Google Launches a Pixel-Branded Premium Chromebook Tablet

Posted on October 9, 2018 by Mehedi Hassan in Chrome OS, Chromebook, Pixelbook with 20 Comments

Google just took the wraps off a new Chromebook device at its hardware event today. The company is launching its new Pixel Slate, a premium Chromebook tablet that’s supposed to compete with the likes of Microsoft’s Surface Pro and Apple’s iPad Pro.

Pixel Slate comes with a detachable keyboard, as well as a stylus. Google seems to have massively tweaked Chrome OS with a new tablet UI for the Pixel Slate, with a new back button and a permanent app launcher that provides quick access to your frequent apps. The updated app launcher on the device comes with Google Assistant integrated into the quick launcher.

The device features a gorgeous 12.3-inch display with a resolution of 3000×2000 pixels — producing up to 6 million pixels, Type-C ports, and no headphone jack. The lack of the headphone jack would mean you will be forced to use either a wireless headphone or wired Type-C ones. The device even includes a fingerprint scanner for unlocking, which is a first for any Chromebook. The device includes double front-facing speakers, supposed to output really good sound. Google says the front-facing speakers, combined with the beautiful display, is supposed to provide the best entertainment experience, and so the company is giving away 3 months of free YouTube TV with the Pixel Slate.

Another interesting component? Rounded keys on the detachable, folio keyboard — yep:

The detachable keyboard on the pixel Slate means you will be able to heavily customize the device with your own likings, including buying things like third-party keyboards or even sleeves for your device. Should be quite interesting. But the one you can get right now is quite expensive, coming in at $199.

In terms of the specs, the device is powered by Intel’s 8th gen processors and you can get up to the Intel Core i7 chips (starts with Intel Celeron). You can even get up to 16GB of RAM on the device, though you probably won’t need such a large amount of RAM on a Chromebook The device includes 8MP front facing and rear facing cameras, both of which include support for portrait mode. The front camera includes a wide-angle sensor that’s perfect for video calls, at least according to Google.

Pixel Slate starts at $599, with the keyboard being sold separately for $199. The pen is sold separately for $99. Available later this year, comes only in Midnight Blue.

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Comments (20)

20 responses to “Google Launches a Pixel-Branded Premium Chromebook Tablet”

  1. RobertJasiek

    Is the display matte or glare? Can one use a Chrome device without cloud and without Google data theft? Does local data transfer via a USB-stick work?

  2. VancouverNinja

    Google has officially lost it mind. They can't sell cheap Chromebooks and yet they think people are going to pay more for them magically? Yikes.


  3. FalseAgent

    so.........I guess ARM is dead for tablets now? Also how is the Core i5 model $100 more than the Surface Pro 6 with core i5? Plus the Surface Pro 6 uses the 15w U part whereas this uses the Y part. And the surface pro 6 is an actual quad-core with 8 threads.


    Also, no headphone jack on this. REALLY?

  4. hrlngrv

    I was wondering when this was going to happen: tablets based on Chrome OS which could also run Android apps. Android apps and Chrome browser along with apps developed for Chrome OS (e.g., Caret and Text) cover a lot, and since Chrome OS has a Citrix Receiver app, it should also be able to handle connecting to large enterprises' application servers for some work-from-home capability.

  5. Jorge Garcia

    Just as with Mobile...Microsoft was first to the convergence party (Windows 8 and its desktop productivity + tablet/mobile/touch features)...then Google comes along and perfects the idea in a way that consumers will actually accept. If it wasn't for the lack of LTE that jaredthegeek points out below, this device could be the holy grail of computing for millions, especially when lower cost models from HP/Dell/Acer appear. I don't blame MS's engineers, they were not wrong, just too early. I have several computers that I refuse to update past Windows 8.1.1 because it is such a sweet interface.

    • hrlngrv

      In reply to JG1170:

      If only MSFT hadn't used the word Windows in the name of the OS the original ARM-based Surface tablets ran it might have done a lot better, that is, avoiding failing to meet expectations for anything running an OS with Windows in the name. Pity MSFT: they believed the Windows brand would give their new ARM-based tablets significant market share; instead, Windows RT disappointment dealt a body blow to Windows.

