Of all the Chromebooks we talk about around here, the Lenovo Chromebook Duet 5 is likely the fan favorite. I don’t have hard data to back me up on that, but I know that our posts and deal announcements for that Chromebook drive more interest than just about anything else we discuss from a hardware perspective.
And it’s not without reason, right? The Duet 5 is a special Chromebook with superlatives that simply aren’t matched by anything in the ChromeOS ecosystem right now. From the 13.3-inch OLED screen to the quad speakers and detachable keyboard, the Duet 5 is a very unique, attractive and fun-to-use Chromebook that has no direct rival and could still one day get a fantastic sequel.
Duet 5 stuck on ChromeOS 116
For some reason, though, this admittedly-great device has been stuck on the same version of ChromeOS since August and we have no understanding of why this is. The AUE (auto update expiry) for the Duet 5 isn’t until June of 2031, so we’re nowhere near the end of life on this device. (We’ve reached out to Lenovo about this and we’ll update if we hear back from them.)
Adding to the mystery is the Duet 3’s current status on ChromeOS 117 and the fact that it may be in line to get ChromeOS 118 soon. These two Chromebooks share the exact same processor and many of the same internal parts, so it’s even more confusing to see the Duet 3 moving forward while the Duet 5 is stuck in the mud.
Beta 119 is available for the Duet 5
Even stranger is the fact that the Beta Channel of ChromeOS 119 works just fine on the Duet 5. You can move to the Beta Channel right now and be right up to speed with most other Chromebooks, yet ChromeOS 117 and ChromeOS 118 in the Stable Channel are nowhere to be found for the Duet 5. As you can see in the screenshot from cros.tech below, there are no issues for the Duet 5 outside of the Stable Channel.
The Snapdragon problem
The only real factor I can see as a problem is the fact that this device is running on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2, and the future of Snapdragon on Chromebooks isn’t exactly bright right now. The next generation of devices set to be based on the Snapdragon 7c+ Gen 3 were all cancelled not long ago, and I have to wonder if support from the Qualcomm side of things has wavered a bit.
That’s an assumption, but it stands to reason and it’s one of the only things I can come up with to explain why the Duet 5 is currently in ChromeOS 116 purgatory. With the massive popularity of this Chromebook and the wider-than-usual user base it commands, whatever is holding up the update must be pretty severe. We’ll keep an eye on things and I’m hopeful that with ChromeOS 119 in November, we’ll finally see the Duet 5 back in the regular update groove once again.