Microsoft is designing its own ARM-based processors that will be located on servers and a possible future Surface device. According to Bloomberg’s report, the processors will be used on servers for Microsoft’s Azure cloud services and will be based on ARM designs. It is also stated that Microsoft is considering the idea of using another chip for some of its Surface devices. However, it is currently unclear whether this will happen in a final product.
Microsoft currently uses Intel-based processors for most of its Azure cloud services, and most of the company’s Surface lineup also runs on Intel chips. Microsoft has shown its willingness to move away from Intel by working with AMD and Qualcomm to design custom chips for Surface Laptop 3 and Surface Pro X devices.
The company co-designed an ARM-based SQ1 processor with Qualcomm for the Surface Pro X last year. This followed a few months ago with another processor called an SQ2. AMD worked with Microsoft to create a custom version of the Ryzen processor for the Surface Laptop 3.
Switching to ARM on the server side is definitely more important, especially for Intel. Apple has already pointed out that it will move away from Intel chips for Mac products with its M1 processor based on ARM designs. Intel’s server chips currently dominate the server market. AMD has already aspired to this profitable market with its own EPYC processors.
Microsoft’s main cloud competitor Amazon, on the other hand, seems to have become a major threat to Intel and AMD with its own ARM-based Graviton2 processors, which it released for Amazon Web Services a year ago. Still, ARM-based servers currently form a small part of the market despite the performance and cost benefits they can offer.
The company, which sent a reply to The Verge site, which wanted Microsoft’s opinion on the matter, did not deny the rumors. Frank Shaw, communications manager at Microsoft, said: “Since silicone is a fundamental building block for technology; “We continue to invest in our own capabilities in areas such as design, manufacturing and tools, while also developing and strengthening partnerships with a wide variety of chip suppliers.” said.