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Microsoft confirms Windows 11’s Copilot+ PCs with Snapdragon have some limitations

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Microsoft confirms Windows 11’s Copilot+ PCs with Snapdragon have some limitations

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Microsoft confirms Windows 11’s Copilot+ PCs with Snapdragon have some limitations


Microsoft has confirmed that Copilot+ PCs with Snapdragon X (ARM) chips still have certain limitations, but are the current limitations a big deal? Not anymore.

While Windows 11 24H2 does make a difference and Windows on ARM performance is now on par with other chips, you might still run into certain limitations, including limited gaming.

In our tests, Windows Latest observed that Copilot+ PCs live up to expectations with faster performance and longer battery life. These Snapdragon PCs are not designed for gaming, but thousands of games have been tested, and they do manage to get up to 30 frame rates under most conditions.

In a support document spotted by Windows Latest, Microsoft has acknowledged five known limitations with Windows 11 on ARM (Copilot+ PCs). As compared to Windows 11 24H2, Windows 10 on ARM has over seven limitations, but things have gotten much better in 2024.

Does this mean you can now use Windows Fan and Scan features on Snapdragon Copilot+ PCs? No. Windows 11 isn’t supposed to support these features on ARM for several reasons, including technical limitations. The fan and scan features are tied to old specific drivers, features and legacy software which are not optimized for ARM.

As a result, Microsoft says it isn’t possible to use the feature on Windows ARM.

What else is broken? Drivers for some apps and games may not work. While Windows on ARM can run anything via the Prism emulation, you may not be able to use apps or games that rely on specific drivers not developed for Windows on ARM.

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“If a driver doesn’t work, the app or hardware that relies on it won’t work either (at least not fully),” Microsoft warns in the support document.

As Windows Latest previously reported, most peripherals and devices work with Windows 11 24H2 on ARM (Copilot+ PCs).

Games may not work if they’re too old with specific driver requirements or incompatible anti-cheat

You also cannot play certain games.

According to Microsoft’s document, it is not possible to play games if they rely on “anti-cheat” drivers that lack an ARM version. If your favourite game does not work, you’ll have to get in touch with the publisher.

You can use www.worksonwoa.com, which is a crowdsourced collection of ARM-ready games.

These anti-cheat-dependent games do not work because of the second reason: lack of driver support. While apps or games can be emulated, you cannot emulate drivers, and without drivers, games with anti-cheat will not work.

The third limitation of Windows on ARM Copilot+ PCs is the lack of support for apps that can customize Windows. Microsoft says most Input Method Editors, cloud storage apps, and assistive technology apps may not work if they have not been optimized by the manufacturer.

The last limitation prevents you from using several antivirus apps. Unlike traditional apps, you cannot emulate antiviruses, so you’ll need a native version of your antivirus app to use it on Windows 11 on ARM. But this cannot be a dealbreaker for most of us as Windows Defender is more than enough.

Windows on ARM limitations

Feature Windows 10 ARM Windows 11 24H2 ARM
Driver Compatibility Requires ARM64 drivers Requires ARM64 drivers
App Compatibility No 64-bit (x64) apps Improved, but still requires ARM64/x86/Arm32
Games Compatibility No OpenGL > 1.1, anti-cheat issues Anti-cheat issues, check compatibility
Windows Customization Apps Possible issues Possible issues
Third-party Antivirus Limited compatibility Limited compatibility
Built-in Security Windows Security available Windows Security available
Windows Fax and Scan Not available Not available
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As shown in the above table created by Windows Latest, Windows 11 on Copilot+ ARM PCs does have certain limitations, but it’s much better than any older version of Windows.

Games work fine in most cases, and performance is significantly better than rivals in the same segment. The battery life is also a plus point of Windows on ARM, which makes Copilot+ PCs a good option if you’re looking for an all-arounder alternative to MacBook.

However, if you do not care about battery life and prefer a Copilot+ AI PC without the above limitations, you can wait for AMD and Intel PCs, which arrive later this year.



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