Microsoft has announced full Windows 10 support for ARM based chips in the coming years. This, thanks to a new partnership with Qualcomm. Windows 10 will be able to emulate the traditional desktop experience across a wide array of form factors that will now include mobile ones like phones, tablets and laptops.
Microsoft will initially support the upcoming Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chips. Only X86 win32 based Windows applications will be supported, with no X64 ones in vicinity. Microsoft is building an emulator directly in the OS’s core to enable this, so developers won’t have to tweak anything to see legacy Windows 10 apps work on ARM based systems.
This might appear as Redmond shooting itself in the foot, having abandoned Windows RT, a Windows variant originally set to address this. On the contrary, Windows RT couldn’t run desktop apps even if it a desktop mode and the outcome thereafter turned out disastrous that Microsoft abandoned the whole project.
However, over the years we’ve seen mobile based chips catching up to their desktop counterparts. The iPad Pro’s A9X can attest to this since it outperformed some Intel-based M chips according to some benchmarks, which leaves the choice to consumers whether to go Intel or ARM now that the two are about to run the same apps.
ARM based laptops are said to ship later next year and marked by the chip’s ability to consume less power while saving some battery juice, Intel’s only answer will be performance though its chips are known to draw a lot of power consumption while doing this which translates to reduced standby time.