Acer has taken to CES 2019 to launch the world's first AMD-powered Chromebook with the Acer Chromebook 315. Starting at just $279.99, the Acer Chromebook 315 is a 15.6-inch Chrome OS laptop driven by brand new AMD-build processors and integrated Radeon graphics driving the visuals. The IPS display is available in either touch-enabled or non-touch variations with a 1080p FHD resolution and is coupled with upward-facing speakers. The housings for those are set to the right and left-hand side and are tall enough to run length of the keyboard for better sound output and immersion. Beside those is a full-size keyboard that ships with backlighting as a standard feature while the edge houses two USB 3.1 Type-C charging ports pulling double duty as a means for data transfers and display-out capabilities. For wider connectivity, the Acer Chromebook 315 is compatible with Wi-Fi 802.11ac standards. The battery powering that package is rated at a claimed ten hours between charges.
More than just oversized speakers.
On the design front, Acer has included an oversized touchpad below the gadget's chiclet-style keyboard. That's not necessarily going to be the best hardware available at its cost and the bezels surrounding the display on Acer's Chromebook 315 aren't exactly small either. But not every feature seems to be meant for the bottom end of the market. Aside from the upward-firing oversized speakers to either side of the standard backlit keyboard, Acer has included a couple of premium features, beginning with the five inputs embedded in the Chromebook 315's apparent all-aluminum frame. On both the right and left-hand edges, consumers will find a USB Type-C port. The standard Type-A USB plugs follow that same pattern but on the left-hand edge, that's coupled with an SD card reader and a 3.5mm audio jack. On the opposing side, the two USB ports sit next to a security lock slot. Just above the display panel, Acer has included an unspecified webcam allowing for video calls and similar features. That allows for a slimmed down look that only improves when the lid is propped open via the dual 180-degree hinges holding everything together, with its slim display accented by the keyboard tapering down toward the front.
AMD Chromebooks Arrive in February
Chromebooks with AMD-built hardware have been appearing in the Chromium Gerrit for quite some time, with projects starting and stopping at various intervals over the past couple of years. Acer hasn't provided too many other details about its Chromebook 315 regarding internal specifications for the time being but the most recent changes to commits suggest that these will be powered by Raven Ridge processors. No fewer than three baseboards were added at the time but there's no clear record of exactly which chips are included and Acer hasn't said how many models will be released. It is known that each of those in the Chromium Gerrit is built on the same Zen architecture as the platform's top-tier Ryzen chips. So the world's first AMD Chromebooks, in keeping with AMD tradition, should be comparatively powerful in spite of its budget price point. Acer has indicated that the world's first AMD-Chromebook will be made available on February 15.