Qualcomm Puts Its Snapdragon X Elite Into a Compact SBC for Windows Artificial Intelligence Work

Designed around the same hardware as Microsoft Copilot+ laptops, this compact machine packs in a lot of compute for gen AI and more.

Gareth Halfacree
23 days ago β€’ Machine Learning & AI / HW101

Qualcomm has announced the launch of a single-board computer built around its Snapdragon X Elite system-on-chip, and designed for those who want to experiment with on-device machine learning and artificial intelligence applications under Microsoft Windows: the Snapdragon Dev Kit for Windows.

"The Snapdragon Dev Kit for Windows is purpose-built to accelerate the next generation of on-device AI applications for PCs," claims Qualcomm's Kedar Kondap of the company's launch, which comes on the back of announcements of a number of Snapdragon X Elite-powered Windows laptops. "This system gives developers access to our powerful Qualcomm Oryon CPU and 45 TOPS [Tera-Operations Per Second] NPU [Neural Processing Unit], so they can build the AI apps of the future."

The idea behind the Snapdragon Dev Kit for Windows is to provide a set platform, which echoes what will drive upcoming PCs compatible with Microsoft's Copilot+ platform β€” a feature of Windows 11 that promises to deliver a wide range of on-device machine learning and artificial intelligence functions, all the way up to a controversial Recall system which will capture screenshots of everything you do at your computer every few seconds and analyze them for later searching.

The compact single-board computer is powered by the Snapdragon X Elite X1E-00-1DE system-on-chip, which has a 12-core Oryon Arm-based processor running at up to 3.8GHz, an Adreno graphics processor delivering a claimed 4.6 tera-floating point operations per second (TFLOPS) of compute, and a dedicated Hexagon neural processing unit (NPU) that adds 45 tera-operations per second (TOPS) of AI-centric compute at the lowest precision levels.

The machine also includes 32GB of LPDDR5x memory, 512GB of NVMe solid-state storage, three USB 4 Type-C ports two USB 3.2 Type-A ports, an Ethernet port, Wi-Fi 7 and Bluetooth 5.4 radios, an analog audio jack, and a single HDMI video output. It runs, as you'd expect, Windows 11, and meets all the requirements for Copilot+ β€” although it lacks the keyboard with dedicated Copilot button Microsoft is insisting must form part of any commercial offering.

Qualcomm has opened orders for the machine, which comes in a custom case built from 20 per cent recycled plastic and includes a 180W power supply, at $899 ahead of a launch on 18 June; interested parties can request more information on the Qualcomm website.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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