We’ve been hearing quite a bit about MediaTek, ARM, and Chromebooks for the past few months. And for good reason: MediaTek has grown by leaps and bounds over the past few years and their interest in Chromebooks has ballooned in that same time. With the MT8183 in devices like the Lenovo Chromebook Duet, MediaTek cemented their place in the Chrome OS landscape. With the upcoming MT8192 and MT8195 being custom-built for Chromebooks, we fully expect an ARM Chromebook explosion in the next 6-12 months as these chips begin shipping in devices.
We’ve already touched on the MT8192 boards and their respective speeds, showing that boards like ‘Asurada’ and ‘Spherion’ should outpace the current ARM Chromebooks in overall speed by a decent margin. What we’ve not had up to this point is a firm idea of how good the more-powerful MT8195 chip should be expected to perform. As of today, we now do. With it’s bigger, faster cores, the MT8195 is definitely a better SoC than any previous ARM chip we’ve had in a Chromebook and with recent demos of this processor running in tandem with NVIDIA GPUs, I’ve felt confident that we’ll have a solid performer on our hands when it hits the market. Now we have firm evidence of that.
As you can see, I’ve included Geekbench results from a board called ‘Cherry’ that is the primary board in development for MT8195-based devices. We’ve not had much luck finding other boards at this point, but I’m certain they are coming. However, the scores for ‘Cherry’ make it quite clear that this MT8195 isn’t to be messed with. I had to search through a few phones before I found the right comparison, and it turns out that the phone in my pocket – the OnePlus 8T – is in the same vein as this upcoming MediaTek chip when it comes to raw single or multi-core performance.
While the Snapdragon 888 made a pretty big leap forward in processing power in the mobile space, make no mistake: the Snapdragon 865 is extremely fast. Not once since I’ve owned my OnePlus 8T have I ever given a second thought to speed, battery life, or performance in general. I play graphic-intensive games and push my phones to the limit of what is to be expected from a pocketable computer, and this chip is a fantastic performer in every right. It looks like the MT8195 will be in this sort of league when it ships later in 2021, and that is just exciting!
Unprecedented ARM speed for a Chromebook
What this means is pretty significant: we’re looking at a massive jump in overall speed and performance versus any previous ARM-powered Chromebook that has come before. New devices with MediaTek’s MT8195 will become the new benchmark for ARM Chromebooks when they arrive, and we’re all pretty excited by that fact. Sure, Qualcomm will likely bring better chips to the table down the road, but there’s no sign of them on the roadmap at this point. And Google is likely to arrive with their in-house silicon (similar to what we’re all expecting in the Pixel 6 this fall) in the future, too, but there’s no timeline on that arrival either.
For now, if an ARM Chromebook is of interest to you, MediaTek is where it’s at, and their MT8195 will deliver the speed we’ve been looking for from more current ARM SoCs. Keep in mind that raw speed is only part of the equation, too. With MediaTek building these chips from the ground up specifically for Chromebooks, the vertical integration should only boost performance in real-world scenarios. Throw that in with the possibility of dedicated GPU support, and the future of Chromebooks with this chipset inside could be very, very bright. Hopefully, we’ll know more about those plans very soon.