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Windows 10 ARM Notebooks: Geekbench Scores, HP Launching 12” Notebook With 8GB RAM & 256GB Storage

by Habeeb Onawole 20

In a couple of weeks we should begin to see the first set of Windows 10 ARM notebooks get announced. Microsoft and Qualcomm disclosed months ago that Windows notebooks powered by ARM chips – the snapdragon 835 for now – will be announced by the end of the year.

With roughly 6 weeks left in 2017, new info about the devices have begin to show up online. Findings carried out by Roland Quandt of show that over the past couple of months, a device listed as Qualcomm CLS has been listed on Geekbench.

Qualcomm CLS Windows 10 Pro Notebook

Qualcomm CLS Windows 10 S Notebook

This device is shown in multiple listings to be running 32-bit Windows 10 S or Windows 10 Pro hinting at models for professional as well as educational categories. The device which was first benchmarked in June has appeared multiple times this month on the site.

Some of the listing shows the device with 8GB of RAM and powered by an octa-core processor clocked between 1.9GHz and 2.2GHz. However, their test scores are not impressive.

Of all the entries listed, 1202 points is the highest single core score recorded and 4263 points is the highest multi-core score recorded. That pales to current Snapdragon 835 phones which score nearly 2000 points in the single core test and over 6000 in the multi-core test. But since these are prototypes, there is a chance scores will be higher when they launch.

HP Windows 10 ARM Notebook

For the ARM notebooks, Microsoft and Qualcomm have signed up with multiple partners. One of them is HP and details of a Snapdragon 835 notebook has been seen on its CarePack Database.

READ MORE: Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore Says Windows Phone Is No Longer Company’s Focus

Apart from having the SD 835 on board, the laptop will have a 12-inch display and be available in 4GB RAM and 8GB RAM versions with 128GB and 256GB UFS storage.

(Sources: 1, 23)




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  • NextHype

    seems we’re looking at the price of emulation (perf lost)

  • Marcos

    Windows 32-bit with 8 gb ram?

    • Yeah this was def kinda weird.

    • ShiverMeTimbers

      Arrrr… Windows 10 on ARM emulates 32bit x86 only.

      • No OEM would waste money including extra RAM that isn’t going to be used. The fact that 8 GB of RAM is showing up means MSFT has 64-bit emulation in the pipeline & may also have an (in place?) upgrade path in mind too.

        • ShiverMeTimbers

          Arrr…. For UWP but me still see no signs of x64 emulation as Intel warned about potential infringements. However only the more than 20 year old 32bit x86 patent should already expired. Straight from www(dot)qualcomm(dot)com/news/onq/2016/12/07/windows-10-powered-snapdragon

          Devices will run Universal Windows Platform (UWP) and Win32 apps through emulation.

          • Intel warned about potential infringements.

            That can always be resolved by licensing, especially since both parties have something the other wants: Qualcomm wants Intel CPU instruction tech and I’m reasonably sure Intel wouldn’t mind Qualcomm’s radio knowledge. That said, Intel already pulled out of the latter market, so Qualcomm might have to throw some money in there too.

          • ShiverMeTimbers

            Arrrr… Me thinks licensing unlikely, because that would be similar the other licensing agreements with other x86 chipmakers like AMD, which allows Qualcomm to make x86 chips also. On the other side, unlikely Qualcomm will license their prized LTE modem tech. Also Intel still have LTE modems www(dot)intel(dot)com/content/www/xa/en/mobile/modem-solutions(dot)html and already moving towards 5G as well.

          • Also Intel still have LTE modems
            and already moving towards 5G as well.

            Yes, everyone has LTE modems. Nobody is close to Qualcomm’s in terms of performance. There’s a reason Broadcom wants to buy them.

          • ShiverMeTimbers

            Aye! Qualcomm makes big bucks from their LTE modems. Thats why Apple also look towards Intel as less expensive second source. Another chipmaker for LTE modem in mobiles is Mediatek.

  • That pales to current Snapdragon 835 phones which score nearly 2000
    points in the single core test and over 6000 in the multi-core test.

    Are you benchmarking the OS or the CPU? For the latter, hardware should be the only variable, whereas your argument benchmarks the OS by making it the variable. In fact, compared to Windows on Atom the Windows SD835 score is excellent. I searched Geekbench for the highest Windows 32-bit Atom score, and found this result from April: browser(dot)geekbench(dot)com/v4/cpu/2331379, which has the highest single- and multicore scores of 1406 & 4077, respectively.

    With that data, we have a proper hardware comparison across the same OS: Atom is 1.17x as fast in single-core, but the SD835 is 1.05x as fast as Atom in multicore.

