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Who are Windows 10 on ARM-powered devices for?

ARM-powered devices running Windows 10 are now slowly beginning to ship. You can already buy the HP Enxy x2 powered by ARM (opens in new tab), with more from the likes of Lenovo and ASUS on the way shortly. Because of this, we've already seen some early reviews talking about these new devices, and it's got a few people asking "who are these devices for?"

Windows 10 on ARM is a pretty big deal. It's full, unaltered Windows 10, running on a CPU basically designed for phones. The first generation Windows 10 on ARM PCs are shipping with a Snapdragon 835, and are more than capable of running full Windows 10 compiled for ARM. Reviews so far have been pretty positive when it comes to performance and battery life when using apps that are compiled natively for ARM, but things start to fall down a bit when it comes to emulation.

Microsoft has focused a lot on building x86 emulation into Windows 10 on ARM, meaning if an app you want to run isn't compiled for the ARM architecture, it should still run thanks to the emulation layer included in Windows 10 on ARM. This makes most x86 apps work, but there's a catch, and that catch is performance.

x86 apps running on ARM appear to suffer from less-than-ideal performance, and that's not great. Apps like Chrome, for example, perform worse than Microsoft Edge on ARM based devices. Slack takes forever to load, and Photoshop is definitely not something you're going to want to be working in all the time.

I've heard the experience of Windows 10 on ARM be described as this: Native performance like an Intel Core i3, emulated performance like an Intel ATOM. With that in mind, who is Windows 10 on ARM for?

Consumption over production

Windows 10 Cloud Wallpaper

Windows 10 Cloud Wallpaper (Image credit: Microsoft)

If you're someone who doesn't like Microsoft Edge and finds themselves using apps from third parties more than Microsoft, then the Windows 10 on ARM experience for you is going to be a lot worse than it would be for someone like me, who uses very little third party programs, and prefers to stick with Microsoft defaults.

The tradeoff there is excellent battery life on ARM if you're using native compiled code. These Windows 10 on ARM PCs are lasting days on a single charge, which is unprecedented for a Windows 10 laptop or tablet running Intel CPUs. That, plus the always-on, always connected mantra, mean these PCs behave more like tablets.

From what it looks like, Windows 10 on ARM is for people who don't do all that heavy computing. If you use your PC for web browsing, email checking, music listening, and procrastinating, then Windows 10on ARM should more or less be great for you, as long as you keep the x86 apps to a minimum.

I think the emulation layer should be treated more as a failsafe for when an app you need isn't available natively or in the Microsoft Store. That way, the user can still get access to the app they need on ARM, even if that means somewhat sacrificed performance. Not every emulated apps performs terribly, but you will notice a performance drop of some sort with every emulated app you use.

The biggest offender in this case will be Chrome. Most people use Chrome, and on Windows 10 on ARM, it performs significantly worse than it does on a natively compiled platform. Google could compile an ARM version of Chrome for Windows, but it hasn't done so yet meaning Microsoft Edge is your only good browser on Windows 10 on ARM.

If you value excellent battery life, and use mostly stock Microsoft apps, including Microsoft Edge, Windows Mail, and Microsoft Office on your Windows 10 PC, then Windows 10 on ARM should be a great choice for you. You've got the x86 emulation there in case you need it, but you shouldn't really buy a Windows 10 on ARM PC expecting to use it exclusively with emulated apps, because that experience is just going to be poor.

The x86 emulation on ARM should not be discouraged, however. It's no small feat that these apps can even run on ARM, so it's not surprising to see that these apps don't perform great when emulated. This emulation can, and likely will, improve over time as well, and with Snapdragon releasing more powerful ARM chips every year, performance should increase on that front too.

