Pixelbook Go is Google's attempt to attract budget consumers

David Matthews

TS Maniac
Staff member

Google held their annual hardware event today with the Pixel 4 being the star of the show. However, the Mountain View-based company also unveiled the Pixelbook Go, a much cheaper update to the original, expensive Pixelbook from 2017. Details line up with the full leak from last week.

The new Pixelbook Go isn't meant to be a revolution in how to interact with a computer. It doesn't fold like the original Pixelbook and isn't a tablet computer with an attachable keyboard like the flawed Pixel Slate. Pixelbook Go is just a straightforward laptop. This isn't surprising considering the company announced back in June that its hardware team would be focusing on laptops for the foreseeable future.

On the outside, the Pixelbook Go is made out of magnesium instead of aluminum. Google says that magnesium has a better strength-to-body ratio which drives costs down due to lower material costs. The bottom has a rubberized, ribbed texture that makes gripping the laptop a lot easier especially combined with the rounded corners.

The Pixelbook Go screen is a 13.3-inch that comes in either a 1080p resolution or 4K "Molecular Display" for those with the cash. Unlike the 3:2 aspect ratio of the original Pixelbook, the Pixelbook Go goes back to a traditional 16:9 ratio which may irk some of those who prefer the 3:2 ratio. During the presentation, Google touted the nearly silent keyboard. Early reports seem to confirm how silent and comfortable the keyboard is, especially compared to Apple's butterfly key switches on the MacBook line. There are also two USB-C ports for charging (including fast charging) and headphone jack.

On the downside, there aren't any SD card slots for storage expansion nor fingerprint sensor. Fortunately, you can use your Android phone's fingerprint sensor for biometric authentication. There's also Google's Titan C security chip for additional device security.

On the performance end, you'll have a choice of Intel 8th generation Core m3, i5, or i7 processors. It must be noted that these are the Y-series versions of those chips so temper your expectations accordingly. That said, ChromeOS is a fairly lightweight operating system and doesn't really need a lot of power. Possible combinations of specs include:

  • $649: Intel Core m3, 8GB RAM, 64GB SSD, 1080p screen
  • $849: Intel Core i5, 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD, 1080p screen
  • $999: Intel Core i5, 16GB RAM, 128GB SSD, 1080p screen
  • $1,399: Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD, 4K screen

Preorders for the "Just Black" $649 and $849 configurations start today with the more expensive configurations "coming soon." Meanwhile, the "Not Pink" versions are relegated to a waitlist. It's an interesting release strategy to be sure but at least the preorders done today will ship in a couple of weeks.

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Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
It is a smart business move to satisfy the lower end markets since so few actually try to, but the fact that it's Google would repel me .... I just no longer trust them at all .....
 
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Theinsanegamer

TS Evangelist
That's a LOT of moeny for a SCREEN. You can get an acer C771 with an i5, 8GB of RAM, two type A ports, 64GB of storage, and a micro SD slot for $500. For $1300 you can get a gaming laptop FFS!

Google seems to miss that, much like android, chromeOS is a CHEAP alternative, people dont want to spend $1300 on one. Even $650 is a big ask, as third party chromebooks get the same update cycle, so all you get for that price is a higher rez screen and the pixel name.
 

rrwards

TS Booster
That's a LOT of moeny for a SCREEN. You can get an acer C771 with an i5, 8GB of RAM, two type A ports, 64GB of storage, and a micro SD slot for $500. For $1300 you can get a gaming laptop FFS!

Google seems to miss that, much like android, chromeOS is a CHEAP alternative, people dont want to spend $1300 on one. Even $650 is a big ask, as third party chromebooks get the same update cycle, so all you get for that price is a higher rez screen and the pixel name.
Agreed. The only reason I have a chromebook is because it was cheap as hell ($200) and I don't need a full windows environment to check email/look stuff up while gaming on the couch. I don't want to spend $650 to use something that can only run google chrome extensions (or a psuedo linux desktop).
 

Teko03

TS Evangelist
PixelBook Go? What's next? PixelBook Pro X or PixelBook Neo?

How is this a budget laptop when the cheapest one is 650 dollars?
My thoughts as well. And with only a Core m3 & 64 GB storage? You can walk away with a Core i5 & 256GB+ of solid state storage at that price point.
 
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Shadowboxer

TS Addict
This is a joke of a product. What advantage is there for Chrome OS over windows? I can only think of disadvantages!

Just buy a windows laptop. I recently got an ASUS zenbook with a Ryzen 5 3500u, SD card slot, fingerprint reader, much bigger hard drive, windows and a bunch of other features that these things don’t have for less than any of them cost!
 
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