Consumers shopping for Black Friday bargains on computers should consider Chromebooks a capable alternative. Interested? We’ve curated the best deals on Chromebooks from major retailers, focusing only on machines that offer respectable hardware at legitimate discounts.
Chromebook sales have plunged in the days since students snapped them up during the pandemic. That means Chromebook makers are relatively desperate to unload inventory, and suddenly, good Chromebooks are on sale. That was the case during Amazon’s Prime Early Access Sale in October, and you can expect more of the same in the days leading up to Black Friday.
Best early Black Friday Chromebook deals
- Lenovo IdeaPad 3 Chromebook (Intel Pentium Silver N6000, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD, 15.6-inch 1080p touch display): $249.99 (47% off at Target)
- Asus Chromebook Flip C433 (Intel Core m3-8100Y, 8GB RAM, 64GB SSD, 14-inch 1080p display): $260.00 (35% off at Amazon)
- Asus 14-inch Chromebook (Intel Core m3-8100Y, 4GB RAM, 64GB SSD, 14-inch 1080p display) $179.00 (45% off at Best Buy)
- Acer Chromebook 317 (Intel Pentium Silver N6000, 8GB RAM, 64GB SSD, 17.3-inch 1080p touch display), $319.00 (36% off at Best Buy)
- Lenovo Chromebook 3 w/Headset (Celeron N4020, 4GB RAM, 64GB SSD, 14-inch 768p display), $125.00 at Walmart
- HP Chromebook 11 (MediaTek MT8183, 4GB RAM, 32GB SSD, 11-inch 768p display): $119.00 (54% off at Amazon)
The really outstanding deals are a bit skimpy, though both the IdeaPad 3 (which favors a larger screen) and the Asus Chromebook Flip (which improves performance via more memory) are pretty solid.
We would prefer to see Chromebooks with larger screens and more memory (such as the Acer Chromebook 317) go below $300, but $319 is still a pretty decent price. The HP Chromebook 11 deal is the absolute minimum you should buy in terms of specifications, but there’s still a place for ultra-cheap Chromebooks, and HP’s price is the lowest it’s been in a year.
When is Black Friday?
Officially, Black Friday takes place on Friday, Nov. 25 2022.
When do Black Friday Chromebook deals begin?
Early Black Friday sales have already begun at several retailers. The “Black Friday” deals season is like Halloween or Christmas, meaning that actually lasts several weeks.
What should I look for in a Black Friday Chromebook?
We still expect low-end Chromebooks—say, those with a 768p screen, Intel Celeron processor, 4GB of RAM and 16GB of SSD storage—to be priced about $100. And if they get much below $100, they become essentially a stocking stuffer for most people.
That said, look for these specs in a respectable Chromebook: an Intel Celeron N4000 chip or higher, 8GB of RAM, and a 1080p screen. A Pentium Silver N6000 processor is a step up from that. A Core m3-8100Y isn’t, but may still be satisfactory.
More memory (that is, 8GB rather 4GB of RAM) will allow for more browser tabs and a smoother browser experience. A 1080p screen will offer a comfortable laptop-like viewing experience. Onboard storage really doesn’t matter all that much, though at least 32GB is preferable storing for apps, screenshots, and the like.
If you’re familiar with our lengthy laptops versus Chromebooks explainer, you know that one of the potential gotchas is buying a Chromebook whose support window expires soon. We try to factor that in, so you won’t get stuck with a Chromebook that will lose support in the near future.
Which Chromebooks does PCWorld rate highest?
Our editors regularly review Chromebooks, so make sure to check our rankings of the best Chromebooks of 2022. We recommend a wide range of price points, and the article offers a great primer on Chromebook shopping. What’s more, some of our top picks will likely go on sale before or during Black Friday.