Always Connected PCs are not restricted to Qualcomm ARM architecture

By: Matthew Adams
2 minute read
windows 10 snapdragon laptop

Microsoft unveiled the HP Envy x2, one of the first Always Connected PCs with Qualcomm (ARM) architecture, last year. The company made some big promises about the new ACPCs, but Geekbench benchmarks highlighted that the laptops might not live up to the hype. The HP Envy X2 launched in March and has not had especially rave reviews. However, the Microsoft Windows general manager, Mr. Chapple, now insists there is much more to ACPCs than just Qualcomm processors.

Reviews for the first ACPCs state that they do not provide great system performance, especially in relation to their RRPs. They do have great batteries, but those batteries still fall short of the 20+ hours promised by Microsoft and Qualcomm. Some reviewers have found the ACPCs’ batteries generally last from 12-16 hours.Microsoft’s Mr. Chapple now reminds us that ACPCs are not just about ARM architecture. The general manager stated, “We don’t equate ‘Always Connected PC’ with Qualcomm. He also stated that Microsoft places greater emphasis on “choice in the ecosystem” more than anything else.

As such, the ACPCs are not just laptops with Snapdragon processors. Chapple stated, “We also have our Surface Pro LTE, which we consider our first Always Connected PC.” The Surface Pro LTE is a laptop with an Intel processor and Qualcomm modem.

surface pro LTE release date

However, Mr. Chapple has reiterated Microsoft’s commitment to ACPCs with Qualcomm architecture. The Microsoft general also confirmed that the Redstone 4 update will raise the current ACPCs’ system performance. He stated, “You will see [ACPC] performance improvements between the Fall Creators Update and the RS4 updates that we’ve been delivering.”

So if ACPCs are not just about Qualcomm architecture, what exactly does an Always Connected PC amount to? Mr. Chapple explains that ACPCs are devices with LTE connectivity and batteries than can last more than a dozen hours without recharge. The ACPCs also include the Windows 10 S platform, which is another aspect of Microsoft’s Always Connected PC initiative. Overall, the ACPC is a hybrid laptop that is more like a smartphone (with regard to battery and LTE connectivity at least).

Mr. Chapple has made clear that Microsoft is not in any way deterred on its ACPC mission. Now it seems Microsoft is committed to launching more ACPCs with a wider variety of architecture than just the current ARM devices. You can check out this post for further HP Envy x2 details.

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