Laptops and PCs

ACER Chromebook 314 – Review

Reviewing a Chromebook like the ACER Chromebook 314 is tricky, because Chromebooks by their nature rely on Google's extensive catalog of apps and Chromium-based apps to work. They are ideal laptops to be the second laptop, the one you use outside your personal one to separate leisure from work, a laptop that can withstand travel and is low cost for students who are afraid of losing a laptop with all their notes and TFG inside.

They are laptops of the lowest possible range, with the essentials to function connected online, with which we do not benchmark graphics or CPU, since they are not necessary or needed. What should we look for in a Chromebook? Connectivity features, which are the ones who need a Chromebook the most.

Without connectivity, they are of little use. You may think that for this, you get one of the oldest laptops possible, but it shows a lot in the user experience when using an outdated network card, when the screen is of a resolution less than 1080p or when the battery is not good. optimized. Even if a keyboard does not have ideal reception. By this, we mean that even a Chromebook can be carefully analyzed, but knowing what to analyze, and taking into account the audience for which it is intended. They are not gamers, but office workers, remote workers, traveling workers, students and even young people whose console already gives them entertainment and want a computer for the basics.

They also notice the poor image and connection quality. Don't underestimate the importance of connectivity options. In an increasingly connected world where cloud services prevail, or for developing countries where there are import taxes on high-end electronic products, a Chromebook is what is most expected and needed, and that does not mean that Be demanding with your innate abilities.

We thank Acer for giving us this product for review. Since it is an engineering sample, the results could change in the final product.

Unboxing the ACER Chromebook 314

The box of this model of Chromeboox can claim to have a perfectly ecological packaging, within what are the standards of packaging electronic products. With this it is intended that the direct sale of a laptop have less environmental impact per unit.

What does it mean that a laptop is ecological?

This philosophy is being requested more and more by users, but as always, everything is in the details. For a product, in this case a laptop, to be more ecological, it is not just offering packaging and manuals made from recycled, biodegradable products and with the least amount of single-use plastics.

A product that is truly greener, with the inevitabilities of component manufacturing, comes with many factors.

It is that it does not succumb to programmed obsolence, which is that the one that is serial, expected to stop working shortly after warranty expires. Or that it becomes obsolete when it is known that a better model will come out that will replace it and leave it as inefficient. A clear example of planned obsolescence are some updates to classic iPhones, which make it slower and the battery last relatively less, due to official software, to encourage buying the latest model.

The Right to Repair is a whole philosophy and demands that They ask that it be easy to repair a product at home, without depending on workshops, and that anyone can get official spare parts years after it is put on sale, to, for example, replace a worn-out battery. Fortunately, for users, more Right to Repair is being requested and electronic products are surviving more over time. In the case of Chromebooks, there is the question of depending on Google services, but they have a very low number of components to do what they are intended to do: surf the Internet and use online services, and in the worst case they they can install Chromium-compatible applications in order to use them.

Laptops are an example of the need for right to repair as they are one huge unit with components measured to the extreme. Its components are very dedicated and the failure of one implies taking the entire laptop to the workshop. For their part, PC towers have separate components, and it is easy to replace them, like if your graphics card breaks due to a spark or a blow, you can find dozens of compatible models in many stores.


Design

The first thing we notice when taking the ACER Chromebook 314 out of its box is its metal casing. That's extremely positive, as Chromebooks by their very nature tend to be carried around often as travel companions, be it daily, weekly, or monthly. This makes them more resistant to the inevitable blows and unwanted falls during transport.

In terms of thicknesses, it is extremely compact. Its connections are limited to the headphone jack port, a USB-C port used for data and battery charging, a USB-A port, and a security lock slot.

Taking into account that it is a range of laptops designed to have something to connect with online, a single USB may be insufficient and we will have to pull the usual hub as soon as we want to put a better keyboard and mouse in the event that we consider it uncomfortable native Chromebook keyboard and trackpad.

