Windows 11 might be available on Apple Silicon Macs after expiration of Microsoft and Qualcomm secret deal

Currently, Windows 11 is not available on Apple Silicon Mac models built on ARM architecture. According to XDA-Developers, a secret deal between Microsoft and Qualcomm is the reason behind the non-availability of a Windows on M1, M1 Pro, and M1 Max chip Macs. 

In 2016, Microsoft and Qualcomm announced Windows on ARM which was a major upgrade as it was able to emulate x86 apps. With Windows 11, Microsoft has added x64 emulation. And the two companies worked to support ARM-Windows on Qualcomm chips. 

Windows on Apple Silicon Mac

Microsoft might be free to offer Windows 11 on Apple Silicon Macs 

Under a secret exclusivity deal, Arm-based Windows can only be available on devices with Qualcomm SoC. But the deal is set to expire soon which could result in Windows 11 support on Apple Silicon Macs. The report states:

One thing I wasn’t able to learn is when the deal will expire, only that it’s the thing holding back other chip vendors from competing in the space. It’s possible that Samsung might want to throw its hat into the ring with its Exynos processors too, especially given its recent partnership with AMD for graphics power. This is also presumably why Apple Silicon Macs aren’t officially supported for running Windows 11, so hopefully that will change as well.

Qualcomm and Microsoft share a strong bond but MediaTek’s Executive Summit and Qualcomm’s Investor Day events indicated that “ARM SoC vendors absolutely believe that the ‘Wintel’ partnership is going to fade and that the transition to ARM isn’t just happening, it’s inevitable.” And most of the companies want to be part of it when it opens. 

Parallels for Apple Silicon Macs

Owners of Apple Silicon Macs can access Windows by using Parallels 16.5 or later to run Insider Preview builds of Windows 10 and 11 as the only solution. Recently, Microsoft confirmed Windows 11 will not be officially supported on M1, M1 Pro, and M1 Max Macs and ARM-based Windows will work via visualization, and that is not a “supported scenario”. 

The latest Parallels Desktop 17 comes with support for macOS Monterey, Window 11, and other performance improvements. And with this update, Windows performance on Apple Silicon Macs got 30% faster in various tasks and 28% faster with DirectX 11 performance. 

About the Author

Addicted to social media and in love with iPhone, started blogging as a hobby. And now it's my passion for every day is a new learning experience. Hopefully, manufacturers will continue to use innovative solutions and we will keep on letting you know about them.

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