The Good The inexpensive HP Stream 14 is an attractive, lightweight 14-inch Windows laptop with long battery life and performance that is sufficient for basic performance and streaming. Many expansion ports. Includes 1TB of OneDrive cloud storage and Office 365 Personal for one year.
The Bad Onboard storage capacity. The screen quality is not very good, and the keyboard and touchpad are just passable.
The Bottom Line HP Stream 14 again demonstrates that a Windows laptop for email and online applications can be attractive and inexpensive.
A low price for a laptop can offset a lot of disadvantages. That is, as long as these shortcomings do not prevent you from doing things.
For example, a 14-inch HP Stream is only $ 220 in the US and £ 200 in the UK. Until your needs go too far beyond watching YouTube videos, emailing and using web applications, you are gold. (HP does not offer Stream in 14-inch size in Australia, but is a $ 500 HP 14-am034tu, which is configured similarly but with a 500GB hard drive instead of 32GB EMMK.)
HP Stream 14 (14-ax010nr)
|Price as reviewed||$220, £200|
|Display size/resolution||14-inch 1,366×768 display|
|PC CPU||1.6GHz Intel Celeron N3060|
|PC Memory||4GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz|
|Graphics||Intel HD Graphics 400 (128MB)|
|Storage||32GB eMMC storage|
|Networking||802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.0|
|Operating system||Window 10 Home (64-bit)|
|Expansion||One USB 2.0 port, Two USB 3.0/3.1 ports, SD card slot, mic/headphone jack, HDMI out|
The 14-inch body is slim and light at about 3 pounds (1.4 kg), but if you were hoping for something smaller, HP makes an 11.6-inch stream at $ 20 less. It has the same internal components as the 14, but has one smaller USB 3.1 port and microSD card slot instead of the 14th full size.
Stream is also a nice laptop, assuming you’re cool with bright blue. It’s all plastic with combs on the lid that give it texture and extra grip. Blue continues inside, except for the bright white keyboard.
With a paltry 32GB of memory – only about half of them are usable – it’s nice that HP didn’t skimp on expansion options. The SD card is also almost fully inserted into the slot so you can easily leave a card for files and applications.
Of course, you can use these keyboard and mouse ports to avoid the touchpad and laptop keyboard. The latter is not altogether unpleasant, but the travel is very small, and the keys feel as thin and contrived as they might pop or stop working if you type too hard. The touchpad is usually good, but I recommend turning off most multitouch options, such as pinching and zooming and adjusting palm deflection.
If you plug in a keyboard and mouse, you can also connect a monitor. The laptop screen looks washed out, the colors are off, and I found myself constantly adjusting the angle in a vain attempt to make it look better. Do you know what worked? Display to full screen via HDMI.
As for its stereo speakers, I’ll just say that it has a headphone jack and Bluetooth 4.0, and it’s not.
The advantage of Stream over similar pricing and customized Chromebooks is that it runs Windows 10, so you’re not locked into the Google Web OS. You can install iTunes software like Apple, Microsoft Office or Minecraft. The same goes for mouse drivers, keyboards, and printers. Oh, and you can use the Microsoft Edge browser or install any other browser you want to use, including Chrome.
This does not mean that you can install and run any The software for Windows you want on it. It just doesn’t have the power of the processor or the memory to power something too demanding. It even struggled with Chrome when it opened half a dozen tabs (though Edge performance was better).
While performance may not deplete you, battery life is astounding: Stream 14 ran for 8 hours on our online streaming test. For simpler tasks such as word processing, you should be able to hit more than 9 hours.
HP Stream 14 again demonstrates that a Windows laptop for email and online applications can be attractive and inexpensive. He has his problems, but it’s $ 220, and it’s hard to argue with.
|HP Stream 14||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 1.6GHz Intel Celeron N3060; 4GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 128MB (dedicated) Intel HD Graphics 400; 32GB eMMC storage|
|HP Stream 11||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 1.6GHz Intel Celeron N3050; 2GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 144MB (dedicated) Intel HD Graphics; 32GB SSD|
|Lenovo ThinkPad 13||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.3GHz Intel Core i3-6100U; 4GB DDR4 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 128MB (dedicated) Intel HD Graphics 520; 128GB SSD|
|Samsung Galaxy TabPro S||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 0.90GHz Intel m3-6Y30; 4GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 128MB (dedicated) Intel HD Graphics 515; 128GB SSD|
|Microsoft Surface 3||Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 1.6GHz Intel Atom Z8700; 4GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 32MB (dedicated) Intel HD Graphics; 128GB SSD|