Chromebooks

Best Chromebooks With Stylus [Pen Support] 2020

Best Chromebooks with stylus
Written by Zubi

Chromebooks were largely marketed for education when they were first introduced. They have a super-fast boot time, extremely sleek form-factor, and lightweight design, and so, they are highly portable. Powered by ChromeOS, they were a perfect antidote for malware. But above all else, they were dirt cheap and would remain to be so.  

Today, they have evolved to become a replacement for regular laptops. ChromeOS doesn’t support third-party apps which remain to be a chink in Chromebooks’ armor. But aside from it, there is little a Chromebook can’t do that a regular Macbook or Windows laptop can.

Chromebooks with a stylus, or pen support,  is a match-made-in-heaven, especially for students. You can take notes on the go, watch fun videos on youtube, and surf the internet to find relevant resources for your next assignment. All this without paying loads of money for it. 

Before we move on to the buying guide, it is important to know how a stylus, Chromebook combination can add value in your life. 

5 ways to use a stylus with a Chromebook:

Creative professionals can squeeze the best out of a stylus, but with Chromebooks, there is a caveat. ChromeOS does not support major designing applications. Partly, it has to do with the insufficient capacity of Chromebooks and partly that ChromeOS is still in its early stages of development. 

You don’t have to lose hope. There are multiple productive ways to use a stylus with a Chromebook. Let us discuss them one by one. 

  • Taking notes:

A study published by the professors of two most prestigious universities around the world, Princeton University and the University of California, revealed that note-taking using a pen enhances learning. However, there are other practical advantages to it. 

Stylus won’t break or run out of ink while note-taking, a major disadvantage with typical tools. You can draw shapes, annotate, and write at the same time, therefore, you won’t miss any major point of the lecture. Also, you can easily convert handwritten notes to text files using ink-to-text Android applications.

  • Giving a presentation:

With a stylus, giving a presentation cannot be more fun and interactive. You can present and doodle on the go, draw circles and arrows to illustrate your point and add personal notes on the slides as you present. 

Another interactive way is to visit online resources and add freehands notes and draw sketches on the fly. These techniques will make your presentations more engaging, and better communicate your message,  as compared to the static bullet point slides nobody loves staring at. 

  • Homework:

Like a presentation, homework usually involves sketching out diagrams, circles, lines and arrows. A pen can come very handy for this. You don’t have to open any app for it as you can draw on the go. 

  • Collaboration tool:

For business professionals and students alike, complex projects need better communication and collaboration to be effectively handled and executed. You can share the screen with all the stakeholders and ask for their valuable insights to tackle a complex problem. 

The part where a stylus comes in is when you need to illustrate a point by sketching or making personal notes. 

  • Brainstorming:

Some professionals think better on paper.it is easy for them to break down mind-boggling problems to simple concepts or bring their ideas to life while writing, as compared to typing. A pencil and notebook are usually the most preferred tools for it. They have to be carried with you everywhere you go. 

A pen or stylus is a better alternative. It can be an effective brainstorming tool to scribble or draw on digital devices.

How To Choose a Chromebook With Pen Support?

We don’t claim it to be the most comprehensive buying guide for Chromebooks. Rather, we have tried to make it concise and to-the-point. 

Key specs:

  • Processor:

Chromebooks usually don’t come with powerful processors, as they are essentially not power-hungry machines. You will find Intel Celeron and Intel M series processors in many of them, with a few exceptions where Intel core series can be seen. 

  • RAM:

Memory in Chromebooks is limited to 2 to 4GB. If you can afford to, it is better to have the maximum RAM for it significantly improves web surfing. 

  • Storage:

As the Chromebooks rely on cloud storage, they come with the minimum internal storage capacity. You will normally find Chromebooks with 16, 32, and 64 GB of primary storage which you can extend with the help of MicroSD card.

As more storage in Chromebooks inevitably translates to more price, it is not prudent to buy an expensive Chromebook just because you are obsessed with maximum storage capacity.

  • Display Size: 

Unlike regular laptops, Chromebooks don’t come in 17-in size. All lower sizes are available, ranging from 11-inch to 15.6-in.  

