Igor Bonifacic

At its annual developer conference, Microsoft doesn’t usually announce new hardware. But in the 2022 build, the company has made time for it a computer designed by Microsoft to help developers create ARM-native applications that use AI-accelerated workloads.

While not all the details about Project Volterra are available yet, what we do know is that it will feature a Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset with a dedicated Neural Processing Unit, or NPU. Microsoft said The component will provide “best-in-class” AI-powered computing power and efficiency.

A neural processor is not something you normally see on computers. It’s more common in phones as it helps save battery power by taking over machine learning tasks from the CPU. But with chips like Including built-in NPUs are becoming more and more popular, and this is the future Microsoft wants to prepare for when it comes.

“As we expect to see NPUs integrated into most, if not all future computing devices, we will make it easier for developers to take advantage of these new capabilities, by providing support for NPUs in the end-to-end Windows platform,” said Panos Panay, Chief Operating Officer Products at Microsoft.

With Volterra, Microsoft is adding Windows support for NPUs. The company also said that development tools such as Visual Studio 2022 and Windows Terminal will soon run on ARM hardware. All of this indicates that the company is more eager than ever to get developers to code native ARM apps for Windows.

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