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Microsoft Testing ARM-Powered Surface Models

Microsoft is tipped to incorporate a custom version of Qualcomm’s 8cx chip within its new Surface Pro 7, with tech giant reportedly testing AMD processors amid a “shaky” relationship with Intel.

According to Petri it’s unclear why the relationship has soured, however, Windows Central claims it could have something to do with Intel’s chip shortage and lack of innovation in chip design.

Reports from earlier in the week claim Microsoft is working on a Surface notebook based on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8cx platform, which is designed for 2019 Windows 10 devices.

Today, BGR reports Microsoft wants to power the upcoming Surface Pro 7 with a custom version of Qualcomm’s 8cx chip.

Microsoft is currently working closely with Qualcomm on this custom ARM chip – codenamed Excalibur – based on its own specs, to make sure it works better on the Windows 10 platform.

Intel chips have powered all of Microsoft’s Surface models to date, and despite these rumours, Intel-based versions of Surface laptops will still hit stores later this year.

Details of the Pro 7 state it will look similar to last year’s Pro 6, but will come with a USB-C connector and without Thunderbolt 3 functionality.

The planned Surface Pro redesign has been postponed to 2020.

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