Qualcomm first announced its Snapdragon 8cx Compute Platform way back in December 2018, which was designed to deliver PC-class performance to ultraportable Windows 10 laptops with the power-sipping credentials that Arm-based chips are known for. Since that time, we’ve seen a handful of devices that have embraced the Snapdragon 8cx including the Samsung Galaxy Book S and the Surface Pro X (which uses a slightly modified version of the SoC called the Microsoft SQ1).
Now, Qualcomm is ready to deliver the next evolution in its PC-centric endeavors with the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G Compute Platform. On the surface, the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G doesn’t seem to offer much of a performance leap over its predecessor, despite the “Gen 2” in its name. For starters, Qualcomm’s own specs sheet [PDF] points out that it is still using an octa-core Kryo 495 CPU, although the onboard Adreno GPU is unspecified at this time (we’d guess that it’s still the Adreno 690). So perhaps any speed gains that will be afforded by the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G will come in the form of a clock speed boost over its predecessor.
With that in mind, Qualcomm says that the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G offers “50% greater system-wide performance and battery life versus competing solutions”. With respect to overall system performance, Qualcomm is quoting an 18 percent uplift versus 10th generation Ice Lake Core i5 processors and over a 50 percent uplift compared to Intel’s hybrid 10th generation Lakefield SoCs. Qualcomm is similarly touting the performance-per-watt advantages of its new 7W chip. How Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G will fare against Intel’s newly announced 11th generation Tiger Lake-based processors, which are available in SKUs ranging from 7W to 28W, remains to be seen.
Like the Snapdragon 8cx that came before it, the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G features an integrated Snapdragon X24 4G LTE modem. The difference this time around is that it’s shipping with a standalone Snapdragon X55 5G modem (hence the 5G in its name). We should also mention that Qualcomm is quoting up to 25+ hours of battery life per charge with Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2.
Acer will be the first to adopt the new Snapdragon 8cx. Gen 2 5G Compute Platform with its new Spin 7 Windows 10 convertible. The device features a 360-degree hinge, and a magnesium-alloy chassis. It comes with a 14-inch Full HD display and weighs just 3.09 pounds. Acer also includes a dockable Wacom AES 1.0 pen that supports 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity as standard equipment.
Unfortunately, Acer has not yet announced pricing or availability for its new Spin 7.