Lenovo has three new devices on the way for its ‘C’ and ‘S’ series budget Chromebook line, dubbed the Lenovo Chromebook C340-11, Chromebook C340-15, and Chromebook S340-14. These won't be a small upgrade from the previous Chromebook C330 and S330 devices.
Based on newly leaked specs spotted after the company posted a new teaser for the devices though, the company is going much further to differentiate this time around too.
As with last year's entries, there are some similarities between the new models. Each utilizes plastics in the casing and comes in 32GB or 64GB storage options coupled with 4GB LPDDR4 2400MHz RAM to start. All but the C340-15 is listed with up to 8GB RAM. Intel chips are at the center of the hardware in each.
Every one of the newly leaked devices shows a 720p webcam set just above the display, with touchscreens available across the board — although not standard in the Lenovo Chromebook S340-14. Along that same vein, each is rated at up to 10-hours of battery life.
The Chromebook S340-14 is a clamshell that should be business-ready
As might be guessed from the naming conventions used by Lenovo, the two new Chromebook with the 'C' designation are convertible designs. The Chromebook S40-14, while available with a touchscreen option, comes in a lay-flat clamshell package.
That comes in either a deep Dark Orchid hue or an Onyx Black color configuration at just 0.74-inches thick.
In the edges, the Lenovo Chromebook S340-14 comes with a microSD card reader, two USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A standard plugs, and two further Type-C plugs — only one of which is rated for DC-in charging. A 3.5mm audio combo jack is part of the package as well.
Display output via either USB-C port maxes out at a resolution of 3840 x 2160 and a 60Hz refresh rate.
For display technology, Lenovo ships the device with either a 14-inch 1920 x 1080 display — at either 220nits or 250, depending on whether the touch-compatible option is selected — or a 1366 x 768 panel. Non-touch variants are anti-glare displays.
Judging by the fact that Lenovo's 14-inch S340 ships with both a dual-core Intel Celeron Processor and an H1 security chip, it's also likely to be the most compatible with business-specific use cases.
The processor is coupled with an on-chip Intel UHD Graphics 600 unit and is clocked at 1.1GHz base frequency or up to 2.6GHz when under load. An Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 9560 combo chip delivers Bluetooth 4.2 and Wi-Fi 802.11ac to the table.
The 'C' gadgets
The Lenovo Chromebook C340-11 is going to be the closest to the S340-14 in terms of specs and capabilities but comes with a few key differences.
To begin with, it's a 2-in-1 folder on a 360-degree hinge for tent, stand, tablet, or laptop use. That's centered around an 11-inch display at 1366 x 768 resolution, embedded in an aluminum lid for extra durability to handle convertible use. The design is 0.7-inches thin.
Colors listed and shown for the Lenovo's upcoming 11-inch Chromebook are Platinum grey or Sand pink.
The largest and likely the most powerful of the new devices is the Lenovo Chromebook C340-15. That features a choice between an Intel Pentium Gold Processor or eighth-gen Intel Core i3 processor — clocked at 2.3 GHz or 2.2GHz and up to 3.4GHz. Both are backed by a maximum of 4GB RAM in either DDR4-2133 or DDR4-2400 formats, respectively.
Aside from the chipset differences, including the use of an HD Graphics 610 or Intel UHD Graphics 620 chip instead of the 600-series unit, there are also differences in the screen and keyboard technology with the C340-15.
The display used in the Lenovo Chromebook C340-15 is set to be a 15.6-inch 1920 x 1080 panel. The keyboard on this device, conversely, will be the only one to offer optional backlighting.
That will all be packed into a build that's slightly thicker than the Chromebook S340-14 but still respectably-thin at 0.74-inches. The biggest difference can be found in the external features too, with only one USB Type-A Standard port included instead of the two found in the other devices. Only one color option will be available for Lenovo's new 15-inch budget Chromebook, Mineral Grey.
No H1 security chip is listed with either of the two new C-series Lenovo Chromebooks.
Pricing and availability
The Lenovo Chromebook C330 and S330 stole the show at last year's IFA 2018 event in Berlin and it's not unlikely the company hopes to do the same at this year's event. With consideration for the leaked specifications, it remains to be seen if there's anything left for the company to do except to set about confirming everything.
Lenovo has not, as of this writing, revealed any details regarding the price for any of the devices. They will undoubtedly be more expensive than the previous devices in the series due to the use of Intel hardware instead of the more affordable MediaTek offerings. The Lenovo Chromebook C330 started out at $279, as compared to the Chromebook S330 at $250.
Availability hasn't been outlined officially either but the leaked pages detailing the devices do show them being built for regions listed as 'North America, Nordics, France, Germany, Netherlands, Australia, and UK Group'. That doesn't necessarily provide confirmation of every region where these will be sold or which models are included. But it does give some base indication of where to expect the new Lenovo Chrome OS laptops.