Zac Bowden
Zac Bowden

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows 10 on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

128 Comments
  • Intel already advertises ARM chips on their website-- Stratix 10 Intel is preparing to fabricate mainstream ARM chips used in smartphones as plainly indicated in Intel slides along with details of their partnership with ARM. Intel will make the switch from x86 to ARM just like Apple did. Don't be live the media narrative about ARM being weak as apparently they don't know the difference between ISA and microarchitecture and couldn't tell you there are already companies like AMD and Fujitsu who have scaled ARM to high performance levels. These same journalists would have written an article in the 70's that Japanese cars are weak and will never compete with American cars and are only for fuel efficiency. Sound familiar? 40 years later Toyota on top of the automotive world.
  • Seems sensible
  • That is why my Honda Accord 2006 rocks with out glitch!
  • The stratix 10 is a FPGA though isn't it? That uses the combined ARM micro processor into one SoC, but using the ARM processor for virtualization and monitoring, its not the actual horse power. Its not a single ARM CPU as we know it in phones etc?
  • > Intel already advertises ARM chips on their website Yeah... not the first time either.. they bought StrongARM off DEC back in 1998... only to sell it to Marvell 8 years later. I am sure someone was touting *both* of those things as the great move for Intel... possibly even the same people :)
  • Answer: No one wants this junk.
  • The question is how can Surface Andro handle emulations!
  • It won't at release if rumors are true. Supposedly, a future update would bring x86 support.
  • If what you say is true the Surface Andromeda 2 screen folding mini Tablet device will run regular Windows 10 store Apps, UWP Apps and the New PWP Progressive web Apps which are cross platform Apps. I Hope that Microsoft can make deals with Developers to get apps for this device
    put in the Windows 10 store to make the device more useful. The Windows 10 store already has has all The apps I Use so there are no APPS GAP issues to me
  • And that kind of emulation needs better UI UX.
  • No mention of SA from the editors in awhile... I want news. Hopefully they can squeeze some sort of tidbits from MS at Build next month.
  • I think they are for the traveling worker. My Uncle travels once or twice per week. He's always on the go and needs to use his computer. It would be very helpful for him to have this type of device.
  • It's an awesome milestone but severely hampered by Microsoft once again as it needs apps and they could have leveraged UWP apps but they haven't been focusing on UWP at all. There was no snowballs chance of getting decent x86 emulation performance on a snapdragon 835 out of the gate. This is where programmatic testing comes into play. But Microsoft fired them with the bulk of the layoffs.
    Total lack of foresight.
  • Short answer - noone normal. Long answer - inb4 Daniel Rubino kicks in with lame sarcasm trying to justify Microsoft's *dumb* moves that are doomed for the N-tn time
  • "inb4 Daniel Rubino kicks in with lame sarcasm" lol this is epic
  • Lol stop
  • Pretty shortsighted comment but you're entitled to your opinions. Tech is always changing and increasingly more quickly. Sure, this right now might not be for everyone but depending on how things progress they may become the norm.
  • I am very concerned that due to petty office politics, the potential of these devices won't be realised. So Microsoft will plough on ahead with PWA, disregarding the windows ecosystem and UWP platform. Thus embarking onto a pathway that will lead to Microsoft's demise.
  • Hopefully office politics won't get in the way of a good device being released. I don't see the app situation being EITHER UWP or PWA, but that both can exist. PWA makes sense for some apps and can hook into the system for notifications, live tiles, etc. UWP will be for more advanced power apps that need more features. Having a PWA at least allows the possibility of an app evolving into a UWP app if it's popular enough and needs more features than PWA can provide. Having PWA apps also mean developers not making a UWP app and then forgetting about it, as the PWA will be updated on the back end so in a way it's impossible for developers to not update PWA apps unless they are just not updating it for all the platforms they are developing for.
  • PWAs don't have to "evolve into" UWP apps, they are already UWP apps to start. Web app support has always been part of the UWP platform, going back to when it was first introduced as the platform for Metro style apps in Windows 8. PWA just adds some new features to the existing web app support, I'm not sure why people are treating it as something entirely new.
  • Gee... Why can't MS see this "pathway to demise" of which you speak?
  • Lack of foresight.
  • Gee, they see it very clearly and you can tell by their desperate lunatic moves (Cortana-Alexa deal is just one example, "MIcrosoft (heart) Linux", Apps for other platforms first, including Office, so on and so forth) Acts of desperation because they foresee the inevitable
  • So many wrong with the way you think.