    But what about power consumption? Intel’s specs put the Atom in that test, a Z3775, at 2W. The lowest SD835 power benchmark I could find was XDA’s (xda-developers(dot)com/snapdragon-835-hands-on-and-qualcomm-visit-part-1-benchmarks-performance-power-savings/), at 2.5 watts. This means the SD835 uses 25% more power than a comparable Atom. In other words, at this point don’t expect battery life to be significantly better than similar x86 CPUs.

    There are a few caveats here:

    1) As mentioned in the article, these are just prototypes. However, if you look again at the SD835 results, you’ll see that performance took a big (~38%) jump between August and October and has pretty much been the same since. Ergo, the prototype status arguably isn’t the reason behind the disappointing numbers.

    2) It’s possible Intel instruction optimizations are missing for legal reasons. Perhaps Qualcomm can trade some of its radio secrets (which I’m sure Intel would die for) for these.

    3) When Windows on SD was 1st announced, many people assumed Microsoft were comparing battery life and performance to Intel Core and AMD desktop CPUs. If Microsoft meant any differently, they sure didn’t bother making anyone the wiser. Clearly, compared to Core and AMD, the SD835 loses handily in performance but wins on battery life. However, if MSFT were actually comparing Atom and SD835 performance, the 2 products line up much closer on both counts.

    4) Battery life and performance weren’t MSFT’s only SD835 selling points. Their other selling point was “always connected devices.” This would imply Windows 10 devices being able to take advantage of QC’s industry leading, legendary radio tech, which includes gigabit LTE on the SD835. AFAIK, this is not something Intel offers (or is intending to offer) with Atoms.

    5) This is only the 1st iteration. Future SD CPUs are likely to perform better.

    6) There is currently no other (mainstream) desktop OS with the same (radio) capabilities, so MSFT still has the chance to bring something unique to market.

    7) Android is pretty far ahead on ARM support in terms development man hours. It’s going to take a while – and working very closely with Qualcomm and ARM in general – for Windows to catch up. If it’s one thing MSFT is better than anyone else in the industry at, it’s hardware partnerships. Interestingly, Android also seems to have dropped x86 development entirely.

    8) 64-bit support isn’t here yet. That may help change things for the better.

    9) I hope MSFT signed an agreement with QC guaranteeing long term support, or they’re gonna be in a world of trouble down the road when these device stop being able to receive updates.

    • ShiverMeTimbers

      Arrr… Your score is for Geekbench4, but the Qualcomm chippery was tested with Geekbench3. Here’s a sample from Geekbench3 browser(dot)geekbench(dot)com/geekbench3/4793985 For laptops, makes no sense because the newer low cost Apollo Lake is so much faster than this.

      • ShiverMeTimbers Wow GREAT catch bud! I updated my post accordingly. Unfortunately, it doesn’t change my conclusions.

        newer low cost Apollo Lake is so much faster than this.

        But at what power consumption? The lowest power Apollo Lake CPU is listed by Intel at a “whopping” 6W here ark(dot)intel(dot)com/products/codename/80644/Apollo-Lake, which is 2.4x what the SD835 uses.

        • ShiverMeTimbers

          Arrr…. Apollo Lake can go as low as 4W depending on thermals and design, but not down to 2W like the old Bay Trail. Note thats “Scenario Design Power” for both Bay Trail and Apollo Lake. Me says “for laptops”, so up to laptop makers decide battery size. Since Apollo Lake is meant for low cost devices usually meant smaller and cheaper batteries also, although there are few exceptions, example www(dot)notebookcheck(dot)net/Dell-Latitude-3189-N4200-HD-Convertible-Review.213692.0(dot)html note thats screen only HD resolution likely contribute to less power usage as well. Higher resolution and larger displays drain battery faster. Premium laptops compensate this with larger batteries. So its a simple matter of laptop makers design decisions. Also Gemini Lake which is even faster than Apollo Lake is coming www(dot)cnx-software(dot)com/2017/09/01/intel-pentium-silver-n5000-gemini-lake-notebook-shows-up-in-benchmarks/ take note of the processor arithmetic especially.

          • Thanks for the info. Sounds like Qualcomm’s value proposition here then is longer battery life and gigabit LTE connectivity. I’m sure they could trade the latter to Intel for 64-bit CPU instructions, which would put both of them on (relatively) even footing in the marketplace.

          • ShiverMeTimbers

            Arrrr… Unlikely, Qualcomm prized LTE modem tech is what keeps Qualcomm viable and in demand. Once that advantage is diminished, Qualcomm would end up like any other ARM chipmaker in the market.

          • Once that advantage is diminished, Qualcomm would end up like any other ARM chipmaker in the market.

