Microsoft and Qualcomm are making history, signing a memorandum of understanding that will merge their businesses.
The deal, announced today in Washington, D.C., is the largest merger between a software company and an Intel chipmaker in history, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Intel, which manufactures the chip that powers many computers and other devices, has a 30-year exclusive deal with Microsoft, which designs its chips.
Microsoft, however, has exclusive rights to use the chips on its Surface tablets and other Windows devices.
Under the terms of the agreement, the two companies will merge the companies’ research and development teams and manufacturing facilities.
The combined companies will focus on software and chip design, manufacturing and marketing.
The terms of Microsoft’s new agreement, which will be announced this week, did not mention any financial terms.
Qualcomm, which has a 15-year relationship with Microsoft that spans many technologies, has been working with Microsoft for the past five years to create a common software platform for chips and systems, according a press release.
Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform, which was developed with Qualcomm chips, has become a dominant platform for mobile computing, with more than one billion phones shipped in the last four years.
Microsoft, however is a member of a group of software companies called the Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) group, which is known for being very secretive about its plans for the next five years.