Qualcomm has exclusive agreement with Microsoft for Arm version of Windows

Only Snapdragon socs can handle the Arm version of Windows, due to an exclusive agreement between Qualcomm and Microsoft. That is what XDA Developers claims. That agreement would expire ‘soon’.

Microsoft and Qualcomm teamed up to support Arm PC chips in Windows, giving Qualcomm an exclusive deal to supply Arm PCs for Windows, XDA Developers writes, citing anonymous sources. It is not clear how long that deal lasted and when it will expire. The sources do say that the outcome will happen ‘soon’.

That deal would be the reason that other manufacturers do not supply Arm Windows chips, while other companies are interested in this. For example, MediaTek indicated earlier this month, according to the news site, that it wanted to make Arm chips for Windows PCs, without providing additional details. MediaTek vice president Eric Fisher said Apple “has shown” that PCs with Arm chips can be made and that the partnership between Microsoft and Intel has come under pressure. That is why MediaTek sees opportunities.

Microsoft announced a Windows 10 version with Arm support in 2016. Those Arm processors are used, for example, in Microsoft’s Surface Pro X series. Samsung and Lenovo also sell Windows laptops with Qualcomm processors.