The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is a cool little Chromebook that offers impressive levels of versatility, as well as great interaction and usability. Simply using the Chromebook CP311-2H-C679 is a joy, and the design, and build quality of this device are also immediately noticeable as soon as you get it out of the box.
The Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is a sleek, compact little machine, with a design and aesthetic that complements the size pretty well. Firstly, it’s a portable notebook in black; blacks on the back, on the keyboard and areas surrounding the screen. But this makes the aesthetic cohesive and attractive for a tiny Chromebook.
The main body of the Spin CP311-2H-C679 sports the same matte black material, but the back of the screen has a subtle diamond-print panel. This feels like it could be for added durability to protect the screen but on aesthetics it works well too, adding texture and fun to the design.
Overall, this 0.8-inch thick laptop is pretty portable weighing only 2.65lbs, and feels reassuring for those looking for a durable Chromebook. The only exception on this laptop is the keyboard panel, especially for powerful typers.
The screen on the Acer CP311-2H-C679 Convertible Chromebook is pretty good, though a bit of a mixed bag. On one hand it is a clear, and easy-to-use touchscreen, and though -being well protected by the Gorilla glass; but on the other hand it way too small and also a bit too dim.
It’s surrounded by rather thick bezels, which I consider to be lots of wasted space. Sure, the design might have required the large bezels in order to accommodate the toughened glass touchscreen and overall robust design, but it feels like a bit too much potential screen real estate was actually lost. Once again, even with IPS screen technology, the 1366 x 768 resolution on the 11.6-inch touchscreen is quite dim.
Keyboard, Touchpad & Ports
The keyboard and touchpad are still satisfying to use and click your way around. The only concern here is that the keyboard has a bit if flex, but only if you’re a heavy typer. And, despite the keyboard being the same size as on other Acer Chromebooks it feels a bit small – due to its place in a smaller design. But you do get used to this more cramped design in time, but it will take a little while.
Port selection is good considering its size. Here you get two USB-Cs (either can be used for charging), two USB A-s, microSD slot and an audio jack. These ports are roughly split into two spread along either side, and one side shares space with the power button, and the other side with volume slider and the Kensington hole. You’ll have to do without an Ethernet port however, making it a purely wireless Chromebook. Given its size, that’s a fair compromise.
Despite having a modest set of components under the hood, the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 easily handles whatever is thrown at it. Having far too many Chrome tabs open, running and listening to YouTube – or Spotify – and messaging on apps all at the same time never results any lagging or trouble that the Intel Celeron N4020 based hardware, supported by 4GB of RAM and 32GB, can’t cope with. You can’t really underrate its performance, and it remains a consistent little workhorse of a Chromebook.
The boot time of 12 seconds from off to log in screen is great, and means you can close the screen to go into sleep and then instantly starting up again by lifting the screen back up – it’s a really smooth and satisfying process.
The battery life on the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is pretty good, but without being truly outstanding for a Chromebook. We are not saying that more than 8 hours in our movie test isn’t good enough, and it surely shows that it can safely last a working day away from the office. Charging via USB-C is very quick, and you only need two hours to charge from zero to full.
All in all, the Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is a great machine: it packs good value; it’s portable and versatile; ad you can do anything on it that you’d ever want to do on other powerful Chromebooks. If you like the petite profile and want a reliable Chromebook with a touchscreen, this is it.
If you’re looking for a small, compact Chromebook, the Spin 311 is ideal for a compact device that you can basically use one-handed. Again, the toughened glass and robust shell are great confidence builders, so you’re sure the Spin 311 will survive bumps and knocks.
However, if you’re looking for something bigger and an easy mainstream laptop replacement, the larger Acer Chromebook 314 might be a better choice, however.
Acer Chromebook Spin 311 Convertible Laptop, Intel Celeron N4020, 11.6" HD Touch, 4GB LPDDR4, 32GB eMMC, Gigabit WiFi 5, Bluetooth 5.0, Google Chrome, CP311-2H-C679
5 used from $249.00
- Great design and build
- Perfect size
- Excellent touch screen and flip mechanism
- Dim screen
- Massive screen bezels