Qualcomm has unveiled a new laptop chip, the Snapdragon Elite X, which it says outperforms the fastest laptop chips from Apple and Intel. The chip is expected to be available in computers around the middle of next year, and Lenovo and HP are among the PC makers promising to debut devices running the new chip.
The Snapdragon Elite X uses a 12-core Oryon CPU running at 3.8GHz and is said to be able to locally run AI models with up to 13 billion parameters without needing to rely on AI processing in the cloud.
This could make it a powerful tool for tasks such as video editing, photo editing, and machine learning. Qualcomm CEO Cristiano Amon says that the Snapdragon X Elite can match the performance of Apple’s M2 Max chip while using 30 per cent less power, and it can match the performance of Intel’s fastest laptop chip while using nearly 70 per cent less power.
The Snapdragon Elite X is a significant advance over Qualcomm’s prior efforts in the PC market. Its previous chips suffered from tepid performance and limited Windows compatibility. However, the new chip is based on Qualcomm’s $1.4 billion acquisition of Nuvia, a chip design company founded by former Apple engineers.
Nvidia is also planning to offer a PC processor using ARM’s architecture as soon as 2025, and AMD is also expected to offer an ARM-based chip option. Intel and AMD’s current chips use what is known as the x86 instruction set, pioneered decades ago by Intel and once nearly universal. Microsoft and PC makers such as HP, Lenovo, and Dell have also been seeking more power-efficient options to better match Apple’s capabilities. The Snapdragon Elite X could be a game-changer in this regard.
The sources for this piece include an article in Axios.