    First -> The Cortana Alexa deal can only be good for both companies. AI needs data to be able to work better as it learns (or is taught) and both solves problems that the other just doesn't. Now that MS finally decided to incorporate Cortana more into the OS instead of it's own app in a future update, Amazon's Alexa can get the data it would never have the chance too. I can see something similar happening with Apple because the data that they all shared can just make their own AI assistants better. I don't see Google playing ball but it is as expected.
    Second-> Microsoft ❤️ Linux doesn't have anything to do with Consumers but with enterprise. It is a fact that developers use Linux because in the 90's and 2000's Microsoft sold their dev tools and those developers had to either pay or use free stuff, which Linux offered. Aside from that there is the fact that Linux in the enterprise is huge. Most of the biggest software you might think (SAP, Facebook, Google) runs on Linux servers for a reason.
    Third -> For Office it makes sense for it to be released on other platform like Mac, Android, iOS and the Web (yes there is browser version) because that app is not only useful but their bread and butter. You only want to have those apps on every platform.' All of that was made so that they could get the most revenue possible, but what company doesn't want to do that? What they are doing with Windows Core in the end is what it will bring Microsoft back on the map (the Consumer) in my opinion. The way you can have a device that does it all in Andromeda, or just apps that works the same as they do on Desktop (saving on sharing the codebase) and the reliance on the web (MS ❤️ PWA)could be just a win for MS.
  • I guess he had better things to do with his time.
  • The narrative seems right now that you would be just as set with a portable device in S-Mode that has built in LTE? This was always my concern of emulating or running desktop-packaged applications on "mobile" devices. Not only is the form factor an adjustment, but performance varies from device to device based on specs.
  • You're right because with any device that will mostly be used indoors and seated at a table, such as a laptop, the main advantages, being always on and with long lasting batteries, are minimised. Usually WiFi and a power socket are present, and no-one's going to be reaching into their bag for a laptop to check notifications that just came through via connected standby. Even on the train WiFi and power are available. Once small tablet and pocket form factors come along this WoA stuff will make much more sense.
  • And with UWP these devices would rock. But...... hardly any UWP movement at all.
  • Agreed except for the comment about laptops being used indoors and seated at a table.
  • I think even in those situations it is still useful. Just because there may be Wi-Fi available or power outlets available doesn't necessarily mean it's accessible by everyone. Whenever I walk into a coffee shop to do some work I'm always looking for those few tables that may be near an outlet because I want to charge my phone or need to plug in my laptop. I see this with other people too. Even the thought of possibly needing to charge my laptop makes me look for a spot near an outlet so I don't have to worry about moving later. Or if there isn't a spot with an outlet nearby I'll settle on a spot without an outlet and then as soon as I see someone leave a spot near one I'll scramble over to claim it. Or in airports, some offer free Wi-Fi some you have to pay. Or sometimes the airport Wi-Fi or coffee shop Wi-Fi might have crappy slow internet or you're in the spot where the signal is crappy.
  • It has become rare for airports, hotels or cafes to not have free and fast WiFi. A couple years ago I would agree with you, but it has been a while since I have been somewhere that didn't have great WiFi.
  • I'd definitely say a device with an Intel cpu and W10s is a better choice. These days, many of those are getting 12, 15 hours of battery life. That's more than plenty for nearly anyone doing nearly anything.
  • the thing is ,this device is expensive (even the ASUS go device)for someone with minimal needs ,like web browsing or open a word doc ,or watch a video...these devices are going to compete against an army of android tablets that are cheaper and faster, chromebooks that are again cheaper ,faster and with more apps ,even windows 10 devices with intel that are much more faster and some of them even cheaper and lets not forget the iPads (ok those are expensive) so its like watching the same thing with windows RT.
    its the apps that will make these devices usable and for the moment Microsoft store apps are not enough to compete with the billions apps that google or apple have.
    Its risky to invest in such a device for now.
  • These devices are nowhere in comparison to cheap andriod tablets. These are premium devices, hence gonna be expansive. Wait for cheaper devices like plain laptop form factor. They will definitely be sell for 200$ to 300$ price.
  • They are "premium devices" in price only. They have horrible performance. Not to worry, in 6 months they will be at fire sale prices, more in line with their performance.
