Surface 2 is no match for Nokia's Lumia 2520 says Qualcomm

Qualcomm executives have claimed that the Snapdragon-powered Nokia Lumia 2520 tablet running on Windows RT 8.1 gives a much superior performance compared to the Microsoft Surface 2.

In an interview with CNET, Senior Vice President of Product Management for Application Processors, Raj Talluri, has said that, "The performance on the 2520 is brilliant," and "It's really at the next level. It's not even really a contest compared to Surface 2. In every area, it's much bigger, faster, and lower power."

The Lumia 2520 which was launched at Nokia World 2013 in Abu Dhabi on October 22, is powered by a Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.2GHz quad-core processor with Adreno 330 GPU, while the Microsoft Surface 2 uses Nvidia Tegra 4 T40 1.7GHz quad-core processor with ULP GeForce GPU. Specifications wise the Lumia 2520 has some more advantages as well, which have been covered in our tablet shootout.

Talluri and his colleague Stephen Horton, a product management executive for tablets and other computing devices, believe that Microsoft opted for the Nvidia Tegra 4 due to the timing of the Surface 2 release as Snapdragon 800 was not ready yet.

Windows RT hasn't gained the traction that Microsoft would have hoped for, but Qualcomm anticipates growth in Windows RT tablets as consumers and businesses realize the productivity opportunities that the platform offers and wants to stay committed to it in the long term.

Source: CNET | Image: Nokia

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Sorry Qualcomm, but the Lumia isn't particular better. Even though the CPU is better, it isn't by much and the Nvidia GPU may be better on the Surface side.

However, since they are both ARM in the 2 and they are running the same apps from the Windows Store; I don't see any advantage over the Lumia vs the Surface. The apps will perform pretty much the same on either.

Since the Surface supports expandable storage, USB storage, printing and more, I will go with the Surface as everything else is pretty much the same.

The odd thing...

It seems the area the Qualcomm based device has a bit of advantage is mainly the GPU. Considering NVidia is a GPU company first and an ARM/CPU maker second makes this rather odd.

The good thing though is they are both well performing devices, and run Apps and Office well.

Consider that the iPad/Android OSes can't 'technically' support software as complex as the full versions of Office at all, let alone run them well on an ARM processor is where Microsoft should be commended.

Mobius Enigma said,
The odd thing...

It seems the area the Qualcomm based device has a bit of advantage is mainly the GPU. Considering NVidia is a GPU company first and an ARM/CPU maker second makes this rather odd.

The good thing though is they are both well performing devices, and run Apps and Office well.

Consider that the iPad/Android OSes can't 'technically' support software as complex as the full versions of Office at all, let alone run them well on an ARM processor is where Microsoft should be commended.

Wrong, test shows that Targa 4 GPU is much faster then Qualcomm. CPU shine with Qualcomm but not much but I also think it's because of the higher CPU speed.

Personal Surface 2 has a better design, useful and innovation Then the Lumia 2520. NFC useless until money exchange become popular. Bigger storage and micro SD and store support. If you were smart then urfaxe is the way to go.

ACTIONpack said,

Wrong, test shows that Targa 4 GPU is much faster then Qualcomm. CPU shine with Qualcomm but not much but I also think it's because of the higher CPU speed.

Personal Surface 2 has a better design, useful and innovation Then the Lumia 2520. NFC useless until money exchange become popular. Bigger storage and micro SD and store support. If you were smart then urfaxe is the way to go.

Noted, I will have to go take a look at some additional testing.

If Microsoft are really looking to combine Windows Phone and RT in the near future, then I think the 2520 will have some future feature advantages due to the LTE.

Lone Wanderer Chicken said,
Saying the Nokia 2520 is no match for the Surface 2 is like saying the Mercury Sable is no match for the Ford Taurus.
Good analogy. However, the young guys may not know what a Mercury Sable is.

Lone Wanderer Chicken said,
Saying the Nokia 2520 is no match for the Surface 2 is like saying the Mercury Sable is no match for the Ford Taurus.

I would have awarded extra points for:

Mitsubishi Eclipse/Eagle Talon/Plymouth Laser

Mobius Enigma said,

I would have awarded extra points for:

Mitsubishi Eclipse/Eagle Talon/Plymouth Laser

LOL! Good one Mobius.

Deihmos said,
Do people walk around with tablets for navigation? I actually rather not pay another bill for service. I can tether.

Same here I don't see the point of GPS in a tablet - I always use my phone for that. Same with LTE (although I see the point of that) - I rather just tether my phone. I don't have a tablet - I have a Lenovo X1 ultrabook but similar concepts in the end...

