If there’s one thing that’s easy to miss when you’re using a laptop—or even buying a new one—it’s the sticker on the frame. Small and out of the way, these badges often signal tiny updates or minor fixes to existing technology.
With Intel Evo, it’s safe to say that isn’t the case. Seeing the black and blue badge on the chassis of a laptop should be enough to make you sit up and take notice—at least if you understand the rigorous certification process.
They say big things come in small packages, and that’s especially true of Intel Evo platform laptops. Lightweight, sleek, and ultraportable, these compact laptops pack a major punch in terms of processing, making them a great choice for any consumer. Manufacturers have to jump over several hurdles to get a certification, meaning users can trust that any Evo laptop will meet a few minimum requirements.
Whether you’re on the hunt for a new device or trying to stay on top of the latest trends, here’s what you should know about the foundations of the Intel Evo certification system, the program’s requirements, and who can benefit from one of these laptops.
The Basis for Intel Evo Certification:
First things first: in order to understand how the Intel Evo certification process works, you’ll need to understand why Intel created the program in the first place.
These days, many laptop manufacturers design their devices through lab testing and analysis—which doesn’t always match with the user experience. For example, a computer with a long-lasting battery life in a lab setting might not see the same longevity when a consumer is using it in real life.
That’s why Intel Evo’s platform revolves around creating a top-notch user experience in line with real-world conditions. The brand does this by focusing on what it calls Key Experience Indicators, or KEIs. This experience-focused framework was first developed during Project Athena, the predecessor of Intel Evo.
As the name suggests, KEIs focus on the user-based experiences that matter. This includes things like battery responsiveness or a computer performance that reflects actual user workflows. For example, because users often use multiple cloud-based apps in the background of their computer, Intel requires laptop designs that ensure stellar performance under these conditions.
To make this performance a reality for all computers under the Evo umbrella, Intel has outlined a few key requirements for these devices. If a laptop maker wants an Evo certification, they have to meet these rigorous standards.
This, of course, is just a quick overview of the Intel Evo platform. For a more detailed look at what this new ecosystem means for laptops, check out this guide from Lenovo.
Certification Requirements for Intel Evo Platform Laptops:
Now let’s take a look at how manufacturers focus on becoming an Evo verified laptop by going through the required performance specs. These requirements build on Project Athena’s existing standards to offer upgrades in a few key areas.
Better Processing and Graphics:
As you might expect, Evo laptops come with Intel’s state-of-the-art CPUs, the 11th gen Core i5 or i7 Tiger Lake processors. These offer a speedy but balanced performance that makes use of AI acceleration.
Even better, they come with Iris Xe integrated graphics, which offer fast photo and video editing and a clean display. For users, this means a more immersive screen time, especially paired with the narrow bezels Intel also requires for all Evo devices.
A Long-Lasting Battery:
The battery is where Intel Evo’s lineup truly shines, and it does so right from the start. The initial bootup with an Evo laptop is lightning-fast, taking under one second. This can happen with a screen lift, a button push, or a fingerprint reading.
From there, things get even better. Intel requires a minimum of 9 hours of real-world battery life with Full HD display, allowing users to tackle a full day’s work on a single charge.
In addition, on a 30-minute charge with the laptop shut down, users should get at least 4 hours of battery life.
These changes are significant for most consumers, especially power users in need of a reliable work laptop that doesn’t need to be stationed beside an outlet.
Additional Performance Details:
In addition to the requirements above, Intel Evo laptops have to check a few more boxes, all of which can add to the user experience:
- At least 8GB of RAM
- At least 256GB of NVMe SSD storage
- Biometric login options
- Wi-Fi 6 and Thunderbolt 4 support
- A user-facing camera of at least 720P
- Fans no larger than 15mm or a fanless design
- A precision touchpad
- Pen support
- A backlit keyboard
- Sleek chassis designs of up to 14mm thick
- A 12-inch to 16-inch display with narrow bezels
Many Intel Evo laptops go above and beyond this bare minimum, meaning that it’s possible to find certified laptops that offer even better quality than the milestones above offer.
How Laptops Get Certified With Intel Evo:
Intel works closely with device manufacturers, which it calls its “ecosystem partners,” in the drive toward laptop innovation. As a result, the company often helps to co-engineer the laptop experience and designs when it comes to certified devices.
To help its ecosystem partners reach certification, Intel provides its in-house testing tools to help manufacturers assess the performance of their latest devices. This ensures that all laptops are meeting the requirements that Intel has decided match users’ real-world needs. Intel, however, also carries out an independent verification process of its own for any laptops that hope to carry the Evo brand.
Given this multi-step testing process, you can assume that all laptops with the Evo certification sticker match the specifications and KEIs we’ve talked about above.
Who Needs an Intel Evo Certified Laptop?:
As you might expect given the specs above, Intel Evo laptops offer a high-end performance with top-tier features and designs. This quality guarantee makes them a great buy for any user who wants to be confident in their choice of laptop.
In addition, because these devices are ultraportable and lightweight, they’re ideal for travelers, students, business users, and anyone who needs a portable laptop that will work all day on a single charge.
Of course, not all users will need the enhanced specifications of an Intel Evo certified laptop.
Entry-level users and people who just need a supplementary second computer might not need the stellar array of features the Evo label offers. If you aren’t seeking a high-powered laptop and don’t need a long-lasting battery, getting a laptop without these features might save you money on unnecessary extras.
The same is true of consumers with unique needs, like extreme PC gamers or anyone doing heavy multimedia editing. As with any purchase, users with specific preferences will want to do their homework to find a laptop that fits the bill.
Finding a Certified Laptop in the Wild:
Once the certification process is complete and the laptop is released to consumers, you won’t have to work hard to find an Evo laptop during your search. Laptops that meet all Intel Evo program requirements will feature the prized black sticker of the Intel Evo brand. This sticker features the Intel Evo logo as well as the logo for the Intel Core i5 or i7 inside the device.
In addition, most manufacturers and retailers will be quick to post the Evo certification in a laptop’s branding and details. After all the effort to secure the certification, you can bet they’ll be glad to show it off!
Upgrade to an Intel Evo Laptop:
Given the rigorous certification standards and process, it’s safe to say that Intel Evo platform laptops are the cream of the crop.
Anyone looking for a great user experience, a long-lasting battery, and enhanced performance won’t be disappointed with one of these devices in hand. What’s more, these machines tend to come at a price point that won’t break the bank, meaning that users can get their hands on a high-quality design for serious value.
If you’re in the market for a new device, Intel Evo laptops are well worth your consideration. Note that, in spite of their similar requirements, each device will have minor differences, so it’s crucial to do your homework to find one that meets your specific needs.
As you work to find the tech tools that fit your lifestyle, don’t forget to check out our other guides, which are packed with additional tips like these!