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The version most would expect to receive

A variant of the popular HP Chromebook 11 that features an entirely different design has reportedly surfaced in Australia.

The 11.6-inch device, bought at retail, appears to be largely indistinguishable from the larger HP Chromebook 14, but uses the same Exynos guts as the smaller, more vibrant model that launched last year. 

“Mystery Chromebook”

The unexpected appearance of the device was highlighted online by technology YouTuber Lachlan.

When he decided to order himself an HP Chromebook 11 ‘for a lightweight typing laptop’ he assumed he’d be getting a glossy white notebook with colour accents on the keyboard and a light bar embedded in the lid.

But what he actually received was something totally different: a smaller version of the HP Chromebook 14:

In the video description accompanying his video review of the device he recounts the story:

“I was told [by the store] that they had 20 [Chromebook 11’s] in stock, so I went in to buy one. I was trying to determine what colour the Chromebook was, since it was marked as “WHITE” in the system.

We opened it up in the store and I was surprised to find that it did not look like the glossy white HP Chromebook 11-1101, but instead resembled a miniature HP Chromebook 14. I took it home not really knowing what I had bought.

The model number is marked on the box and on the Chromebook itself as HP Chromebook 11-2001TU.”

Did Lachlan strike it lucky and get an advance unit of an as-yet unannounced device? Bizarrely, it seems not. The Australian HP website hawks this variant design front and centre, implying that this is far from being a device leaked ahead of schedule; this design is very much ‘out there’ in retail.

Slipped Out Quietly

Chromebook Specs (Source: HP AU Website)
Chromebook Specs (Source: HP AU Website)

Compared to the ‘traditional’ HP 11, there are few differences to be found in this redesigned model. Both feature:

  • 11.6″ HD LED Display
  • Exynos 5 Dual (5250) CPU
  • 16GB eMMC
  • 2GB RAM

Lachland notes that his device feels heavier than the 2.4lbs of the 11-1101 model and that the display ‘does not appear to be IPS because of poor viewing angles’. Battery life is estimated at 6 hours.

With retail stores down under already stocking the variant, and the HP website not shy of showing it off, it’s clear that whether formally announced or not this design is ‘out there’.

The lack of IPS display does makes it a less attractive proposition over other, faster 11-inch Chromebooks. There’s also no word or mention of this model being sold outside of Australia and New Zealand.

For more details you can hit play to see Lachlan’s video review of the mystery unit for yourself.

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