Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 Review

This is my first Chromebook. I switched from Linux Mint because of the Android support on Chrome OS. So far, I have almost no complaints.

The display is good enough. Nothing spectacular, but more than sufficient for anyone who isn't a videophile. I don't watch movies or TV on my Chromebook. Most of what I do is text (usually programming), and the screen is great for that.

Screen size is perfect. Not too small for a laptop, not too big for a tablet.

Speakers are mediocre. I use them mostly for Google Assistant, which sounds a little tinny but otherwise fine. It plays music OK, but not the greatest quality. If you don't listen to music much on it, then the audio is fine.

Speaking of Google Assistant, it works greatly. Routines are not supported, which is an issue, but Assistant on Chromebooks is still somewhat new.

Both cameras are pretty good. They're comparable what you'd expect from a phone in the $200-300 range. On a laptop/tablet, cameras aren't that big of a priority, so they are more than sufficient. I've got some pretty good scenery pics with the world-facing camera.

Linux (Beta) app support works fine. It's good for programming, but probably too beta-y for much else. The default Terminal app in Linux is not that great, but "sudo apt install gnome-terminal" fixes that. (If this paragraph doesn't make sense, just ignore it.)

Tablet mode is EXCELLENT. This easily replaced my Samsung Android tablet, which I disliked for two reasons:
* Samsung messes with Android SO much that, in my opinion, they ruin it.
* It had an annoying bug that made it randomly reboot a LOT.
Although this is a Samsung device, Google doesn't let OEMs change Chrome OS like they do with Android. Android app support on this is great. Unless you're a gamer, this is a great tablet replacement.

The pen, while not pressure-sensitive, is a great stylus. It works well for writing and drawing.

The default on-screen keyboard is not very good. I recommend installing Gboard from the Google Play store. After you set it up (it shows you how), it will not always be the default. From the default keyboard, tap "US" (or whatever else appears directly to the left of the space bar). Tap Gboard in the popup. You will then need to tap the text field again to bring Gboard up. This setting remains as long as you keep it in tablet mode. As soon as you position the screen into laptop mode, this setting goes away. It's annoying, but the default keyboard is bad enough that it's worth the effort.

A little note on the physical keyboard: Chromebooks do not have "Caps Lock" keys. TO TYPE IN ALL CAPS, press "Alt-Search." "Search" is the key where Caps Lock should be. (It normally works like the Windows logo key.)

Build quality feels "plasticky" but not too cheap. It has a little more flex than I would like, but that's certainly not a deal-breaker.

Here's my only major issue: it's hard to charge when in use. If it's in your lap, the cord has a tendency to disconnect from the Chromebook. It does, however, charge quickly, and it's got good battery life.

You might be put off by the Celeron processor. Don't worry about it! It's fine for a Chromebook.

I'm used to using Google Docs instead of MS Office, so that was fine for me. However, Google Docs is not right for everyone. If it's an issue, the cloud version of Office might be a better fit.

I've had none of the hardware issues that others have. It seems fine to me.

Overall, this is what you expect from the price: a mid-range Chromebook.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This device, like all other Chromebooks, has an "expiration date." It will stop receiving updates in June 2024. At the time of writing, that is about four years and six months. Remember that when buying

I was not compensated for writing this review.

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