen on the side.

And on the long-term investment, you’ll need a Chromebook with a really good processor. This one comes with two, the Intel Celeron 5205U, or Core i3-1010U. The Core i3 option is more future-proof and ensures that you’ll have no issues in the future with Android apps or opening multiple web pages. Intel’s Core processors are higher-powered and handle multitasking a lot better.

The other thing that makes this a good long-term buy is the overall design. It’s a really durable machine that’s lightweight and thin. Yes, it is plastic but that means you can hold it easily with one hand and travel around with it. The keyboard is backlit, too, which means that your kid or yourself can use it at night. If there’s one thing to complain about, though, it’s just the ports. A lot of modern Chromebooks are moving to USB-C to keep the design thin and light. That’s the case here, with two USB-C ports. You’ll have to buy your kid a dongle to keep on hand for connections to USB drives or even displays.

    Galaxy Chromebook 2

    The Galaxy Chromebook 2 is great as a multimedia machine thanks to the QLED display

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We’ve now come to the end of our list of best Chromebooks for kids. If you didn’t find something on this list, then don’t worry too much. There are a ton of great Chromebooks you can buy in 2022. We have a list with other options, so feel free to check it out.

The post Best Chromebooks for kids in 2022 appeared first on XDA.

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