This is the Pixelbook Go review and Google has been building its own Chromebooks for a while now.
First there were two iterations of the Chromebook. The pixel bool and then there was 2017 pixel book. All three worked great laptops with one huge flaw they cost way too much money.
Google is back at it! Again this year with the new Pixelbook Go and for the first time Google’s not trying to make the best Chromebook ever.
Instead Google is trying to build a Chromebook that anyone can use and afford. The pixelbook go starts at 650$. A full 350$ less than the original pixel book.
It’s still a lot of money for a Chromebook. But, for the first time Google has built something better than the cheap low-end Chromebooks out there that still semi affordable.
Unfortunately, in its quest to get the price down Google also second rest a lot of what made the original pixel looks so intriguing in the first place.
but, for a lot of people those trade-offs will be worth it.
All of Google’s previous Chromebooks as well as last year’s ill-fated pixel slate tablet had distinctive designs and premium hardware with very few corners cut.
While the pixelbook go though is a nice device it’s a phone or pedestrian computer than anything Google has released.
Google pixelbook Go specifications
- CPU: 1.3GHz Intel Core i5-8220Y (dual-core; 4MB cache; boost up to 3.9GHz)
- Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 615 (300MHz)
- RAM: 8GB LPDDR3
- Screen: 13.3-inch Full HD (1,920 x 1,080; 166 ppi) LCD touchscreen (16:9; 72% NTSC)
- Storage: 128GB eMMC
- Ports: 2 x USB-C 3.1 (charging and display out), 3.5mm headphone jack
- Connectivity: Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac, 2×2 MIMO, dual-band); Bluetooth 4.2
- Cameras: 1080p Duo Cam (2MP, 60 fps)
- Weight: 2.3 pounds (1,061g)
- Size: 12.2 x 8.1 x 0.5 inches (311 x 206.3 13.4mm; W x D x H)
Built and Design
The pixelbook go is a basic looking clamshell laptop with a 13.3 inch 1080p touchscreen and a black paint job unmarked except for a small Google G logo in the corner of the lid.
It also comes in very light pink with a bright coral underside a much more distinctive combo but the all-black has a certain understated elegance.
Either way the pixelbook go feels sturdy and well built. but, doesn’t have any of the distinctive design elements you’ll see in the original pixel book.
It’s thicker than that device.
But, still weighs about the same at 2.3 pounds. I definitely miss the aesthetics of the original though. Particularly, it’s glass an aluminum lid that echoed the design of pixel phones.
The pixelbook go has a functional utilitarian design. Which I can appreciate.
but, I wish it was slightly more exciting there is one new funky design flourish to be found.
The pixelbook go it’s ridged underside for whatever reason pictures made me think that this was a different softer material than the magnesium that makes up the rest of the pixelbook go case.
It doesn’t feel any different than the rest of the device google says it design needs word just to make the laptop easier to grip or pull out of a sleeve.
But, I can’t have had any problems handling other computers. Still it’s good to see Google’s more playful side on this.
Otherwise, dull laptop and while the goal might be a little boring. it still feels nicer and sturdier than almost any other Chromebook on the market.
The otherwise excellent Asus Chromebook flip that I reviewed earlier this year.
It’s much heavier than the pixelbook go for example Google’s surely simplified its design as a way to cut costs and as such there are some other notable changes to the pixelbook go compared to its predecessor.
Unlike the first pixel book it’s not a convertible, the tablet mode is out. that also means it doesn’t work with the pixel book pen.
I’m a little sad to see the step back and display quality. here, that’s not to say the Dell has a bad screen.
It’s just not nearly as gorgeous to look at as those last two computers 1080p on a 13.3 inch screen works out to 166 pixels per inch.
A far cry from the 235 PPI on the first pixel book and the impressive 293 PPI on the pixelbook.
Google did build a pixelbook go with a 4k screen. but, that option is only available if you get a top-of-the-line model. Which costs an eye-popping 1399$ dollars.
The good news is that the pixelbook go has much slimmer bezels around the screen than the original pixel book.
But, I still prefer the taller and more pixel dense display on that laptop to the screen on the pixelbook go. Fortunately, Google didn’t skip out on the keyboard.
Keyboard and Trackpad
The original pixel book offered a great typing experience and the pixelbook go is almost as good.
I can’t quite put my finger on what’s different. but, the keys don’t feel quite as soft when you’re typing and there’s plenty of travel and they’re pretty quiet.
Google here got the whole thing right. Here, the trackpad under hand is just fine.
It feels kind of rough under my finger and scrolling around isn’t as smooth as I’d like. It’s not bad and I’ve gotten used to it.
But, I’ve definitely used better touch beds well google cut some corners in the design department.
The pixelbook go is still among the more powerful Chromebooks out there.
The base model pairs an 8 generation Intel Core m3 processor with 8 gigabytes of RAM and 64 gigabytes of storage.
The one I reviewed steps up to an i5 processor in 128 gigabytes of storage that model costs $849 comparable to what defined in the $999 pixelbook.
I wish I could have tried that m3 model. Because I really want to see what kind of performance Google is offering for $650.
Unsurprisingly, Intel’s Core i5 and 8 gigs of ram is plenty for Chrome OS. The pixelbook go handles my normal workload without any issues.
My routine involves a dozen or so browser tabs, TweetDeck, hangouts slack, todo list, google keep and Trello all running as Chrome apps.
which is frustrating notably this didn’t happen when using YouTube music as a browser tab this reinforces my belief that Android apps on Chrome aren’t usually worth using.
If there’s a web-based alternative overall. I can’t imagine most people need to upgrade from the $849 model.
I tried Google was also selling in configuration that doubles the range of 16 gigabytes well that $1399 model.
I mentioned includes a core i7 processor 16 gigs of ram 206 gigs of storage and a 4k display. Well I’d surely enjoy that high resolution screen.
I don’t think it’s a worthwhile upgrade for anyone. the pixel book though also holds up pretty well in the battery side.
Something that wasn’t always true with the original and our video playback test.
The pixelbook go ran for just over 13 and a half hours before shutting down that’s more than an hour longer than the 12 hour battery life google claims with mixed usage.
Unfortunately, I never came close to 12 hours and putting the go through my normal routine.
but, it did last more than eight hours which is a definite improvement over the first pixel book.
Pixelbook Go pros
- Incredible battery life
- Amazing ‘Hush’ keyboard
- Rare 1080p webcam
- Excellent design
Pixelbook Go cons
- No biometric login
- pricing at mid- to- high-end
All this said the pixelbook go is a much easier device to evaluate than either the first pixel book or the pixel Slate.
It’s a standard familiar almost boring laptop. but, instead of figuring out if cromoz works on a convertible tablet.
if you’re willing to spend $1000 on a premium laptop the pixelbook go is just a straight forward no-frills device.
It’s still not particularly cheap. Especially, if you step up to the i5 processor I tried.
but, premium Chromebooks in the 600 to 800 dollar range are becoming more common now.
Google has something that can compete on quality as well as price yes you can still get a Chromebook for less money than what Google was asked for.
if you think a Chromebook can be your main computer and don’t mind paying a little extra for a device that’s thin light and well engineered. the pixel book go will likely meet your needs.
This was our review of the pixelbook go. Tell us what do you think about this laptop in the comments section below. Till then make sure you subscribe our newsletter.