We’re ringing in the new year with virtual coverage of the 2022 CES tech conference. While we anticipate some exciting news about new Chromebooks on the horizon, the current generation of 11th Gen Tiger Lake devices is still worth getting excited about. In a bizarre twist, ASUS pumped out three formidable Chrome OS devices in 2021 and went so far as to supplant our usual list of manufacturers that top our annual “Best of” list. As a matter of fact, the #1 and #2 premium spots both went to ASUS Chromebooks.
The first place device, my personal favorite, is the ASUS Chromebook CX9. As I don’t use the convertible form-factor very often, the ultra-premium clamshell design and powerful Core i7 CPU of the CX9 were a dream come true for me as I spend a lot of time tinkering with Linux applications. The second-place device is the sleek and savvy ASUS Chromebook Flip CX5400. The 14″ convertible features the fanless versions of Intel’s 11th Gen CPUs and you get most of the goodies that come with the CX9 minus the fingerprint sensor. ASUS also did us a solid by including a garaged USI stylus that’s perfect if you’re the note-taking type.
Featured Video: Best Chromebooks of 2021
The ASUS Chromebook CX5400 may have come in a close second but rumor has it that Robby may have had a change of heart. Stay tuned for an update about why the versatile 2-in-1 has actually become his everyday carry. Anyway, the top-tier CX5400 can be purchased directly from ASUS or Amazon for $1,050 and it’s a device that offers up enough horsepower for any task you may throw at it. However, for the majority of users, the mid-tier Core i5 version found at Costco has more than enough oomph to handle even heavier tasks with ease. You still get the Iris Xe graphics and an ample 16GB of RAM that’s matched with 256GB of zippy NVMe storage. It’s a beast, trust me.
There’s so much to love about this Chromebook and I could go on forever but where ASUS really made some noise was in the price department. Previous “flagship” Chromebooks from ASUS were not only sub-par in build quality they were price so egregiously high that, even when on sale, we simply couldn’t recommend buying one. That all changes when ASUS went on a tear that began with the release of the 15.6″ CX5500. Along with the CX9 and CX5400, ASUS has produced three of the best devices ever to bear the Chromebook emblem and they are priced as competitively, if not more so, than any other devices on the market.
The aforementioned mid-tier ASUS Chromebook CX5400 is exclusively available from Costco for the very respectable price of $899 and you don’t have to be a member of the wholesale buying club to purchase one. You will have to pay a 5% non-member surcharge but, in my opinion, it’s worth the extra jingle. Right now, however, you can score the premium Chromebook for only $799 and nab yourself one of the best Chrome OS laptops ever created. This model will get updates through June of 2029 and it will serve you very well no matter your use case. You can order online at the link below or, if you’re a member, you can swing into your local store and see if they have one in stock.