12 Best Laptops (2021): MacBooks, Windows Machines, Chromebooks

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The Pixelbook Go is Google’s latest vision of what a Chromebook should be. Unlike previous efforts, the Go doesn’t shoot for the stars. Its price reflects that, and it starts at a full $350 less than its predecessor. If, however, you like the original Pixelbook’s high-end specs, you can order a high-end Go with a Core i7 processor, 16 GB of RAM, 256 GB storage, and a 4K display. 

The Go’s design is very much function over form, and an interesting ridged underside is the only thing that sets it apart from standard laptops. The base model uses the Intel Core M3 chip, but we recommend going for the Core i5. You’ll get 8 GB of RAM either way, which is plenty for average Chromebook use.

Chrome OS has progressed significantly in recent years and feels very mature. Support for Linux makes the Chromebook decent for light development work too. Using Android apps can still be an exercise in frustration, but things have improved in recent releases.

Specs to look for: Intel Core i5, 8 GB RAM, 128 GB SSD

Another great Chromebook: Want something newer? Consider Samsung’s Galaxy Chromebook 2 (7/10, WIRED Recommends) for $700. It has a premium, all-aluminum build that’s lightweight, with a beautifully minimalist design. It also has a sharp, bright screen. The model I recommend has an Intel Core i3 and 8 gigabytes of RAM inside.

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