Chromebooks are extremely popular laptops, mostly because of their attractive price. Most of them are also really good at streaming movies from platforms like Netflix, Huly or Amazon Prime. So if you need them mostly for that… why pay extra dollars, when a Chromebook can offer everything you want?
If you’re just like us and you see no reason to do that, let me share with you some great news: we have selected the best Chromebooks for watching Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime Video and we’re sharing our findings with you in today’s article.
These Chromebooks will not only be great at streaming your favorite Netflix or Hulu TV shows and movies, but they are also very cheap compared to most laptops out there. They can do more than let you watch videos – they’re also great for surfing the web, chatting with friends, watching YouTube videos and editing documents, just to mention some of the main things you can do with. In other words: a perfect choice!
We’ve already shared with you a list of great cheap Chromebooks under $200, but now it’s time to focus exclusively on live streaming videos (which might require a bit more power), so let’s check out below the best Chromebooks for watching Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu and other services in 2020.
And yes, all these Chromebooks can be connected via an HDMI cable to your TV and stream all the shows on a larger screen if you want to. Most models don’t have an integrated HDMI port, but this can easily be fixed with an USB-C to HDMI cable (like this one here) which usually cost under $10.
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While we’ll have all the details and specifications for our recommendations below, if you’re in a hurry, you can just use our table view to make your choice.
|Samsung Chromebook 4||Award: Best Budget|
Storage: 64GB eMMC
Overall Rating: 5 / 5
| Acer R13||Display: 13.3″|
Storage: 32GB SSD
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5
|Asus Chromebook C425||Display: 14″|
Storage: 64GB eMMC
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5
|HP Chromebook x360||Award: Editor’s choice|
Storage: 64GB eMMC
Overall Rating: 5 / 5
|Acer 15.6″ Chromebook||Display: 15.6″|
Storage: 32GB eMMC
Overall Rating: 4 / 5
|Lenovo Yoga||Award: Best performance|
Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5
Best Chromebooks for streaming movies / TV Shows
(Note that we’re listing the laptops based on their display size, from the small 11.1″ Samsung to the large 15.6-Inch model from Acer)
Samsung Chromebook 4 (Budget Award)
Samsung’s Chromebooks have always been some of the most appreciated on the market, and they are so for all the right reasons: they offer great performance at a cheap price, and that is exactly what we need in our lives sometimes!
The Chromebook 4 is a small one – with an 11.6″ display – so unless you really need something small and portable (as well as VERY cheap), you might want to go for bigger models… until then, Samsung’s Chromebook 4 grabs our award of the best budget entry on the list.
If a large display size is not that important for you, then this Chromebook is great for streaming your favorite TV shows and movies. You can also connect it to a larger TV via HDMI (if you buy the dongle I mentioned above) for increasing the screen size.
It’s actually a good thing to do, as many shows and movies are not available on Smart TVs, but are available online (plus, you kind of fix its small screen size, which is really good!)
In terms of performance, if you don’t need the specifics, it’s enough to know that the Samsung Chromebook 4 can handle streaming without a problem and can do so for long periods of time without the need of recharging (up to 12.5 hours of regular usage).
If you want to know the specifics, we can note that it runs on an Intel Celeron N4000 processor running at a maximum speed of 2.60 GHz, with 4GB of RAM. It has a maximum resolution of 1366×768 pixels – so it’s HD, not full HD, but the truth is that for streaming movies and TV shows online, especially on its small screen, you won’t really notice a difference!
This isn’t really top notch performance, but you will still have no stuttering or lag when streaming from your favorite platform, as long as you have good internet.
As a bonus, the Chromebook 4 is slim and weights under 3 pounds, meaning that it’s extremely easy to carry it around. However, this can turn into a Con for other people who would probably appreciate a larger screen – but that is up for you to decide.
It’s also worth noting that, just like in the case of most Chromebooks out there, you get very limited storage: Samsung’s Chromebook 4 comes with a 64GB eMMC drive (which is actually better than what most chromebooks offer).
eMMC drives are also really fast compared to regular hard drives. Also, since you won’t need to store the movies and TV shows when you’re streaming, storage shouldn’t be a big problem anyway.
