5 Laptop Trends at CES 2022

CES is the most important media event in the PC notebook industry. At CES 2022, most of the events took place abruptly and remotely, but they were equally important. 2022 is going in a very good direction for Windows laptops. New CPUs and GPUs from AMD, Nvidia and Intel promise to deliver breakthrough laptop performance boosts. And this is only the beginning. Here are 5 laptop trends identified at CES 2022.
ⓒ Asus

1. Increase laptop performance and power consumption

At CES 2022, the PC notebook industry focused on large, heavy and expensive laptops. AMD, Intel and Nvidia continue to build chips for thin, light and lightweight systems, but the most exciting announcements are still in the high-power and high-performance mobile computing areas. What makes lightweight laptops such as the Dell XPS 13 Plus and Lenovo ThinkPad Z attractive is that they try to fit high-performance hardware in the right space (though it remains to be seen whether or not they succeed).

The 12th generation Intel Core processor has a low basic power of 9W. The maximum TDP reaches 29W for the U series and 115W for the fastest H series. For reference, popular Intel 8th Gen Core mobile processors like the Core i5-8250U and Core i7-8550U have a maximum TDP of 25W. The increase in wattage is due to a significant increase in the number of cores. The flagship 12th generation core processor has a whopping 20 cores.

Acer’s 16-inch Swift X © Acer

This trend can also be seen in external graphics. AMD and Nvidia have announced the AMD Radeon 6850M XT and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Ti, respectively, as high-performance notebook options for external graphics. The mobile performance of each product is not only the highest among the products released by each vendor, but the maximum design power is also slightly higher than the previous model.

Increased power consumption is not good for portability, but it has a positive side. With the focus on high-end laptops, 2022 is a good time to buy a reasonably priced computer with excellent multi-core CPU performance and decent discrete graphics. Products like the Acer Swift X, Lenovo ThinkBook Plus and entry-level Razer Blade are all expected to perform well in the mid-range price range. It should perform well in place of a gaming or workstation desktop, and you won’t notice any cons except for the noisy system fan.

2. High-performance integrated graphics that are advantageous for entry-level laptops

At CES 2022, high-performance laptops will be the focus of attention, but there is also good news for users looking for an entry-level laptop or a lightweight laptop with high speed. AMD and Intel have announced new integrated graphics processor (IGP) options. The annual performance improvement is the largest since the Ryzen APU was released.

AMD Ryzen 6000 Mobile APU improves performance by switching IGP to the RDNA 2 architecture installed in the latest AMD discrete graphics cards. AMD claims that it doubles the performance of the Ryzen 5000 APUs, which have already excelled in gaming. This allows many modern games to run at 30fps at 1080p resolution, and many games can run at 60fps.

The RDNA 2 architecture used in AMD’s Ryzen 6000 APUs is also featured in the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X and S. ⓒ AMD

IGP also supports AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution. This is a function that can increase the low rendering resolution of the game. According to AMD, using a top-of-the-line Ryzen 6000 processor with the FidelityFX Super Resolution feature turned on, Far Cry 6 can run at an average of 59 fps at 1080p resolution with medium graphics settings. That’s impressive performance for an integrated graphics.

The integrated graphics for Intel’s 12th-gen Core i7 and i5 processors look similar to the 11th-gen Core, but the Core i3 has been upgraded from 48 to 64 EUs. The integrated graphics performance of the 12th generation Core i3 processor is not yet at an ideal level, but it has improved enough to play a variety of games on an entry-level Windows laptop priced around $500.

3. Upgrade your wired and wireless connection

CPU and GPU performance improvements aren’t everything. Connectivity and Wi-Fi performance are just as important as CPU and GPU in everyday laptop usage.

Physical connectivity is improving with the introduction of USB 4 and Thunderbolt 4. It’s not a new announcement at CES 2022, and some laptops already have USB 4 and Thunderbolt 4, but more widespread use is expected in 2022. Both USB 4 and Thunderbolt 4 are supported by Intel’s 12th Gen Core mobile platform, so it will become increasingly common with new models appearing in 2022. AMD Ryzen 6000 Mobile does not support Thunderbolt 4, but does support USB 4.

