From the horse’s mouth
Lenovo who are well known for their highly-durable ThinkPad business laptops have taken this class of computer to the student user-base. Typically the student is more likely to take these computers through a rough lifespan as they make their way to and from school and friends’ houses and some of this rough-handling can cause problems in the computer’s life.
What they have done is to release a quartet of 11-inch notebooks with rubber bumpers, reinforced ports and strengthened hinges to handle this rough activity. There is the ThinkPad 11e which runs Windows 8 along with a ThinkPad Yoga 11e convertible also running Windows 8. But Lenovo also offered these as Chromebooks that run Google’s Chrome operating system. For the Windows-based models, I am not sure what RAM and storage capacity they have but would need to cater for a reality with students using them for more than school life.
It is a step in the right direction for companies like Lenovo to create highly-durable portable computers not just for big business but for school life, “first cars first friends” and eventually startup and small business life.