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HP may like to use incredibly disjointed naming schemes, but the HP Chromebook x360 13b shouldn't be ignored just because the name is so bad that you can't tell what it offers over the rest of HP's x360 line. This particular device runs on a MediaTek Kompanio 1380 — perhaps not an SoC you'd expect from MediaTek — yet, I can assure you the chip delivers, making the HP Chromebook x360 13b one of my favorite Chromebooks in my growing stable.

Of course, this is still a Chromebook, which means you get everything you'd expect from one, good and bad. The 1920 x 1080 IPS screen is attractive, with colors that pop and dark blacks, but it's also very reflective (since few Chromebooks offer matte touchscreens). Ports are also limited, which is nothing new for Chromebooks, but at least HP offers a black keyboard so the optional backlighting is legible in every situation.

That's not to say the HP Chromebook x360 13b is some sort of remarkable powerhouse able to compete with Chromebooks that sport i5 Intel chips, but it certainly performs for the price. Plus, at 13.3 inches, it's an incredibly handy size for portability. It also manages to get everyday tasks done and has splendid battery life (what ARM chips are all about), which is why the HP Chromebook x360 13b is the laptop I currently reach for as a reliable travel companion.

The HP Chromebook x360 13b may have flown under most people's radar, but it's quite a little powerhouse thanks to the included MediaTek Kompanio 1380 chipset. There's also a cheaper model with a weaker chip for those looking to save a little money. However, if you'd like to use a backlit keyboard, you'll have to go with the 1380 model, which also includes double the RAM at 8GB.

While ARM devices aren't as prevalent for Chromebooks, you can rest assured both the Kompanio 1200 and 1380 can keep pace with x86 chips. Plus, you get excellent battery life due to how ARM sips power, making the HP Chromebook x360 13b a worthy mid-range contender that won't break the bank at $490.

  • Color: Grey
  • Storage: 128 GB PCIe NVMe SSD
  • CPU: MediaTek Kompanio 1380
  • Memory: 8 GB LPDDR4-4266 MHz RAM
  • Operating System: Chrome OS
  • Battery: 2-cell, 47 Wh Li-ion polymer
  • Ports: 2 USB Type-C 5Gbps signaling rate, 1 USB Type-A 5Gbps signaling rate, 1 headphone/microphone combo
  • Camera: HP Wide Vision 720p HD camera
  • Display (Size, Resolution): 13.3" diagonal, FHD (1920 x 1080), multitouch-enabled, IPS, edge-to-edge glass, micro-edge, 250 nits
  • Weight: 2.96 lb
  • GPU: MediaTek Integrated Arm Mali Graphics
  • Auto Update Expiration (AUE): Jun 2030
  • Form: 2-in-1
  • Dimension: 12.13 x 8.22 x 0.66 inches
  • Network: MediaTek Wi-Fi 6 MT7921 (2x2) and Bluetooth® 5.2 combo
  • Speakers: Dual speakers; HP Audio Boost (downfiring)
  • Price: $490
  • Board: jinlon
  • Model: HP Chromebook x360 13b-ca0047nr
  • USI Compatibility: Yes
  • Power: 45 W USB Type-C power adapter
  • Finish: Anodized aluminum and plastic
  • Portable at 13-inches
  • Micro SD slot for expanded storage
  • USB-C and USB A ports
  • Backlit keyboard on black keys (very legible)
  • Bottom-firing speakers
  • Glossy screen is very reflective
  • Could use more ports
  • Slightly heavy for the size
Buy This Product
HP Chromebook x360 13b

Price & availability

HP Chromebook x360 13b review angle stairs

The HP Chromebook x360 13b comes in a few different optional configurations. The device I'm reviewing can be purchased directly from HP for $490 and comes with the Kompanio 1380, 8GB of RAM, 256GB storage, and a backlit keyboard. There's also a model that comes with a slightly weaker Kompanio 1200, 4GB RAM, and 12GB storage.

Both models can be purchased with or without a backlit keyboard, ranging from $450 to $509. These devices often go on sale, making the x360 13b an even better deal, but you will have to order directly from HP as it appears nobody else carries the Chromebook. If you're waiting for a sale, you will have to wait until the next time HP discounts the laptop. Even though anyone can easily order from HP, the lack of availability outside of this store does mean you're beholden to HP and its pricing whether you like it or not.


HP Chromebook x360 13b review open moss

The overall look of the HP Chromebook x360 13b is familiar if you've ever used a laptop, especially any 2-in-1 Chromebooks. That's not to knock the folding design, but it's a familiar look for sure. What I appreciate is that the entire lid is aluminum, which feels substantial in hand and will hold up to some rough use. Although the lid's added weight makes the device less portable, its overall sturdiness ensures it can stand up to some abuse while carrying it around. The aluminum is anodized, with a welcoming dark gray color; the plastic chassis matches this color quite well, while the lid is only slightly darker than the body. From a distance, you'd think the whole thing was aluminum.

