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What just happened? On Tuesday, Google introduced a trio of Chromebooks designed with cloud gaming in mind. The systems – from Acer, Asus and Lenovo – all ship with respectable hardware and high refresh rate displays.
When Google announced it was winding down Stadia last month, it felt like the end of the search giant's cloud gaming push. As it turns out, the Mountain View-based tech titan is still very much interested in cloud gaming albeit via a different avenue.
The Acer Chromebook 516 GE retails for $649 and packs a 12th gen Intel Core i5-1240P CPU alongside 8GB of RAM, Intel Iris Xe graphics, a 256GB SSD and a 16-inch display with a resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 and a 120Hz refresh rate. Other goodies include an RGB anti-ghosting keyboard, Wi-Fi 6E and Ethernet connectivity, three total USB ports and up to nine hours of battery life.
The Asus Chromebook Vibe CX55 Flip, meanwhile, ships with an 11th gen Intel Core i5-1135G7 processor mated to 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM, Intel UHD Graphics 630, a 256GB SSD and a 15.6-inch touchscreen display operating at 1,920 x 1,080 resolution at up to 144Hz. The 2-in-1 additionally includes Wi-Fi connectivity, Harmon Kardon certified speakers and an anti-ghosting keyboard. Pricing starts at $699 with a one-year warranty.
The Lenovo Ideapad Gaming Chromebook starts at $599 and is offered in a couple of different configurations. The base model includes Intel's Core i3-1215U chip, 8GB of RAM, a 128GB eMMC SSD and a 16-inch WZXGA (2,560 x 1,600) IPS display with a 120Hz refresh rate that covers 100 percent of the sRGB color space. Lenovo's latest promises up to 11 hours of battery life and includes additional amenities like a microSD card slot, dual 2W speakers with Waves Audio and Wi-Fi 6E connectivity.
All three are compatible with a variety of cloud gaming services from Nvidia, Microsoft and Amazon, and can play games like Cyberpunk 2077, Crysis 3 Remastered and Fortnite without issue. Availability varies but all are slated to be out by the end of the month.