Very few people know I am a passionate writer and published author. Fewer still, who read my work here have any idea what I do when I’m not reviewing products or writing honest opinion pieces about awesome, not-so-awesome, or outrightly bad products that I have been cursed to use over the years.
Fewer still who read my articles here and around the internet have the faintest idea that their favorite, dead honest blogger, is also a consummate writer and published author who more than anything else, loves to create characters out of nothingness, assign roles to them and importantly, give them their own world to inhabit (and dominate).
As a matter of fact, I was a writer and had published many works (under various pen names, of course) before I decided to share my opinion of the products I use in my personal life and how these products have helped made my life easier (or in some truly sad cases, worse – bordering on hell)!
About a year ago, when I was shopping for the best Chromebook for a writer, I was thoroughly disappointed that there wasn’t any concrete piece of information relating to the subject matter online. Worse still, the very few articles that I found remotely related to the subject matter were written by persons who were anything else but writers (who also did not even have the privilege of first using what they were recommending, to start with).
To make matters worse, I was completely new to the Chrome world, having right up until then, exclusively used a Windows machine. After about three months of asking questions, asking other authors what they recommended, and reading the reviews, I made up my mind and took the plunge.
However, I wasn’t sure if I had made the right choice. To be very certain, I needed to first use the chosen option for a considerable time. Now, after a year plus, two full books, hundreds of articles, and a ton of Youtube/social media, I believe I’m finally ready to share with the writing world what I sincerely believe to be the very best Chromebook for a writer.
This, below, is my story – and it is inspired by my real-life experience with the Chromebook recommended above. It is flared up with practical reasons why I believe the choice I made was the best and will also serve you, a year after, as far as you’re a writer.
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Photo by Sora Shimazaki Via Pexels.
What Is The Best Chromebook For Writers?
The best Chromebook for a writer is the HP x360 14a Chromebook. This Chromebook has been singularly honored and chosen to be the very best you can get as a writer for a variety of reasons – all of which are detailed down below and explained clearly.
If you’re in a hurry, you can check out the HP x360 14a Chromebook on Amazon directly. If Walmart is your choice when it comes to an online marketplace, the HP x360 14a Chromebook is also available at Walmart.
That said and done away with, there’s a very important issue that needs to be thrashed before we proceed to the reasons why the HP x360 14a Chromebook is the best Chromebook for an author or a writer, generally.
Why do you need a Chromebook as a writer? Why not a Mac or a Windows machine, especially since these operating systems have been around for more than twice the number of years ChromeOS has been on the market?
Why Should A Writer Consider A Chromebook Over A Windows Laptop Or A Mac?
There are various (very good) reasons why a writer, author, or anyone who deals with the word crafts should consider a Chromebook over a traditional laptop, powered by either Windows or the macOS.
Here are the most compelling:
1. No Need To Worry About Viruses And Malware
The creative arts are a pleasure to dwell in, especially if you’re fond of putting pen to paper or your hands to the keyboard. However, the challenges of a modern writer, especially in the age of self-publishing are way more than just writing and publishing.
You need to pitch your story to agents, deal with the back-and-forth publishing houses put you through, send out the word yourself to maximize your impact on launch, etc. It is even more hectic if you happen to be a self-publisher: you do everything alone, including even the very publishing and marketing of your books! Granted, power-houses like Amazon make the task easier, but the challenges of writers are still very much there – and continue to mount.
Unfortunately, not properly taken care of, these challenges can easily spiral out of control and lead a writer, even the very best ones, to focus on things other than productivity, things that shouldn’t even occur in the first place!
A virus or malware attack is one such issue. When I was still a Windows user, had the misfortune of having my laptop invaded by malware. My entire works were wiped and a manuscript I was working on then without a backup elsewhere was lost as a result, too.
This is not an isolated case: writers the world over have encountered similar challenges and the issue is pretty well documented.
With a Chromebook, this isn’t possible. This is so because, over three-fourths of malware targets Windows and the macOS – with as much as more than half focusing on the Windows Operating System. Statistically thus, the chances of getting a virus or contracting malware on your Chromebook is less than one in four. This alone is good news.
However, assuming you still contract the virus to your Chromebook, ChromeOS is designed to handle the virus in the smartest of ways so that it has no effect on any other files on your computer. The operating system does this by sandboxing or isolating every tab opened on the device in such a manner that any challenge an open tab takes upon itself is maintained in that tab and when closed, the issue is brilliantly resolved with the closure. It is as simple as that.
