The Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 will be a familiar SoC to most smartphone owners, and especially those looking for a best-in-class flagship smartphone experience. However, today at Computex 2017, in Taiwan, Qualcomm announced an expansion of the Snapdragon 835 platform that takes the SoC to a completely new level - the power beneath PCs running on Windows 10. Qualcomm has today not only confirmed a new wave of PC devices that are on the way and powered by the Snapdragon 835 Mobile PC platform, but also that ASUS, HP, and Lenovo, will be among the first OEMs to bring such devices to the market. No firm details on these devices were provided during today's announcement (beyond the confirmation that they are en route), although Qualcomm did confirm that they will adopt a “sleek, thin and fanless” design, will offer “beyond all-day battery life” and of course, will provide a full Windows 10 user experience.
While this effectively sees the Snapdragon 835 blurring the SoC lines, it also represents a blurring of device categories in general. For instance, while these PCs will be PCs, and will offer a typical and full Windows experience, the benefits of including an SoC like the Snapdragon 835 is that device manufacturers will be able to offer that full Windows experience, housed within a form factor that is lighter, thinner, and generally more portable. Especially compared to what traditional PC users will be used to. This is achievable due to the 10nm process and smaller physical footprint that the Snapdragon 835 makes use of, as well as the thermal handling and power efficiency benefits that are on offer with this SoC. An example of the strictly physical benefits of including the Snapdragon 835 can be seen below.
Likewise, with this being a Snapdragon 835 at the helm, these devices will also be more akin to an on-the-go experience more typically associated with high-end smartphones. For example, the X16 LTE modem-supported Snapdragon 835, will allow PC device owners to make use of 1Gbps LTE speeds. Essentially, these ‘always connected PCs’ will offer all the software benefits of a traditional PC, coupled with all the benefits associated with a mobile phone - lower power consumption, remaining on for longer periods of time, quicker to launch, and always connected, to name a few. Not to mention that as devices are becoming more connected, and carriers look to offer cross-device data plans, these Snapdragon 835-powered PCs, will be able to tune in to that data movement, and further make use of a design that is less PC-like (less dependent on Wi-Fi), and more smartphone-focused (high-speed LTE-capable). For those who have been waiting for a smartphone or a tablet that thinks it is a PC, these devices might fit the bill.