HP Chromebook x360 13b review top down

However, picking up the device from the corner with the lid open tends to make the trackpad click. While manufacturers figured out how to avoid registering those clicks in the OS a good while ago, the physical clicking sound still happens because the body is made of plastic, so it's flexible. This does not provide the user with an overall feeling of quality, but it's a common issue across many laptops and Chromebooks, especially those that are thin and made of plastic. While the use of recycled plastics in the HP Chromebook x360 13b is commendable, you do have to wonder if this contributes to the plastic's flexibility.

The good news is that despite the flexy plastic chassis, after a month of tossing my x360 13b around, it's still holding up just fine. The folding mechanism feels quite solid, so when you flip the screen into tablet form, you can tell you're holding something substantial that won't break easily. However, this also means you can't open the device with one hand, like most 2-in-1s. Thanks to the stiff hinges, you'll have to use two hands to open and fold the x360 13b — an inconvenience.

HP Chromebook x360 13b review speakers

Another downside is that the dual-firing speakers are underneath the unit, so they are easily blocked if you rest your Chromebook on something soft like your bed covers. While the lack of an internal fan means you can set the laptop on any surface without worrying about blocking vents and overheating, the poor speaker placement ensures you won't hear much if anything blocks them, which is pretty easy when they are under the laptop.

There aren't many ports; this is a Chromebook, after all, so you get two USB-C ports, one on each side, and they both offer charging and video out. There's also a USB A port on the left, which is where you'll also find the power button and volume rocker. On the right, you'll find a headphone jack and micro-SD slot. Having the ability to charge on either side of the device is nice, but I can't help but feel that one or two more USB A ports would have been nice, or even a dedicated HDMI out. Sure, you can hook up a USB hub if you wish, but it would be nicer not to need one.

HP Chromebook x360 13b review keyboard and touchpad

As for the keyboard, you can choose a model with or without backlighting. I can say the backlighting is welcome and plenty legible, thanks to the black keys. And much like most Chromebooks, the touchpad is large and in charge. You have plenty of room to swipe and pull off gestures, and when pressed, the click feels good, plenty tactile to ensure you don't miss click.

To sum up the design, I'd say it's a little boring, a little short on ports, and could be sturdier. But overall, these are the compromises you'll see in similarly-priced Chromebooks, so it's not like they are unexpected or even that disrupting.


HP Chromebook x360 13b review front stairs

Not everyone will agree with me, but I'm happy to see that the screen is 16:9. This is the best ratio for modern content, from games to TV shows. While it might not offer the height of a 3:2 display, fitting much more text vertically than 16:9 can muster, the glossy IPS screen tells me media rather than text-based websites are the focus here. How well 16:9 is depends on what you plan to use the device for, though I find it to be a perfect middle ground for both work and play, which is often what my Chromebooks are used for when writing reviews like this or streaming games in bed.

My main gripe with the display is that it's only 250 nits. That's not bright enough for good visibility in direct lighting, thanks to the reflective screen, so the Chromebook excels more indoors than it does out. Sure, you can still get some work done outside if you can block the sun under an umbrella while drinking a mojito — but this isn't the Chromebook to take with you if you often work outdoors in direct sunlight. Seeing that I'm a homebody, it was rare 250 nits wasn't enough for me.

HP Chromebook x360 13b review air

What stands out about the 13.3-inch 1920 x 1080 multitouch-enabled IPS is its colors and black levels. Watching movies and TV on the screen is a delight, and streamed games also look pretty great; I had a blast playing "Cyberpunk" through Geforce Now. The best part is that all streamed games will fit the 16:9 screen since all game streaming services support the ratio, unlike those new gaming Chromebooks with 16:10 screens. So for all intents and purposes, I find the x360 13b to be a fine gaming device, which all comes down to the quality screen. It might not be anything special at 1080p compared to higher-end Chromebooks, but it gets the job done and looks great.

This is a touchscreen device that works with USI pens, and since this is also a 2-in-1, you can flip to an exclusive screen mode, something more akin to a tablet. Yes, it's heavy and cumbersome when folded, but it's still a nice option for reading, gaming, or editing documents (thanks to the touchscreen).


HP Chromebook x360 13b review in hand

Those who have used Chrome OS devices surely know what to expect here. The OS is immutable, meaning almost every version running is the same (beyond some manufacturer tweaks for specific hardware and software support). Whether or not you'll enjoy ChromeOS's software comes down to what type of experience you expect. Apps will be limited to what's available on Android and Linux, with a few PWAs mixed in, and many of these options won't look great on the screen or run optimally. That's not to say you can't make due, but perhaps spending money to make due isn't on your immediate agenda.

