Chromebooks instant savings end 12/31/16

IF you need a Chromebook right away, and don’t want to wait for the newer CES 2017 models that may have support for the “Chrome Droid” (Android app support), there is an instant savings promotion running that can get you up to $50 off select models by ASUS, Acer and HP through

If you are not sure which existing models support (or will support) “Chrome Droid”, check (and bookmark) this support page at the Chromium project.

TIPS: even though ChromeOS is a lightweight OS, the web itself is getting more and more bloated, which increases the minimum specs necessary for a lower-frustration web browsing experience. As such, I would recommend avoiding 2GB RAM models unless you plan to use them in a uni-tasking type of fashion. Touchscreen still adds significantly to the price, but if you are not interested in running Android apps, the lack of a touchscreen opens the door to even lower prices.

New laptop: 15.6″ Acer Aspire ES 15 for $300 [limit 5]

A new laptop is out of the gate and it already has its first discount. For $300 you can get the 15.6″ Acer Aspire ES 15 running Windows 10 Home. It is powered by the i3-6100U processor, which currently ranks #740 at, so definitely not a Photoshop or AutoCAD powerhouse. It is a U-series processor after all. It has 4GB RAM and 1TB hard disk. The screen resolution is what will go on Windows’s tombstone if it gets killed by iPads and Androids, “1366 x 768 non-touchscreen”. Meow! But it has a DVD burner, so take that iOS and Android 🙂

It has the usual connectors, USB full size (Type A) ports (3.0, 2.0), HDMI, bluetooth 4.0, Ethernet port, 802.11ac MiMo Wifi, and so forth. Battery life is “up to” 6.5 hours with a 4-cell battery. Graphics are of course on-board Intel, the HD 520.

The official model name if you want to further research it is ES1-572-31KW.

Pre-order new convertible Acer Chromebook R11 for $300

Chromebooks continue to grow in the market, and with the upcoming Google Play app support on ChromeOS, this is a good time to consider getting a new model or your first model. The feature is just launching, so it’s a good idea to buy a model with 4GB RAM and a touch-screen since Google Play apps are touch-optimized. There are a handful of compatible models already, but if you prefer a “latest model”, there will be a few coming out in the run-up to the 2016 holiday shopping season.

Which brings us to the brand new Acer Chromebook R11 with a pre-order price of $300 at The release date is not yet known. It has 4GB RAM, an 11.6-inch touch-screen but unfortunately with a 1366×768 resolution, and it is powered by Celery 🙂 Okay, the Celeron N3150 quad-core processor which currently ranks #1249 at

Acer wisely resisted the temptation to just stick a USB-C port. Instead you get one USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0 full size ports, along with HDMI output. Storage is 32GB on-board, along with an SD card reader (and of course the two USB ports and anything else you can connect via Wifi or Bluetooth or Ethernet-over-USB).

But that’s not all, part of the reason for the $300 starting price is that this is a convertible. The screen has a 360-degree rotation, so you can do the classic “tent” and “netflix and chill” angles, or fold the keyboard under the screen and turn it into a big tablet. Which would be even more handy when the Google Play apps come in!

21.5″ Acer G226HQL Monitor for $90 [VGA, DVI, no HDMI]

If you are looking for a utilitarian 21.5-inch computer monitor that takes VGA and DVI (but no HDMI) and still stay under triple figures, and still get a new condition model, we have good news for you! The 21.5″ Acer G226HQL is currently on sale for $90 with free shipping with a limit of four units per customer at Amazon by Amazon actual.

There are multiple models on the same page, so the review total is not necessarily indicative of a particular model. For that, you have to go look at the reviews of that particular model. To save you the extra work, here’s the pre-filtered list of its 1000+ customer reviews. Unfortunately Amazon does not offer a star average on filtered by sub-model reviews, and I obviously can’t calculate the average of 1000+ reviews and stay sane 🙂

It has 1920 x 1080 resolution, no touchscreen, power-saving features, and more.

