Chrome OS is light, speedy, and runs well on both low-end and high-end hardware, so you’d think that every manufacturer would have a Chrome OS tablet on the market right now, right? WRONG. Chrome OS is still greatly-improved with a keyboard, and while touch-optimization has made leaps and bounds in recent years, Chromebook tablets have still been few and far between. Before the Lenovo Chromebook Duet debuted this spring, they all had some fatal compromise in either features or price. Now, we have a great Chromebook tablet for most people and a few other options for those needing specific requirements.
Best Overall: Lenovo Chromebook Duet
There may be other tablets out there running Chrome OS, but for the great majority, there’s only one that should matter: the Lenovo Chromebook Duet. The Duet may not have been the first Chrome OS tablet, but it’s the first that feels like it gets everything right. It comes with a keyboard but feels like a complete product even when used alone, something that is a testament to both how far Chrome OS has come in three years and what Google has learned from past failures.
The Duet’s screen is a 10-inch 1080p touchscreen that can get nice and bright if you’re using it in the sun. It’s equally comfortable for watching cat videos or just curling up in bed with some fanfiction to help you escape from this bugged-out simulation called reality for a while. It also comes with a magnetic kickstand back cover that you can use to prop up the Duet while following a recipe or watching videos in bed.
On the note of videos, while they look great, the volume on the Duet can get a little bit soft — they had to compromise somewhere to hit that sweet, low price point — so you might want to grab a Bluetooth speaker or Bluetooth headphones to pair it with since the Duet also lacks a headphone jack.
As a 10-inch tablet with a 10-inch keyboard, the keyboard will feel cramped to some folks, especially during longer typing sessions, but for quickly rattling off a report while traveling, the Duet is perfect. The MediaTek processor holds out just fine in regular use, and this isn’t a power-user device by any means. (If you’re needing extra power, check out the next tablet below!)
Battery life here is great as well; you should easily get 8-10 hours on a charge, though I’ve gotten over 12 hours with mine when I’m using it for reading. It only comes with a 10W charger in the box, but it supports 18W Power Delivery charging and I highly recommend using a PD charger instead of the in-box USB-A charger.
- Bright 1080p screen
- Easy to hold for hours
- Kickstand and keyboard included
- All-day battery life
- Keyboard can feel cramped
- No headphone jack
- Quiet speaker
Auto Update Expiration Date: June 2028
Lenovo Chromebook Duet
- $299 at Best Buy (128GB)
- $249 at Walmart (64GB)
The best tablet experience on a Chromebook so far
With both the keyboard and the kickstand included, the Duet has everything you need for a proper Chrome tablet experience.
Best Premium Tablet: Google Pixel Slate
The Google Pixel Slate was not that well-received when it launched back in 2018, largely due to software problems and the fact that while Chrome OS wasn’t completely touch-optimized back then, Google didn’t include a keyboard in the box.
Well, Chrome OS has been touch-optimized and the launch bugs have all been quashed, leaving us with a Google Pixel Slate that is powerful and perfectly capable if you’re willing to meet its premium price tag. The Pixel Slate is without a doubt the most powerful Chrome OS tablet around, being available with up to 16GB of RAM and up to an i7 processor.
Beyond the powerful internals, the Pixel Slate packs a 12.3-inch screen with a 3000×2000 resolution and front-facing stereo speakers, meaning it’s absolutely wonderful for watching videos. It has support for the Pixelbook Pen, which means that you can use it for more intricate sketching and digital art if you’re so inclined. Plus, it has up to 256GB of storage, so you’ll have plenty of space for offline movies and downloads.
The Slate is definitely an investment — and yes, you will still absolutely want to have a keyboard of some kind to use it with whether it’s a keyboard cover or just a Bluetooth keyboard — but if you want a tablet that can also serve as your primary computer, the Pixel Slate is a great option.
- Powerful configuration options
- Bright, high-definition screen
- Larger size for creators
- Pixelbook Pen
- Kickstand and keyboards sold separately
Best Premium Tablet
Google Pixel Slate
$454 at Amazon
$800 at Best Buy
$999 at Walmart
All power comes at a price
This tablet is every bit as powerful as the Pixelbook Go but in a sleeker, darker tablet form. Just make sure you have a keyboard..
Best Rugged Tablet: Lenovo 10e Chromebook Tablet
While the Lenovo Duet captivated the masses at CES when it launched, a more rugged version was quietly announced aimed at the one segment that the Duet itself is too delicate for: kids. The Lenovo 10e Chromebook Tablet still sports a bright 10.1-inch touchscreen — this one covered by Dragontail Pro, an alternative to Gorilla Glass — but the rest of the tablet is covered by a more rugged plastic rather than the Duet’s metal.
Like the Duet, the 10e only has one USB-C port, but it also has a headphone jack for using regular wired headphones with it. It doesn’t have a keyboard or kickstand in the box, but there is a keyboard/kickstand case available for it. Lenovo claims that you can get 16 hours of use out of the 31.5WHr battery, but I think 12 is more likely, even if the MediaTek processor here is optimized for tablet use.
The 10e is a little harder to come by than the Lenovo Duet — which given the popularity of the Duet is saying something — but if you have a younger child that needs a tablet that can still be used for actual schoolwork, the 10e might be the better call for a slightly more life-proof design and the headphone jack. I wish the 10e had 64-128GB of storage like the Duet, but the 32GB here is passable for a kid’s tablet.
- More durable
- Long battery life
- Big, bright touchscreen
- Has a headphone jack
- Harder to find
- Doesn’t come with keyboard
- Only 32GB of storage
Best Rugged Tablet
Lenovo 10e Chromebook Tablet
$270 at Lenovo
$300 at Amazon
Compact, durable, and ready to learn
Lenovo knows that kids are hard on tech, so this one comes with an impact-resistant screen and a bigger battery to last from dawn to dusk.
The market for Chromebook tablets is, unfortunately, rather slim. If you want Chrome OS you’ll have more options just looking for a great regular Chromebook. However, since Chrome OS is better optimized for touch these days, you’ll still find some excellent choices.
Again, for most folks who just want a nice compact tablet that can double as a Chromebook for some light-duty work, the Lenovo Chromebook Duet is what you’re going to want. I use mine on the couch most weekends, because it is the perfect size for reading comics and e-books while curled up with a soothing beverage. The keyboard is easy to snap on when you need more than the on-screen keyboard, and while its smaller size can get annoying if you’re going to be typing on it for 8-10 hours, it works perfectly fine for quicker tasks or when you’re out and away from your primary computer.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
Ara Wagoner themes phones and pokes YouTube Music with a stick. When she’s not writing help and how-to’s, she’s running around Walt Disney World with a Chromebook. You can follow her on Twitter at @arawagco. If you see her without headphones, RUN.