Today, after more than a month of waiting, the Google Pixel Slate is finally available for purchase. And while the Slate (which starts at $599) has a great screen and sweet sound, it's launching with a couple of bugs that have us saying you should wait.
While I tested the Pixel Slate for my review on Laptop Mag, I was frustrated by random, inexplicable Bluetooth connection issues that dropped the connection to my wireless headphones, playing my music off the slate's speakers, for everyone at the cafe around me to hear.
There is just so much to love about the tablet and its optional detachable keyboard (which costs $199 extra), that it felt sad for the Slate to be hindered this one feature that should be so basic.
A Google representative told me "We've received reports about intermittent Bluetooth issues with select headsets and are working on a fix as soon as possible," and I hope to see that patch soon.
And that's not the only weird issue I found. While I loved the Slate for its USB Type-C port, which supports for external storage — which the iPad Pro doesn't allow for — one odd hiccup came as I imported files. I found that dragging larger files — videos of more than 4GB or so — to the Slate would trigger something that looks like a system crash.
Right when the file appears to finish transferring, the screen goes dark for a moment, and comes back on with a blank Chrome tab. The good news, though, is that the files actually transfer successfully.
Once these bugs are gone, the Pixel Slate will be a much easier device to recommend. Not only has Chrome OS evolved for the touch interface — it borrows great touches from Android and its handwriting recognition is speedy as heck — but the Slate slots right into all of your existing devices, and has a serious shot at being a laptop replacement.