When it comes to the best laptops I’m on team Apple for my personal work, preferring to use the best MacBooks available. But there are some shortcomings in the fruit-named company’s laptop specifications - and Acer just dropped a new line-up with one ace new feature that makes me jealous.
The Acer Chromebook Spin 714, as revealed at the company’s ‘Next at Acer’ annual conference, is also the first in the company’s range to use an all-new 2K webcam. That’s a major upgrade - and one I wish Apple would move to sort out in its line-ups - for those of us frequently on calls.
Videoconferencing and home-working are now so commonplace that Acer has clearly identified an area of the market where the Chromebook Spin 714 can take command. The webcam’s specification is described as ‘QHD MIPI 2K’, meaning quad-HD resolution for crisp and clear images. There’s more, too, with “temporal noise reduction technology” to “maintain high-quality visuals even in low-light conditions” and a pair of microphones to ensure you sound as good as you’ll look.
I know, not everyone is going to get super-excited about a webcam, but the 2023 version of Acer’s Chromebook Spin 714 comes with other alluring features. The touchscreen can be controlled using an optional stylus, for example, while the product’s hinge mechanism - hence that ‘Spin’ name - means it can be positioned through a full 360-degrees for use as a laptop, touchscreen ‘tent’, or flat ‘tablet’. Very versatile.
Under the hood the Chromebook Spin 714 features Intel Core i processors (from i3 to i7), supported by Intel’s UHD Graphics or Iris Xe Graphics, making it a powerful workhorse. I could see this being one of the best laptops for students, therefore, in addition to one of the best Chromebooks coming in 2023.
You’ll have to be content with Google’s ChromeOS operating system, but of course, which is an integral part of a Chromebook’s lifeblood. I’m still super-happy with my macOS setup on MacBook, but I’d sure love the latest MacBook Air to feature a better webcam. Your move, Apple!
The Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (also available in an Enterprise edition) will be available from this May. Pricing is from $699.99 in the USA, and while there’s no official UK, Euro or Australian pricing just yet, I’d expect those markets to have to pay a little more.