One of the 3 devices Google announced at its Made By Google event was the new Google Pixel Slate. Looking like an update to the older Pixel C tablet, the Pixel Slate looks like it is attempting to be a best of both world. Being a good tablet without a keyboard attachment and then bringing a full desktop affair was you snap in the new Pixel Slate Keyboard that can be brought separately for it. The new Google Pixel Slate and accessories however won’t come for cheap. Starting out at $599 for a baseline model which has 4GB RAM, 32GB SSD, 8th Gen Intel® Celeron processor which isn’t going to win any performance awards and tops out at a whopping $1599. For $1599 you’ll get 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD, 8th Gen Intel® CoreTM i7 processor which is okay nice but for that price whoa. And this is all just the tablet itself, no keyboard. For the keyboard folio, you’ll be shelling out another $199 and if you want/need that Google pen another $99. Make no mistake, this isn’t a simple budget use tablet, with these prices Google is coming for the neck of Microsoft and its Surface line.
While at the Made by Google event, I spent most of my time looking mainly at the Pixel Slate. My last real tablet use was the Nexus 9 and since support for that has come and gone, the Pixel Slate had caught my eye. From first glance the Pixel Slate’s screen is impressive. The display is really amazing and would be great for viewing a show or movie from say Netflix, and I’m curious how the SlingTV experience might be. If you a cord cutter, this could be a great device for catching up with your shows where ever you go. Beyond the screen, the user interface and touchscreen controls were on point, with the limited time I had I couldn’t find anything wrong I disliked about the Pixel Slate. Right now the only thing I’m not feeling is the price. Drop it down about 200 and I’d be a happy camper! When it comes to the keyboard though, I really do like the look, feel, and use of it. I can see it taking a little time to get use to the round keys vs square, but think it should be a short learning curve. I do appreciate that it isn’t a keyboard that has a battery you have to charge and the fact that it has a backlit keys is awesome. You definitely don’t see that on many attachment keyboards.
Now time will take if the Google Pixel Slate is worth it, and especially at that price point. It is much like iPad regular competitor and more Surface Pro and iPad Pro competition. So depending on your needs, this tablet may or may not be for you. Am I still interested? Yes. My current computer is an Apple Macbook Pro that is really long in the tooth now and I’ve tried to see what machine I would next replace it with. When I purchased this Macbook Pro, it was very different times, and my needs and how I can work with the inclusion of the cloud now is very different from before. I can use the Slate being something I’d be interested in. But again time will tell. Hopefully we can get a review unit to test out and give some full thoughts on! Once thing is for sure, I want the Google Pixel Slate just to using what app this was for this display unit at the event. I could do that every weekend just for fun! The Google Pixel Slate will be available later this year.