Could Qualcomm's Computex event be the company's most important moment ever? Here's why.

TAIPEI, NEW TAIPEI CITY, TAIWAN - 2024/02/10: An elevated view of Taipei city during twilight with skyscrapers against a subtle sunset, taken from a mountainous area with foliage. (Photo by Jorge Fernández/LightRocket via Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Is Qualcomm's biggest moment just days away? With its much-hyped Snapdragon X Elite chip powering so-called MacBook killers, the San Diego-based multinational could rock the computing world less than a week from now during the Computex convention in Tapei, Taiwan.

On Tuesday, Qualcomm President and CEO Cristiano Amon teased his keynote speech dubbed "The PC Reborn," declaring that "Qualcomm is the company driving intelligent computing everywhere."

The announcement states the speech will "[showcase] where innovation creates disruption in a mature industry." 

The "innovation" mentioned here is Qualcomm's Snapdragon X Elite chip, set to transform Windows on Arm into a viable MacBook competitor, disrupting the "mature industry" currently dominated by chips from Intel and AMD.

To further this point, the announcement post and Amon's teaser video on YouTube mention the PC industry being at an "inflection point." 

Qualcomm thinks the release of its new Snapdragon X Series chips will be this historic inflection point for the industry, with new Copilot+ PCs powered by these chips "setting new benchmarks in the industry and restoring performance leadership to the Windows PC ecosystem."

This could very well be the company's most important moment in recent years, a chance to show consumers how "next generation PCs with on-device generative AI are poised to revolutionize the future of productivity, creativity, and entertainment." 

After all, it's one thing to say generative AI is revolutionary, and another to actually show how consumers can use these new features to their advantage.

Qualcomm has always had high hopes for the Snapdragon X Elite chip. When it was first revealed in October 2023, the company called it "the AI Super-Charged Platform to Revolutionize the PC."

Since the chip was first announced, multiple leaked performance results have painted the Snapdragon X Elite in a glorious light.

A hand holding a Qualcomm Snapdragon X Elite chip held in a sealed display case

(Image credit: Laptop Mag)

In a gaming hands-on with the X Elite, its "buttery smooth performance" blew Laptop Mag away, potentially beating Apple's M3 in overall gaming performance.

Recent Snapdragon X Elite laptop debuts from HP and Asus boast impressive battery life. The new Asus Vivobook S15 can supposedly last up to 18 hours, and HP's new OmniBook X 14-inch AI PC is rated for up to 26 hours of battery life.

These battery life estimates line up with the first Snapdragon X Elite benchmark tests, in which the X Elite-powered Surface Laptop 7 lasted 58 percent longer than the Surface Laptop 5 and 16 percent longer than Apple's MacBook Air M3. 

In these tests, the Surface Laptop 7 also came out on top in multi-core performance and NPU performance but lagged behind in single-core performance and tests for web browsing, graphics, and media transcoding. That said, not all configurations are created equally, and the Asus Vivobook S15 or HP OmniBook X 14-inch could perform better than Microsoft's Surface Laptop 7.

While we don't know precisely what Qualcomm chief Amon plans to talk about or demonstrate in his keynote speech next week at Computex in Tapei, it's surely going to create excitement for the future of AI PCs. Amon says that the Snapdragon X Elite platform will "[enable] the extraordinary to become the every day," and we're absolutely here for it.

You can watch Qualcomm's keynote speech live on YouTube at 10:30 p.m. Pacific on June 2 (1:30 a.m. Eastern on June 3), catch the on-demand version after the live stream ends or check back in with Laptop Mag for highlights from Amon's speech and other keynotes at Computex 2024.

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