If you happen to keep the infected tab more than it is necessary, there’s another smart method of keeping viruses and malware away from your machine. When you restart, the boot process goes through what is called ‘verified boot’. What this means is, your copy of ChromeOS is compared with what Google has as standard and if there’s a discrepancy, it is fixed even without your notice.
All these security measures make it completely needless for third-party anti-virus services when using Chromebooks. Still, without any anti-virus, the native application offers security in excess of what any commercially available anti-virus has to offer.
2. Very Light OS. And Super Fast
The macOS, especially the machines that come with the M1 Chip are fast, no questions or arguments. Windows computers, especially paired with impressive RAM sizes and housed in capable machines are also fast, no doubt – especially if you’re using the latest versions or at least, have something up and running as recent as Windows 11.
However, stripped of all the weight and bloat traditional OS (read: Windows and Mac) are wont to carry, ChromeOS is a breath of fresh air.
The system is capable of rising from a flat state of being switched off to receiving a boot and presenting itself ready for work in three (3) seconds flat (sometimes less), depending on actual configuration and settings.
This reality is still very far from the reality of the duo of either Windows or macOS. As a matter of fact, this is novel, as far as the traditional options are concerned.
Now, as a writer, when inspiration strikes and you need to reduce it into writing before it fizzles out, the last thing you’re willing to do is wait for a device that takes forever to boot up or load.
This is one area you’ll bless yourself daily for making the decision to switch over to a Chromebook: there aren’t wait times on that route!
3. Very, Very Cheap
The desire of every writer, author, or aspiring author/writer is to one day, wind up as rich as the creator and author of the Harry Potter series, JK Rowlings who is without question, one of the richest authors alive and currently has a net worth of well over a billion dollars.
However, life isn’t the books we write and we certainly aren’t also the characters that we create and attribute special powers to. In the real world, most of us who are writers and authors now live average lives with average incomes and a lot of bills to pay, like everyone else in society living a responsible life.
This translates to budgets being tight, almost all the time, and priority given to issues that are more pressing like the tuition for the kids, vehicle repairs and/or mortgage payments. Sometimes, this means, using an old, unreliable laptop or tablet for well longer than such a computer should be used, leading to crashes and sometimes, loss of precious works and drafts that could have been avoided.
This is where a cheaper but madly efficient device comes in. Chromebooks are generally cheaper than either Windows or macOS – with the cheaper end of the spectrum starting at well under $200. The HP X360 14a Chromebook under discussion here retails for well under $500 and is likely never to rise beyond that, going by its position in the market and how Chromebooks in its category are generally priced.
Anything from the $500 mark and above is ‘premium’ territory, with all the bells and whistles, you don’t even need as a writer or an author to get your next book out.
On the other hand, a $500 Windows laptop is basic at best and at under $200, you won’t be able to get a new laptop that will serve you as a writer, if you’re even ‘lucky’ to get any at all. Apple products, powered by the macOS, are largely more expensive since they work in a more restricted and proprietary fashion.
To wrap up, to get your writing done, and your work in front of the world, you only need a simple $200 – $500 max machine and not a fancy $1,500 Windows laptop or a top-of-the-line $2,500 Macbook.
You’re a writer whose business is writing; you aren’t a celebrity who lives on show off or some rich, spoilt brat who breathes attention and would die if he/she doesn’t have the most expensive toy to show around.
4. An Array Of Apps Open To You From The Play Store
The Windows and macOS ecosystems are quite closed. Despite occupying a dominant market share for years, little has been done to democratize their offerings or make their ecosystems more open.
To drive home this point, as a writer, you may need some software. Assuming you’re a Windows or Mac user, this will mean buying the physical software and the license from some vendor or directly from the company responsible, if there’s no online alternative (and there are many companies without an online alternative).
Imagine your predicament. Imagine your (further) predicament if you aren’t living in the continental US where most of the companies are based and where it is easier to get their software and licenses.
With the advent of ChromeOS and the application of apps from the Play Store to the experience, both Windows and macOS are playing ‘follow up’. However, as with all ‘follow-ups’, the ‘catchup’ is quite poor and the experience is nowhere near what is obtainable from the standard Play Store that you’re used to on your Android devices and now, also open to ChromeOS.
Apps found on the Microsoft store aren’t usually useful for a writer or a serious author per se as most developers don’t even bother about the market at all. The macOS App Store apps aren’t any different and most times, only ensure frustration, capped with a nice little charge 🙂
The concentration and attention have always been on Andriod for developers (followed closely by the iOS platform used by the iPhone) largely because of the open-source reality of the former, and the popularity of the latter.
