Chromebooks are about to get the upgrade we've been craving

The final piece of the Chromebook puzzle is sliding into place

Woman holding a Chromebook talking to a man
(Image credit: Future)

Chromebooks often rank among the best laptops in our testing, offering a great blend of portability, speed, and ease-of-use while remaining pretty cheap. 

When T3 searched for the best Chromebook, the standout model was the Acer Chromebook Spin 713, a more powerful model in the bunch, albeit at a slightly higher price. 

And that's just it: Chromebooks have a lot of virtues but can often feel a little underpowered in comparison to the best Windows laptops and the MacBook Air, especially with Apple's own chips. 

All that might be about to change, however, according to a new report (opens in new tab) from Chrome Unboxed, which suggests Chromebooks are about to get a pretty huge upgrade in the GPU department.

It's fair to say that not many Chromebooks rank among the best gaming laptops and with good reason: gaming hardware is very specific and uses a lot of power. Neither of these things are conducive to a lightweight, long-life laptop.

But the report from Chrome Unboxed suggests that the next generation of Chromebooks, equipped with Steam, could change that by pairing up Intel's 12th Gen Alder Lake CPU and Nvidia's GPU.

Described as "Agah" within snippets of Chrome OS code, which seems to have been in the works for some time. There has never been a Chromebook with a powerful GPU capable of playing AAA titles, so this would mark a pretty significant shift.

Evidence suggests that HP might be on hand to provide the hardware, hopefully in the mould of the excellent HP Pro C640 Chromebook, which we rated as the best premium Chromebook around.

We doubt that the Nvidia GPU is going to the GeForce RTX 3080 or anything close, so don't get your hopes up for 60fps gaming, but for more casual titles, things are looking pretty great.

In terms of the release date, we'd expect to see these Nvidia-powered Chromebooks sometime in 2023, which is when Steam for Chrome OS – currently only in alpha preview – is expected to launch.

Max Slater-Robins has written for T3 now on and off for over half a decade, with him fitting in serious study at university in between. Max is a tech expert and as such you'll find his words throughout T3.com, appearing in everything from reviews and features, to news and deals. Max is specifically a veteran when it comes round to deal hunting, with him seeing out multiple Black Friday campaigns to date.