HP Slatebook 14 review: Pros: Runs Android which is an very reliable and useful os

HP Slatebook 14 review:
Pros: Runs Android which is an very reliable and useful os.
Lots of ports
Good battery life compared to windows laptops
Cons: Lags at times
Low quality screen
Touchpad is finicky
Price: $429

I need to start this review by explaining my interest in this device. Since Android came out, I've been very interested in the potential of the os to be used on devices other than phones and tablets. Many companies including Asus and HP had made pseudo android laptops over the years but none of them truly fit my needs in a laptop. Then HP announced this laptop and it seemed as though my wishes had been granted. Were they? Well, sort of.

For starters, the Slatebook 14 is a 14 inch laptop with a 1080P screen, a NVidia Tegra 4 quad core processor clocked at 1.8 ghz, and 2 gigabytes of ram. There is 16 gigabytes of storage inside the US model and 32 in the European version, though this can be expanded with a micro sd card up to 64 gigabytes as far as I know and possibly 128, though I never got a chance to test that. Included ports are a hdmi 1.4 port supporting up to 4K screens (yes, apparently this is possible, though I don't have a 4k monitor to test this), 1 usb 3.0 port, 2 usb 2.0 ports, a headphone jack, and a power port as well as the previously mentioned power port.

In terms of benchmarks the device does very well scoring roughly 37,000 in Antutu. Interestingly, it lists the ram clockspeed as 1866 mhz, which is very fast and above average for laptops, including the Macbook pro which has 1600 mhz ram. In real world usage it doesn't lag a whole lot, although it does occasionally when installing updates to software in the background. This is in part due to my antivirus though, which is AVG and it hogs a lot of ram while scanning software.

In terms of user input, it is actually very flexible. The screen is a capacitive multitouch screen and using it is similar to using a tablet. It also has a touchpad, although the touchpad is fairly finicky and does take some getting used to. The keyboard is actually very amazing. It's similar to using a Macbook Air's keyboard, although it has slightly less travel. It has many keys for android functions such as home, recent apps, back, search, airplane mode, etc. The volume keys are weird in that not all software works well with them. Ironically, the built in HP software doesn't work well with them at all, so install your own software. I recommend Rocket Player for music and videos as well as VLC.

The laptop ships with Beats Audio speakers. They are the loudest laptop speakers I've ever used, but they aren't the best quality, though for the price its not bad. It is very bass heavy so if you like listening to Rap or Dubstep it's a great setup.

The laptop is running Android 4.3, and this leads to one main performance issue. The wifi is not great, because when you open the laptop the wifi doesnt always automatically connect. You have to turn wifi off and on sometimes to fix this issue. Other than that, the software isnt bad, and it is compatible with a wide variety of software. Rooting isnt currently possible, but it will be once it gets 4.4, hopefully some time in October. This wifi issue is widespread on 4.3 with many affected devices including the nexus 7.

So, to summarize. The Slatebook 14 isn't a bad laptop. It's also not the worlds greatest. But, for $429, it's a fairly good deal for anyone wanting a laptop, but not wanting to run Windows. It is also the first of it's kind and I sense that there will be many more. Should you buy it? Well, that depends. If you're like me and have always dreamed of having an android laptop, then yes you should. But if you're just looking for a new laptop and you don't care what os you have, then not really.

verdict: 7/10
buy: maybe, depends.

If anyone has any more questions or wants me to cover a detail I may have missed let me know in the comments below.

HP Slatebook 14 review:  Pros: Runs Android which is an very reliable and useful osHP Slatebook 14 review:  Pros: Runs Android which is an very reliable and useful osHP Slatebook 14 review:  Pros: Runs Android which is an very reliable and useful os


Ghost_Slayer007 05.10.2014, 04:05
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 04:06
Ghost_Slayer007 that's your opinion, I'm sharing a device that I feel many would be interested in.+1
Mason Mcleod05.10.2014, 05:25
would actually be really useful with an ARM version of linux 
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 05:32
Mason Mcleod I'm not sure you could install another os but I guess it's worth a shot...
Mason Mcleod05.10.2014, 05:34
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 05:36
Mason Mcleod well if you actually have time to do it then sure, and tell me how lol. I'm too busy haha.
Mason Mcleod05.10.2014, 05:39
If i can get my hands on the hardware and a drill... Anything is possible lol. Case and point: http://i.imgur.com/z2ezME9.jpg
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 06:00
Mason Mcleod oh, God your like a good friend of mine. That guy put a desktop GPU in a laptop lol.
Mason Mcleod05.10.2014, 06:00
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 06:00
Mason Mcleod it was a 780ti. And it was a closed loop liquid cooled laptop. And it worked.
Mason Mcleod05.10.2014, 06:00
that sounds both ridiculous and awesome 
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 06:00
Mason Mcleod it was haha. It got like 2 minutes of battery haha.
Mason Mcleod05.10.2014, 06:00
I need to see pictures lol
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 06:00
Mason Mcleod I'll try to find some... I'm out of town but next time I see my buddy, I'll take a photo...
Andy Liu05.10.2014, 07:15
How well does Android work with keyboard and mouse?
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 07:15
Andy Liu really well actually. I seldom use the touchscreen. The touchpad is finicky, but external mice are a lot better. And you'll get used to the touchpad.+1
Tristan Agostino05.10.2014, 08:34
Could see this being really great, but scrolling sounds like a huge pain. Does the mouse wheel bind to scrolling? If not it's basically a failure for non touchscreen usage.
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 08:36
Tristan Agostino you just use two fingers to scroll just like on a Mac. And with an external mouse it does bind to the scroll wheel in most cases.
Tristan Agostino05.10.2014, 08:37
strkilla89 okay that immediately is a +2000 to usability
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 08:38
Tristan Agostino yeah, it would be useless junk without that haha. Cursor keys on a website anyone? Anyone? Yeah didn't think so...
Tristan Agostino05.10.2014, 08:40
If this bad boy had a K1, I would consider throwing Linux on it.
strkilla89 05.10.2014, 08:43
Tristan Agostino lol, well hopefully they'll update it soon with a better screen, more internal storage, better touchpad, and k1...