Now, since ChromeOS users have open access to download and use almost all the apps on the Play Store (and since all Windows programs have an app on the Play Store that does their jobs as well or even better), switching to a Chromebook, either from Windows OS or macOS as a writer or author is a no-brainer.
5. Secure, Cloud Ready Setup, Perfect For A Writer
The reality of a writer is one that is constantly plagued with the need for secure storage – especially one that will be available across devices and space. While working on a story, the last thing any writer wants to hear is that the story got compromised or cannot be accessed from another device, once the original computer is unavailable.
Another scenario that every writer dreads is having their laptop corrupted or stolen during a break-in or via transit; these are things we dread mortally! However, daily, they happen to writers across the world and when they do, the best stories that should bless the world aren’t told or published as that inspiration never (almost) strikes again.
There’s yet another angle: safe storage of electronic manuscript files. While it may be easy to keep track of manuscripts if one is just starting out in the business of writing, a time comes when the articles, opinions, books, plays, etc. become all too much and need a safe, easily accessible, and easily sortable storage format. This always presents a challenge, right up until Google came on board.
With Google, all the scenarios and likely happenstances shared above here have been brilliantly solved with its vast and comprehensive cloud storage options which ChromeOS easily benefits from, usually as a complementary offer to help with the onboarding process, and the service, for light use, remains free for life. Use Gmail? Enjoy how it is free unless you get thousands of messages a day and don’t want to delete any? You get the picture!
Stolen Chromebook? You simply buy another and recover all your files. The best part? The folk who stole it cannot access your files and if you protected it properly, would not even be able to use same.
Need to complete a story while in transit? Simply log onto your phone/tablet and type away, despite the fact that the Chromebook where the original story was started on is more than 5000 miles away! Chromebooks already come cloud-ready and if you use Google’s services or are familiar with the plethora of offers, syncing between devices is secure and a breeze.
Need to access old manuscripts for possible editing and new editions? Two clicks and you’re working with your old characters and settings again – as if you never left.
All these realities are protected by periodic security and product updates, even without your knowledge, right the AUE date to keep you strong and going, without even needing to think about it.
What beats that in the business and reality of wrtiting?
What Makes The HP X360 14a The Best Chromebook For A Writer?
You’ve seen for yourself, in black and white why you need a Chromebook as a writer as against the impractical and often, bulky Windows or macOS machines.
The important question is: why should it be the x360 14a Chromebook from HP?
The answer to that question is to be found below.
1. A Standard 14-Inch Display
There are smaller Chromebooks that come in with a display of 10 inches or thereabout. These devices are cheaper, smaller, easier to carry around, and in some cases, sport a battery life that makes the HP x360 14a green with envy – and this is just what suits the majority of the world.
Writers, of course, are NOT included in that statistic.
As a writer, you need a display that will bring the book or article you’re working on to life and importantly, make the process of typing it easy on you. It doesn’t make any sense squinting one’s eyes and stressing the brain just so that you can type!
If you use all your mental energy to type, what would be left to create? This is the very first reason why the 14-inch display is a perfect fit – especially for New Times Roman 12 moments!
2. An Impressive Battery Life
The x360 14a Chromebook from HP is rated to serve for at least, 12 hours and 15 minutes per charge. However, in my own case and by carefully playing around with the display settings and switching off other options like WiFi, Bluetooth and music, I have been able to hit the 14-hour mark on numerous occasions.
Usually, working normally on Google Docs with WiFi on and some light browsing, I have been able to hit 13 hours plus, most times, especially in the mornings. That said, 10 hours plus (per charge) is my average, irrespective of what I do.
This is what no writer plays with or should; with such impressive battery life, you’ll easily run through the entire business or work day without the need for plugging in and still have enough juice left to put down a scene or two before catching up with something else.
Or, would you rather deal with life (and work) by the power outlet?
3. Great Light Weight Reality
Many writers choose their professions for the maximum flexibility it ensures. I know firsthand because that is what drew me into the writing reality, at least, professionally, in the first place.
With a weight point of just over three pounds, this machine doesn’t pose a single challenge in the hands, backpack, or bag. I have on many occasions even forgotten that I have my Chromebook with me in the backpack!
What does this translate to? Ultra mobility and an ability to carry your ultimate writing machine with you everywhere: hotel, work, commute, etc without even actually thinking of it or bothering to ‘work something out’.
A professional clue here: if you’re interested in taking your Chromebook as a writer with you everywhere you go, please be certain to invest in a sleeve like this one before putting it in your bag or backpack. This is a cheap investment against scratches and broken hinges, especially if you’ll be commuting via public transport, and will appreciate that the already sturdy machine lasts as long as possible in as a clean state as possible.
