Google’s successor to the Pixelbook is the the $599 Pixel Slate, available later this year as a lightweight hybrid tablet that doubles as both a workstation and a home theater.
The powerful Chrome OS device comes with a high-res touch screen. For $199, add the Google Pixel Slate Keyboard, which doubles as a protective case. Complete the set with the $99 Google Pixelbook Pen.
The Pixel Slate is thin and light with rounded edges, measuring only 7mm thick and weighing in at 1.6 pounds. It comes in a new Midnight Blue color. The detailed display packs 293 pixels per inch for a wide 6 million pixel display that Google touted for movies, photos, and games.
The Pixel Slate’s dual speakers are positioned on the front of the device to shoot stereo sound right at you. Google thinks so highly of the sound, it’s offering three months of YouTube TV free with a new Pixel Slate or Pixelbook.
The tablet has 8MP front-facing and rear-facing cameras. As with the new Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, the front-facing camera has a wide-angle lens called a Duo Cam for a wider field of view in video chat, and a sensor with larger pixels for better low-light camera performance. The cameras also have portait mode, leveraging on-device machine learning to keep a single point in focus.
The Pixel Slate Keyboard connects by snapping into the base of the tablet, and requires no pairing or charging. The backlit keyboard has rounded keys designed to minimize those annoying clacking sounds, and a full-featured trackpad. There’s also an adjustable folio to tweak your keyboard angle to what’s comfortable.
On the software side, the Pixel Slate runs a new version of Chrome OS optimized for touch screens with a full desktop experience that can support developer tools and full-powered Linux apps. The OS has a reconfigured app launcher that uses machine learning to surface the apps you’re most likely looking for, and is more deeply integrated with Google Assistant to carry out more tasks with voice commands.
Pixel Slate devices come with G Suite, plus a full desktop Chrome browser with extension functionality and unlimited tabs. The tablet is also launching with the new Adobe Acrobat app, where you can use the Pixelbook Pen to edit PDFs, fill out forms, and sign documents, as well as apps including Netflix, Peloton, and Roblox.
The Pixel Slate also has split-screen mode, Do Not Disturb and night light features, and a tool called Family Link to set ground rules for family use and parental controls over screen time if it’s a shared device. On the security front, the Pixel Slate joins the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL in having the Titan Security chip built in to encrypt information, passwords, and the operating system on-device. For an additional layer of security, the power button doubles as a fingerprint sensor.
In terms of battery life, Google says the Pixel Book has up to 12 hours of charge with typical mixed usage.
The Pixel Slate also comes in several other configurations. The base $599 model has a Celeron processor, 32GB of storage and 4GB of RAM. There’s also a $799 model with a Core m3 processor, 64GB of memory, and 8GB of RAM, and a $999 configuration with a Core i5 processor, 128GB of storage and 8GB of RAM. Finally, the maxed-out $1,599 model packs a Core i7 processor with 256GB of storage and 16GB of RAM.