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Why PC Manufacturers Have to Start Paying Attention to Microchip-Maker Qualcomm

Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs talks about the company's new 800 series Snapdragon processors.

Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs talks about the company's new 800 series Snapdragon processors. // Julie Jacobson/AP

Qualcomm, maker of many of the microprocessors that power mobile phones and especially smartphones, released earnings on April 24, and they showed impressive growth considering that the company is already the third-largest microchip manufacturer in the world. Revenue was up 24% compared to a year earlier, and shipments of microchips rose 14%.

But that’s not why PC manufacturers should pay attention to Qualcomm—after all, what do they care that a mobile-focused company is doing well, other than what that says about consumers’ preference for tablets and smartphones over PCs?

But like ARM, the company that creates many of the chip designs upon which Qualcomm elaborates and then sells through to companies like Samsung and HTC, Qualcomm has bigger ambitions. Specifically, it wants to tackle the market for PC chips—long the domain of Intel and AMD—head-on.

As Qualcomm’s VP of marketing recently told tech site Fudzilla, Qualcomm wants to see its highest-end “Snapdragon” processor show up in something other than bleeding-edge smartphones, namely TVs and PCs.

Read more at Quartz

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