HP Slatebook 14 Inch Touchscreen Android Laptop Review
00:08 – Hardware overview
02:43 – 3DMark Benchmark results
02:48 – Android screen rendering issues
03:58 – Conclusion and final thoughts
This is a tough review to write as I think this product’s value differs based on the audience.
The HP Slatebook 14 is a laptop, but it’s not running Windows or ChromeOS that would typically be installed on a device at this price range. Instead it’s running a tablet version of Android. This is great for fans of the Android operating system that are looking to run their tablet apps on a device in a computer/laptop form factor. But for those looking for a well built and affordable laptop alternative, I’d suggest looking at Chromebook from HP or another manufacturer.
As an Android device it is well configured. The Slatebook 14 includes a nice 1920×1080 full HD touch display, a fast Tegra 4 processor and 2 gigs of RAM – making it a very capable gaming and general purpose machine. Just be aware that Nvidia’s much faster chip, the Tegra K1, will be appearing on many more devices later this year. It is, however, running a slightly older version of Android (4.3 Jelly Bean). It has 16 gigabytes of on board storage.
Because it’s running Android 4.3 you will see a navigation bar taking up real estate at the bottom of the screen on many applications – even when those apps are set to run full screen. It’s annoying and there’s really no easy way to get rid of it. More recent versions of Android offer the option to hide it.
The overall build quality is impressive for a sub-0 laptop. Very solid although a bit on the heavy side. But that weight brings with it better battery life, which HP says will deliver about 9 hours of continuous 720p video playback. In my tests the battery only lost about 10% of its charge even when running a pretty demanding 3D benchmarking utility for about an hour as well as additional tasks.
My biggest issue with the Slatebook 14 is that its operating system really isn’t designed to run on a laptop form factor. It’s impossible to see a full page in Google Docs (the text is overly zoomed in) and some web pages render much too large on the screen even when requesting a desktop version. And since everything runs in full screen it’s not possible to run two windows side by side like you could do a Chromebook or other PC.
The bottom line? If you live, eat, and breath Android you will find many uses for the Slatebook 14. But for those looking for a laptop replacement a Chromebook will likely cost less and be far less aggravating to use.
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DISCLOSURE: I received this product through the Amazon Vine program to review on Amazon’s site.
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