Microsoft has added compatibility for x86 chips for its new Windows 10 Mobile OS, meaning that Intel-based Windows smartphones could be around the corner. Until now, Windows smartphones have only run on ARM-based chips from Qualcomm.
Intel and Microsoft last year joined forces in an effort to get device makers to bring Windows 10 to low-cost smartphones and phablets that would run on the chip-maker's Atom X3 chips.
Devices with Windows 10 Mobile can have screen sizes up to 7 inches and a maximum resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels.
Although the Atom X3 smartphones are only 3G capable, meaning they will power low-cost devices, faster Atom X3 chips with integrated LTE capabilities will be in handsets this year.
There are only a few of Intel-based smartphones in the market today, and they all run Android.
Energy efficiency is another issue for current Intel x86 chips. Althought the current generation of the chips could be lagging behind ARM chips, obviously projections shave showed that the progress in chip manufacturing node could make x86 chips more efficient and powerful that ARM's designs. But we have to see that inm practice in the next couple of years - or even more.