Nvidia, a dominant player in the artificial intelligence (AI) computing chip market, is expanding its presence to challenge Intel in the realm of personal computers (PCs). According to sources familiar with the matter, Nvidia is secretly working on designing central processing units (CPUs) that would run Microsoft's Windows operating system using technology from Arm Holdings. This move is part of Microsoft's initiative to assist chip companies in creating Arm-based processors for Windows PCs.

Microsoft's is to compete with Apple, which has experienced significant growth in market share since introducing its own in-house Arm-based chips for Mac computers. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) is also reportedly planning to develop chips for PCs that utilize Arm technology.

Nvidia, AMD, and Qualcomm (which has been manufacturing Arm-based chips for laptops since 2016) may start selling PC chips as early as 2025. At an upcoming event, Qualcomm intends to reveal more information about a flagship chip designed by a team of ex-Apple engineersFollowing the news of Nvidia's plans, Nvidia's shares rose by 3.84%, while Intel's shares fell 3.06%. Arm's shares saw an increase of 4.89% at the market's close. Representatives from Nvidia, AMD, Arm, and Microsoft declined to comment on the matter.

These efforts by Nvidia, AMD, and Qualcomm have the potential to disrupt the PC industry, which has long been dominated by Intel but is facing increasing competition from Apple. Apple's custom chips have proven to provide better performance and battery life for Mac computers compared to traditional chips. Microsoft executives have recognized the efficiency of Apple's Arm-based chips and aim to achieve similar performance, particularly in AI processing.

Microsoft partnered with Qualcomm in 2016 to move the Windows operating system Arm's processor architecture As part of this arrangement, Qualcomm had exclusive rights to develop Windows-compatible chips until 2024. However, Microsoft has encouraged other chipmakers to enter the market once this exclusivity deal expires.

Microsoft has been urging the chipmakers involved in this project to incorporate advanced AI features into the CPUs they are designing. The company envisions AI-enhanced software, such as Copilot, becoming an integral part of the Windows experience. Therefore, future chips from Nvidia, AMD, and others will need to allocate on-chip resources to support these AI capabilities.

While there is no guarantee of success, Microsoft and the chip firms face challenges in transitioning from the x86 computing architecture (used by Intel and AMD) to Arm-based designs. Software developers have invested considerable time and resources into writing code specifically for x86 chips, which may not automatically run on Arm-based designs.

Intel, in response, has also been developing AI features for its chips and recently showcased a laptop running features similar to ChatGPT directly on the device. However, Intel has not yet commented on these developments.

Nvidia's foray into CPU design for Windows PCs, along with AMD and Qualcomm's efforts, signifies a significant shift in the PC market, with increased focus on Arm-based technology and AI capabilities.