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Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 Chromebook review – a handy laptop alternative

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  • VERDICT

The Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 Chromebook is a value laptop and is a great choice for users who want a fast and reliable device to connect, create and to stay productive.

When considering a laptop purchase there is an alternative to Windows or Mac – and that’s a Chromebook which uses Google’s platform. And the Lenovo 13.3-inch IdeaPad Flex 5 is a great example.

Lenovo’s IdeaPad Flex 5 has a 13.3-inch full high definition display with 8GB RAM and 128GB SSD (solid state drive) storage capacity.

The device is powered by Intel Core i5 10th Generation processor so it’s pretty fast and responsive.

The operating system in this case is the Chrome browser which links to the Google online platform so you can use Gmail, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Google Drive, Files and much more.

And because there is no operating system that has to be booted up, the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex Chromebook wakes up in seconds and is ready to go.

Design-wise, the Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 is pretty slick and weighs in at 1.35kg with a thickness of 17.95mm.

Everything works off the browser and each time you open a new application like Gmail or Docs it opens up another tab on the Chrome browser so it’s easy to keep track of your tasks by simply moving in and out of the various tabs.

And because the laptop basically works through Google’s cloud-based platform it’s also a lot cheaper than Mac or Windows laptops.

Yet users have access to the same quality display, the same wireless connectivity through wi-fi and Bluetooth 5.0 and the physical ports and also the same processing power.

There are two USB-C ports – one on either side of the laptop so you can have easy access and also the choice when it’s time to charge of having the cord connecting on the left or right side of the device.

On the right is a volume control beside the on/off/sleep button while on the left edge you’ll also find another USB-3.1 port, a microSD card slot and a headphone jack.

And it has a full sized keyboard which offer an accurate and comfortable typing experience.

The Lenovo Chromebook is not called the Flex for nothing.

The touchscreen display has 360-degree hinge so it can be folded back so you can use the device like a tablet.

And when you hold the device in portrait mode the screen immediately adjusts to make it easier to view and work.

It’s also possible to position the laptop in tent mode by flipping the screen back and resting it on the surface so all you see is the display.

Another interesting feature is stylus tools which allows you to use a stylus to capture a section of the screen, the entire screen, write a note and use the stylus is a laser pointer or as a magnifying glass.

But then when it’s time to go back to laptop mode, the display can go back to its regular position right next to the keyboard.

The onboard speakers are impressive so you can use the device to listen to music or watch YouTube and other video content.

Some users might want to have more than the 128GB of storage but, being a Chromebook, you can also take advantage of cloud storage.

Alternatively, you can even connect a portable hard drive via the USB-C or USB 3.1 ports to have even more memory.

The screen brightness could be a little better. It’s fine while working inside but you might struggle if you’re using it outside in bright sunlight.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 has a 10-hour battery life which will just get you through a work day.

If you’re a student the Flex 5 will get you through a school day or if you’re on the go it will last a full work day.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 is available now and is priced at $899.

VERDICT

The Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 Chromebook is a value laptop and is a great choice for users who want a fast and reliable device to connect, create and to stay productive.