Here come the Chromeboxes. First Acer, then Asus, and now HP have planned release dates and prices for the Chromeboxes they announced in January. Online pre-orders for the HP Chromebox G2 have begun at two retailers (Tiger Direct and MacMall) with HP expecting device shipments to start on or around May 30.
Like the new Chromeboxes from Acer and Asus, HP is selling a range of models that use either the older seventh-generation Intel processors or, for a higher price, the new eight-gen chips. For $208, you’ll get a 1.8GHz Intel Celeron 3865U paired with 4GB of memory, 32GB of local storage with a microSD expansion option, six USB ports (with one being USB-C), HDMI out, 802.11ac with 2×2 MIMO for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2 and a Gigabit Ethernet port. That’s nearly the same configuration as the base Acer unit for $30 less.
Moving up the budget very quickly is a $574 configuration at both retailers that has the same ports and network connectivity but is powered by a 2.6GHz seventh generation Kaby-Lake Core i5-7300 processor. For the big boost in price you also get double the memory — 8GB of RAM — but still 32GB of local flash storage.
And if you want the latest Intel processors inside your HP Chromebox G2, you’ll pay a premium. There are two models from to choose from costing $720 (Tiger Direct / MacMall) and $820 (Tiger Direct / MacMall).
The main differences are in the chipset, storage and memory. Both are powered by a 1.9GHz eighth generation Kaby Lake-R Core i7-8650U processor. The $720 model has 8GB of memory and 32GB of storage while an extra $100 doubles both capacities: 16GB of RAM and 64GB of storage.
While HP hasn’t announced these details, they generally match up with an internal press sheet showing the HP Chromebox G2 specs. Note too that the spec sheets specifically says “Android support” even though these devices don’t yet appear on the official list of Chrome OS devices that support Android apps.
Email correspondence between my tipster (thanks, George!) and HP indicates that “the tentative launch date of the HP Chromebox G2 is on May 30, 2018”, so if you pre-order now, you’re looking at around four to five weeks, assuming HP meets its expected release date for the HP Chromebox G2.