  • Durability:

Usually, Chromebooks are tough enough to survive falls, scratches and other abuses a laptop is put through over the course of its lifetime. However, to be on the safe side, look for the drop test of the Chromebook to find out how capable a particular model is to sustain disasters. 

  •  Battery Life:

Chromebooks are usually the best performers when it comes to battery life. The normal battery performance level of a Chromebook is 9 hours, and of the premium laptop, it can be as high as 13 hours with regular usage. 

Type of stylus:

Stylus comes in two types: active and passive stylus. An active stylus is expensive and has more accuracy and versatility than a passive stylus. Features like palm rejection and pressure sensitivity justify the high price of the active stylus.

 

For more information: Active vs Passive Stylus

 

However, in Chromebooks, you cannot exploit the full potential of an active stylus for the reason that they do not run major creative applications. To put things into perspective, no app on the play store supports PSD format, until now, ChromeOS does not support third party creative applications.

Top Chromebooks With Stylus

Chromebooks with stylus

Best Chromebooks With Stylus

1. Acer Chromebook Spin 13 (Powerful chromebook with pen support)

Acer Chromebook Spin 13 CP713-1WN-53NF 2-in-1 Convertible, 8th Gen Intel Core i5-8250U, 13.5" 2K Resolution Touchscreen, 8GB LPDDR3, 128GB eMMC, Backlit Keyboard, Aluminum Chassis,Steel Gray

$899.99
$553.70  in stock
4 new from $699.99
5 used from $553.70
Free shipping
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of July 10, 2020 1:01 pm

CPU: Intel Core i5-8250U | Storage: 128GB eMMC | RAM: 8GB | Screen size and Resolution: 13.5″ 2K Resolution | Weight: 3.50 | Expected battery life: 10 hours | Stylus: included| connectivity: USB C port

Acer spin 13 is by all means a powerful chromebook that rivals major business notebooks in the market.  A 360 hinge makes it a convertible and therefore allows it to be used in different modes: clamshell, tent and tablet. 

Acer decided to go with the 8th gen core i5 processor to justify the mouthwatering price tag of the Chromebook. The quad-core processor can effortlessly run demanding applications with the help of 8 GB of RAM. You can browse several tabs at a time without throttling the performance of the machine. 

The 13.5-inch widescreen supports multitouch display for higher accuracy and precision while using a stylus. Furthermore,  2k screen resolution is poised to contribute a great entertainment value to users. The active stylus included in the deal can flexibly interact with the touchscreen: you can draw and sketch with a higher precision level than a passive stylus.   

Last but not least, it has an excellent battery life of 10 hours. A single charge will make it to the end of a busy day at the office or school.

Pros
  • Ultra-fast processor
  • Huge memory and storage capacity
  • Active Pen
Cons
  • It costs a ton of money
$553.70
$899.99
in stock
4 new from $699.99
5 used from $553.70
Amazon.com
Free shipping
Last updated on July 10, 2020 1:01 pm

 

Recommended For You: Best 2 in 1 Laptops With Stylus

 

2. Google Pixelbook (Best value chromebook with pen support)

Google Pixelbook (i5, 8 GB RAM, 128GB) (GA00122-US)

$1,084.95  in stock
3 new from $1,084.95
7 used from $449.99
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of July 10, 2020 1:01 pm

CPU: Intel Core i5 | Storage: 128GB SSD | RAM: 8GB | Screen size and Resolution: 12.3″ Quad-HD Resolution | Weight: 2.45 | Expected battery life: 10 hours | Stylus: not-included| connectivity: 2 USB C port

Google pixelbook is a premium chromebook for business professionals. It has an ultra sleek and light-weight design despite the powerful components packed inside. With a 360 hingle, it is yet another convertible in our list. 

The quad-core i5 processor features in this ultrabook can effortlessly tackle CPU-intensive tasks. 8 GB RAM and 128 GB SSD storage further adds to the speed of the Chromebook. To give you a hint, it takes less than 10 sec to boot up, thanks mainly to its ultrafast OS and secondly to its powerful specs.

The 12.3-inch screen size is ideal for web surfing and basic sketching. The multitouch screen is best matched by Google pixelbook pen for productive usage, but it is not included in the package. Also, the screen supports Quad-HD resolution for a vivid and sharp display.

