While Qualcomm has become wildly successful in the Arm SoC market for Android smartphones, their efforts to parlay that into success in other markets has eluded them so far. The company has produced several generations of chips for Windows-on-Arm laptops, and while each has incrementally improved on matters, it’s not been enough to dislodge a highly dominant Intel. And while the lack of success of Windows-on-Arm is far from solely being Qualcomm’s fault – there’s a lot to be said for the OS and software – silicon has certainly played a part. To make serious inroads on the market, it’s not enough to produce incrementally better chips – Qualcomm needs to make a major leap in performance.
Now, after nearly three years of hard work, Qualcomm is getting ready to do just that. This morning, the company is previewing their upcoming Snapdragon X Elite SoC, their next-generation Arm SoC designed for Windows devices. Based on a brand-new Arm CPU core design from their Nuvia subsidiary dubbed “Oryon”, the Snapdragon X Elite is to be the tip of the iceberg for a new generation of Qualcom SoC designs. Not only is it the heart and soul of Qualcomm’s most important Windows-on-Arm SoC to date, but it will eventually be in smartphones and a whole lot more.
But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. For now let’s focus on the Snapdragon X Elite SoC and the Oryon cores underpinning it.
Some more in-depth information about Qualcomm’s upcoming Snapdragon X Elite, this time from AnandTech.