Windows 10: First Reviews of new ARM Always Connected PCs Decidedly Mixed

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  1.    21 Mar 2018 #1

    First Reviews of new ARM Always Connected PCs Decidedly Mixed

    Laptop Magazine and The Verge have come out with the first reviews of the new generation of Always Connected ARM-based PCs and they're strongly mixed. Indeed, they do have amazing battery life. But both sources mention that Win32 apps -- most notably, Chrome, but also web-wrapper or Electron-based apps such as Slack -- have noticeable performance issues. Adjectives like "laggy" (Laptop Mag) and "abysmal and frustrating" (The Verge) are used to describe how such things behave at runtime on the HP Envy x2 (Laptop Mag) and the Asus NovaGo (The Verge). Sigh.

    To read more: check any of these items:
    1. onMSFT "First reviews for Windows 10 on ARM PCs are out, and they're not great" 3/21/2018
    2. Laptop Magazine "HP Envy X2 (Qualcomm) Review" 3/19/2018
    3. The Verge "Always-connected Windows laptops show promise but still need work" 3/20/2018


    [Note Added 10 mins later]
    Paul Thurrott is also getting the Envy X2 but hasn't received it yet. He'll be reviewing it later, but wrote a "Preview" for today: "HP Envy x2 (Qualcomm) Preview: Here Comes the Future."
    [Note Added 1 day later]
    Avram Piltch of Laptop Magazine/Tom's Guide concurs with the growing and still less-than-enthusiastic consensus on these devices in his review of the HP Envy x2 and the Asus NovaGo: Why I'm Waiting for the Next Generation of Windows ARM Laptops
    [Note Added 2 days later]
    Thurrott has started publishing little "Review Check-Ins" to document his ongoing experiences with the HP Envy X2. Here's what's out there so far: Performance and App Compatibility. Coming "soon": app performance and cellular connectivity.
    Last edited by essenbe; 05 Apr 2018 at 09:13.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  2.    23 Mar 2018 #1

    OOPS! Missing some from Thurrott's ongoing series of Review Check-ins from yesterday: Battery Life and First Impressions.

    After reading all this stuff so far, any inclination I might have had to spend my own $$$ for a 'try-it-out myself' experience has pretty much evaporated.

    The HowToGeek has also weighed in on this platform in a 3/23/18 story entitled Windows on ARM Doesn't Make Any Sense (Yet)
    Last edited by EdTittel; 23 Mar 2018 at 15:23.
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  3.    24 Mar 2018 #2

    Like a lot of tech, they will have advantages and disadvantages. Trade offs will be made in one area to gain in another. My Raspberry Pi's use ARM processors, they aren't Snapdragons though unfortunately. Even on my quad core version you need a lot of patience when web browsing. It is what it is though, I didn't buy it to be my daily user PC. I bought it for the other things it can do that I can't do on my PC. My wife would likely be fine with one of these Arm always connected devices. As long as Facebook loaded in a reasonable time. That's about all she uses her laptop for. I don't see myself using one though.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    24 Mar 2018 #3

    Perhaps multi processor versions will be more interesting?

    ARM processors are key for new supercomputers
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5. Joan Archer's Avatar
    Posts : 1,657
    Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64-bit
       24 Mar 2018 #4

    Interesting reading thanks Ed, although I only read the link for the HP Envy, probably because I've just got myself an HP Envy, of course not one that has phone capabilities and it doesn't have a removable keyboard although it is a convertible one so I can use it as a tablet and I have an HP Pen with it. :)
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  6.    24 Mar 2018 #5

    The thing that really disgusted me about the HP PC is that, for nearly $1000, I would personally expect a laptop that "screamed", not one with "sluggish performance"! The latter is what I would expect from a $200 entry-level notebook.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    25 Mar 2018 #6

    Mark Phelps said: View Post
    The thing that really disgusted me about the HP PC is that, for nearly $1000, I would personally expect a laptop that "screamed", not one with "sluggish performance"! The latter is what I would expect from a $200 entry-level notebook.
    The HP Envy x2, if that's the one your referring to, is a tablet, not a laptop. It looks to me, like your paying for thin, light, and long battery life. That's not always synonymous with performance. I'm not defending it, just my observation. And since its Arm powered and has to use emulation for 32 bit programs, that's going to slow things down. I see "not for power users" mentioned so that about sums it up. Just my 2 cents.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    26 Mar 2018 #7

    Here's another round-up from TechRadar that echoes the "great battery life, questionable performance" theme that's emerging in the press coverage and reviews on the current generation of SnapDragon Always Connected Win10 PCs. I had a chance to play with the Lenovo, HP and Asus versions at the MVP Summit. For email, casual web surfing, and media consumption, these machines are acceptable but can be slow. I'm thinking now that things will get interesting when -- as other posters have observed on this thread and elsewhere -- newer, faster SnapDragon chips with more cores that are available now, but weren't available when these machines were built show up in the next generation of these devices. They may not be total game-changers, but they make make it more fun to play on these machines. We'll see!
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  9.    26 Mar 2018 #8

    Another review: Windows on ARM Benchmarked > Native App Performance - TechSpot
    The performance is terrible when using x86 apps
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10.    26 Mar 2018 #9

    At one time I was wishing Windows on Arm would run on my raspberry Pi. I was actually more hoping 10 Mobile would be ported to run on a Pi. But after reading the above reviews the phrase "be careful what you wish for" comes to mind.

    For me personally, the trade off of performance for extra battery life doesn't really factor into it. Not for my use anyway, I'm retired with simple needs. Even when I use my laptop, its almost always plugged in. The only time I ever run it on battery for an extended time is if we have a power failure. My Internet would be off anyway? I don't own a smart phone and couldn't afford 4G or 5G for a tablet, just isn't going to happen with my current financial situation.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

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