To make web browsing more comfortable, this Chromebook model has several additional multimedia buttons. It does take some getting used to, especially if you use this model as an afterthought, but it's nice that they use the space that is going to be used by the case and that would normally be empty and use it for additional functionality.


Features

As can be read on the official label, these are the characteristics of the ACER Chromebook 314:

  • Octa-core MTK MT8183 CPU
  • 14-inch LCD touch screen
  • 64GB eMMC storage
  • 48 Wh lithium battery
  • 8 GB SDRAM memory
  • Wi-Fi and BlueTooth

As standard, this model of Chromebook comes with about 64 GB of storage. After the installation of the operating system, and the basic Google applications for its operation, we have a total of 45 GB of storage available.

This is a fairly high amount of storage for web browsing cache, office documents such as Google Docs and Google Spreadsheets files, PDFs, and some images or videos.

Clearly, a basic Chromebook is not good for more than online browsing and online functions, but some Chromium programs allow you to expand its capabilities. In recent years, apps from the Google Play Store have added functionality to the Chromebook series, making it, for example, you can put a video player and combine it with a portable external SSD to easily have a portable movie player, even if it does not have an output to HDMI or miniHDMI to be able to connect it to a television.


Specifications


Gallery


Experience and conclusion with the ACER Chromebook 314

As we said, it is difficult to analyze a Chromebook, because there can hardly be differences between models that seek to be cheap. But we can say for sure that it is not an outdated product. Although a decade ago it was possible to say that a Chromebook could be a bad decision because it was not within the reach of even the lowest-end laptops, today, with so much online service and remote work, a Chromebook as a supplementary laptop, or travel, or very low budget is a good choice. Especially this model, which is presented as a good standard for someone who is only going to do tasks and entertainment purely online through a browser and dedicated apps, and has no intention of playing.

In the case of the ACER Chromebook 314, its connections, essential for its good user experience, are fast thanks to its 5 Ghz connection, it has Bluetooth to use headphones and microphones that use it, and the battery lasts a whole business day and a transport half an hour one way and another half hour back by metropolitan public transport. It is really light, although that is expected of Chromebooks because they do not even have low-end components. A key point is the screen, of a good quality, which will undoubtedly be pleasant for those who have to work several hours a day.

Its only drawback is that it is a Chromebook, with everything that it brings together. Those who read us often already know that we live in our own flesh an effect of depending on unified ecosystems for our projects: that If they delete your account, they delete everything you have associated with them. By depending on Google services for documents and navigation, there is the possibility that for arbitrary reasons your account will be deleted and with this you will lose access to your documents in the cloud, your photos, your contacts and your emails. The 64GB storage on this model allows for lots of files to be kept local, but realistically few people save the documents they type in Google Docs, even though Chromebooks already make sure there's a local copy.

Chromebooks do not stop depending on Google services, and they are made to use web applications.

In short, this ACER Chromebook 314 It's still a Chromebook. A laptop limited to simply connectivity and use of online elements such as the browser, streaming games, and office automation through the browser. In its favor, is that as a Chromebook, it stands out for added quality of life elements such as screen quality, battery life and having a metal casing that makes it more resistant to travel, along with shortcut keys.

It is a very good model of Chromebook. If you are one of those who wants to give a laptop to your parents, uncles or grandparents so that they have something to connect to the Internet but you feel that a laptop with an integrated graphics card, this is a good model with good performance within its limitations.

  • Good battery life.
  • Very light and compact, ideal for use on public transport if the occasion arises if you have to write something on a trip.
  • Resistant metal casing, ideal for transporting.
  • Good quality screen.
  • Being a Chromebook, it depends on Google services, and its efficiency and synchronization depends on having Wi-Fi or a mobile internet connection, although internet providers don't really like tethering.

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Benjamin Rosa

Madrileño whose publishing career began in 2009. I love investigating curiosities that I later bring to you, readers, in articles. I studied photography, a skill that I use to create humorous photomontages.

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