AMD just announced its new Ryzen 5000 C-series processors, bringing its powerful Zen 3 architecture to high-end Chromebooks from HP and Acer.
The new series of processors range from the AMD Ryzen 3 5125C, which is a dual-core/quad-thread chip with a 3.0 GHz boost frequency, to the high-end AMD Ryzen 7 5825C, which is a beast to eight cores/16 threads. with a boost frequency of up to 4.5 GHz.
“With up to eight cores, Ryzen 5000 C-Series processors give Chromebook users the ability to stay unplugged all day without sacrificing performance and productivity,” AMD Vice President Saeid Moshkelani said in a press release on the new range.
The new processors come as Chromebook makers seek to market the devices beyond the education market, where they are ubiquitous in classrooms across the United States and elsewhere. Of particular interest is the business sector, where manufacturers hope to see Chromebooks adopted as a kind of computer away from your computer, offering excellent performance for business applications and portability, while improving the lifespan of battery, display and video quality, and Suite.
“This next generation of Chromebooks is a great example of what a collaborative industry partnership can deliver: excellence in compute performance, graphics, battery life and design,” said James Lin, General Manager of Laptops for Acer’s IT Products Business Division.
Here are the specs for the four Ryzen 5000 C-series processors announced today:
- AMD Ryzen 7 5825C: 8C/16T | 15W | 2.0GHz, up to 4.5GHz | Eight GPU cores | 20 MB of cache memory
- AMD Ryzen 5 5625C: 6C/12T | 15W | 2.3GHz, up to 4.3GHz | Seven GPU cores | 19 MB cache
- AMD Ryzen 3 5425C: 4C/8T | 15W | 2.7GHz, up to 4.1GHz | Six GPU cores | 10 MB of cache memory
- AMD Ryzen 3 5125C: 2C/4T | 15W | 3.0GHz/3.0GHz | Three GPU cores | 9 MB cache
Analysis: It has the power, now what will Chrome OS do with it?
Chromebooks have always been low-power devices. This keeps costs low and makes the devices much more affordable for schools and parents looking for a device their kids could use without risking an expensive laptop in the hands of a teenager with a cup of shaking soda.
As a result, the operating system that evolved on Chromebooks, Chrome OS, is geared more toward basic productivity, education, and cloud computing than heavier tasks like media editing. We won’t even talk about the games.
Boosting the processing power of a Chromebook certainly can’t hurt, but if what you’re doing is still just basic productivity and cloud computing, you really don’t need it. Having access to the entire Google Android ecosystem is great, but Android apps are designed for phones and tablets, not laptops, and no one will confuse the two just because they run on a Chromebook.
If manufacturers really want to see Chromebooks enter the enterprise market, then Google needs to redesign Chrome OS as something more than it currently is. An enterprise-class laptop that professionals actually use for work can do so much more than connect to a Salesforce portal, and unless Google starts making its operating system much more robust, even the best processors in the world cannot turn the Chromebook into more of a student-centric device.