You can't run the new Windows 11 AI Explorer on Intel and AMD NPUs, here's why

This might change in the future

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Windows 11 AI explorer to only run on ARM64 CPU

If you recently purchased an Intel or AMD AI PC in the hope of receiving more AI-powered features on Windows 11, we have bad news. The biggest development in recent times, a new AI Explorer, is limited to ARM-based PCs on Windows 11.

According to Albacore, a software enthusiast, the system requirements for the new Windows 11 AI Explorer list only ARM64 CPU and not the Intel or AMD options. In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Albacore shared the requirements for the AI-powered feature on Windows 11 build 26100.

Besides an ARM64 CPU, you will need 16GB RAM, 225 GB total storage, and the Snapdragon X Elite NPU (HWID QCOM0D0A).

It’s not yet clear why Microsoft limited the number of devices getting the AI Explorer on the latest iteration of the OS.

Reports from Windows Central suggest that it has to do with the computing power. While Snapdragon X can deliver up to 45 TOPS, Intel and AMD NPUs offer 10 TOPS and 16 TOPS, respectively, at the maximum.

Or it could be a push for ARM-based PCs, given Microsoft is showcasing ARM-based Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 during the much-hyped event on May 20, 2024.

Whatever the reason, this step will disappoint Intel and AMD NPU users. Also, Intel’s AI push in recent years has been phenomenal, be it the release of the new Gaudi 3 accelerator or AI-oriented chips.

Remember, the system requirements shared here might only be applicable in the early days, and Microsoft may soon release an updated list, which includes Intel and AMD NPUs. So, don’t lose all hope yet!

On the bright side, Microsoft has AI plans for OEMs to enhance the AI-backed feature set on your future devices, with the latter responding positively!

What’s your take on Microsoft limiting the AI Explorer to ARM-based CPUs? Share with our readers in the comments section.

More about the topics: AI, File Explorer, Windows 11