While you can enjoy your new Chromebook just fine from the get-go, there are a number of Chromebook accessories that can make the experience even better. Some of them are literally must-haves, such as a protective Chromebook sleeve or case to provide basic required protection for any new portable notebook. Other accessories are not “required” per se, but once you use them, you’ll wonder how you ever got along with out them. Sephie and I have looked at the range of accessories available, and come up with this short list of the most essential ones. We’ve taken into account compatibility (of course), best performance, best price/value, and, in certain cases, overall aesthetics.
1. Chromebook Mouse: Logitech Wireless Mouse M305
We’ve talked about this portable wireless mouse before, and we like it even better than Logitech’s more expensive options. Based on the comments, other people agree. It’s the perfect size for a portable mouse, and the wireless “nano” USB dongle is so tiny that you can leave it plugged into your Chromebook at all times without worrying about anything breaking. isn’t loaded with extra buttons or gimmicks, it’s just a streamlined, very sleek-looking mouse. For a Chromebook-compatible wireless mouse with perfect tracking, clicking, and scrolling at a very low price, we think the M305 is currently the one to beat.
Buy Now: Logitech Wireless Mouse M305
2. Chromebook Carrying Case: Case Logic 14.1″ Laptop Attache
One of the reasons we like this bag more than other options is the amount of space it packs in such a small footprint. Its dedicated notebook compartment (surrounded by dense padding) has a good amount of protection for your Chromebook. Unlike a typical tight sleeve, this small attache case has plenty of pockets and storage room to stash all your related Chromebook accessories, such as the AC/power cord, wireless mouse, hard drive, USB stick, and so on — as well as a separate pocket for documents, magazines, books, folders, and so on. Another advantage of this attache over most Chromebook sleeves is that it has a shoulder strap and a carrying handle. Also, if you travel frequently like us, you’ll appreciate the luggage strap that fits over the telescoping handles on larger bags. For a compact, very protective Chromebook case with plenty of space to carry everything from accessories for your Chromebook to reading material, this perfectly-priced attache case from Case Logic is the perfect solution.
3. Chromebook Lapdesk: Logitech Comfort Lapdesk
If you want to use your Chromebook in bed, on the couch, or in your favorite comfy chair, a good lapdesk is a must. Not only does this lapdesk shield you from the heat all notebooks produce, but the unique angle design helps to prevent eye and neck strain by allowing you to tilt the screen at the optimal position for you. Because the bottom of this one is made of a comfortable mesh, it doesn’t transfer the heat from the bottom of the Chromebook to your legs. Unlike many other lapdesks, this one is thin-but-firm, so you can easily stand it up right next to a chair, lounger, or sofa. With the Chromebook’s small footprint, the lapdesk area is wide enough that you’ll have room to use a portable mouse with your Chromebook while seated or reclined — an indispensible feature. For all these reasons, we highly, highly recommend the Logitech Comfort Lapdesk.
Another Good Option: Belkin Notebook CushTop Stand (Dark Sky/Pitch Black)
4. Chromebook External Hard Drive: Western Digital My Passport Essential
For storing and/or backing up things like your music library, photos, and files, an external hard drive is an essential item. The aptly-named WD My Passport Essential is a simple, inexpensive option for personal storage. Western Digital has the best reputation for hard drive reliability among hard drive manufacturers, meaning that we highly recommend WD drives over equally-priced options like Seagate which have become notorious for failing down the line. The “passport-sized” hard drive will fit easily in your Chromebook case, a backpack, or even some Chromebook sleeves. The “essential” means that the hard drive is the bare-basics: a good, solid storage/backup drive without additional software or gimmicks. Out of the few really good options for external hard drives, we’ve chosen the WD My Passport Essential as the best overall for its low price and proven reliability.
5. Chromebook Speakers: Creative Labs Inspire T12 2.0 Speakers
if you want the best in at-home listening for your Chromebook, these 2.0 speakers from Creative Labs are a solid solution. They sound great, are compact and work particularly well with a notebook setup — and, since they have Bass Flex technology, there’s no large subwoofer box sitting by your feet. Because of the simplicity and small size, it can even be used as a portable speaker system if needed. Especially if you want to watch videos on Netflix, Hulu, or Youtube, or experience your favorite music on your Chromebook, we definitely recommend the Creative Labs T12 Speakers as the top of the notebook/portable class.
Alternatively, these surprisingly compact Cyber Acoustics 3-piece speakers have an exceptionally good sound and cost less than the Creative T12s. They come highly recommended by our app reviewer, Persephone.
Have any questions or comments? Let us know what you think below. Or see reviews of other Chromebook Accessories. Thanks for reading!