Lastly, this Chromebook is made up of premium material and its screen has a gorilla glass protection to give you an edge in durability.

Pros
  • Powerful processor
  • Premium built
  • Fast charging
  • 2-in-1 Chromebook
Cons
  • Expensive
  • Stylus not included
$1,084.95
in stock
3 new from $1,084.95
7 used from $449.99
Amazon.com
Last updated on July 10, 2020 1:01 pm
3. Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 (Best affordable Samsung chromebook with stylus)

Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 2-in-1 Laptop- 4GB RAM, 64GB eMMC, 13MP Camera, Chrome OS, 12.2", 16:10 Aspect Ratio- XE520QAB-K03US Light Titan

$549.99
$427.99  in stock

6 used from $427.99
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of July 10, 2020 1:01 pm

CPU: Intel Celeron 1.5 GHz | Storage: 64 GB eMMC  | RAM: 4 GB DDR3 | Screen size and Resolution: 12.2 inches screen with 1920 x 1080 pixels | Weight: 2.98 pounds | Expected battery life: 9 hours | Stylus: Yes | Ports: 2 X USB-C

Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 is essentially a low-price ultrabooks for budget-users. It is best suited for students who spend most of their time surfing on the internet or watching videos on the internet. 

Intel Celeron is a low-powered chip that has no match to the powerful core i5 and i7 processors. However, it will be able to perform undemanding processing tasks quite easily. 4 GB RAM is barely enough for opening more than 10 tabs at a time without compromising performance.  Similarly, 64 GB eMMC is not the best you can get in a Chromebook. Those who need more on-board storage can extend the storage up to 400 Gb with the help of a microSD card.

The Quad-HD multitouch screen is highly responsive. Whereas, the pen included in the package, is a non-active type which means it cannot perform palm rejection or reacts to applied pressure. Notwithstanding, it can sketch, draw, and write with passable precision. 

All in all, this Chromebook has all the features one needs as a budget buyer.

Pros
  • Lightweight and sleek design
  • Stylus included
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Processor is not fast enough
Last updated on July 10, 2020 1:01 pm
4. HP Touch-Screen Chromebook (best hp Chromebook with stylus)

HP 2-in-1 12.3" Touch-Screen Chromebook Intel Core M - 4GB Memory - 32GB eMMC Flash Memory (X2 12-F014D) White - New

$609.99
$548.00  in stock

4 used from $548.00
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of July 10, 2020 1:01 pm

CPU: 7th generation Intel Core M| Storage: 32GB eMMC Flash Memory | RAM: 4 GB DDR3  | Screen size and Resolution: 12.3 inches screen with 2k display | Weight: 3.06 pounds| Expected battery life: 6hours  | Stylus: yes | connectivity: USB C ports

This hp chromebook is yet another affordable machine for budget users. Of its many advantages over competitors is its Core M series Processor and high resolution screen. 

As opposed to the Intel Celeron processor we found in the Samsung Chromebook V2, the M series processor in the Hp model is power efficient and powerful. 4 GB RAM is an unexciting feature both Chromebooks have in common. Moreover, 32 GB e MMC memory is barely enough to store any data onboard and you might rush to extend it using the microSD card it supports. 

The Chromebook is detachable, so you can use it as a standalone tablet while sketching or drawing for your next assignment or during the presentation. Surprisingly enough, it comes with an active pen in such a low budget. To remind you, an active pen has high accuracy and precision while drawing. 

The battery life is low which is quite an unusual thing with Chromebooks as they gained popularity for their exceptional battery performance.

Pros
  • Affordable
  • Stylus included
  • 2k Multi Touch screen
Cons
  • Low battery life
Last updated on July 10, 2020 1:01 pm
5. Dell Inspiron Chromebook (best affordable Chromebook with stylus)

Dell Inspiron 2-in-1 14" Full HD Touch-Screen Chromebook - Intel Core i3, 4GB Memory, 128GB eMMC Solid State Drive Urban Gray Chrome OS

$455.00
$408.00  in stock
53 new from $452.00
3 used from $408.00
Buy now at Amazon
Amazon.com
as of July 10, 2020 1:01 pm

CPU: 8th generation Intel Core i3-8130U processor 2. 2 GHz | Storage: 128 GB eMMc Flash Storage | RAM: 4GB DDR2 | Screen size and Resolution: 14-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) | Weight: 4 Pounds | Expected battery life: 8 Hours | Stylus: No  | connectivity: Bluetooth 4. 0; HDMI output; USB Port

Dell inspiron chromebook is an unusually heavy laptop as far as the chromebooks are concerned. But it has low price as its key advantage.

