Dell Chromebook 11 2 in 1 – First impressions

Today I received a new toy to play with in the form of the “Dell Chromebook 11 3189 2 in 1”. Apart from having a ridiculously long name, this Chromebook has some other very cool features onboard. Now as far as Chromebooks go, this is pretty much what you would expect from the norm. Even the fact that it is a 2-in-1 is no longer as groundbreaking as it was a few years ago. What does separate this from the masses are two things really.

Number one, this is a Chromebook that has been designed for the classroom. Number two, it has also been designed to take a bit of a beating as can be seen from the slightly bulky, and dare I say, unsightly exterior. These two things are really inextricably linked and one necessitates the other.

Without further ado though, let’s have a look at the pictures of this beast.

Specs wise, this machine is packing a budget but adequate offering.

CPU Intel Celeron N3060
RAM Upgradable to 4GB
Hard Drive Size 64GB
Hard Drive Type eMMC
Display Size 11.6
Highest Available Resolution 1366 x 768
Native Resolution 1366×768
Ports (excluding USB) USB 3.0
Ports (excluding USB) HDMI
USB Ports 2
Card Slots SD memory reader
Warranty/Support One year limited
Size 11.96 x 8.18 x 0.82 inches
Weight 3.2 pounds

So as you can see, these are some pretty good specs for an education based tablet. But what I find more interesting is the ruggedness of the convertible. The Chromebook 11 2-in-1 is designed to take more than a little abuse. According to Dell, its laptop passed a number of MIL-SPEC tests, including those for shocks, vibrations and extreme temperatures. To make sure that it can withstand the punishment that it will have imposed on it during daily use by those sticky-fingered cretins we call children, Dell dropped the machine 26 times onto plywood from a height of 30 inches and it kept working. Another really nice touch is that the laptop has a spill-resistant keyboard to help it survive liquids, whilst also making it easy to clean after the aforementioned children have used it!

I have had the device for around 24 hrs. During that time I have been using it for writing, and I am getting used to the keyboard which has got a good amount of travel but is very loud to type on especially after coming from a Dell XPS 13! This will have been part of the design though, to allow for the spill resistance I guess. It also means that you can actually hear the kids in a classroom environment typing away, thus reassuring the teacher.

Dell Chromebook 11 2 in 1   First impressions

Another way this can be done is via the Status LED on the back of the laptop after downloading a Chrome extension called Dell Activity Light. This will give the Status LED a colour depending on what the student is wanting to indicate to the teacher. It’s kinda neat.

The last thing I want to mention in this brief first impressions is battery life. As I am typing this I have not had to use the charger since I removed the laptop from the box, which is awesome. I also have at least another five and a half hours working time left, which is really good to know. This is one of the features that I do miss from having them on my Chromebooks a few years ago.

I look forward to discovering what else has changed on Chrome OS over the next few days. And you never know, it may be enough to bring me back from Windows 10 and make me consider getting a more premium Chromebook in the future.

Full review to come in a bit, so join me then if you want to know more.