Qualcomm squares up to Intel on ultrathins

An SVP for Qualcomm, Rob Chandhok, is pitching the company directly against Intel in the upcoming battle for dominance over Windows 8.

The company is on the way to getting a quad-core Snapdragon S4 out to market, aimed squarely at thin laptops running on Windows 8. Chandhok said the machines, reports IDG, will outclass Apple’s Macbook Air for ultrathins, as well as blowing any existing Intel Ultrabooks out of the water too. “We think much lighter than what Intel calls an Ultrabook,” he reportedly said.

The Qualcomm SVP also said that connectivity would play a key role in differentiating Qualcomm under the bonnet compared to rivals. The S4, which will be manufacturered at a 28nm process and based on ARM designs, have “strong media qualities” as well as 4G connectivity built-in. He was not able to confirm if or when a 64-bit Snapdragon chip would crop up.

The question, of course, is if Windows On ARM (or WOA) will be able to stand up to Intel architecture – and, if they will be able to get around the tricky problem of running legacy applications.

Chip industry insiders have, in the past, suggested to us that WOA will quite simply not have the right ecosystem available to provide as rich an experience as x86.

Regardless, Qualcomm seems confident it can snatch market share from Intel in the next line of ultra thin, portable computers.

We have long heard rumours that the thinking at Intel isn’t worried by ARM, specifically, but by Qualcomm. The official line from Chipzilla, we imagine, will be that it likes competition: let the best man win. Until then, there’s at least one USP Intel has over any upstarts: the unwaivering support of high-end fashionista Michael Michalsky.