In December last year, Qualcomm and Microsoft extolled a new class of laptops equipped with ARM processors. The machines named Always Connected PC are characterized by a long time of work on a single charge and a fully usable Windows 10 operating system with a decent performance. However, recently Microsoft has revealed the first limitations of the new solution.
The biggest advantage of the new laptop class is that they will be connected to the Internet all the time. This will be possible thanks to the native LTE modem, which is an integral part of the SoC Qualcomm Snapdragon 835. This type of equipment perfectly fits into the vision of the ubiquitous cloud. Unfortunately, Windows 10 on ARM-based computers may have problems with applications that use non-native components. This problem applies not only to programs that modify the appearance of the operating system, but also cloud applications that automatically synchronize user files with the cloud. However, this is not the only limitation.
Windows 10 on ARM computers will not launch the 64-bit Win32 applications
Unfortunately, but emulation of the Win32 application will be possible only for 32-bit programs. The problem is related to the efficiency of the emulation layer that Microsoft uses to run the x86 application on the x64 architecture. This restriction is a surprise for many people, because Qualcomm representatives during the presentation of the first Always Connected PC computers announced that problems related to the performance of the emulation layer were solved. Mobile computers with ARM processors will not support Hyper V technology, so their owners will be able to forget about any virtualization.
Always Connected PCs will support only some games
The times when players were only the owners of consoles and computers with powerful graphics cards have passed. The mobile games market is playing an increasingly important role today. Therefore, owners of computers with Qualcomm processors will also want to run a game from time to time. Unfortunately, they will be able to forget about titles that use the OpenGL library earlier than version 1.1 or require hardware acceleration. Further restrictions apply to the lack of support for external cheating protection systems (e.g. EasyAntiCheat). Unfortunately, we do not know how the Win32 emulation will work for games. Perhaps Always Connected PC owners will be sentenced only to items from the Windows Store dedicated to ARM processors.