We shared recently about the hidden availability of the ASUS Chromebook Flip C433 at local Best Buy stores nation-wide in the US, and now we’re taking a few moments to actually unbox and react to this device in the flesh. The Flip C433 has been a bit of a question mark since it was first uncovered by our own Gabriel Brangers back in the beginning of September.
Fast forward to today and we finally have our hands on this new Chromebook from ASUS and we want to begin dissecting the question of “why?” that has surrounded it from the onset. Why build a device so similar to the Flip C434? Why bring this out right on the heels of the Flip C425? Why charge $499?
Well, as you can see in the video, we don’t have all the answers to those questions, but a few things are becoming clear as we break open the box. First, this is not as premium as the Flip C434 as the keyboard deck is decidedly plastic. The lid and bottom are aluminum, however, so that is a step up from the more-budget, non-convertible C425. The side-firing speakers sound pretty nice and the excellent keyboard from the Flip C434 and large trackpad from the C425 are both present as well, but the plastic surrounding it is a bit of a disappointment.
The screen was a bit of a question mark as well, and I can tell you from first blush that it is not as bright or vibrant as the Flip C434. The FHD resolution is great and viewing angles are fine, but the colors lack depth and the brightness isn’t as good as I’d hoped for. The only real advantage this device has over the Flip C434 is the side-firing speakers, but that’s just not enough at this price of $499.
Ultimately, I’d like to see this on sale for somewhere near $399 and I’d be far less confused or harsh. But in a world where the insanely-similar Flip C434 exists and can be purchased for $40-$60 more, I don’t have the first idea what ASUS was thinking in building this particular Chromebook. Stay tuned for the review as I spend some time with this newest ASUS Chromebook and try my best to figure out whether or not this is a device anyone should buy. If history repeats itself with the C425, a sharp discount will happen soon after launch and I’ll feel quite different about this one.