The Chromebook’s speakers are decent, but not more. The sound quality you get is aceptable and for watching movies it is good enough, but without cinema-grade quality and clarity. We do recommend using a pair of headphones or some sort of speakers to get better quality sound, though.
We’re now moving to what I would call a decent size for watching movies and shows directly on the laptop’s screen. In this case, the size still remains relatively small so that we have increased portability, but at 13.3″ you’re getting a larger and better screen that makes watching movies or TV series on Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime a lot more enjoyable.
11.6″ is way too small in my books unless you connect it to a larger screen or you really need something extremely portable. When watching movies, bigger is better.
And the Acer R13 does have a few tricks up its sleeve! One of them is the fact that it’s sold as a 2-in-1, meaning that you can rotate its screen and turn it into a tablet (a large, bulky one though).
This also means that it has a touchscreen, which is a nice feature for modern users. But these are more like extra bells and whistles, which are nice to have but not must have for our purpose of watching movies and shows online.
It does have some great specifications as well: even though it is powered by a MediaTek Quad-core M8173C processor (which is usually seen on tablets, not larger laptops), it still performs well and our tests showed that it can handle multiple apps and tabs at the same time – as well as flawless video streaming.
It has 4GB of RAM to help it run better, as well as 32GB of SSD storage, which is better than an eMMC since it’s faster. But in this case, I’d say that it’s a bit on the low side and you’ll fill it up really fast. At least it has a microSD card slot, so you can increase the storage if needed.
The image quality is really good since it’s full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels) and this laptop remains highly portable as it’s very slim and extremely light at around 4 pounds, with a solid battery life of up to 12 hours on a single charge.
In terms of audio quality, you won’t really have any reasons to complain, but neither to write home about. The sound is as clear and nice as you can expect it to be from a budget laptop, which is less than impressive. But we haven’t had much better experiences either with other laptops in the same price range…
Asus Chromebook C425
Asus is a high quality brand when it comes for traditional laptops and fortunately the same goes for Chromebooks.
This model is perfect for streaming Netflix and Hulu videos and comes with a great price/quality ratio, plus an even larger screen (14-inch) which offers the ideal mix between portability and actual image size for easier viewing.
It packs quite some power under the hood, thanks to its Intel Core M3-8100Y Processor running at speeds of up to 3.4GHz. You also get 8GB of RAM here, which is enough for a flawless experience without any lag or freezes – as long as you have a good internet connection.
The Chromebook C425 also supports full HD resolution (1920×1080 pixels), which is always a bonus, especially if you plan on connecting it via an HDMI cable to your TV.
But even if you watch on your laptop’s display, you will enjoy a crisp, solid image – better than on a regular HD definition laptop, if streaming in Full HD is available.
An interesting feat that Asus managed to accomplish is keeping its size low: you’re actually getting a 13″ laptop’s body, but thanks to the massive screen-to-body ratio (which is 85%), you’re actually getting a 14″ Chromebook. This further means that it’s light at just 2.87lbs, so highly portable.
This model offers a decent amount of storage as well: 64GB on an eMMC and I consider it a really good Chromebook with a long battery life and a great processor/RAM combo. In other words, it works great for streaming online and also performing other regular activities over the internet.
It has a durable aluminum chassis and this particular model includes a backlit keyboard and two USB type C slots, making it a really modern device.
We were pleasantly surprised with the audio quality of this Chromebook. While definitely not cinema-grade quality (you rarely get that from a laptop anyway), the sound is crisp and clear even though the bass levels give it some trouble. The good thing is that for watching movies and TV shows, you don’t really need that.
HP Chromebook x360 – Editor’s Choice
We’re sticking to the larger, 14″ screen with an elegant model manufactured by HP. Doesn’t it look sleek and absolutely awesome? It sure does, and fortunately it doesn’t only look good – it has some great specifications to perform really well in 2020.
This means that we’re getting a more powerful processor (the 8th generation Intel Core i3-8130U, running at speeds of up to 3.4Ghz), as well as 8GB of RAM. This is by far one of the best combos on our list, for maximum performance!
