At CES 2023, this year's iteration of the world's largest technology show, I've already been spoiled for options when it comes to laptops and gaming equipment breaking new ground. Whether that's the new 18-inch standard, ultra-slim offerings from LG, or standout design from Acer, the best laptops are a big part of this showcase.
What I didn't expect to see at CES 2023, however, was a Chromebook that would make me want to put pen to paper (or fingers to keys, really) and exclaim just how darn good-looking it is. Yet here I am, eyes on the HP Dragonfly Pro Chromebook 14 and, well, it's a contender for the best-looking ever made.
HP has gone big on sustainability in recent years, so for this Dragonfly Chromebook to use 65 per cent recycled metal in its chassis is no surprise. That it looks like a higher-end Ultrabook despite such credentials is much more a surprise.
Finished in either Ceramic White or Sparkling Black (the latter pictured, and very nice it is too), HP has a real strength in design language – whether from the choice of finish or the colours deployed, it's a strong showing indeed.
There's some great collaboration, too, with the four integrated speakers being handled by Bowers & Wilkins for high-end delivery. And I mean high-end with an emphasis on high: because the Dragonfly Pro Chromebook uses two of those speakers to fire sound upward, the other two downward, for a more surround experience.
While this is a Chromebook and therefore runs Google's Chrome OS, HP did also use CES 2023 to reveal its Windows-based Dragonfly Pro too, i.e. the non-Chrome option. That's equally as good-looking, if not even more refined, should you be in the market for a designer Windows laptop instead.
Elsewhere the Dragonfly Pro Chromebook features some great additions: the keyboard is backlit; you can recharge half the battery capacity in just 30 minutes; the 14-inch LCD display is not only bright, at 1200 nits, it's a touchscreen too – ensuring ease of operation.
No, it won't be the most powerful laptop you can buy, given the use of 12th Gen Intel Core i5 processor and Intel UHD Graphics, but given the way it looks I certainly don't mind that for a device mainly targeting word-processing tasks. I'd buy one tomorrow, although there's no price or release date revealed at this stage...