Deihmos said,
Do people walk around with tablets for navigation? I actually rather not pay another bill for service. I can tether.

I am one to agree personally, but I have seen professional uses where built in LTE/3G and GPS are required.

There are a few consumers that want/need built in LTE as well. For example imagine buying a grandparent a device that doesn't have internet and would never figure out tethering it to their cell phone. There are also still 3G users in the US that can't take a call and use data at the same time, making their tablet worthless if they are on a call on their cell phone.

More options the better.

What it really comes down to is multitasking and MS Office speed. Can I watch a fail video on youtube while working on a spreadsheet with no lag? For me I love the Surface design but lack of GPS and let is a fail.

mrdeezus said,
This comment doesn't make any sense.

Mind to elaborate? It would make perfect sense for MS to focus on the Surface line of products vice having to build, develop and support two different ones, very similar in specs and cannibalizing each other markets. Verticalization of costs is a factor of paramount importance in any competitive market.

korupt_one said,
there is nothing to say Nokia can not continue to make tablets after the ms purchase.

Do you mean Nokia as Nokia? If so, and if it is allowed by the agreement the two companies may end up signing I agree with you and I guess that Nokia will launch a 8" device as well. But if it will be up to MS to continue the development of the line I do not think so for the the above mentioned reasons.

I won't be getting either "have no need for a 10 inch tablet with ARM cpu", but I am very curious to see the benchmarks of these two stacked up together.

All good.

As an owner of Surface 2 (and with other family members owning Surface and Surface Pro), I can say that Surface 2 subjective performance is excellent. The thing really flies.

If the Nokia tablet is as good or better, it will be great. But I can't imaging Surface 2 owners complaining much about performance.

two great devices. pick your poison. I prefer the surface 2. the screen is bigger, it comes in bigger storage configurations, it has a kickstand, and I prefer a keyboard cover that isn't floppy

the nokia device has lte, 2 usb ports in the keyboard cover, and a better camera.

I just picked up a surface 2 yesterday just to see how it compares to the original, I have to say its like night and day, the surface 2 is a superb consumption tablet, super fast and smooth running, the screen is amazing, having the added bonus of 2 years of 200gb SkyDrive and 1 year of Skype premium is also a good deal. all in all if you purchase this device you will not be disappointed, I purchased from future shop in Canada and asked the rep how they were selling, he said both this and the pro have been selling very well.

They're pretty equal but the Snapdragon 800 is a little faster mainly because of its clock speed. But not enough to notice any difference in anything but benchmarks. I'd go for the Lumia as it has LTE for almost the same price and a very bright screen, brighter than any other tablet i know of.

clockspeed is irrelevant. tegra uses a standard cortex arm core from ARM , whereas QUALCOMM licenses the arm instruction set from ARM and custom built their own core.

I know. But block for clock at the same speed they're almost equal, the Tegra 4 might be slightly faster. But the 500MHz increase on the SD 800 will give it a slight lead. So clock speed isn't irrelevant here.

check out the anandtech benchmarks here. the msm8974 mdp/t is a snapdragon 800 reference tablet running at 2.3Ghz. the NVidia shield is running the tegra 4 at 1.9ghz.

based on these few benchmarks, the tegra4 came out ahead, even though there is a 400mhz discrepancy. this says the clock spread is irrelevant.

So true. The Surface is an excellent tablet range!
I'm getting the Lumia 2520 though, because of the NFC, GPS and LTE functionality (especially the GPS) as I've been waiting for quite a while before one implemented it.

Thief000 said,
So true. The Surface is an excellent tablet range!
I'm getting the Lumia 2520 though, because of the NFC, GPS and LTE functionality (especially the GPS) as I've been waiting for quite a while before one implemented it.

Until we see money exchange NFC is a useless technology.

True, that's why I said the GPS especially and the LTE is going to come in handy for me too. NFC is a nice addition that might or might not see good use. I'll just have to wait and see.

who would even use their tablet for money transfer, that would be your smart phone. NFC on a tablet would only be useful for pairing stuff like the Samsung cameras with wifi.

HawkMan said,
who would even use their tablet for money transfer, that would be your smart phone. NFC on a tablet would only be useful for pairing stuff like the Samsung cameras with wifi.

We already have Bluetooth for that. Plus power consumption is a lot better at it.

If I recall, in benchmarks the Tegra 4 does better in CPU tests, but worse in GPU tests over the snapdragon 800, so one isn't distinctly better than the other.

I just got my Surface Pro 2 and this thing rocks. IPad is no match to it in the next decade. Media has to stop the biased against MS. Surface2 is quite the grade for most consumers and the difference in power between Qualcomm and NVIDIA is not much.

coderchi said,
I just got my Surface Pro 2 and this thing rocks. IPad is no match to it in the next decade. Media has to stop the biased against MS. Surface2 is quite the grade for most consumers and the difference in power between Qualcomm and NVIDIA is not much.