It offers decent amount of storage too – 64GB on an eMMC, which means lightning fast reading and writing speeds and more storage than your regular Chromebooks offers. We would’ve enjoyed more storage, but you can live with that as well.
The larger full HD display offers a really clear and nice image quality – with the display itself offering touch capabilities. It has a good battery life and USB Type C ports (together with a regular USB one), as well as a microSD card slot.
So if you’re looking for a larger screen – all while still being as portable as possible (this model not only looks good, but is also really thin and pretty light at 3.7 lbs) – this model definitely offers the top performance for the money and is our top recommendation (unless you really need a device with a larger screen).
Another thumbs up goes to its surprisingly good sound quality.
Acer Chromebook 15.6″
The Acer Chromebook 15.6″ offers a display size that I would consider standard for regular laptops and great for watching video content.
So based on this – as well as its other specifications – this Chromebook is great when it comes to streaming video content from Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and so on – especially if you enjoy larger screens and you don’t necessarily want to connect it to a TV.
I would’ve liked it to have a better processor to match its size, but the Intel Celeron N3350 it comes equipped with can offer speeds of up to 2.4GHz, so it’s decent. It also has 4GB of RAM – again, something that could’ve been better for faster performance – but it’s clear that its main advantage here is the screen size.
Finally, the 32GB eMMC drive rounds up its set of pretty unimpressive specifications, with the only consolation (apart from size) coming from the fact that it has a touchscreen display that supports FHD resolutions of up to 1920 x 1080 pixels.
All in all, this is a good Chromebook for streaming movies and TV series online. I personally prefer a larger screen at all times and this one offers that without becoming too uncomfortable to carry around: at almost 4 pounds, it’s not extremely heavy and is just 0.7″ thick!
You are definitely getting less than you get from the smaller laptops – but you’re trading some storage and a little bit of speed for a larger screen with a decent image quality. As I said, bigger is better when it comes to watching movies, so it might be worth it.
This model also delivers really good audio thanks to its forward-facing speakers. This way, the sound isn’t muffled and you get the full experience and the sound itself has more depth. The larger size of the Chromebook also helps make the audio fill up a room easier and nicer.
Lenovo Yoga 2-in-1 – Best Performance
Now, if you really want something extremely powerful, this entry is exactly what you’re looking for. It might be a bit overkill if you’re only getting it for general use like streaming videos, browsing the internet and whatnot, but its sheer power and amazing specifications make it too good to ignore.
You’re basically getting here a Chromebook with regular laptop specifications: it has a nice, large display of 15.6″, but the biggest surprise comes from the fact that it is powered by an amazing 8th Generation Intel Core i5-8250U processor (the best on this list and rarely seen on a Chromebook).
It is paired up with 8GB of RAM and also offers a ton of storage: 128GB on a fast eMMC drive. Even better, you also get a bonus 64GB SD card to expand that storage a bit for free.
In other words, it is as much of a beast as Chromebooks can be nowadays and you will definitely have no problems multitasking on it.
Full HD resolution (1920 x 1080 pixels) and a touch screen round up an amazing product that offers a lot of processing power and can be easily used for multitasking and performing more advanced operations, like photo editing and other more demanding tasks – and also handles streaming videos without a problem.
The audio quality is really nice here as well. The Windows version of the Windows Yoga has JBL speakers to handle the sound and we believe that the same brand is used on this model as well. Either way, the stereo sound quality is really good here!
It does come for a price as it is the most expensive on our list and, as I said, you don’t really need all these top features if you’re only looking for a portable laptop for streaming movies and nothing else.
But if you want a product that moves really fast and will probably deliver a solid performance for at least a few years from now, the Lenovo Yoga is a great choice!
So these would be the best Chromebooks for streaming videos from Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video. We’ve listed different sizes above, so you can pick a smaller or larger screen as you prefer. You have all the details you need to make an educated choice and get the right Chromebook for your needs.
But no matter which model you buy, I am sure that you will be extremely pleased with the streaming and overall quality of these Chromebooks. Don’t forget though that a solid internet connection is essential, otherwise you won’t be able to get the most from streaming your favorite shows even if you buy a more powerful product.
And if you want even more options and increased portability, why not check our article on the best cheap tablets for Netflix and Hulu?