  • That's how it is for every new device: first models are expensive and the price drops as it goes forward. This happens with almost everything. I'm not sure why it would be an issue now. I think it's a short-sighted comment.
  • These have a place and can be very successful but a few things need to happen for that to occur. One the price is way to high for what you get. When you consider the Windows Store, which is lacking apps and the fact that emulation isn't really good. I mean when HP is charging $1k for one of these, I just don't see that as starting off well. I don't think these will sell too well and if they don't more developers won't create apps for the windows store and that is key to success. We've seen it play out with Windows Phone. I'm not an Apple fan boy, I don't own an Apple product anymore (well that's kinda a lie, I have a couple Apple TVs) but when you can go and get an iPad for less and sometimes with LTE, and a better app store, this Windows on ARM just seem to offer the same value. Or if your are intent on going Microsoft, Surface Pro can be had for $1k. Which I consider a great product. I own one myself. Just my 2 cents.
  • I have to agree the price point is going to make or break these devices.
  • Your two cents are actually right but you are missing the whole picture. These devices are in premium standard range. Wait for cheap devices like a simple tablet without any keyboard or stylus or a plane laptop form factor device (no two in one or convertibles). They will definitely be cheap make the points which you are concerned for.
    And remember, you can run full suit of MS office on this device which you can't get on other platform unless you are using a Mac. So it still makes a point as mentioned by the author. If you are tied with MS suits of app, then it is a better choice then an iPad pro.
    Plus at 1k you get complete set from HP but on the other hand you only gets a tablet. Keyboard is sold separately;")
  • Although they may be encased in premium housings, the actual computing hardware does not give premium performance.
  • If you are tied to MS suite of APPS, IOS is one of the better platforms to be.
  • My only counter argument would be until those cheaper devices come, which they will, develops will not come. The people and number of devices wouldn't make any sense for them. So my question is when the cheaper devices do come, will it be to late? If I were Microsoft and I was serious about these, I would build my own device, sell it below cost. Generate a lose but try and get a ton of these out there. Then offer developers assistance and show them how many devices you are selling. Hopefully, the windows store grows with new apps. Close the gap between the windows store and the Apple App Store and Google Play. I know everyone wants to make money, but I still think the sweet spot for this is much lower than the $1k they are starting at.
  • > Wait for cheap devices... Why? Dell Inspiron 11 ($150 *with* 1 year of Office 365) + Netgear LTE router ($50) will get you 90% there at 20% of the price... Actually, if you do need something which is only available in x64 form, it will get you 120% there :)
  • I agree. Why not even the Surface Pro LTE that has that Surface style with a PC and apps, with LTE support? That seems like a better bet for someone who wants a PC and mobility with connection anywhere.
  • To add to your point, these are running a generation old SOC at this point. So the customers aren't really getting "bleeding edge" technology. Thus the price point falls flat at the first hurdle.
  • It has taken Microsoft until 2018 to offer what Apple gave us in 2010, namely an arm device with long battery life and a 3G/4G connection. The difference is that their Windows App Store is still nowhere close to where it needs to be. This is why iPads are ubiquitous in the corporate space. There certainly was a demand for devices like this, but I’m not sure there is anymore as it negates the one strength the PC still has, namely, its rich software catalogue. Until you have all pc applications (and games?) recompiled to run on either platform, it’s not going to sell in any great numbers as the same convenience can be had from other manufacturers and it’s inability to run typically resource-intense emulated business apps like Autocad, photoshop, slack etc. makes it little more than a “look what we can do!” exercise a la Windows RT.
  • The price is way too high if it only runs ARM apps properly. Not to troll, but if someone is only going to buy this for ARM apps, then they are better off buying an iPad which is a hell of a lot cheaper, or just buy a regular W10 laptop
  • I don't think someone would be buying this just because they want to run arm apps, otherwise they wouldn't have even bothered with making emulation work. It's about being mobile with long battery life.
  • But battery life isn't that great and emulation is nearly useless due to performance issues. Why bother with these machines when an XPS13 is similarly priced?
  • How does ARM compare to Atom now days? I remember Atom being a lot cheaper than these new ARM systems
  • Atom was heavily subsidized by Intel (they lost a billion per quarter on those subsidies). Nowadays there are no Atoms competing with ARM, they killed the line because they couldn't compete, not even with those massive subsidies.