The iPad shouldn't be a match for any decent x86 machine.

coderchi said,
I just got my Surface Pro 2 and this thing rocks. IPad is no match to it in the next decade. Media has to stop the biased against MS. Surface2 is quite the grade for most consumers and the difference in power between Qualcomm and NVIDIA is not much.
You are comparing two different products dude. The Surface Pro is basically a laptop. There are a few ultrabooks I'd rather have over a Surface Pro. Let's correctly compare products!

coderchi said,
I just got my Surface Pro 2 and this thing rocks. IPad is no match to it in the next decade. Media has to stop the biased against MS. Surface2 is quite the grade for most consumers and the difference in power between Qualcomm and NVIDIA is not much.

Comparing the iPad to a Surface Pro 2 is a great honor for the iPad. You shouldn't really even be thinking about the iPad against what is a fully fledged PC in a tablet form factor.

Two VERY different markets

It's the same market, it's the same people considering both before they make the purchase... Only Apple would like to make the "It's two entirely different markets" argument so they can appear to not have to compete with the Surface 2, which as we all know in the real world is a bunch of BS. Everyone I know says "Which should I get the surface 2 or the ipad?" I always tell them go test them out and decide for yourself...

glen8 said,

Comparing the iPad to a Surface Pro 2 is a great honor for the iPad. You shouldn't really even be thinking about the iPad against what is a fully fledged PC in a tablet form factor.

Two VERY different markets

Ravensky said,
It's the same market, it's the same people considering both before they make the purchase... Only Apple would like to make the "It's two entirely different markets" argument so they can appear to not have to compete with the Surface 2, which as we all know in the real world is a bunch of BS. Everyone I know says "Which should I get the surface 2 or the ipad?" I always tell them go test them out and decide for yourself...

It's really not the same market. If it was, and going by the sales figures the surface pro / pro 2 would be a total flop.

One is a consumer device, a tablet computer for consumption. The other may look pretty similar, but it's a different animal. It's for people who want a PC, but in a tablet form factor. They are really not a like at all.

People should not be comparing them period.

Deihmos said,
How do you even compare an iPad to a surface pro? The surface pro is a non upgradeable computer with a touch screen.
the Surface Pro is more upgradable vs the iPad. Can you increase storage with an sdcard on an ipad? Can you attached any external drive to an ipad? How about a mouse and a keyboard and a joypad?

You are missing the point. It is a computer that cannot be upgraded. You cannot upgrade the memory or internal storage. You cannot store applications on the SD card. The processor is weak in comparison to what you can get for the price. I'll compare the surface rt to the iPad.

TechieXP said,
the Surface Pro is more upgradable vs the iPad. Can you increase storage with an sdcard on an ipad? Can you attached any external drive to an ipad? How about a mouse and a keyboard and a joypad?

Mouse? No because the iPad only supports touch and has a touch interface making a mouse and pointer useless.

Keyboard? Yes. When I had an iPad, I plugged my Microsoft Natural 4000 into all of the time. You can also use just about any Bluetooth keyboard you can find because, you know, the future is wireless...

Joypad. You got me there. Millions of people will not buy the iPad because it lacks joypad support...

Deihmos said,
You are missing the point. It is a computer that cannot be upgraded. You cannot upgrade the memory or internal storage. You cannot store applications on the SD card. The processor is weak in comparison to what you can get for the price. I'll compare the surface rt to the iPad.

I think you're missing the point as well, internal upgrades can't be done on the iPad either. However the Surface is more comparable to the iPad than the Pro.

Deihmos said,
You are missing the point. It is a computer that cannot be upgraded. You cannot upgrade the memory or internal storage. You cannot store applications on the SD card. The processor is weak in comparison to what you can get for the price. I'll compare the surface rt to the iPad.

Apps on an SD card? CPU is weak for the price?
You are the one caught thinking from the iPad perspective.

How many ultrabooks are upgradable? Maybe HD on a few and maybe RAM on a few models; however, 99.999% of all notebooks made are NOT upgradeable devices. They also have less excuse, as they are not a solid case build design.


As for Apps on the SD Card...
Yes you can store Apps on the SD card. You can even plug in a 10TB HD USB Array and install Apps to it as well. Want storage and portability, buy a near flush 1TB USB stick, it is that simple and flexible, and depending on the device, as fast as the internal storage device.


