Lenovo this week revealed its ARM-equipped Windows 10 notebook at IFA 2018 with the Chinese manufacturer promising the new Yoga C630 WOS (Windows on Snapdragon) will be powered by Qualcomm’s cutting-edge Snapdragon 850 processor.
A clamshell-like design and fashioned from polished aluminium, Lenovo said it is fitting out the Yoga C630 with a 13.3-inch FHD IPS touchscreen, optional 4GB or 8GB of RAM, and 128GB or 256GB of storage, as well as USB-C ports. Built-in LTE support for mobile connectivity on the go is a given for Windows on ARM.
However, grabbing the headlines is Lenovo’s promise of a 30 percent improvement in battery-life over its previous Miix 630 Windows on ARM device. In total it claims the new Yoga C630 will be able to run for 25 hours on a single charge. Lenovo’s Yoga C630 is expected be available in November and begins at $849.99.
After years of development and fine-tuning, Microsoft last year announced it had found a way of utilising those same ARM processors in the latest smartphone handsets with the larger form factor of laptops and larger tablets.
The Asus NovaGo, HP Envy x2, and the Lenovo Miix 630 were the first three ‘Windows-on-ARM’. As among the first to be announced last December, the Asus effort was an intriguing prospect. A 13-inch premium laptop with a 360-degree 2-in-1 design and equipped with Windows Hello and a fingerprint sensor – and perhaps most importantly up to 22 hours of battery life. It is almost double the battery life that Intel/AMD processors can claim.
Since Windows-on-ARM enables lightweight designs, remarkable battery life and ‘always connected’ Windows 10 on ARM, it had been expected that many major original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) would be chomping at the bit to begin manufacturing ARM-powered PCs.
However, scaring off many potential OEM’s was the knowledge that Microsoft’s previous trials with ARM – Windows RT and Windows Phone – were both spectacular failures.
However, unlike both Windows phones or Windows RT devices, ARM-powered PCs run a full-fledged desktop version of Windows – well almost.
Microsoft documentation for Windows 10 on ARM outlines some limitations for ‘Windows-on-ARM’. They confirmed that applications designed for x86 chips will function as intended although 64-bit apps designed for Intel and AMD chips are not supported – for now.
While ARM-processors would not enable heavy Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Premiere usage, this new range of personal computers may just be the right fit for students on a budget.