A year with a Chromebook (The Acer Chromebook CB3-431)

It’s just over a year since I bought a Chromebook. Acer’s CB3-431 (4GB RAM, 32GB storage model) to be precise.

I bought it because my windows laptop had gotten very slow and was troublesome. I didn’t want to buy a cheap windows laptop and couldn’t afford an expensive one and had been wanting to try out a Chromebook so I took the plunge.


After a year, definitely wouldn’t go back to windows. Unlike my windows machines down through the years, my Chromebook is now faster and more capable than when I first bought it. It’s very easy to use and set up.


Some points:

  • When I got it (November 2016):
    • It was fine, definitely faster than my windows laptop but slow in some respects (Google Inbox was very slow at the time).
    • Splashtop, which is my main tech support app, was only available as a chrome extension and while ok, wasn’t very good.
    • I used Chrome RDP to access my old laptop for certain things (mainly to provide remote support via Splashtop or Microsoft RDP)
  • Now (Jan 2018):
    • It’s much faster, thanks to improvements in the OS and in online apps. Google inbox is very fast and much more user-friendly now.
    • Android apps have become available so I can use the Android Splashtop app which works well on the Chromebook. The only current issue is it only allows me one connection at a time. I think this might change in future when Android apps get multitasking support. Also, I now can use the Microsoft RDP Android app.
    • Update speeds, reboot and boot speeds are amazing. The release of the latest firmware update (for security purposes) required a powerwash of my system which is basically a complete wipe of my Chromebook. I’ve had to do this in the past on windows laptops at was generally a day’s work between backing up everything, wiping and reinstalling windows, and installing all extra apps and drivers and then configuring the system the way I had it. The same procedure on my chromebook took (no exaggeration) 3 minutes, and everything was done for me automatically.

I’ve since recommended it to a few people who purchased the same one as mine and everyone who bought it was very happy with it and had a lot of praise. Two of these people work in education, one is a student, and one owns his own business (and uses it as his main business device, he also bought Chromebooks for his two children for their own business use).