The good news is that OS updates are timely, ensuring the software remains secure, which is always nice.


HP Chromebook x360 13b review tbalet form-1

For me, performance is where the HP Chromebook x360 13b shines, which feels surprising to say about a device with an ARM chip, yet I'm definitely saying it. For one, power consumption is pretty minimal, so battery life is superb. But that's a known for ARM; what's surprising is how well the Kompanio 1380 stacks up to the likes of Intel and x86 chips. At no time did too many open tabs in the browser slow me down, and even Linux and Android apps ran expediently, which surprised me. While I tend to stick to PWAs for my app experience on Chromebooks, it's nice to see that the MediaTek Kompanio 1380 paired with 8GB of RAM stacks up quite well against the competition.

Navigating the UI feels smooth, with no noticeable hitches during use. For instance, Android apps open fairly fast, and even Linux apps don't take ages to open. Sure, you can clog things by opening tons of apps and tabs in Chrome, but things are plenty reliable for my day-to-day work, with at least ten tabs and four to five apps open. And even though I don't put much stock in benchmarks, here are a few that you can easily compare to competing Chromebooks.

  • Speedometer 2.0: 74.5
  • Jetstream2: 98.587
  • MotionMark 1.2: 342.94

While I wouldn't go so far as to claim the HP Chromebook x360 13b is superb at playing demanding Android games (where it struggled with titles like Genshin Impact), it's a perfect companion for streaming games — which appears to be where gaming is headed on Chromebooks, with the recent launch of Cloud Gaming Chromebooks. The HP Chromebook x360 13b isn't one of them, but that doesn't mean game streaming and getting work done aren't possible.

Battery life

HP Chromebook x360 13b review around the house

HP claims you'll get 16 hours of use with a single charge with the 2-cell, 47 Wh Li-ion polymer battery included, and I have confirmed through use you can easily get pretty close to this lofty metric. I've eked out about 13 hours of use on each charge, and that's with a heavy workload that lasts longer than 8 hours a day. Suffice it to say you'll be able to lean on the x360 13b throughout the day without worrying about running out of juice. Plus, you can charge 50% in just 45 minutes, meaning a full charge is only an hour and a half. So even if you manage to tear through your battery life with incredibly demanding tasks, you can easily plug in to regain some battery life without too much downtime.


The Lenovo Duet 5 Detachable 2 in 1 Chromebook comes in at a similar price point ($500) with similar specs, though you'll lose on RAM since you only get 6GB with the Duet. You get a 13.3-inch OLED screen, though, which is a step up over the 13.3-inch IPS of the x360 13b. The Lenovo is also a detachable device, which means you can take off the keyboard and use it as a tablet, cutting down on weight where you'll have to lug the entirety of the x360 13b around when in tablet form. The Duet 5's Snapdragon SC7180 Processor is comparable to the Kompanio 1380; however, neither is x86, so they aren't as widely supported.

Then there's the Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (3H), a 14-inch device that offers AMD Ryzen 3 processor, keeping the non-Intel processor train rolling. This is a typical 2-in-1 Chromebook comparable to the x360 13b, but it is nowhere near as portable as the Lenovo when detached from its keyboard. The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (3H) goes on sale often but retails for $550. So if you're more of an Acer stan than an HP fan, perhaps the extra $50 will be worth it. Just keep in mind the AMD chip means a hit to battery life compared to the x360 13b and Duet 5.

Should you buy it?

HP Chromebook x360 13b review sunny

The HP Chromebook x360 13b may not be on everyone's radar, seeing that it's not available in retail stores beyond HP's. And the fact that it's also an ARM device may not be doing it any favors, either. But to me, that's the selling point. Not only does the Kompanio 1380 punch well above its weight, but I also had a blast running it through its paces as a fan of unique and interesting technology. While fanboying over tech might not be the most reliable method of not wasting money since the performance is on par with any Intel Chromebook in a similar price range, it's fun to explore new ground while also getting some work done.

Still, Chromebooks aren't for everyone, especially those of you who have to use specific software with your jobs and schools. Luckily, ChromeOS has been around long enough that plenty of workarounds are available, such as using Linux software and Android apps, both of which are compatible with the x360 13b, rounding out its capabilities beyond the competent internal specs.

So whether or not you'll be eager to plop down $490 for the HP Chromebook x360 13b comes down to your personal needs. As someone who primarily works in the cloud, I have no issues using the device in my day-to-day life. Then, in my evenings, the Chromebook makes for a solid game streaming device that excels at playing media, thanks to the 16:9 screen. This is why for the last month, the HP Chromebook x360 13b has been the device I have reached for the most. It's portable, the build quality is reliable, the performance is on point, and unlike my more expensive laptops, it won't be the end of the world if some battle scars arise while toting the Chromebook to and fro. Isn't that what good laptops should be all about?