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Report: Windows on ARM Is Exclusive to Qualcomm, But Not For Much Longer


For years, Windows PCs have flirted with ARM processors, but none of the hardware was good enough to compete with x86 chips from Intel and AMD. Now, we might know why. According to a new report from XDA Developers, Microsoft has an exclusivity agreement with Qualcomm that prevents other vendors’ ARM designs from integrating with Windows. That’s the bad news. The good news is it will expire soon. 

Microsoft and Qualcomm teamed up in 2016 to launch Windows 10 with support for ARM. Unfortunately, the difficulty of making software run well on Windows for ARM has impeded growth. This wasn’t even Microsoft’s first attempt at supporting ARM. In the Windows 8 era, it launched Windows RT for 32-bit ARM chips. It was a spectacular disaster, owing to the lack of app support. Newer chips from Qualcomm didn’t really help, either. The available hardware, like the Snapdragon ...


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