Qualcomm has published its latest set of financials (concerning Second Quarter Fiscal 2022 Results), followed up with a lengthy earnings call, with answers provided by President and CEO, Christian Amon, among others. During the call Amon provided an update on the integration of the Nuvia team, and progress in their goal of developing a big-leap-forward for Arm processors. Amon commented upon the timescale in which we should expect to see Nuvia powered Windows laptops on retail shelves, indicating things are currently on track for late 2023.
In answer to a question from an IT industry analyst regarding the laptop market and Qualcomm silicon, Amon said that he was happy with the commercial and enterprise designs of Windows 11 systems based around the newest Snapdragon 8CX Generation 3. Then he brought up the Nuvia designed processor, which he claimed will be "going after the performance tier… development is on track, and we expect to have that in late 2023."
Processors are still going to be sampled with device design partners in H2 2022. This gives us some hope for performance leaks surfacing between late 2022 and late 2023.
Is This a Delay? Yay or Nay
The stated late 2023 availability of Nuvia Arm core designed processors appears to indicate Qualcomm has slipped a delay into its Nuvia plans. At the investor day presentation last November, Qualcomm's CTO said that SoC sampling by partners would start around August 2022, with shipping retail products set for 2023.
In an email to PCWorld, which asked whether the earnings call had surfaced a delay, a Qualcomm representative denied that there was any delay. The timing discussed by the Qualcomm CEO was consistent with the November investor day data, and "2023 refers to device launches," which still stands (but it is now "late 2023").
Qualcomm acquired Nuvia in January 2021. The processor startup was founded by ex-Apple engineers who wanted to turn their talents to Arm-based system-on-chips (SoCs) for servers. Just a few months later Qualcomm provided an extensive update on its plans for Nuvia-technology SoCs, and it publicly pinned its hopes on addressing the always-connected PCs (ACPCs) market with a processor that could get in the ring and trade blows with the Apple M1. This could be an exciting introduction for the Windows ecosystem, if all goes to plan.
For more about the potential Nuvia technology has to outpace existing CPU architectures from the likes of Apple, Intel and AMD, please check our article about the company's acquisition by Qualcomm.
The Nuvia chips will be a PC computing first product, according to Qualcomm, and are already talked about as Windows processors that are ready to combat the Apple M1. However, by 2023, Apple will be well into its M2 processor cycle, with whatever advances that family of processors might bring.