Lenovo’s Chromebook Duet is far from flawless. But when you’re evaluating a device that starts at $279, the question isn’t “Is this a perfect device?” The question is: “Is this better than other stuff you can get for that price?”
Chromebooks in that price range tend to be clunky and cheap, like HP’s Chromebook 14 or Chromebook x360 12b. If you want a Windows alternative, you’re looking at the lowest end of the Acer Aspire or Acer Swift lines or other extremely bare-bones options like the Motile 14. And, of course, there are entry-level iPads and other basic Android tablets, but those don’t come with a keyboard.
Lenovo has certainly cut some corners to shave the Chromebook Duet down to that price point. And since I’m employed as a professional griper, gripe I shall. But at the end of the day, they feel like cut corners — not like major missteps that significantly hamper the device. And after several days using the Duet as my primary driver, I feel comfortable saying it feels much more like a Surface Go with some concessions than it does an ultra-budget PC.