Getting your hands on the coveted Duet Chromebook is all but impossible at the moment but Lenovo is still burning the candle at both ends putting out new devices. Just recently, a refreshed version of the C340 Chromebook showed up on Lenovo’s website. Branded simply as the Chromebook 3, the Gemini Lake-R clamshell doesn’t bring a lot of pizazz to the party but the sub-$300 price tag makes it appealing to the masses. Oddly enough, the Chromebook 3 is already listed as “no longer available” which leads me to believe another variant may be on the way.
I was swapping emails with Tak. S. when my new Canadian acquaintance tipped me off to a new listing on Lenovo Canada and I honestly, at first glance, realize what I was looking at on the page. I saw Lenovo Chromebook 3 and just assumed that it was the new FHD iterations that are coming soon. Then, I looked again and I saw the word “FLEX.” Sure enough, Lenovo has released yet-another Flex Chromebook but unlike the 13.3″ Flex 5, the new Chromebook Flex 3i is of the 11.6″ persuasion.
As with all of Lenovo’s Flex products, the Chromebook 3i is a 2-in-1 convertible with a touchscreen. Like the Chromebook 3, the 3i is powered by the Gemini Lake-R N4020 processor from Intel and the two models available here in the U.S. feature 4GB of RAM and your choice of either 32GB or 64GB of storage. Both models are listed as “Almond” which is Lenovo’s rendition of Champagne if I remember correctly. On Lenovo Canada, you can grab the 32GB model in Abyss Blue in addition to the two Almond models.
Here’s a rundown of what the Chromebook Flex 3i has to offer:
- Chrome OS
- Intel Celeron N4020 processor
- 4GB RAM
- up to 64GB eMMC storage
- 11.6″ HD (1366 x 768) IPS, glossy, touchscreen, 250 nits
- 2 x USB-C
- 2 x USB 3.1** Gen 1
- MicroSD card reader
- Headphone / mic combo
- Kensington lock slot
- Android and Linux app ready
- Android™ Studio preinstalled*
Both sites list the Chromebook 3i as having Android Studio preinstalled. I find that a bit odd since that requires the enabling of Linux apps which many users won’t give two shakes about. Additionally, I’m not sure how this Atom-level processor is going to run Android Studio when it lacks the recommended specs that Google lists for running the resource-heavy application. Regardless, this device is very well-rounded and Lenovo has done very well in the 11.6″ Chromebook space. Still, it’s tough to look at this as your best option when you can get the Core i3 Flex 5 for just $80 more. That said, there’s a human for every Chromebook and this one could be right up your alley. If the build quality is anywhere near the Flex 5, it is probably worth the money. You can order one today and save 5% when you use the promo code “EXTRAFIVE” at checkout.
Correction: I received word that the listing for Android Studio on this device was, in fact, an error. The listing has been updated to reflect the corrected information.