Summary

Review Price £199.00

Key Features: 13.3-inch screen; 768 and 1080p versions; Chrome OS

Manufacturer: Toshiba

A cheap Chromebook with an awesome Full HD screen

The first Toshiba Chromebook is our favourite Chromebook. It ticks all the right boxes and is, like most Chromebooks, cheap. The only problem was the low resolution and rather average screen. The Chromebook 2 fixes that problem with the option of the Full HD screen, but it still costs just £249.

Watch our Toshiba Chromebook 2 hands-on video

The Toshiba Chromebook 2 is due for release in Q1 2015


Toshiba Chromebook 2: Screen

There will be two versions of the Chromebook 2, one normal 1,366 x 768 one for £199 and the Full HD version for £249. But it's the latter that catches the eye.

Chromebooks, the Pixel excluded, all have mediocre screens. Indeed, most cheap laptops do. That's why this screen is such a revelation.

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It's not just a cheap Full HD panel, either. This is an IPS display with all the benefits that brings. Colours in HD videos look crisp and rich, blacks have a sense of depth and everything looks sharper and leaner.

It's a bright screen, too, as it tops out at 300 nits, much like more expensive laptops. To get all this on a £250 laptop is totally unexpected and very welcome.

Toshiba Chromebook 2

Toshiba Chromebook 2: Design

This is a good looking laptop, too. It's not as light as the 980g 11.6-inch Asus EeeBook X205, but at 1.3kg it's in the same bracket as the Macbook Air. It's just 19mm thick, too, making it noticeably thinner than the current Toshiba Chromebook.

I rather like the slightly angular look Toshiba has gone for and the build quality is excellent. This is a plastic laptop, obviously, but it feels solid and sturdy.

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The smooth, light hinge is nice, too, though perhaps a little too much so. Given I saw a pre-production version, it's too early pass judgement here.


Toshiba Chromebook 2: Specs and Features

On the inside, the Chromebook 2 is all fairly standard for a Chromebook. It's powered by an Intel Celeron processor, though Toshiba didn't say which one. The £199 has 2GB RAM and the Full HD one a generous 4GB.

There's a 16GB of flash -- as usual the main focus is on the 100GB of Google Drive in the cloud. Connections include a couple of USB ports, and HDMI out and an SD card slot, which is all you really need.

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First Impressions

This is both the most modest and the most exciting product at IFA 2014 this year. We're used to seeing cheap laptops and Chromebooks, but we're used to seeing them with cruddy screens.

Think about it this way. When the Toshiba Chromebook 2 comes out in Q1 next year, it will have a better screen than the MacBook Air. Your move Apple. Your move.

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