AMD vs. Intel vs. Apple vs. Qualcomm: Who’s winning the chip war?

Computer chips
(Image credit: Future)

2022 has been an exciting year in the computer chip business. AMD, Intel, Apple and Qualcomm have all brought some cool new products to market, and we're just beginning to get a sense of how well they perform and what they presage for the future of PCs.

To help you make sense of how these cool new chips differ, what they're best at, and what they mean for the future of the industry, the experts over at our sibling publication Laptop Mag (opens in new tab) sat down for a rousing roundtable discussion of the biggest chip-makers in the business as part of its inaugural Laptop LIVE week. 

Market leaders AMD and Intel both delivered a bounty of exciting new CPUs this year, but unless you're a real chiphead it can be hard to know how Intel's new 13th Gen Raptor Lake chips and AMD's new Ryzen 7000-series CPUs differ in terms of strengths and weaknesses. 

Then there's the new Apple M2 chip, which improves upon Apple's industry-shaking M1 chip in some less exciting but meaningful ways. We've already seen it deliver significant improvements in battery life in the new 13-inch MacBook Air 2022 and MacBook Pro 2022, and if Apple stays true to form we may see upgraded M2 Pro chips in the near future.

But don't forget about Qualcomm. The mobile chipmaker's Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC is still powering some of the best Android phones, and a custom Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chip (branded Microsoft SQ3) powers the new 5G-enabled Surface Pro 9

Luckily for us, they taped the whole thing, and now you can watch the roundtable in the video embedded above or on the Laptop YouTube channel (opens in new tab)

It's an entertaining video, even if you don't know your performance cores from your efficiency cores. What's more, it will leave you better-equipped to make smart calls about which chips to look out for and what the best laptops can offer you in terms of performance. Don't miss it!

Alex Wawro is a lifelong tech and games enthusiast with more than a decade of experience covering both for outlets like Game Developer, Black Hat, and PC World magazine. A lifelong PC builder, he currently serves as a senior editor at Tom's Guide covering all things computing, from laptops and desktops to keyboards and mice.