Mobile hardware from AMD and Intel will support Wi-Fi 6E, the latest Wi-Fi standard, opening up a new 6GHz wireless band. When I tested the Wi-Fi 6E router, the Wi-Fi 6E was definitely faster. Since Wi-Fi 6E can reliably provide speeds of over 800Mbps in real-world usage, with a Wi-Fi 6E router, gigabit Ethernet in most homes is virtually obsolete.

Laptops sold in 2021 didn’t support Wi-Fi 6E, so speed was meaningless at the time. But in 2022, things will change drastically. Wi-Fi 6E isn’t a must for most people, but if you’re a gigabit user, you should seriously consider upgrading.

Lenovo Thinkbook Plus 3rd Gen ⓒ Lenovo

4. Appearance full of personality

With the lightweight notebook design unchanged, notebook manufacturers are looking for new differentiators. In order to win the competition, there is a limit to the method of reducing the thickness and weight of the system, and if the performance deteriorates in the process, it is rather disadvantageous in the competition.

In other words, PC makers must now compete with creativity. The groundbreaking Dell XPS 13 Plus features touch-sensitive buttons instead of an island-style keyboard and function keys. Among various types of multi-screen laptops, Lenovo’s Thinkbook Plus has an 8-inch touch screen instead of the number pad on the right side of the keyboard. The Lenovo ThinkPad Z and Dell XPS 13 Plus also have a haptic touchpad. This is a rare feature for a Windows laptop. Asus unveiled a high-end foldable laptop aimed at content producers.

Asus Zenbook Fold 17 ⓒ Asus

Mid-range laptops are also becoming more diverse in appearance. The Acer Swift X, Lenovo Yoga 7i, and Dell Inspiron 7000 series are typical mid-range laptops with their own merits. The Acer Swift X features RTX graphics, the Lenovo Yoga 7i is the only 2-in-1 form factor, and the Dell Inspiron 7000 offers advanced storage and RAM configurations and decent connectivity at an affordable price. Each of these laptops has a unique style, with each vendor choosing different materials and bold colors.

5. AMD’s Surprising Claims About Batteries

Most of the laptop trends seen at CES 2022 are positive, especially for users who value performance, a change that is doubly positive. However, for users who want a battery that lasts for several days, this change cannot be said to be positive. This eventually returns to the first trend of large, fast, power-hungry laptops.

AMD, Intel and Nvidia have addressed the battery issue with performance optimizations. Intel’s 12th Gen Core processors combine low-performance, low-power E-cores with high-performance P-cores, while minimizing their use when P-cores are not needed. Nvidia used a method that selectively maximizes the clocks of some GPU cores while leaving others unused. AMD claims that with around 50 new power management features, the battery can last up to 24 hours. Of course, that’s hard to believe.

Can a laptop battery last 24 hours on a single charge? ⓒ AMD

AMD’s claims are not false as they are based on actual testing of reference notebooks under specific conditions that have not been specifically disclosed. The problem is that AMD’s reference laptops aren’t for sale, and the specific video playback they used for testing is far from realistic. Just because the battery in a laptop with a Ryzen 6000 APU lasts 24 hours doesn’t mean the battery will last 24 hours (or even close to 24 hours) in everyday use for AMD notebook buyers.

Intel made no claims about the battery at CES 2022. Intel’s 12th-gen Core processor press release doesn’t specify specific battery life. Laptop makers have generally followed Intel’s path. That translates into less impressive battery life on the 12th-gen Core mobile, at least not going to make naive users expect durability that lasts for days.

Considering the five trends, CES 2022 was positive in the face of rising chip prices and continued pressure from MacBooks equipped with M1 chips. The laptops unveiled at CES 2022 feature impressive performance, competitive pricing and versatility. If you are looking for a computer for work and play, a PC laptop is always the best choice. [email protected]

Source: ITWorld Korea by www.itworld.co.kr.

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