A new report has revealed that Qualcomm and Microsoft have a secret exclusivity contract. This has been the reason why Microsoft has declined to make a version of Windows 11 available for Apple’s M1, M1 Pro, and M1 Max Macs that are built on the Arm architecture. The deal is however said to be expiring soon.
Qualcomm currently supplies a few chipsets for machines running Windows on ARM including the Snapdragon 7x Gen2 Compute, Snapdragon 8X compute, and Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 Compute.
A contract between the two tech giants does explain why we haven’t seen wider adoption of Windows on ARM on more devices running ARM-based chips from Samsung, Apple, or MediaTek. It also makes the case for a possible reason why Windows on ARM isn’t yet officially supported on M1 Apple computers.
At last week’s MediaTek Summit, the competing chipmaker admitted that it does want to add value to the PC market, but it has no plans to do so for the time being and is continuously looking at the prospect.
If the secret deal that Qualcomm is having with Microsoft didn’t expire, don’t expect wider adoption of Windows on ARM.
Currently, Windows 11 has x64 emulation enabled to improve support for legacy Windows applications on the new ARM-based version of the operating system but it still lags behind Apple in this regard. Windows on ARM was first introduced in 2016 to emulate x86 apps and as a permanent replacement to Windows RT.
It is not known exactly when the alleged exclusivity deal between Qualcomm and Microsoft is set to expire, but it is “set to expire soon” according to the report’s sources.