  • LTE
  • Hey, we know Google would love to compile Chrome for ARM but they are just too busy hunting for security flaws in Microsoft's products to get it done. What about Firefox? Maybe MS could entice Firefox into compiling an ARM version, that woud be good for both wouldn't it? Then maybe Google would feel left out and join the party, or not. 😏
  • The store doesn't allow other browser engines. Microsoft would have to change their policies first.
  • Why would it have to be in the store? As stated, you can already run Chrome (which isn't in the store); it's just a poor experience doing so, because it has to run through emulation.
  • I guess it wouldn't have to be in the store, but what is the point of it can't be in the store?
  • The point would be to use the browser you like, without compromising performance.
  • Then you do not buy one of these machines. They do not have any users, let alone enough users to justify building an app that wouldn't even be allowed in the store. If Microsoft wants these things to be successful, they need to incentivize developers one way or another. Large numbers of engaged users is the best way.
  • D'Oh! Yeah, Microsoft shoots themselves in the foot again with unnecessary platform restrictions dooming it before it takes the first step.
  • Me. Once they add telephony, they're for me. As it currently stands? Early adopters willing to deal with emulation issues. It will only get better though. I await Microsoft's flagship device featuring this technology. Maybe even version 2 of it.
  • They won't add telephony, not to this form factor. Pocketable will have telephony, I don't see them doing the same with laptops. The demand certainly isn't there.
  • Why not? I know we won't hold a laptop up to our head, but a Bluetooth headset or ear buds would work (with a Bluetooth range limit of course). I'm always left wondering what might evolved if Microsoft would just stop shutting off features people may or not use. They could run an experiment 'prototype' 8" tablet device jointly with one of their partners with telephony turned on just to see, right? Tell everyone upfront, "this is a prototype device". Crazy techies will still buy enough to validate usage, or if they end up in closets. If it dies, then it dies.
  • There really isn't anything stopping them, even today, but I don't see demand making them viable. What is the point? Why would you ever want to make your laptop your main phone instead of an actual phone you can carry anywhere? Like you said, only techie fanboys would ever want to do that and for them there are much better solutions already available.
  • A xpa compatible full win10 portable vs smart phone? esp in small form factor, no choice! It's not like I cannot read my news or emails on a win10...
  • I am seriously looking forward to having this on my next Windows phone!
  • > Me. Once they add telephony, they're for me. Not sure of your definition of "telephony" -- install SIP client, pay $5/mo to any of VOIP providers, you are done. The only problem I see is -- most SIP clients I used are x64, but I am sure you can find one to run under emulation...
  • Much obliged for the suggestion! I would absolutely prefer 1st party integration because I'm unbearably lazy. I just want to drop my SIM in (or port to the eSIM) and call it a day. This is the only reason I'm not selling everything I own and trying for the i5 LTE Surface Pro.
  • I'd be all for this, performance issues n all... for half the price. And not trying to be cheap. Paying full laptop prices for a somewhat gimped experience doesn't make sense. Battery improvements aren't enough to warrant a 800 dollar slow laptop
  • Well in their defense is not the laptop that is slow but the emulation software. Thea article do state that Windows Apps works great, it's just the emulation software that is still slow.
  • But I bet no intel can let you use'em as a long lasting pocket wifi. These ARM devices'd be useful for travel and business trip.
    Different usage.
  • This is the first iteration so it's to be expected. I will probably buy one since I prefer a 2 in 1 device than a iOS tablet.
  • This gen 1 device. I expect better performance with SD845, Andromeda etc. They will tweak the emulations.
  • Exactly. This will get better over time.
  • Running what exactly? WoA would have benefitted heavily from UWP apps. But Microsoft is far too busy chasing PWA like greedy magpies.
  • With more powerful next gen ARM chips and if Microsoft further improve x86 emulation I may just get one.
  • Also to add these Windows 10 on ARM devices are running on the snapdragon 835 not the 845. I was hoping they would launch with the 845 as it would mean signficantly better performance when it comes to emulation. But as it stands these devices are more than a generation behind and priced as flagship products. Flagship android Phones will be launching with the snapdragon 845.... pretty soon. I sure as heck hope Andromeda doesn't launch with the snapdragon 835.... Because knowing Microsoft they'll probably announce it at build then sell it in october 2018. By then it will be two / three generations behind in terms of the SOC. Not to mention how critics will bash the device because it's using a old SOC. So no matter what it has to launch with the Snapdragon 845.
