Chromebook Plus sparks new era of affordable AI-powered laptops

Google is offering Google One AI Premium plan at no cost to new Chromebook Plus users for 12 months

Generative AI Backgrounds for Video Calls
An example of a video call background created with generative AI on a Chromebook Plus. I inputted "mid century modern office" and was given several options to choose from.

From writing assistance to creative tools, Google is taking its Gemini AI and heavily integrating it into new Chromebook models.

Chromebooks have come a long way since their inception, evolving from easy-to-use, affordable, web-based laptops to powerful devices capable of handling a wide range of tasks. The introduction of new Chromebook Plus models marks a significant milestone in this journey now that Google is bringing a slew of AI features to Chromebooks.

To maximize the potential of these AI features, Google is offering the Google One AI Premium plan at no cost to new Chromebook Plus users for 12 months. This plan includes access to Gemini Advanced, 2TB of storage, and integration with Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Gmail, and more.

That said, let’s dive in!

Summary of AI features coming to Chromebook Plus
A summary of the Gemini AI features coming to Chromebook Plus

Help Me Write

One of the standout AI features of Chromebook Plus is the “Help Me Write” tool. This powerful AI-driven assistant can transform how you approach writing tasks across the Chromebook operating system. With Help Me Write, you can simply right-click to get suggestions on structuring your review, adjusting the tone to fit your audience, or even generating text from scratch based on a prompt you provide.

The Gemini AI chat assistant is now built right into Chromebook Plus to assist with planning, writing, learning, and more, making it a valuable resource for both work and personal projects. Google positions Gemini as a personal tutor and creative partner, always ready to guide you when needed.

Generative AI Wallpapers and Video Call backgrounds

Generative AI wallpapers
Generative AI wallpapers created on a Chromebook Plus

Next up, Chromebook Plus introduces generative AI wallpapers and video call backgrounds. These features allow you to personalize your device and enhance your video conferencing experience. You can create custom backgrounds ranging from whimsical to professional, tailored to your preferences and the nature of your calls.

Magic Editor tool

Magic Editor on Google Photos
Magic Editor on Google Photos

Additionally, the new Magic Editor tool in Google Photos leverages AI to make photo editing easier. This feature, exclusive to Chromebook Plus, provides intuitive editing capabilities, allowing you to reposition objects, adjust lighting, and enhance backgrounds with just a few clicks. The contextual suggestions offered by the AI can further improve the overall look of your photos, making professional-quality edits accessible to everyone.

Additional AI features

Task integration on Chromebook
A new built-in view of Google Tasks that allows you to add or check off tasks with a single tap on the date in the bottom right corner of your home screen

Other notable features on the new Chromebooks include the ability to set up your Chromebook with your Android phone via a simple scan of a QR code, a new built-in view of Google Tasks that allows you to add or check off tasks with a single tap on the date in the bottom right corner of your home screen, a built-in screen capture tool that saves recordings in GIF format, and the new Game Dashboard that lets you control your gaming experience by mapping game controls to your keyboard.

If you already own a Chromebook, you’ll be pleased to know that many of these features will be delivered to your device through automatic updates. Over the next week or so, Google will roll out these updates, ensuring that your Chromebook stays up-to-date with the latest innovations without any extra effort on your part. Chromebook Plus models will be updated monthly in the background through automatic updates.

Chromebook and Chromebook Plus laptop lineup

A new lineup of Chromebooks from Acer, Asus, and HP is on its way with hardware specially tailored for AI. Plus, these devices promise built-in security, easy access to Google apps, and a battery life extending up to 10 hours.

Google shared a sneak peek of the new Chromebooks:

Acer Chromebook Spin 714: This Chromebook has touchscreen functionality, a 360° hinge, a 1440p QHD webcam with AI-powered audio and video enhancements, dual microphones, and dual upward-facing speakers. Starting at $699.

HP Chromebook Plus x360:  The x360 features a 14-inch Full HD touchscreen display with a micro-edge design, a 360° hinge, and HP Fast Charge for $429.

ASUS Chromebook Plus CX34: Balances performance and portability with a 13th Gen Intel Core i5 processor, a 14-inch clamshell design, 180° lay-flat hinges, and Wi-Fi 6E. Starting at $499.

Acer Chromebook Plus 516 GE: For the gamers out there, the Chromebook Plus 516 GE offers high-performance, immersive cloud gaming with a 16-inch WQXGA display featuring a 120 Hz refresh rate, high-quality speakers, an RGB keyboard, and NVIDIA GeForce NOW. Starting at $649.

Asus Chromebook CM30: Ideal for users who are constantly on the go, this lightweight, 10.5-inch detachable device features both a full tablet and a keyboard, powered by 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. It boasts up to 13 hours of battery life, making it perfect for all-day use. An LTE option ensures connectivity from anywhere. Starting at just $299.

What’s next for the Chromebook and Chromebook Plus?

Google has shared some exciting upcoming updates that could take the Chromebook experience to a whole new level:

The “Help Me Read with Gemini” feature will allow you to summarize websites or PDFs with a simple right-click. You can even ask follow-up questions and receive AI-generated answers. This feature will be incredibly useful for students, researchers, or anyone who needs to process large amounts of information quickly and efficiently.

Preannounce hands free control
AI-powered hands-free control with face and gesture tracking is coming to Chromebooks

Other upcoming features include the ability to pick up right where you left off each time you log in, a new Focus feature that helps you concentrate by allowing you to set a specific window of time, and AI-powered hands-free control with face and gesture tracking. This hands-free control will enable you to compose and send emails, open and use apps, or browse the web without touching the keyboard.

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