Five months ago I started using the Google Pixelbook Go, see our full review, and as much as I love using the Pixel Slate, it is the Pixelbook Go that has been my preferred computer for nearly the past half year. The Pixel Slate is an excellent Chromebook, but I haven't incorporated tablet use as a daily standard practice. The clamshell laptop format of the Pixelbook Go is more productive for my needs.
In early 2018, I stopped using the Surface Pro 4 and made the Google Pixelbook my primary home office computer. The Pixelbook was replaced by the Pixel Slate that has now been trumped by the Pixelbook Go. I probably shouldn't have sold off my Pixelbook, but I honestly like the more modern design, better keyboard, and 16:9 display of the Pixelbook Go.
After five months of daily usage, I've explored the Pixelbook Go in depth and prefer to use it as my daily driver and as my remote work device for the following reasons:
- Android apps and remote work: While the full Google Chrome browser experience covers many use cases, having the Google Play Store integrated into the Pixelbook Go takes things to the next level. I have dozens of Android apps on the Pixelbook Go with one of the most used being the VMware Horizon software. With this software, I have full access to the VDI experience at my engineering firm and am able to run Rhino, Microsoft Project, Deltek Vision, AutoCad, GHS, and more applications that would normally require a full Windows computer. Being able to run all of my engineering and project management apps through Horizon on a laptop I prefer to use has revolutionized my work processes.
- 16:9 aspect ration: At first I thought there was no way the Pixelbook Go could replace the Pixel Slate as I have always found the 3:2 aspect ratio to be useful for internet usage. However, the Pixelbook Go's 16:9 aspect ratio does a better job of supporting using two apps side-by-side on the display and this has led to increased productivity for me.
- Seamless updates: I'm a huge fan of the background update process on Chromebooks and love that I never worry at all about updates on the Pixelbook Go. Google takes care of this without any work on my part and that continues to be an awesome benefit of Chromebooks.
- Awesome keyboard: I started using Apple computers in 1989 and was a MacBook user for many years. It's terrible to hear of so many people with flawed Apple keyboards while Google continues to knock it out of the park with its Hush Keys keyboard. I can fly on the Pixelbook Go and love that I'm not banging away during meetings or calls.
- All-day battery: While the Google website shows 12-hour battery life, I find I get a bit less (closer to 10 hours), but can still get through a full day away from the charger.
- Portable design elements: Flip open the display and you are ready to go. The tactile bottom design of the Pixelbook Go makes it comfortable to carry and keeps it in place on a table.
- Wonderful media experience: The dual front speakers sound great, the 16:9 display looks lovely, and Bluetooth headphones work seamlessly with the Pixelbook Go. Since it's a laptop form factor you can angle it at your preferred viewing angle too. Even better for me with my older Bose noise-canceling earbuds is the fact that the Pixelbook Go still has a 3.5mm headset jack for wired audio support.
- Google Assistant integration: I regularly use Google Assistant to get tasks done while using the Pixelbook Go. I've never really tried using an assistant in the past to do more than look up some information, but Google Assistant is now truly functioning as an assistant to help me get work done.
- Laptop use: The Pixel Slate isn't the best for use on a laptop, but the light weight, awesome keyboard, and perfect balance of the Pixelbook Go means I can use it on the train when there is no table and anywhere around my home or office with ease. Efficiency doesn't take any kind of hit when you use the Pixelbook Go away from a desk.
I rarely use the Pixelbook Pen on the Slate and don't miss it at all on the Pixelbook Go. I'm a touchpad fan, but still like that I can touch the display and quickly select or scroll around with my fingers too.
My MobileTechRoundup podcast co-host Kevin Tofel and I apparently had a similar idea about posting follow-up articles on the Pixelbook Go so make sure to read his Pixelbook Go re-review with a discussion for developers.
While I've been using the $849 Intel i5 model, the $649 Core m3 model should perform about the same for my specific use cases so if this one ever dies that's the model I'm picking up for myself.