As for the 'weak' CPU...
The i5 in the Surface Pro is still faster than 99% of all AMD desktop CPUs (especially per core) and in non-tablet comparisons is still one of the faster PCs. So your version of 'weak' is either misinformed or you required a desktop class i7, as even the notebook class i7 CPUs are not a big jump in performance.

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/high_end_cpus.html
(Look up i5-4200U - it is ahead of 'gaming' class desktop CPUs.)


The reason it is compared to the iPad, is it is nearly as light/mobile as the iPad, nearly the same price range, and works as just a tablet. Which begs the question, why dump $700 for an iPad when you can spend $700 for a higher end device?


As for the 'price'..
Strap a digitizer class, low latency, high input resolution touch screen on to any other notebook and notice the price differences of any 'deals' you may find quickly go away. (And this is a specious argument anyway, as most people have dropped $700-800 on a iPad, knowing it was 5o times slower than a comparable priced notebook.)


Just to be clear, I personally don't think the Surface Pro is ultimately the best Windows 8 tablet out there, but it isn't shabby and has provided a level of quality and features that other OEMS are finally matching and competing with.

coderchi said,
I just got my Surface Pro 2 and this thing rocks. IPad is no match to it in the next decade.
It's all about the apps. iPad is far better than any other tablet in many areas. For example, I find iMovie on iPad to be a whole decade ahead of any video editing app on other tablet platforms. This (quality of apps) is why people buy iPads. Microsoft still have a lot of work to do in regards to the UI from my opinion - the Windows 8 Start screen still looks like it's in beta to me, as does the whole OS.

They can be compared if you use the form factor as the base of comparison. Then after than you tally the differences which are huge for the Surface Pro. Unless you think they are different form factors?

Ravensky said,
It's the same market, it's the same people considering both before they make the purchase... Only Apple would like to make the "It's two entirely different markets" argument so they can appear to not have to compete with the Surface 2, which as we all know in the real world is a bunch of BS. Everyone I know says "Which should I get the surface 2 or the ipad?" I always tell them go test them out and decide for yourself...

They're talking about the Surface PRO 2, not the surface 2. one is competing with the ipad, the other is a XS Ultrabook with touch.

That is true but if you use the form factor as a frame of reference then they can be compared. It is all subjective. You pick what you are comparing by and then you can compare. If someone decided to compare tablets with a USB port then you cannot compare an iPad to a Surface or other tablets. However, the Surface and Surface Pro are tablets and can be compared to an iPad but cannot compare a laptop since it is a different form factor. Both Surface and Surface Pro are sold as tablets. The Surface Pro is not sold as a laptop. It just happens to be a very powerful and versatile tablet that can do what a laptop can.

Deihmos said,
You are missing the point. It is a computer that cannot be upgraded. You cannot upgrade the memory or internal storage. You cannot store applications on the SD card. The processor is weak in comparison to what you can get for the price. I'll compare the surface rt to the iPad.
False. The Surface Pro uses an X86 CPU. The internal storage, yes can't be upgraded...but I can with a USB or SDcard. I can install applications to a USB or SDcard. The card or USB simply has to be present for me to use the app. X86 CPU's certainly aren't weak.

Now even if you go to the RT side? If I wanted a limited computer, an iPad is already as limited as you can get. However, even the Surface RT is still more usable vs an iPad even without Microsoft Office. Weak CPU/GPU? I personally don't like anything made by Nvidia. Even tho my laptop has an Nvidia 720M and its been good, I prefer ATI. But Nvidia Tegra 4 vs the GPU inside the iPad? The iPad GPU has better specs on paper, but when it comes to just using those kiddie games like Angry Birds? It really doesn't matter. Those apps on the ARM based devices can run on CPU's with 25% as much power. In fact, the CPU in the old Sega Genesis which is the same chips used in the old 64k macs would push those games too.

If you were using Photoshop or Adobe Audition on an iPad, it would be different. But to watch a movie, play an audio file and play those reskinned 80's games, neither CPU or GPU is worth bragging about.

I rather have a Note 10.1. Why? Because for one it has much improved multi-tasking where I can use several apps on the screen at the same time. In fact I open 15 apps on the screen. Even tho it was crowded, I was able to minimize most of them and still have them readily avail, like a computer should have.

Windows on ARM is still versatile vs an iPad with iOS. They both do have some similar limitations, but the Surface is the better of the 2.

coderchi said,
I just got my Surface Pro 2 and this thing rocks. IPad is no match to it in the next decade. Media has to stop the biased against MS. Surface2 is quite the grade for most consumers and the difference in power between Qualcomm and NVIDIA is not much.
Whats amazing is that 20 people and counting liked this comment without actually reading what he wrote. All they saw was Microsoft product > Apples product. They then clicked liked. Unbelievable!