            I disagree:

            1) They have a lot their own custom core and other proprietary tech besides the radio.
            2) How would other chipmakers get to Qualcomm’s radio performance level if Qualcomm licenses it to Intel only?
            3) What other chipmakers, anyway? The only real competitors are Samsung, MediaTek, and Huawei. Samsung and Huawei appear to be keeping their CPUs as 1st party exclusives, with few exceptions. MediaTek’s strategy seems to be attacking the wide performance gap between SD800 & -600 devices at a low price point. No one’s building a flagship device with a MediaTek CPU, and MediaTek doesn’t have Qualcomm’s radio prowess anyway.

            (I wrote this before re-reading your comment; it doesn’t address what you said, but it bears saying nonetheless:) Intel has already abandoned the phone market and – based on your Apollo Lake links – appears to be leaving the ultra low power market too. This means the Qualcomm and Intel CPUs with Qualcomm radio tech would never actually compete head-to-head as they’d be in completely different segments/device classes.

          • ShiverMeTimbers


            1) ARM Cortex A72 or newer, example Samsung using it in their Exynos line, is very competent. There’s also ARM Mali and Imagination PowerVR for GPU. So Qualcomm’s IPs in this area does not have any advantage.

            2) They don’t. If Intel gets license then it would mean the end for Qualcomm’s own LTE modem. Intel can sell to anyone especially Apple. Just look at the recent spat between Qualcomm and Apple.

            3) Samsung is strong contender. Huawei is big in China. Mediatek is actually used in some premium phones like Sony Xperia.

            Arrrr… Intel abandoned the CPU SoC part of the phone market, because of price competition from numerous ARM chipmakers especially Chinese ones, plus losing money pushing their chips. Their last phone Soc was Moorefield. Those Bay Trail, Cherry Trail and Apollo Lake more suited for tablets.

          • 1) I’ve never used an Exynos device, but I’ve used enough non-Snapdragon CPU devices to tell you that their performance tends to be awful relative to Snapdragons.
            2) Not if Qualcomm forbids it in the agreement, although this would have the potential to become a court case down the road.
            3) Samsung: not in the US. Huawei: not in the US. Although Xperia is a premium label, not all their devices are premium performance. Of the 19 Xperias listed on Sony’s current website, I counted 12 with SD CPUs vs. only 7 with MediaTek. You know, before Ryzen, many PC OEMs sold AMD-powered PCs that weren’t remotely competitive with their Intel models. My point is that an OEM fielding 2 different CPUs in their product line is more of a market segment decision and not an indication that said CPUs are comparable.

            because of price competition from numerous ARM chipmakers especially Chinese ones

            This is either corporate speak or revisionist history. The only serious Chinese ARM competitor is Huawei, and their emergence as a leader has been relatively recent. Intel’s phone issues were:

            1) They couldn’t simultaneously match Qualcomm’s performance AND power consumption on x86.

            2) They couldn’t match Qualcomm’s radio performance. Proof of this is independent tests showing Apple has had to deliberately handicap its Qualcomm radio equipped phones to avoid uneven performance vs. their Intel radio devices.

            3) Their relatively late entry to the smartphone market made OEMs leery of choosing their products.
            4) While all of the above was happening, Android x86 development and (app) support were lagging badly.

          • ShiverMeTimbers

            Arrr…. Gemini Lake Celeron leak browser(dot)geekbench(dot)com/geekbench3/8478230 and yet to see Pentium version which should be tad faster. Intel certainly took their time.

            Arrr… Samsung’s Exynos are no slouch, same goes to Mediatek which is why Sony uses them also. Mediatek were the first to employ Cortex A72 cores before anyone else. They also use Imagination’s PowerVR for GPU like Apple did.

            1) x86 arch much more complex than RISC arch like ARM, so higher power usage expected. However Moorefield was head to head with older Snapdragon 600 to 800 series at its launch. But Intel did not update or improve the SoC quickly enough while Qualcomm continue to update and improve theirs at faster pace.

            2) Like me says earlier, Qualcomm’s LTE modem is the best one so they can command better deals and contracts with wanting clients. However Apple purposely leaking Qualcomm’s code to Intel can be seen as a way to cut off Qualcomm in the future.

            3) Late because other parts of the SoC like GPU not low power enough. In the end they used Imagination’s PowerVR instead of their own HD Graphics for their SoCs. Both Clovertrail and Moorefield used PoweVR.

            4) Wrong, Intel’s x86 Android OS was more mature than ARM’s especially in multitasking and memory management. Thats because Android was based on Linux, and Linux was first conceived on x86. Look at how Asus Zenfone handles multiple apps running simultaneously. It was Android apps compatibility department that was lacking a bit, but it could run quite a number of apps both x86 native and ARM ones thru emulation. By today that problem was nearly fully solved. Can see that in x86 Chromebooks ability to run almost all Android apps. Both Chrome OS and Android were developed by Google.