Admiring the success of Apple chips, Qualcomm is rolling up its sleeves


Almost two years after the launch of Apple’s M1 chips and a week after the announcement of the M2, Qualcomm takes the stage to discuss strategy and performance.

Apple just announced its new ARM chip, the M2 // Source: Apple

While Qualcomm remains very dominant in the smartphone market with its Snapdragon SoCs, it looks like something is missing on the laptop side. Of which note: the acquisition of the start-up Nuvia last year must help the company pass the fifth. Above all, we need to react to Apple.

Apple makes people jealous

What makes the Apple Silicon chips (M1, M1 Max, M1 Ultra and now Apple M2) successful is not just their performance. Direct derivatives of chipset integrated into the iPhone, they are very efficient. Furthermore, their ARM architecture allows them to launch both the usual programs and some applications hitherto limited to mobile devices.

A versatility that inevitably makes the competition envy; especially since Qualcomm has something to play for, where Intel is still only considering launching ARM processors in its new Alder Lake range. But the resistance is organizing: Intel recently mocked Mike Filippo, Apple’s ARM specialist. Suffice it to say that Qualcomm has every interest in accelerating so as not to lose its influence.

Fortunately, the company already has an edge. Microsoft’s Surface Pro X, for example, is already powered by an ARM processor in Microsoft’s SQ1, designed by Qualcomm.

Qualcomm’s future plans

In an interview with cnet

Cristiano Amon, CEO of Qualcomm, says he is grateful that Apple is clearing ground on ARM laptop computer. ” The right time to do this is now, because we need perfect alignment of the stars “, Adds the entrepreneur, who wants to take advantage of the breath of fresh air created by the growing needs for mobility and the democratization of teleworking in recent years to strengthen his position on the market.

And it is precisely here that Nuvia enters, one of the latest acquisitions of the brand. Founded by industry veterans chipset of Google, Arm and Apple, is seen by Qualcomm as the cornerstone of its future success.

Beautiful promises and a barely veiled enthusiasm, which in any case will have to pass through the sieve of reality. Today, the computer component crisis does not leave manufacturers free to innovate. And according to Cristiano Amon it should last until the end of 2023.

Worse: it pushes to internalize the production of some parts. This is particularly the case with Apple with its internal chips, but soon also with its own modems, which could find a place in future iDevices at the expense of Qualcomm’s models.

Nothing that seems to bother the company, which claims its results aren’t (yet) impacted. And to add with a smile that Apple ” they know our number, they know where to find us “. In addition, Qualcomm is keeping an eye on augmented reality, virtual reality and the metaverse. So many important levers on which sooner or later it intends to pull.” We are about five years apart [premières] realistic AR glasses “Makes Amon slip to Cnet. “ This is not a technological challenge that we have no visibility on. Something that, let’s face it, would have been pretty funny, when it comes to eyewear.

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