  • But we can only assume that the 845 processor would improve performance. There's no telling whether it'll be significant or not.
  • Wow, alot of down votes. I guess people haven't really paid attention to past launch and sale dates of products. I guess people don't really read. These WoA devices cost more than a core m3 Surface bundle. Whilst their emulation performance is pretty subpar and not to mention they cannot run x64 apps yet. The snapdragon 845 will be a significant upgrade when compared to the 835 as it has to be through definition. As it's the flagship tier. The crux is that would be possible to maintain this aggressive progression going forward? I am not entirely sure as beyond a certain point it may become impractical due to the limited power budget in small form factor devices. Most importantly, UWP apps are perfect for WoA devices but we are seeing far less focus on UWP by Microsoft through their actions.
  • Microsoft needs to stop releasing half baked products. Then there would be no need for the usual excuses and attempts to justify the limitations. And an Atom device wouldn't have such issues, or have we forgotten the Surface 3?
  • Atom in surface 3 can run x86 apps natively.
  • > Atom in surface 3 can run x86 apps natively. What is more important -- it can run x64 apps natively...
  • Even Atom has the "issue" of being just under-powered enough to drive the user crazy once they use the machine for a few weeks. That's for a normal SOHO, throw all the standard corporate security and patching packages on there and it's a non starter. Bad performance (especially on $1000 devices) tarnishes the entire Windows brand and ecosystem.
  • WoA is a proof of concept today, they aren't "for" anybody. Maybe in a couple years price and performance will bring an audience. Today they are just for early adopters to buy and later complain about when reality sets in.
  • Proof of concept indeed. But you gotta admit, it's a good concept. I just hope Microsoft is good enough to follow through with it.
  • The promises sound nice but that is all they are at this point. It looks like it will be years before they live up to the hype. Where will Windows relevancy be in a few years? It certainly won't be as strong. Microsoft needs something now, not a promise a few years away.
  • The problem is, Windows is not all that relevant today. When you count up phones, tablets and PCs, Windows makes up about 15% (and still dropping) of all personal computing devices sold today. That's a HUGE drop from 10 years ago, when Windows accounted for about 95%.
  • Exactly. In a few years, it will really struggle to stay relevant.
  • "15% of all personal computing devices sold today"... Have you lost your mind?
  • The biggest deal will be the ability to run Andromeda on our phones. The 30 million users of Windows phones badly need a path forward, with hopes of the long rumored Surface Phone. MS has said that they will stop supporting Windows mobile, but I believe that is just another in their long line of confusing marketing approaches, often saying that one line is ending, but then following with another line, calling it a different name (Windows Mobile replaced by Windows Phone, which was replaced by Windows 10 mobile, which will be replaced by Windows 10 ARM?)
  • …that’s why Microsoft will call it Surface Scribe. Who wouldn’t want an ancient Jewish record-keeper in their pocket?
  • I don't see how combining all of Microsoft's failed products into one makes for a compelling device. Windows phone, windows tablets, RT & continuum have all flopped, but mashing them all together will make the perfect device. It's just silly.
  • I think fans are confused as to what this device will do and have high expectations, some of them due to misleading fantasies of writers here.
    The mobile surface will be a niche device which will perform some additional tasks which a phone cannot do and increase productivity. but some of the users who are expecting to run full suite of photoshop or visual studio wil be in for a big disappointment.
  • Well, unless you factor in all the X86 stuff (which it doesn't do very well), this is a product with a very small pool of software. The only software that it's worth buying for being what's been written for ARM and there ain't much of that. You could suggest that the apps will come, but that's what they said about Windows Mobile. At this price point I can't see it succeeding when it's mainly competing with Chromebooks which offer vastly superior value. Even on HP's own website, I dug the following up:
    https://www.windowscentral.com/e?link=https2F2Fcrea...
    An I7 processor with 8GB of RAM and a 15" screen. It blows the ARM effort out of the water for just $649. I don't know what they were thinking choosing a $1000 price point for something this underpowered. They're going to have to be much cheaper.
  • Exactly. Microsoft is hobbling this effort right out of the gate. They needed to launch these at like $299 to push adoption and give developers a reason to build apps for it. Maybe they know they suck and only want early adopters to buy and test them. That could explain the high price. Either way, the strategy doesn't seem to make sense.