4. A Ergonomic, Comfortable Keyboard
Writing, as a writer is done the old school way: by putting pen to paper or hands to the keyboard though the latter is what you’re more likely doing at the moment than the former for obvious reasons.
Dictation is also an option – not just a very pursued one. This leaves us majorly with typing on a standard keyboard, the old-school way.
This is where it gets interesting: many ChromeOS and Andriod devices today feature a keyboard of some sort; heck, even your smartphone, and tablet come standard with one!
There is even a booming market for third-party keyboards, all aimed at helping you input better. The challenge is that a chunk of these keyboards aren’t ergonomic and still more, aren’t standard size meant for typing by themselves. Essentially thus, they are very uncomfortable when it comes to punching words for any extended period of time.
This is where the x360 14a Chromebook recommended here excels. As it is with the standard 14-inch display, so is it with the keyboard. If you have used any standard laptop without any issues, this also will not present any issue at all to you.
As a matter of fact, writer to writer, this keyboard is a joy to type on; since I got the Chromebook about a year ago, I have discovered that my words per day count has more than doubled!
This isn’t a coincidence. This is why you should also consider the Chromebook yourself. Directly.
5. The Ability To Convert To A Tablet As Use Cases Demand
All work and no play, it is said, makes Jack a dull boy.
Nowhere in the sphere of human endeavor is this truer than when it comes to the business of writing. Creating something out of nothingness, especially, if it makes sense (and get others excited) isn’t something that you take for granted. It is also something that cannot be achieved with a clogged or overworked brain. That is why, after a few thousand words a day (or a few hundred – depending on your ability and skill level), you’ll need to unwind.
Now, to unwind, you don’t need to proceed to any TV or bother with a fancy tablet. All you need to do is simply switch your work machine into either tablet or tent mode from its work clamshell layout and blast away your fun!
Inspiration cracks as you’re enjoying yourself? All you need to do is simply return the ‘tablet’ to its ‘laptop’ (clamshell) position state and type away.
Now, what beats this?
6. It Is Affordable. Very Affordable.
I have mentioned this here already under the various powerful and compelling reasons why you should consider a Chromebook as against a ‘traditional laptop’, powered either by Windows or macOS.
However, what I did not mention there (I have been reserving it for the very end, this conclusion) is that, even amongst other Chromebooks in the Chromebook world, the x360 14a is competitively priced. You cannot get an all-rounder, new, with the features of this machine at a price point better than what you’ll get here, especially if you’re buying from Amazon or Walmart directly.
Starting out as a writer and low on budget? This is a perfect fit. Don’t just want to spend more money on a machine as an experienced writer because you’re always losing your devices? This is also a perfect fit, no matter which angle it is looked at.
Why wouldn’t you fall in love with one?
Are There Alternatives To The HP X360 14a In The Race For The Best Chromebook For A Writer?
I understand that despite the fact that I’ve tried very hard to convince you with facts and my own personal experience that the Chrome machine detailed in this article is the very best for you as a wordsmith, I perfectly understand that you may not love HP, may not be in love with convertible laptops or generally, have one thing or another that simply doesn’t sit well with you regarding this unit
If this is you, here are the best alternatives to the x360 14a Chromebook that you may consider in the business of weaving words on a monitor:
- ASUS Flip C433 2-in-1 Chromebook (you’ll love the speed the 8GB RAM ensures and the backlit keyboard – if that is your thing).
- Lenovo Chromebook 3 (you’ll love the stylish rendering, the native stylus support, and the excellent battery life).
- Acer Chromebook 314 (you’ll love this Chromebook for its easy design and almost utilitarian appeal).
The best Chromebook you can’t go wrong with as a writer or an author is the HP 14a x360 2-in-1 Chromebook. This Chromebook is the preferred option because of careful thought and practical experience as a writer and published author.
This is thus a writer-to-writer recommendation.
Coupled with better security, an impressive price point, and a reality that practically smokes the major contending OSs in the dust, the question of whether or not you should consider switching is already settled.
When you figure out the fact that in the Chromebook world itself, the battery of the recommended option here is impressive and will easily take you through the workday without challenges; the keyboard being standard (for long typing without any form of fatigue) and the 14-inch display large enough for a fatigue-free use, you instantly realize that you’ve reached the moment of decision.
If you’re ready to buy (or simply to take a look further), you can take a look at the x360 at Walmart here or if you prefer Amazon, you can also check out the unit there.