In JOI’s own words, the JOI Book SK3000 is an always on, always connected notebook PC. And sure enough, our experience with it seemingly invokes that same tagline through and through. But why do we say so?
But before that, the SK3000 is powered by an ARM-based Qualcomm Snapdragon Mobile Compute Platform 64 Bit Octa-Core CPU (up to 2.96 MHz with 10 nm Process Technology). It comes with an integrated Qualcomm A630 GPU.
And yes, this processor is more commonly found in smart devices rather than a laptop computer. But what does that truly mean for the SK3000 to be rolled out in the market without having the more common Intel or AMD processors? The short answer is, it works! Windows 10 boots up and runs perfectly on this notebook.
But because the Snapdragon 850 in the SK3000 is essentially an ARM-based processor, users must first be aware that a lot of common applications and programs such as anti-viruses and high-end games can’t be installed yet. Especially programs that are made for the 64-bit version of Windows 10.
However, based on our use, we are still able to install apps and programs that are compatible with 32-bit version of windows. As a way of imparting general knowledge to you, this technically means that arm-based processors are currently able to run most 32-bit version apps and programs but are limited to 64-bit ones. In fact, Microsoft just released the 64-bit emulation in December 2020 although this is on the preview version. It is a very good sign that there will be no issue for ARM-based Windows OS Running any kind of apps.
Here’s an external link talking about the 64-bit emulation: https://blogs.windows.com/windows-insider/2020/12/10/introducing-x64-emulation-in-preview-for-windows-10-on-arm-pcs-to-the-windows-insider-program/
Honestly, I would think that aside from this limitation, the JOI Book SK3000 is a pretty good laptop overall. It’s light, has an amazing battery life (which we would touch on more) and allows you to expand its storage by way of a micro-SD card slot. It also has a SIM card slot, which allows for data connectivity. This is why its tagline of Always On, Always Connected is so apt.
And that’s pretty much the heads up that I would like to impart first because it’s crucial for you to know what to expect out of an arm-based processor laptop. But everything else that follows from here on, might delight you.
Built Quality And Design
Now it’s true, that being a Macbook user, the SK3000 is highly reminiscent of Apple’s latest line of notebooks. The aluminum body feels quite premium. It’s simple, very slim and has no superfluous features. Anyone could pick this up and immediately know how to work it.
One could also be grateful for the narrow side and top bezels on the 16:9 12.5-inch Full HD IPS display.
On the right, you only have a headphone jack.
While on the left, you get a USB-C port. It’s highly advisable that you have a port-expansion hub to connect USB-A flash drives, or even HDMI displays should you wish. While you don’t get a lot of options for port connectivity but it is as such that it is able to retain a weight of only 1.05KGs.
The keyboard layout is pretty standard. The keys have a sort of slightly coarse texture but comfortable to type on nonetheless. The trackpad is something that I personally find amazing due to its size, width and placement on the palmrest.
On the bottom, you will see this rather minimalist panel and an opening for a microSD card slot, and a Sim Card slot. As mentioned, this allows you to not only expand its storage but also install 4G LTE data connectivity, which is essential for those who are always on the go.
In some sense, this feature makes it a truly mobile notebook PC.
While the built quality is quite impressive overall, one slight quandary that I face with the SK3000 is its balancing capabilities when the display is opened and tilted to the maximum. What happens is that the notebook loses a bit of balance as the palmrest is lifted up against the weight of the screen. It gets slightly wobbly. So the advice is really to not tilt the screen to its maximum and all will be well.
Also notice how slim it is. At complete closure, it’s less than 15mm in terms of thickness.
Operating System and Usage
The SK3000 boots up Windows 10 Pro rather speedily with Instant On capabilities, supposedly thanks to its 128GB Universal Flash Storage 2.1 SSD and the Qualcomm Snapdragon Mobile Compute Platform.
Operating Windows 10 is surprisingly smooth and hassle free. The only hurdle is the app limitations due to the ARM-based processor, which we mentioned earlier. The version of Windows 10 that comes pre-installed is Windows 10 Pro.
For a Qualcomm Snapdragon notebook, it comes with pretty good specs. And even though System Info mentions its 64-bit operating system, it is still an ARM-based processor.
Here, you’re seeing 50% battery remaining but you didn’t know that this laptop wasn’t charged in more than a week! I’ve used the laptop on and off for about an hour a day, surfing the internet and watching Netflix – all without shutting the computer down at all. And I’ve used up only 50% for a whole week!
The battery life is just amazing! And it gives me the confidence of not having to bring the charger along with me every time I go out.
For having only an IPS display, the SK3000’s visual quality is pretty good. Here’s a show on Netflix and visuals are clean, sharp with good color settings. The onboard speakers might be a tad tinny but confers adequate mids and highs for casual entertainment.
The JOI Book SK3000 is in short an ARM-based processor laptop. While it functions without a hitch having pre-installed with Windows 10 Pro, it does come with its very own software limitations of not being able to install 64-bit version apps. But it is said that many companies are currently working on introducing apps that are compatible with ARM-based processors – which will be gradually introduced.
But if you’re not particularly attached to high-functioning apps such as triple A PC games, and would go online frequently, then the SK3000 would fit the bill. It would perform all basic tasks easily such as word document processing, browsing the internet, watching Netflix and YouTube and responding to emails.
The JOI Book SK3000 is highly recommended for the general users and travelers. Its light weight, amazing battery life and the ability to install a SIM card for 4G LTE connectivity makes it very powerful in its own right as an Always On, Always Connected PC. And to that, we agree.
If you would like to browse for more information over the net or even consider making a purchase, here are some Malaysian links for you!
JOI Shopee – https://shopee.com.my/product/71213155/5170292078/
GLOO @ Shopee – https://shopee.com.my/product/3089259/5170273605/