Another Chromedroid option now: Acer R11 Chromebook

If you want to test Google Play apps on a Chromebook RIGHT NOW, and you can’t wait for new models coming in the fall, and you are cool with playing with the development channel builds, a second existing Chromebook has joined the ASUS Flip. It is the 11.6-inch Acer R11, also a convertible with a touchscreen, but unlike the 10-inch ASUS, this one has a larger screen.

The prices are close enough at the moment, the Acer R11 is on sale for $259 with free shipping, with a limit of three units per customer at

Unfortunately this is only available with 2GB RAM, so that’s something to consider depending on how much you multi-task and what type of websites you visit (or if you use Chrome extensions that kill off most of the CPU waste (Flash, Annoying Ads, pointless widgets, etc)).

Other than that, it is powered by the Celeron N3150 (ranks in the 1200s at, unlike the Rockchip of the ASUS. However, the ASUS has 4GB RAM. Other specs include a couple of USB ports (one is 3.0), HDMI, SD card, Bluetooth, etc. The screen is an IPS 1366 x 768 touchscreen. Touchscreen being the critical part since most Android apps are optimized for the touch user interface.

Having said all that, if you are not in a hurry to try ChromeDroid apps right NOW, you are better off waiting to see what the Fall Laptop Season brings. Then you can either get newer/better models or you can find bigger discounts on the existing models.

15.6-inch Acer Chromebook 15 for $230

Speaking of budget laptops, on the Chromebook side of things, if you are fond of the 15.6-inch form factor, there is a sale on the Acer Chromebook 15, model CB5-571-C1DZ, going for $230 with free shipping at Amazon by Amazon actual. This comes with a nice 4GB RAM but only 16GB on-board storage which can however be augmented using the two USB ports, the memory card slot, and of course the cloud. The screen is a 1080p IPS, but not a touchscreen.

It is a Celeron powered model, it has the Dual-Core 3205U which currently ranks #1239 at The review average is 4.4 out of 5 based on almost 500 of them, but multiple variations are clustered together in a single review page. The options 2 or 4GB RAM and 16GB or 32GB SSD, and Accessory Bundles (mouse and bag).

Pre-order 15.6″ Acer Aspire E (i5U, 8GB, 256GB SSD, 2GB Nvidia, 1080p) for $550

Things are getting competitive in the world of laptops once again. If you like to be among the first to try new models as they roll out, Acer has a new power-value model coming up soon with a starting price of $550, the E5-575G-53VG, part of the Aspire E line-up.

For that, you get a 15.6-inch 1920 x 1080 display with a dedicated graphics card, the NVIDIA GeForce 940MX with 2GB DDR5 VRAM. It has 8GB of RAM and 256GB of SSD if you are no longer fond of churning hard disks. The processor is the Intel Core i5-6200U which currently ranks #588 at

The lower performance is because this is a “U” processor, which in turn promises up to 12 hours of battery life on a 6-cell battery running the included Windows 10 Home.

Creature comforts include an 8X super-multi-format DVD burner, 802.11ac Wifi, HDMI out, the new USB triumvirate (USB 3.1 Type C, along with two USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0 ports), Bluetooth 4.1, Gigabit Ethernet, and such.

NOTE: as far as I can tell from the specs and pictures this does NOT have a touch-screen.

As of the time of writing, this is available for pre-order at Amazon by Amazon actual for $550. There is no shipment estimate at the moment.

PS: as usual with new releases, there is always a risk since a product is an unknown, so if you hate this “boldly going” type of thing, you may want to wait until reviews come out or go for one of the laptops that has already been released and has been “vetted” by shoppers and reviewers alike.

Refurbished 15.6-inch Acer CB3-531-C4A5 for $115 [ChromeOS]

Many of the Chromebooks are on the smaller side of laptops, but not all of them. With prices dropping on computer screens, you don’t have to get a Windows machine if you prefer a budget 15.6-inch screen. You can get a Chromebook.

