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HP debuts new Intel-powered Envy x2 Always Connected PC

Back in December Microsoft and Qualcomm announced its first "Always Connected" PCs, delivering a full Windows 10 experience on ARM processors. Among these was the HP Envy x2, an ultra-thin PC with some clear inspiration from the Surface line, packing a Snapdragon 835, with 4G LTE2, Wi-Fi and up to 20 hours of active battery use.

As a part of CES 2018, HP has unveiled a second version of the device – this time powered by an Intel processor. Leveraging 7th Gen Intel Core Y-Series processors, this device delivers a balance of performance and power efficiency, while still delivering the always-on experience promised by its Snapdragon 835 counterpart. With this revision, HP is promising up to 17 hours of battery life, which while three hours shorter, still promises the same benefits of the Always-Connected line.

The HP Envy x2 offers a 12.3-inch touchscreen, 256 GB PCIe SSD storage and up to 8GB of LPDDR3 memory. The device also offers support for Windows Ink with its pen and touch experience, a backlit keyboard, and detachable tablet mode. The device will also come with the option of LTE and WiFi connectivity.

HP is yet to provide details on pricing and availability, though can be expected sometime later this year.

Matt Brown is Windows Central's Senior Editor, Xbox & PC, at Future. Following over seven years of professional consumer technology and gaming coverage, he’s focused on the world of Microsoft's gaming efforts. You can follow him on Twitter @mattjbrown.

  • So it has both an Intel processor and a Snapdragon one?
  • There is an Intel version and a Qualcomm version, yes. Hopefully we'll be able to get both and do a serious comparison.
  • Thank you for the reply! I would love to see the comparison 😊
  • Nope, there is a snapdragon version and an Intel version (two seperate Models)
  • That makes it more clear, thank you 😊
  • I thought the "always connected" / "instant on" capability is only available with ARM processor and Windows on ARM (WOA) OS. I am guessing this will be similar to Surface Pro LTE running Windows 10 Pro. The title "Always Connected PC" on Intel confuses me though..
  • It looks like the Intel version is 7.9mm instead of 6.9mm thick. Does that mean it will be also heavier? Above 700g would be a no-go or me as far as weight is concerned for a tablet.
  • In other words we don't trust MS enough to actually make Arm PC's viable so here is the backup plan. Oh well can't say any of us are surprised much by this.
  • What are you talking about?  MS seems to be doing just fine building computers lately.  More than likely they are allowing OEMs to come out first as a gesture of good will before releasing their own products using ARM.  The Surface line was never meant to directly compete but to inspire and, frankly, twist the arm of OEMs to make better Windows products. 
  • Without OEMs making Windows PCs there is no Windows. That's how it's always been and how it will always be. Climb down off your pedestal. This is nothing new. This is how it happens.
  • The surface using the same processor is rated at 15 hours of battery life can't imagine the X2 has a larger battery. 
  • Which Surface is this? The Surface Pro is rated for 13.5 hours, and uses an Intel m3 (or better) processor.  The Surface Book 2 does not use a Y-series, but it's rated for 17 hours.   * by "rated for", I mean Microsoft claims...
  • Curious how these compare in terms of UX (aside from the slightly shorter battery life on the Intel model) -- performance, price or functional differences? Looking forward to both being available for a comparison.
  • Something I wonder about performance is storage speed. The storage used in Snapdragon phones is not nearly as fast as even a SATA ssd. That would seem ti be a problem using larger files in Windows.
  • Storage type is not specific to any type of processor (as far as I know). eMMC storage (embedded flash storage) used in smartphones and tablets is the type of storage you are talking about, whereas PC's typically use SSD or HDD with SATA (or mSATA) interface. As far as I know, the HP (ARM-based) 2-in-1 uses SSD, and the novaGo by Asus uses eMMC. So to address your concern: the only limitations with regards to storage speed on these new "always connected" ARM-based PCs is going to be the type of storage actually used. HP seem to be going the correct route on this whereas the cheaper Asus solution is keeping it cheap.
  • @neilbey, SATA is the older, slower form for PC SSD, limited to about 500MB/s. PCI-e using the NVME interfaces (often listed for sales as M2, referring to the specific form factor) are the fast ones running at about 2GB/s, or about 4 times the speed of the fastest SATA drives. Note the large B is Bytes, not bits (with a little 'b'). Multiple by 8 to convert to bits.
  • I'm curious if the computer will be able to be used with all major service providers. With only a couple of exceptions, most recent mobile Windows products were not compatible with CDMA carriers. Hoping this next generation of computers will not be limited to data bands/channels used by GSM carriers.
  • Basically only Sprint and Verizon use CDMA while almost the rest of the entire world uses GSM.  Frankly if I were MS I would not even waste the time with CDMA.  
  • @Rann Xeroxx, except that Verizon is the largest cellular company in the US and Sprint is #3, so the majority of US customers are on CDMA for voice and data when LTE is not available (LTE for 4G data is effectively a GSM tech, so eventually Verizon and Sprint will probably move away from CDMA too, but that's still several years away). Fortunately, we know this should not be a problem: Windows supports CDMA now as evidenced by HP releasing the Elite X3 Windows phone on Verizon a few months ago.
  • And Verizon is very steadily moving toward GSM. All of their LTE stuff aligns with GSM standards, so it's just the old bands that are still CDMA... Here's to hoping I can finally get any phone I want and still use VZW!
  • Once you upgrade to Windows 10 Pro, I don't see the WoA version getting battery life this good.
  • Man, but this adds confusion to the concept of ACPCs. I thought the name was going to be reserved to just Windows on ARM devices, not just any laptop with better than usual battery.
  • I don't think the average consumer cares about the processor. And those who do care can easily find the information. Even Walmart lists the name of the processor next to their laptops. I don't see how anyone who cares would be confused.
  • No, not end users, but the whole category as recently presented was going to be about ARM processors. What's left to see is a performance/battery duration comparison, but I don't see why they don't just market this in their regular line of laptops.
  • @fdruid, I think that's a good thing -- we don't want the category defined by the chip type, but rather by its capabilities. I think it's great for the category that Intel and ARM are competing. If the conventional distinctions hold, this will push ARM to improve processing power to equal or exceed Intel on performance and push Intel to lower power requirements to equal or exceed ARM on battery life. Meanwhile, each will probably continue to press their relative advantages. In the end, consumers win. :-)
  • Agreed. I see no downside to this. Competition is good, and the capabilities are far more important than the chip maker.
  • 17 hours on a 7th Gen Y series? Sounds like BS. The Matebook E struggles to get 6 hours. Either they throttled this down unbelievably or they have a magical battery. Looking forward to real world head to head comparisons between both versions of this PC. 
  • Looks great!
  • Going to be very confusing for the average user, unless of course both machines look, feel and work exactly the same