There are some excellent Chromebooks out there, but the race to create the one and only successor to Google’s $999 Pixelbook is still in full swing. Asus is throwing in its hat with two new releases: the Chromebook CX9 and the Chromebook Flip CX5.
Both new Chromebooks meet U.S. MIL-STD 810H standards, the company says, meaning they’ve passed several tests for pressure, shock, drops, and more. Both can also be configured with up to an Intel Core i7 processor with Iris Xe graphics (which will be overkill for all but the most specific users).
The clamshell Chromebook CX9 comes with up to 16GB of RAM, 512GB of storage, and a 550-nit UHD touchscreen. (There are also FHD touch and non-touch options). Asus claims a battery life of 14 hours (using a video playback test).
The CX9 is also the first Chromebook to feature Asus’ NumberPad, an LED number pad that appears on the touchpad when you tap an icon in the top corner. This technology has been useful on previous Asus laptops – it appears on the company’s popular ZenBook line, including the latest ZenBook 13.
The convertible Chromebook Flip CX5 is more standard fare. It offers up to 512 GB of storage and 16 GB of RAM, although the display is limited to a 1080p touchscreen. A USI stylus is included, which Asus claims can be used for 45 minutes on a 15-second charge.
The Asus Chromebook CX9 is now available in the Asus store – a model with a Core i3, 128 GB storage and 8 GB RAM costs $749.99, and a Core i7 with 512 GB storage and 16 GB RAM costs $1,149.99. The Chromebook Flip CX5 costs $1,049.99, although we haven’t been able to find it in the Asus store yet.