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CES 2017: Qualcomm thinks ARM machines running Windows 10 can refresh PC market

By Ian Chee & Koh Wanzi - on 9 Jan 2017, 10:07am

CES 2017: Qualcomm thinks ARM machines running Windows 10 can refresh PC market

One of the biggest pieces of news to come out in the past month was the announcement that Microsoft would now support ARM chips on Windows 10. The move was the product of a partnership between Microsoft and Qualcomm, and the implicit promise of thin and efficient devices with excellent battery life had more than a few folks excited.

Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 will be the first in line to enjoy Windows 10 support, and laptops are expected to be the first to debut. This is exciting because we could soon be welcoming a new breed of notebooks with svelte figures and excellent battery life to last you the day.

“We’re quite excited at the prospect of re-energizing the PC market. Many PC manufacturers also dabble in phones, so we’re actually doing something similar but in reverse,” said Cristiano Amon, Executive Vice President at QCT.

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 will be the first ARM chip to be supported by Windows 10.

“In fact, we hope to change the PC market by bringing LTE to laptops. Phones can already work almost everywhere as they don’t need a persistent Wi-Fi connection, but what if your PC did too? Laptops with Qualcomm chips could do that, and I believe we can halt the decline of the PC market by fixing one of the key weaknesses of PCs compared to phones.”

Qualcomm also talked about the possibility of bringing PCs to carriers, which could represent another shake-up of the market if users are now able to get new machines at discounted prices on contract as they do with phones.

In addition, Amon said that Qualcomm is doing a lot better on the yield curve for its 10nm Snapdragon 835 chip than originally expected, so we are well on track to mass production and the debut of ARM-powered Windows laptops in the second half of the year.