I don’t know about you, but I really enjoy the name Hatch Family. There’s just a nice ring to it. Last year’s unibuild family name ‘Nami’ never really caught on as we were all a bit too focused on ‘Nocturne’ becoming what we now know as the Pixel Slate. Though Gabriel always had a hunch that ‘Nami’ was going to spawn great things, I don’t think any of us were ready for the dearth of great Chromebooks we’d see released at the end of 2018 that all emerged from that single baseboard.
While I think there’s worth in talking about what impact we could see from the Hatch Family by year’s end, that’s not what we’re here to do today. Today is for a new introduction to the family, and that device is codenamed ‘Kled’.
‘Kled’ joins us as what looks to be a direct offshoot of ‘Kindred’ (who was added alongside ‘Helios’ in just the past few weeks) as yet another ‘Hatch’ unibuild variant. If you need to be caught up on what all these codenames and boards mean, you can check out this piece and learn more about all the devices now in the Hatch Family that will be decidedly high-end, powerful Chromebooks.
In the first commit, we simply see a specific SKU getting added to ‘Kled’ here. In the next commit, we actually see a keyboard backlight feature getting added, but at the same time tying ‘Kled’ to ‘Kindred’ from a development standpoint:
kindred: support keyboard backlight for Kled
Enable keyboard backlight control by SKU ID of kled, which number is 1,2,3,4.
What this means is still a bit of a mystery as we don’t know a ton of things about these devices collectively just yet, nevermind individually. Consider the same treatment from last year with ‘Nami’: we have some devices like the Lenovo Yoga C630 with large 4K screens with and without backlit keyboards while also seeing smaller devices with a stowable stylus in the Dell Inspiron Chromebook 14. Each of these Hatch Family devices will likely bring a unique element to the table to differentiate it from the pack.
What we do know about the Hatch Family, however, is they will all likely have a combination of these available features:
- Intel Comet Lake U-series processors
- MST Multi-monitor Daisy Chain Support
- Stylus Support
- 3:2 Screens
- Fingerprint Scanners
- Backlit Keyboards
I don’t know about you, but those stats look to me like they could come together to form what could become the best Chromebook you can buy. If you are excited about new clamshells and convertibles, it seems likely that you’ll find one that fits your needs and wants somewhere in the Hatch Family come this fall. Add these to the emerging Snapdragon Chromebooks, MediaTek Chromebooks, and flagship-level AMD Chromebooks, and the decision on what Chromebook to buy in the next few months could become insanely difficult.