Framework Laptop Chromebook Edition Review: Unpacking a brand-new Chromebook is, for the most part, a routine occurrence. Typically, a Chromebook, a charger, and a sizable cardboard box will be sent to you.
I’m all for Chromebooks being sold in recyclable packaging, and it’s great to see businesses like Acer, with their Chromebook Vero 514, taking the extra effort to make the box for such a product look a little less boring than usual.
This is all taken to a new level with the Framework Laptop Chromebook Edition (Framework Chromebook from here on), as not just the package but also the Chromebook and all the extras inside, are exclusive to this model. As far as we’re aware, the Framework Chromebook is the first ChromeOS device of its kind, so this unboxing is fairly remarkable.
Constant Chromebook Fare
Before we get into the crazy stuff that this Chromebook can do, it’s important to point out that even without the unique modularity it brings to the table, the Framework Chromebook is a very sturdy, very powerful Chromebook. This unusually packaged Chromebook comes with a wide variety of adaptable ports and a long list of excellent technical specifications.
Even without its ability to be readily fixed or modified, this Chromebook is noteworthy due to its brilliant screen, all-aluminum frame, and highly quick internals. At this very now, I am using a Framework Chromebook, and I have to admit that it is one of the nicest Chromebooks I have ever used.
Accessory Modules for Chromebooks
Of course, we can’t ignore the unique features of this Chromebook; one of the best examples is the adaptability offered by the included expansion cards. These cards (you get four of them with a normal $999 purchase) make it simple to switch out your ports on the fly. You may change the configuration of the ports as you like depending on the ones you select at the time of purchase.
To change out a card, you need to press the button located at the bottom expansion slots, remove the card in question, and then insert the new card. Our evaluation equipment was equipped with several different connectors; I first connected two USB Type-C ports, one USB Type-A port, and an HDMI cable.
Although I initially approved of that choice, as I flipped everything over and switched their places to make plugging in my display and charger a bit cleaner, the obvious value of this Framework feature became very evident.
Key Features of a Framework Laptop, Chromebook Version
- 12th-gen CPU: Intel Core i5-1240P (4+8 cores).
- Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) from Intel Iris Xe
- 8GB RAM (can be upgraded to 64GB)
- In-house 256GB NVMe SSD Storage (can be upgraded to 1TB)
- 2256×1504 3:2 Screen size: 13.5″ with a brightness of 400 nits+
- 1.85 inches thick
- 1.5% key travel keyboard
- A milled aluminum housing
- Modular, hot-swappable, port-selection expansion
- USB-C, USB-A, MicroSD, HDMI, DisplayPort, Ethernet, additional storage, and more are all available.
I won’t bore you with the upgrade/repair/modular details, but I can say that using this Chromebook is an outstanding experience. The keyboard’s metal frame is sturdy, the trackpad’s glass surface is beautiful, the speakers are loud for a gadget of this size, the screen is a visual feast, and the performance is flawless. The 1080p webcam is excellent, and it can be removed and replaced if necessary.
Chromebook Parts That May Be Fixed or Swapped
Yet the modular concept goes well beyond just those add-on cards. The internal design of this Chromebook makes it simple to replace any component. While it’s true that you can access and replace components within the chassis of many Chromebooks, we’ve never seen a Chromebook with such straightforward, user-friendly repairability.
This device’s internal layout was made specifically for modification. The Framework Chromebook was designed to be customized and repaired by its owner, thus features like stronger ribbon cables and QR tags on each component allow for easy online access to maintenance guides.
Moreover, the device’s modularity is not accompanied by a sense of flimsiness or instability. The laptop itself, on the other hand, is well-made and sturdy, and the screen can be flipped up with a single finger.
The total quality of this item, which is designed largely to be disassembled, has left me speechless. While I would have previously overlooked Framework’s poor construction, they don’t actually require any special consideration. If I handed you this Chromebook and asked what you thought of it, I’m confident you’d give it high marks for its sturdy construction without even noticing its expandability.
That it can be customized both on the outside and the inside makes this Chromebook stand out. As a solid clamshell device, the Chromebook I’m using right now would be great, but that’s not the case.
So far, I have really enjoyed typing on it because of its responsiveness, its sleek design, and its bright, clear display. It lacks touch functionality, but after using many different Chromebooks this year, I’ve realized that this isn’t a major issue for me in my day-to-day life.
The remarkable nature of this Chromebook becomes clear if you factor in its outside and interior versatility. I think that a trial time is really necessary, however, I can honestly say that I enjoy using this gadget very much even without the trial.
It’s great to work from home, and knowing that any part of this machine can be replaced quickly and simply by myself makes it that much more appealing. Bear with me as I review some Chromebooks. There will be a more in-depth review coming soon, but if a stylish, versatile, and swift laptop with user-serviceable components seems like something you’d like, don’t wait.