HP's New Chromebook x360 Convertibles Support Ambitious Universal Stylus Initiative

HP Chromebook x360 14b NaturalSilver Ceramic 2
Hewlett-Packard has just unwrapped a duo of new Chromebook devices, which are increasingly becoming popular due to the versatile nature of Google’s Chrome OS and affordable pricing. The new devices are the Chromebook x360 12b and the Chromebook x360 14b.

Both share the same design language, with the main distinction being with screen size. The Chromebook x360 12b features a 12-inch HD+ display (1366x912), while the Chromebook x360 14b brings with it a larger 14-inch panel that can be had in either HD (1366x768) or FHD resolutions. Both of the devices feature a 360-degree hinge for using it in laptop or tablet modes (or anything in-between).

HP Chromebook x360 14b NaturalSilver CeramicWhite Front
HP Chromebook x360 14b

With either device, you're looking at a base dual-core Intel Celeron N4000 processor (or an optional quad-core Pentium processor), 4GB of LPDDR4-2400 RAM, a 32GB eMMC for internal storage (you can option it up to 128GB), a microSD reader for further expanding storage, and B&O stereo speakers. You'll also find Wi-Fi 5 support and Bluetooth 5.0 along with an HP Wide Vision HD camera.

The Chromebook x360 12b weighs in at a relatively lightweight 2.98 pounds, while the Chromebook x360 14b isn't much heavier at 3.48 pounds. The former can last up to 12 hours per charge, while the latter isn't far behind at 10 hours of use -- both should be fully capable of getting you through a full day's worth of work.

HP Chromebook x360 14b NaturalSilver Ceramic

While the new Chromebook x360 family's specs seem perfectly in line with what we expect from a modern Chromebook, they do have one trick up their sleeves: they support the Universal Stylus Initiative (USI). This standard is being adopted by a number of manufacturers to allow compatible styluses to work across a wide variety of devices and support two-way communication, while also preserving settings/preferences as you move from device to device.

Right now, we're seeing the first wave of USI 1.0 devices, and the new HP Rechargeable USI Pen is of course compatible. The stylus magnetically attaches to the Chromebook x360 when not in use. Other well-known device makers that have signed on with USI include Google, Samsung, and Wacom; however, none have released compatible stylus hardware at this time. That could change though when Google announces new hardware early next month.

The HP Chromebook x360 12b and the Chromebook x360 14b will be available in the coming days priced from $359 and $379 respectively. Likewise, the HP Rechargeable USI Pen is priced at $69.99 and will be available to purchase in November.