Best Chromebooks for college students in 2022

Acer convertible Chromebook on a library table surrounded by students
(Image credit: Acer)

The best Chromebooks for college students meet the demands of daily coursework. Powered by Google’s Chrome OS, Chromebooks are easy to use, power efficient and fast-booting. Couple these traits with automatic updates, built-in virus protection, and secure logins — it's easy to see why Chromebooks are such popular Windows and MacOS alternatives. 

We find 2-in-1 Chromebooks offer the best value for K-12 and college students alike. Convertible laptops are great since you're getting a flexible machine that you can take notes or easily read in tablet mode on your lap. Although these Chromebooks are a little pricier than your average budget Chromebook, the right Chromebook deal can net you big savings. 

Best Chromebooks for college students

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The Acer Chromebook Spin 713 is our number one pick for the best student Chromebook for good reason. It has a gorgeous 2K display, a powerful 11th Gen Intel chip, and reliable battery life. When students are not doing homework or studying for exams, its Iris Xe GPU makes it a great Chromebook for gaming

For connecting a monitor or hard drive, the Chromebook Spin 713 has plenty of ports. It has two USB-C ports, one USB 3.0 port, one HDMI port, and a headphone jack. You also get a microSD slot, which comes in handy for expanding storage or transferring files between systems.

During testing we loaded up 20 Chrome tabs (including 7 YouTube tabs, playing music videos simultaneously), and the laptop showed no signs of lag.

And that's just one of our top recommended Chromebooks for students. Learn more about the excellent Acer Chromebook Spin 713 and our other favorite Chromebooks for students below. 

Acer Chromebook Spin 713 on a white desk next to a pen holder

Acer Chromebook Spin 713 (Image credit: Laptop Mag)
Chromebook with the best performance

Specifications

CPU: 11th Gen Intel Core i5
RAM: 8GB
GPU: Intel Iris Xe
Storage: 128GB
Display: 13.5-inch 2K (2256 x 1504)
Dimensions: 11.8 x 9.3 x 0.7 inches
Weight: 3.2 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Awesome 2K display
+
Sturdy construction
+
Strong performance

Reasons to avoid

-
Sensitive Touchpad
-
No stylus support

Starting at $699, Acer's Chromebook Spin 713 is a versatile 2-in-1 Chrome OS laptop. The base model packs a 13.5-inch 2K (2256 x 1504) touch screen, 2.1-GHz Intel Core i5-1135G7 4-core CPU, 8GB of RAM, and Intel Iris Xe graphics, and 256GB SSD.

The Chromebook Spin 713 is ideal if you're looking for a laptop that converts into a tablet for taking notes or sketching ideas. We took it for a "spin", and were impressed by its stunning display, durable build quality and strong performance. After lengthy real-world and overall performance tests, the Chromebook Spin 713 garnered a 4 out of 5-star rating and our Editor's Choice award. 

If you're in the market for a flexible notebook with GeForce Now cloud streaming support, the Acer Spin 713 is worth considering. 

Read our full Acer Chromebook Spin 713 review

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 5 on a wooden table next to a coffee mug

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 5  (Image credit: Future)
The Chromebook that's next to perfect

Specifications

CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2
RAM: 8GB
GPU: Qualcomm (integrated)
Storage: 128GB eMMC
Display: 13.3-inch FHD (1920x1080) OLED
Dimensions: 12 x 7.4 x 0.28 inches
Weight: 2.24 pounds (with keyboard/case); 1.5 pounds (tablet only)

Reasons to buy

+
Bright, color-rich OLED display
+
Long battery life
+
Includes detachable keyboard cover 

Reasons to avoid

-
Stylus not included

For students on a tight budget, the beloved Lenovo Chromebook Duet 5 is the best 2-in-1 laptop for the money. The base sports a 13.3-inch (1920 x 1080) OLED 400 nit touch screen, 2.55-GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon SC7180 8-core CPU, and 8GB of RAM. Rounding out its specs are Qualcomm Adreno graphics and 128GB of eMMC storage.

We love the Chromebook Duet 5's bright, vivid OLED display and 2-in-1 design. It also wowed us with its long battery life — lasting 13 hours and 31 minutes on our Laptop Mag Battery Test. We gave the IdeaPad Duet 5 an overall rating of 4 out of 5-stars and our coveted Editor's Choice award. 

If you're looking for a less costly Surface Pro alternative, the Lenovo Chromebook Duet 5 might be right for you. 