      I also don't blame MSFT engineers. I blame MSFT marketing types and senior management for Windows RT.

      • Jorge Garcia

        In reply to hrlngrv:

        Agreed, but I don't think it would have done that much better. The MS mobile app store was too immature to matter, and the "metro"/live tile approach (that I personally love) was too cerebral for average Joes to enjoy using. Add to that the fact that MS's mobile apps (had they materialized into a viable ecosystem) would have been totally proprietary versus Google's "open" Android apps which you can side-load onto any open-source hardware (a really big deal that is often ignored). So basically, since it seems like there is only ever room for two massively-adopted ecosystems for any given computing method...I am sure that Google would have won the #1/#2 spot in mobile/tablet anyway.

        • skane2600

          In reply to JG1170:

          So few people perform side-loading that I can't imagine that allowing it or not allowing it has any significant effect on the success of a platform.

          • Jorge Garcia

            In reply to skane2600:

            I know what you mean, and I really meant more than just side-loading. I do consider the ability to "just add apps" onto any old hardware, without "permission" a really big deal....especially outside of the US/Europe because literally anybody can make an Android phone...whereas only authorized vendors would have been able to make the MS compatible ones. I guess you can call it "cheating" but by "open sourcing" Android, the competition (including iOS) never stood a chance against Android. It's the exact same thing that happened in the mid 80's when ANYBODY could make an IBM compatible...but only Atari/Commodore/Apple could sell you an 800/C64/Mac. As a result, all those companies folded shortly thereafter. (well, not Apple, they unfortunately got bailed out by MS :).

  6. Polycrastinator

    No built in cellular is annoying. I don't mind tethering to my phone, but it would be nice to just be able to turn on and be connected. This sort of device begs to be an on the go computer (I appreciate that's not a priority for a lot of people, but as someone who is on call IT, the faster I can fix someone's problem and then get back to my weekend, the happier I am).

    Overall though, even despite the sky high price (did you see what they're asking for the i7 version? OUCH) I'm really interested in this device, I think having Android apps available is really going to make having a convertible make sense, finally. The apps were always the weak link for Microsoft, and Google has a far stronger hand in that regard.

  7. Detective Polarphant

    The prices of these are a bit crazy when you look at the processor options:


    $599 Celeron - 32GB/4GB

    $799 Core m3 - 64GB/8GB

    $999 Core i5 - 128GB/8GB

    $1599 Core i7 - 256GB/16GB


    They cost the same as Surface Pro 6, or a little more, and the keyboard costs more too - I dunno...


    It's interesting as well that they didn't use Arm processors - even for the low end models.

  8. jaredthegeek

    Why are companies making portables like this with no LTE integration? Apple is the only one that offers LTE across their line of iPads. MS is always a year later with LTE in anything and with the Pro 6 there was no announcement and now with this? LTE is cheap from a consumer standpoint and an easy win. If this had LTE I would be on board.

  9. darrellprichard

    "Pixel Slate comes with a detachable keyboard, as well as a stylus."


    No it doesn't. They're sold separately. You even call that out later in your article.

  10. Michael Bodo

    I am in the market to replace my two year-old Surface 3 this winter and am considering this and either the Surface Pro (five) or 6 Pro. I love the looks and appearance of this device and the fact that it can be used productively for work and entertainment consumption. I'll wait to see reviews on it prior to making any decision, but I do a agree that the prices seem a bit steep when you consider the keyboard isn't included. I'd want the i5 model at the bare minimum, but I may scoop up a current Surface Pro with the same amount of RAM and internal storage at a discounted price once the Pro 6's hit the market.

  11. hrlngrv

    Serious question about cellular connectivity for tablets: how much does it cost to add a tablet to one's phone's data plan? I've never looked into this because I don't use tablets, my wife is happy with her iPad which only has wifi, and only one child has bought an iPad and that with wifi alone.

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