  • First, SD835 is not a cheap SD chip. Second, price point is not set by Microsoft, but I agreed it is steep.
  • These are dead in the water... Another lame brained idea from Microsoft... I feel sorry for the OEM's... No one will buy this... Just like the invoke... Just like mixed reality...
  • Actually the idea is sound. Execution is a whole other matter.
  • Just like the 950 phones.
  • Sounds worse than RT. 😜
  • Lol nah RT was definitely worse. I liked RT and even had one too.
  • No
  • This high end ARM laptops have a specific audience, people that do light work.
    But we need sub 300$ laptops with these ARM SoCs, "i3 performance in native apps and Atom performance in emulated apps" isn't a problem in this price point.
  • I think it's great, but won't be really good until the next generation of ARM processors.
  • Also the win32 desktop programs work alot,better if there downloaded from the store that's an interesting tidbit.
  • Looks like a real cat and mouse game with arm compiled vs native. Hopefully the benefits of using ARM cpu's makes them compelling enough for people to adopt them. At the same time, I wonder if google will compile ARM code for it. We all know they've got their own systems in the works, but if they don't, they can risk losing market share, again, if the benefits of the arm cpu's are compelling enough.
  • These devices are and always were clearly targeted at condition and light duty work like a student or housewife/househubby might do. They're not for productivity, obviously.
  • Yes, but the question is why would any of those people pay such a high price for such an underperforming laptop when there's a million and one cheaper ones out there.
  • Hey Zac, one question I wondered if you could address? MS claims that the emulation they do improves over time. the longer you used certain apps, did see see any snappier performance? Was it at all noticeable?
  • Nice catch
  • I'm going to get one of these. Probably the cheaper 2 in 1 Lenovo Miix 630. Keep in mind it'll be a secondary computer. I have a Ryzen 7 workstation as a primary PC. I travel a bit and like to work out at coffee shops. The built in LTE and long battery life is what I've been looking for. I'm happy with using Microsoft Edge (its not that bad) and Office 365 most of the time.
  • Me, I'd totally get one of these. I have an SP4 and most of the time I feel its too powerful for my regular use. Before I used a Surface 2, and it was enough for light use, but I wanted a Windows 10 device with the newer apps. A device with WoA with a nice screen and features would be perfect for me. I could even use the emulation sometimes, for example to punch a Steam key or small things like that. Other than that, are those who use Chrome so hooked into it as a browser that they couldn't adapt to use Edge in one of these? I mean, I know what it's like to prefer another browser over it. But it's really no big deal.
  • No one is going to buy these if Edge is the only browser that works. Even on desktop Windows, only 4% are using Edge. 67% are using Chrome. The rest are using Firefox and IE. There are more people using IE (still!) than Edge.
  • and ppl thought they could run photoshops on mobile.
  • "Who are Windows 10 on ARM-powered devices for?" Good question. They are very expensive. Strike 1. Mediocre performance. Actually, for the price, terrible performance. Strike 2. Once again, no apps. Edge is the only browser with acceptable performance? Strike 3. As always, the NEXT version will be The One.
  • it's too late.... Windows as an OS will go the way of Nokia.
    for now those with x86 will stay with it...till
    ARM....Android will win this and bring out the 'thick apps' if needed. they have the money, marketing and the consumers. or they will just wait and watch MS flounder.
    MS lost the consumer market willingly.
  • ChromeOs on Arm will bury this initiative.
  • To be fair, Microsoft's own documentation for developing and publishing UWP apps encourages developers to submit app packages that contain x86, x64, and ARM binaries. Native performance on ARM devices should not be restricted exclusively to Microsoft's own software, but also include any UWP apps for which the developer has followed the guidelines and included binaries for ARM when submitting to the Store.
  • No review from windows central for HP envy 2 or Asus Nova yet? It's because it's too slow?
  • We need proper review and comparison with surface 3 and surface pro core m3 versions.
  • Ultimately I believe the goal is for low cost devices to provide thin client like accessibility to hosted OS/browser/web based application structure. Everything will be streamed, very little will be processing locally. There of course will be exceptions and people who need higher end workstation like processing will buy those with more capability (content creation, gaming, etc). But I think we could even see those sold as more end-to-end computing solutions, where there is no real OS exposed to the user, but rather the specific application UIs. I believe that is the future they see coming, in 5-10 years.
  • How does the emulation hold up if you want to put some old games on there, like baldurs gate, Creatures 1, 2 or 3, or other stuff like that?