And if you are comfortable with manufacturer-refurbished, at Groupon Goods you can get the 15.6-inch Acer CB3-531-C4A5 for $115 with free shipping, and free returns, and a 90 day warranty from Acer.

This obviously has basic specs, 2GB RAM (ChromeOS is not as demanding as Windows, but websites continue to get bloated and fill up with all kinds of widgets and scripts, so keep that in mind), 16GB on-board SSD storage, only a 1366×768 resolution (despite the 15.6″ size), and it eats Celery. And by that I mean it is powered by the Celeron N2830 processor which currently ranks #1556 at

Refurbished 11.6″ Acer One Cloudbook for $100 [W10]

If you are going to get a really entry-level Windows 10 laptop, you might as well pay a really entry-level price, $100 with free shipping and free returns. That gets you the manufacturer refurbished 11.6-inch Acer Aspire ONE Cloudbook from Groupon Goods.

This has basic specs obviously, the Celery N3050 CPU (ranks #1592 at cpubenchmark), along with 2GB RAM, 32GB of on-board storage, 1366×768 screen, 02.11ac WiFi, two USB ports (one is 3.0), HDMI out, Bluetooth, SD slot, etc. It comes with a 90 day warranty from Acer. Its full name is AO1-131-C9RK.

Pre-order new semi-premium 14″ Acer Chromebook for $300

Chromebooks have certainly come a long way since the early days when Samsung’s goofy model (with the ports on the back) became the first “blockbuster” Chromebook, topping the best selling charts at Amazon for a long time. Since then, many and more models and manufacturers jumped right in, trying all kinds of different things to differentiate themselves.

Which brings us to today, Acer has a new semi-luxury 14-inch Chromebook, the awkwardly named CB3-431-C5XK, with an aluminum chassis, a 1080p display and 4GB of RAM (the web is getting more and more bloated, my 2GB Chromebook sometimes has a hard time keeping up with some of the bloated big media websites). It has 32GB on-board storage, and loves to eat celery (aka a Celeron processor, the N3060 which is apparently new enough that is not listed yet at

It also has two USB 3.1 ports and the latest Bluetooth (4.2 or so). However, some compromises had to be made: no touchscreen!

It is now available for pre-order for $300 at (no date provided yet).

Refurbished 11.6″ Acer CB3-111-C8UB for $150 [ChromeOS]

But Chromebooks are not standing still, they are “countering” that at the eBay deals, with Acer’s Outlet Store on eBay offering the manufacturer refurbished 11.6″ Chromebook CB3-111-C8UB for $150 with free shipping, with a limit of five per buyer, and a 90 day warranty from Acer.

It has 2GB RAM, 16GB on-board, and it is powered by a dual-core Celeron processor, with the usual 1366 x 768 resolution, and 2.7 lbs weight.

11.6″ Acer Chromebook 11 (CB3-111-C670) for $174 [limit 3]

Choices aplenty today if you are interested in an 11-inch Chromebook. Among them, the 11.6″ Acer Chromebook 11, model CB3-111-C670, with 2GB RAM and 16GB on-board storage is on sale for $174 with free shipping at Amazon by Amazon actual with a limit of three per customer. This has a non-touchscreen 1366×768 display with the Celeron N2830 processor, and two USB ports (one of each).

It averages 4.4 out of 5 based on 347 customer reviews and has over 220 questions answered.

11.6″ Acer Chromebook for $130

The Best Buy has a two-day sale ending Saturday night (April 5) that includes the 11.6″ Acer Chromebook for $130 with free shipping. This is available in the Moonstone white color scheme. Its official name is CB3-111-C8UB.

It has the basic budget specs of Chromies, 1366 x 768 resolution, no touchscreen, 2GB RAM, 16GB on-board storage, 2.4 lbs, one USB 3.0 port and one 2.0, HDMI output, card reader, and such.