Qualcomm has a secret exclusivity deal for Windows on Arm, but not for much longer

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The next Windows laptop you buy may not be a processor from Intel or AMD, but may instead feature an Arm-based chip.

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According to a new report from XDA DevelopersThe reason why only Qualcomm SoCs are currently found in Arm-based PCs is an exclusivity deal between Qualcomm and Microsoft for Windows on Arm.

The two companies first launched Windows on Arm back in 2016 in an effort to create laptops with all-day battery life, and some of the first Windows devices to feature Qualcomm’s Arm chips included the HP Envy x2 and Asus NovaGo.

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XDA Developers We also spoke to people familiar with the matter who said that Qualcomm’s exclusivity with Microsoft for Windows on Arm is about to end soon, although the exact date of when this will happen is yet to be revealed.

Further expansion from Qualcomm

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At a recent executive summit hosted by MediaTek, the Taiwan-based chipmaker confirmed its intention to make Arm-based chips for Windows PCs.

Speaking at the summit, Eric Fischer, VP of Corporate Sales and Business Development at MediaTek, reportedly explained to attendees how to open up Windows on Arm to other chip makers to fuel the long-standing Windows/Intel or Wintel partnership. Can affect, saying:

“Apple has shown the world it can be done. Such a long-standing Wintel partnership must be under some pressure, and when there is pressure, there is an opportunity for companies like ours.”

In addition to Mediatek, Samsung’s Exynos processors and even Apple’s M1 chips could eventually be used to run Windows on Arm after Qualcomm’s exclusivity agreement with Microsoft expires.

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via XDA Developers

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