With the light notebook market filled with numerous Chromebooks, HP had to come up with something that is a bit different from the rest. So here is it, HP Stream 14-ax040nr, a 14-inch notebook that comes with a preloaded Windows 10 (rather than a usual Chrome OS). So, let’s see how it stacks up in comparison with the rest of the Chromebooks.
- CPU – Intel Celeron N3060 Dual-Core, 1.6 GHz
- GPU – Intel HD Graphics
- Memory – 4 GB (1 x 4 GB) DDR3
- Screen – 14-inch HD (1,366 x 768)
- Storage – 64 GB eMMC Flash
- OS – Windows 10 Home edition
- Price – While not one of the cheapest ultrabooks out there in the market, I would rather say that it’s a mid-range ultraportable laptop. Looking at the configuration that it comes with (dual Core Intel Celeron processor rather than an inferior Mediatek or Rockchip CPU that many Chromebooks has opted for, 4 GB of low power RAM, and 64 GB of ROM + additional storage as covered next), I would say that it’s a good value for all the spent money.
- Storage – It comes with a relatively larger flash memory of 64 GB (especially in comparison with the earlier model of this series Stream 14-ax010nr which included only 32 GB). In addition to that, keeping the ever-increasing need for online cloud-based storage in mind, it comes with 100 GB of free OneDrive cloud storage from the Microsoft. And if even that doesn’t suffice, you can opt for an external memory card.
- Battery – The 41 Wh battery shows a pretty decent battery backup. Even while surfing internet and streaming videos online via Wi-Fi (that’s the only option for accessing the internet, sadly; no RJ45 port) it is able to stay alive for a good long 7 to 8 hours. It beats the Lenovo duo of Ideapad 100S-14 (5:51) and ThinkPad 13 (6:30) in this section with staying just behind Samsung Chromebook 3 (9:50).
- Crappy plastic – While the candy blue plastic casing looks pretty funky, it does come with a bit of problem. First of all, due to the plastic material, there is very little sturdiness in the chassis. While typing (or clicking the trackpad somewhat strongly) a considerable amount of flex can be seen in the hollow chassis of the laptop.
- Dim Screen – While the screen is a relatively wide 14-inch display, it does seem a bit dim. With an average brightness of 180 nits, it surely lags behind the minimum display luminance of 200 nits. Also, it doesn’t feature touchscreen unlike many of the competing Chromebooks. But again, it’s not a 2 in 1 in the first place, to begin with.
- Lagging – Okay, I won’t lie. Running a full-fledged Windows OS in a minimally configured laptop like this is not absolutely easy. This fact can be observed first hand when one tries to run a number of different programmes simultaneously. Even opening 5 or 6 tabs in the browser (especially in a browser that is installed by the user; inbuilt Microsoft Edge lets it feel much less) causes a considerable amount of stuttering and lagging. So, the Windows OS, I think, is a twin edged sword here. The usability and the familiar interface of Windows come at a price of less multitasking capabilities.
Well, after looking at it closely I would say that it is worth every penny that you spend on it. Even considering its limited capabilities, it’s more than enough for your internet surfing, mail checking and typing jobs. So, considering its pocket-friendly price, decent battery life and loads of features, I would say that it is a good bargain.