Acer’s latest quartet of Chromebooks are eco-friendly and designed for education

All-day battery life and a variety of features make the new machines ideal for students of all ages and professionals.

Acer has announced four new Chromebooks that, while designed for education environments, are still suitable for business use, especially for deployment in situations where the hardware can be treated a bit crudely.

The four models, the Acer Chromebook 512, Chromebook 511, Chromebook 314, and Chromebook Spin 311, all have eco-friendly touchpads made from OceanGlass, a material made entirely from recycled ocean-bound plastic. Additionally, all new Chromebooks (except the 314) have post-consumer plastics in their chassis, making them a good choice for companies looking to be a little more eco-friendly.

All four Chromebooks have kid-friendly features that make them valuable in the corporate world too: they meet MIL-STD 810H shock-resistance standards and can withstand a 48-foot drop and 132.3 pounds of pressure . The displays all open 180 degrees (apart from the Flip, which has a 360 degree hinge), there’s a drainage system built into the keyboard to prevent damage to internal components, enlarged stands and data ports. Reinforced I/O and, with the exception of the 314, all have mechanically anchored keys that “are difficult for curious students to remove, but at the same time simple for IT personnel to repair or replace” .

TO SEE: Power Checklist: Troubleshooting Hard Drive Failures (TechRepublic Premium)

Again, ideal for students and children, as well as IT professionals who have had to make laptop repairs that could have been avoided if the user had a more durable machine.

Acer Chromebook 512: more vertical space than average

Picture: Acer

With a 3:2 screen ratio, the Acer Chromebook 512 is surprisingly square. That said, that 12-inch 3:2 display (1366×912) adds 18% more vertical space, which is great for those who work with documents and don’t want to spend so much time scrolling.

In addition to its single screen, which has optional touch capabilities, the 512 offers up to 12 hours of battery life and has a webcam with built-in light glare reduction technology that should make finding the right spot a bit easier. for a video call.

Acer Chromebook 511: Tough enough for a toddler or your clumsiest colleague

Picture: Acer

The 511 isn’t anything special to look at, but it has it where it counts, as long as “count” means it’s able to take a beating at toddler level and keep ticking. . This is thanks to its compliance with ASTM F963-16 toy safety standards and UL/IEC 60950-1 computer equipment safety standards.

Putting them on a cart for employee orientations, for a temporary crate for field work, or as a pool of loaner machines is great use in an adult environment. It also gets up to 12 hours of battery life, which is more than enough for a good day’s work.

Acer Chromebook 314: a little more professional

Picture: Acer

The Chromebook 314 was unveiled at CES 2022 as part of Acer’s new Chromebooks for 2022, and this model is the education version of said machine. In addition to its original features covered during CES, this version of the 314 comes with educational features such as contactless registration, another great feature for businesses as well.

Acer describes the 314 as being designed for administrators, teachers, and older students, which explains its smaller bezels, more compact design, and overall “upgraded” appearance compared to the other three models covered here.

Acer Chromebook Spin 311: Tiny, antimicrobial, convertible power

Picture: Acer

The Spin 311 is the only fully convertible of the four new Acer Chromebooks and has a 360-degree hinge that also allows it to be used as a tablet (touchscreen controls are standard).

To make it even better as a lender/public facing/customer/etc. machine, the Spin 311’s Gorilla Glass touchscreen incorporates ionic silver particles that resist the growth of odor and stain-causing microorganisms. Its octa-core MediaTek MT8183 CorePilot chipset delivers “efficient performance that contributes to long battery life of up to 15 hours,” Acer said.

TO SEE: Keyboard Troubleshooting Guide (Free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Where and how to buy the new Acer Chromebooks

Pricing and availability of these four new Chromebooks vary by region. Acer did, however, provide version and pricing details for the US and EMEA:

  • The Acer Chromebook 512 will be available in North America in January 2022, starting at $349.99. EMEA users will be able to get their hands on it from the first quarter of 2022 from €329.
  • The Acer Chromebook 511 will arrive in North America in February 2022 with a starting price of $349.99, and in EMEA in February for €329.
  • The Acer Chromebook 314 won’t be released in North America until the second half of 2022 and will start at $429.99. EMEA will get it in April from €369.
  • The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 will start shipping in North America in March 2022 for $399.99, and EMEA will see it in Q1 2022 starting at €339.

Sam D. Gomez