Read our Lenovo Chromebook Duet 5 review

Red Samsung Chromebook on a wooden desk with Among US game start page

Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2  (Image credit: Future)
Chromebook with the best display

Specifications

CPU: Intel Celeron,m3/10th Gen Core i3-i5
RAM: 8GB
GPU: Intel UHD Graphics
Storage: 128GB
Display: 13.3-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) QLED
Dimensions: 12.0 x 8.0 x 0.55 inches
Weight: 2.7 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Bright, color-rich display
+
Slim, lightweight design
+
Eye-catching design

Reasons to avoid

-
Stingy on ports
-
So-so battery life
-
No S Pen compatibility

Samsung's Galaxy Chromebook 2 is the world's first QLED Chrome OS laptop. It's also one of the best Chromebooks for students. Period. 

Starting at $699, the base model Galaxy Chromebook 2 runs on a 2.1-GHz Intel Core i3-10110U dual-core CPU coupled with 8GB of RAM. Its 13.3-inch (1920 x 1080) QLED touch screen delivers life-like imagery with colors that pop. It affords you 128GB of storage, which is expandable via the laptop's built in microSD slot. 

In our Galaxy Chromebook 2 review, we were wowed by its vibrant, color-rich display and an ultra-slim, lightweight design. During tests, rotating the Galaxy Chromebook 2 into tablet and tent mode was hassle-free.

If you want an ultraportable notebook that won't weigh down your backpack, the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 is one to consider. 

Read our full Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 review

Asus Chromebook with illuminated number pad on a white table

Asus Chromebook CX9 (Image credit: Future)
Snappy, powerful Chromebook

Specifications

CPU: 11th Gen Intel Core i3/i7
RAM: 8GB/16GB
GPU: Intel Iris Xe
Storage: 128GB/512GB
Display: 14-inch (1920 x 1080)
Dimensions: 12.7 x 8.1 x 0.7 inches
Weight: 2.5 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Military-grade durable
+
Comfortable keyboard
+
Ample variety of ports

Reasons to avoid

-
Frail speakers
-
Webcam could be better

The base model Asus Chromebook CX9 has a 14-inch (1920 x 1080) touch display, Intel Core i3-1115G4 CPU, 8GB of RAM, Intel UHD graphics, and 128GB SSD. That's plenty of oomph for enjoyable gameplay on a Chromebook. 

In our Chromebook CX9 review, we praise its dazzling display, powerful performance. We gave this Chromebook an overall rating of 4 out of 5 stars for its aforementioned attributes and long battery life. 

Our review unit had an 11th Gen Intel Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, and Iris Xe graphics. In our lab's Geekbench 5.0, a synthetic overall performance test, it achieved an overall score of 4,747. This beats the Chromebook category average of 2,666. 

Built to military specs the Chromebook CX9 can take a beating. It's shock, drop, water and humidity resistant. Go for this laptop if you want a rugged, powerful machine that packs plenty of power for cloud gaming. 

Read our Asus Chromebook CX9 review

HP Chromebook x2 on a table with art sketch on display

HP Chromebook x2 (Image credit: Laptop Mag)
The stylishly portable detachable 2-in-1 Chromebook

Specifications

CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c 8-core CPU
RAM: 8GB
GPU: Integrated
Storage: 64GB/128GB eMMC
Display: 11-inch (2160 x 1440)
Dimensions: 9.9 x 4.6 x 0.3 inches
Weight: 2.6 pounds

Reasons to buy

+
Gorgeous design
+
Immersive 2K display
+
Super portable 

Reasons to avoid

-
Crammed keyboard

Digital art students looking for a portable easel will want to consider the HP Chromebook X2. Pricing for the HP Chromebook X2 starts at $569 for this compact, Surface-like detachable 2-in-1. 

It features an 11-inch 2K (2160 x 1440) touch screen, 2.4-GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c 8-core CPU, 8GB of RAM, Adreno 618 graphics and 64GB of eMMC storage. If you purchase Best Buy's model, it ships with a stylus.

We tested the HP Chromebook X2 and found its stunning, super-portable design with 2K display impressive. Despite its compact size, stereo speakers tuned by audio experts Bang and Olufsen deliver big sound. So if you're studying or creating, you can boost your productivity with your favorite music playlist. 

Read our HP Chromebook x2 review

Hilda Scott uses her combined passion for gadgets and bargain shopping to bring you the best prices on all things tech. She has a bachelor’s degree in film and media studies from Hunter College and 11 years of tech and entertainment journalism. Her work has been featured on Tom’s Guide, iTechPost, Examiner.com, Parlemag, Enstars, and Latin Times. When she's not scouting for the best deals, Hilda’s catching up on her favorite TV shows and pro-wrestling matches.