As CES 2022 approaches, so does the beginning of the year and the requisite hopes for new Chromebook hardware. So many great things are coming in 2022, including devices with the higher-powered MediaTek Kompanio 1000 and 800 series, Snapdragon 7c+ Gen 3, and 12th-gen Intel Alder Lake chipsets inside. While we’ll see these releases scattered throughout the year, CES generally coaxes a few out right at the beginning.
We don’t know exactly which of the boards that we’re tracking will end up being announced at CES or later in the year, but we do have a good hunch that at least 4 of the Alder Lake-powered Chromebooks will be coming from HP. Yep, that’s right: at least four next-gen Intel-powered Chromebooks are on the way from HP this year.
We’ve covered one of these already in ‘Redrix’ as the solid candidate for an upgraded HP Chromebook Elite c1030. ‘Redrix’ began life as a carbon copy of ‘Jinlon’ (the Elite c1030), so that one didn’t take a whole lot of detective work. The emails attached to ‘Redrix’ made it pretty clear this was an HP product and the fact that the hardware – not just the baseboard – was a direct copy of the Elite c1030 made the case pretty evident in the early going.
Three more Intel/HP Chromebooks
HP is clearly gunning for more of the Chromebook market this year. They are also working on a MediaTek Kompanio 1000-series (flagship device) with the code name ‘Dojo’, but it is equally interesting that ‘Redrix’ may not be the only high-end device from HP in 2022 sporting Intel silicon on the inside.
We’ve previously uncovered three devices – ‘Draco’, ‘Vell’ and ‘Anahera’ – that are clearly 12th-gen Intel Alder Lake Chromebooks, but we’d not done a ton of digging to see who was connected to any of them. With ‘Redrix’ already filling the flagship Intel Chromebook slot, we weren’t completely sure we’d see any other Alder Lake Chromebooks from HP, but now we have a hunch there are actually three more.
At the end of the day, emails attached to commits and the battery models used in upcoming Chromebooks can tell us a lot when we cross-reference that data with other Chromebooks that are known entities. For example, the battery in ‘Vell’ is a Simplo 996QA167H and many of the commits for this device reference Devin Lu. Looking that battery up, we find references to product safety sheets hosted on HP’s website and Devin Lu on all sorts of other Chromebooks we know are made by HP.
Looking at this commit for ‘Draco’, we can reference the battery manufacturer number and find that it matches other HP Chromebooks and then search the repositories for Zick Wei and realize he’s been heavily involved in other HP Chromebooks like ‘Dooly’ (HP Chromebase 22), ‘Gumboz’ (HP Chromebook x360 14a), and ‘Dirinboz’ (HP Chromebook 14a). With these bits of info, it becomes highly likely that this will become a Chromebook manufactured by HP.
The story is much the same with ‘Anahera’ as well, and I’m a bit surprised to see 4 Intel Alder Lake Chromebooks on the way to join the MediaTek Kompanio 1000 series (‘Dojo’) and at least one Snapdragon 7c device (‘Kingoftown’). This is to say nothing of the affordable devices HP likely has in the works with Jasper Lake internals as well.
We’ll obviously have to wait and see how this all shakes out, but it looks like HP is showing up in 2022 with their guns blazing in the Chromebook space. As I type this post on the still-excellent HP Chromebook Elite c1030, I’m pretty excited to see what they come up with. I like HPs mid-high-range Chromebooks, so it’s going to be exciting to see what surfaces as all these development devices finally arrive on store shelves in 2022.