The Intel Core i3 processor packed in this laptop is better in performance than its Celeron and M series cousins, but not as good as the Core i5 processor you will get in google pixelbook and Acer spin 13. As a metric of performance, it can run more than 10 tabs at a time and handle spreadsheet calculations quite effortlessly. 4GB RAM is a logical choice in a budget laptop, while the laptop went over the top to add 128 GB storage in it. 

The 14-inch multitouch FHD screen gives you an added advantage when it comes to entertainment and creativity. More size means more real estate to draw, and also, an immersive user experience. The laptop supports an active stylus that doesn’t need to be charged, and there is a slot in the Chromebook to store it. However, you will have to buy the stylus separately.

Pros
  • Dirt cheap
  • FHD multitouch screen
  • Powerful processor
Cons
  • Stylus bought separately
  • It is a bit heavy
$408.00
$455.00
in stock
53 new from $452.00
3 used from $408.00
Amazon.com
Last updated on July 10, 2020 1:01 pm
6. ASUS Chromebook Flip (best rugged Chromebook with pen support)

ASUS Chromebook Flip C214 2-In-1 Laptop-11.6” Ruggedized and Spill Resistant Design with 360 Degree Touchscreen, Intel N4000, 4GB LPDDR4 RAM, 32GB Storage, Chrome OS, Built-In Stylus- C214MA-YS02T-S

 out of stock
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as of July 10, 2020 1:01 pm

CPU: Dual-Core Celeron N4000 Processor, up to 2. 6 GHz | Storage: 32GB eMMC storage

RAM: 4GB DDR4 RAM | Screen size and Resolution: 11. 6-inch HD 1366 x 768px resolution | Weight: 2.26 pounds | Expected battery life: 7 hours | Stylus: Yes | connectivity: 2x USB Type-C (Gen 1), 1 x Type-A (Gen 1) ports.

Asus chromebooks are famous for their durability and light-weight design. Asus chromebook flip is not the most powerful chromebook available in the market, but certainly an inexpensive one. 

Dual-core Intel Celeron processors are good enough for normal internet surfing and running google suite apps. 32 GB storage can only store essential files, whereas, 4 GB RAM ensures that the laptop doesn’t fail while running multiple apps simultaneously. 

This laptop has the minimum screen size you can get in Chromebooks, 11.6-inch. Also, the HD resolution has failed to impress as we have alternatives in this list with impressive displays with very slight differences in price. 

One particular area where Asus has done an impressive job is the lightweight design of the Chromebook. The laptop weighs just 2.2 pounds, and therefore, is highly portable. 

The built-in stylus has a dedicated slot so you don’t fear losing it. It works fine on a multitouch screen but the performance is somewhat inferior to an Active pen. 

Lastly, this laptop is designed specifically for students with durability as its key strength. The company claims it to be a rugged laptop and the US military-grade standards have been followed to back this claim.

Pros
  • Cheap
  • Lightweight
  • Stylus included
Cons
  • Low power
  • Low screen resolution

FAQs

Q: What are the different advantages of a stylus?

Ans: We have discussed it already in detail above in the article. To remind you, a stylus can help you bring your creativity to life, draw sketches for illustrating your point, and of course, note-taking during class. 

Q: Can we use a Chromebook for creative design?

Ans: No, a Chromebook is not the right machine to do creative design. The creative applications require powerful specs, which Chromebooks usually lack, and also the ChromeOS has compatibility issues with many popular designing applications. 

Q: Are Chromebooks useless?

Ans: It depends upon the usage. If you spend most of the time surfing the web on Google and prefer to store your data on the cloud, a Chromebook can be anything but useless. In contrast, if you are a creative professional or prefer to use third-party apps, not supported by chromeOS, a Chromebook will be just a waste of money if you buy one. 

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Zubi

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