  • 1st generation devices are generally not good but improve over time. The Qualcomm 845 will be faster and more powerful than the current qualcomm 835 so there will be faster Win32 Program emulation in future Windows 10 on ARM devices. the price on these WOA devices must fall because there are cheaper non WOA Intel CPU & Core M CPU devices that are out there that do not have the restrictions on what Windows PC programs they can run that ARM CPU's now have. These WOA devices at present capability wont be as popular as Intel CPU devices especially
    if Intel is smart and lowers the price of it's core M CPU's
  • I hope that the coming Andromeda 2 screen folding Mini PC Tablet has a version that use's a Intel Core M CPU in addition to one that runs a an Qualcomm 845 because it will run natively a lot more current Win32/x86 PC programs than any Qualcomm 845 can ever do
  • So - this begs the question why not use Microsoft's very good iOS apps on an iPad Pro and be done with it? There, you have to deal with poor file system support (sorry Apple, but Files is a poor substitute - just buy FileBrowser next time) and no mouse support, but the software is well designed and you can almost make a WindowsPad of your own choosing.
  • I'm not sure how well the consumer / office style Window 10 ARM notebooks will go, however there is definitely an existing market where this type of architecture is currently dominated by Android. And that is what I refer to as the industrial mobile or blue collar mobile industry. Think field service, courier, transport & logistics, hospitals, retail, etc. Repackage this as a robust tablet, perhaps with a built in barcode scanner and you have a device that will compete favourably in these areas. A good example would be retails stores that use Microsoft's Dynamics 365 products. The current hardware choices in this area are dominated by Android devices from the likes of Zebra & Honeywell. And although Android is good for a consumer phone it needs a lot of work to make it business ready. So I see a great future for Windows ARM but it will take some time for vendors to figure out where the money is to be made,
  • Everyone is missing the main points... 1) Always On Connectivity... PCs that receive communications just like a Phone with the screen off.
    -Current LTE Sim with an Intel CPU do not offer the same experience. So it isn't just abut 25+ hours of battery life, it is about your PC being able to get notifications and REAL-TIME communication, just as your phone does now. 2) eSIM - Look this up. It is also important and will change having a SINGLE device for a phone number or a communication end point. (All your devices/PCs will have CONCURRENT access to the same number/end point, etc. So you could answer your PC or other 'odd' device. 5) PERFORMANCE - When running UWP and software compiled to ARM, Apps/software are running faster than i3s, and from a user experience, feels close to a newer i5. x86 emulation is 'slower', but not unusable - x86 software will run as fast on these devices as it does on the Atom X7 based Surface 3. This also puts x86 software performance in the same class or faster than the m class Core processors. (Which is not a bad experience, or people would have been writing how worthless the Surface 3 was or the Mac Airbook was.) -The fact that something like Photoshop is not unusable should be telling, and the x86 functionality isn't worthless. 4) If anyone is buying one of these to run Chrome as your main piece of software/browser, just don't. Chrome doesn't run well on a low end Pentium/Celeron class device either.. However, if you occasionally need to run XYZ x86 software or your company has an x86 piece of software, you will be able to run it. 5) Right now, in the current price configurations, with the current Snapdragon 835 and with eSIM and Always Connected not being yet a necessary feature - people should be cautious about these systems. When there are products with lower pricing and in other form factors like Tablets/Foldable/unknown it will make a lot more sense. When the next generation 845 SoCs are available and other ARM OEMs see a potential, what 'little' performance difference there is today, will fall away. So in summary, to be able to perform in the Intel i Core range with native software, on a RISC based ARM 835 processor should be heralded as 'impressive' and 'brilliant' - because NOBODY is able to do anything close to this, and Microsoft just did it.
  • Chrome already performs woefully on Windows 10 in my experience, enough to make me switch to Firefox. So the emulated experience must be pretty awful. Autodesk already has an Android version of Sketchbook, so that one shouldn’t be too hard to deploy on ARM.
  • It will be interesting to see Apple moving forwards with ARM Macs.
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-02/apple-is-said-to-plan... I could see Apple providing Boot Camp Assistant to install Win 10 ARM, just like it does on its current Macs. IMO, both companies would mutually benefit. For Apple, it would give its users the option to run Windows for those who need it; and for Microsoft, it would provide a huge credibility boost for its Windows ARM efforts.