Always-Connected Windows Laptops Are Still Works-in-Progress at Best


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While there are some advantages in using Windows on the Snapdragon computer or the Always-Connected PC such as long battery life, silent design, and integrated connectivity, it still cannot match the performance of Intel PCs, according to Dan Seifert, writing for The Verge.

Although Windows on the Snapdragon platform offers an integrated cellular modem that frees users from having to rely on Wi-Fi and incorporates features such as instant resume from sleep, it is a 32-bit platform, which means 64-bit apps will not run on it. This includes a lot of recent tools and utilities. There is also no guarantee that 32-bit apps will work smoothly, as in the case of an e-mail client that crashed every time it was used in setting up e-mail accounts. The Windows Mail app also behaved strangely. It took three tries of installing and removing Google accounts before it can support basic archiving. Also, restrictions against x64 apps disqualify most modern video games from being run on this platform. It is also possible to install the Chrome browser but it performs badly on this platform, with long load times, jittery scrolling, and slow transfers between tabs.  

This platform may be suitable for the most casual of users who can coexist with the Edge browser and have no use for third-party apps. But it may not be the right choice for heavy users who want an always-connected PC that can last for more than a day without having to recharge the battery. It may be that there will be more connected PCs in the future but they will likely be powered by an Intel processor.

The Asus NovaGo convertible laptop had app compatibility issues and gave the impression that it was always being pushed to the edge and could barely hold on. Comparisons with a low-end Chromebook are unavoidable.