Your next Windows PC may need at least 16GB of RAM
How much RAM do you need to work without any drawbacks on Windows PCs? The answer depends on what the PC is used for. Several tasks, including gaming and video editing, benefit from as much RAM as you can squeeze onto the motherboard.
Each Windows version comes with a set of minimum and recommended system requirements. Right now, Microsoft suggests 4GB of RAM as the minimum system requirement for Windows 11. While you may be able to install the operating system on systems with less memory, you may experience slowdowns and performance issues as data may need to be cached on a hard drive.
Microsoft's next version of Windows, which may be called Windows 12, focuses on AI. A new rumor suggests that the minimum RAM requirement of these AI PCs may be set to 16GB. In other words, a quadrupling of the requirement from one generation to the next.
The information comes from research firm Trendforce. The company has the following to say about the RAM requirement in a press release on its website: "Microsoft has set the baseline for DRAM in AI PCs at 16 GB. In the long term, TrendForce projects that AI PCs will catalyze an increase in annual demand for PC DRAM bits, with consumer upgrade trends further boosting this demand."
According to Trendforce, AI PCs will require at least 16 gigabytes of RAM.- While the company does not mention Windows specifically, Microsoft is said to launch Windows AI PCs as early as this year. In fact, the upcoming Microsoft Surface Laptop 6 and Surface Pro 10 devices could be the first AI PCs.
Trendforce reveals another interesting hardware requirement. NPUs, Neural Processing Units, need to meet the 40 TOPS requirement. TOPS, which stands for Trillions of Operations Per Second, is a performance metric. The latest and greatest silicon, including Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X Elite, AMD’s Strix Point, and Intel’s Lunar Lake platforms, support these according to the article.
With 16 GB of RAM as the requirement and a fast NPU, Windows AI systems will once again limit upgrade capabilities, if supported at all. When Microsoft released Windows 11, it changed system requirements and locked hundreds of million of Windows devices from upgrading to the new version of Windows.
With Windows AI PCs rumored to make additional changes to the system requirements, it is clear that even fewer PCs could be upgraded. System RAM may not be the major issue, as most modern PCs support 16 GB of RAM or more.
It is possible to Windows AI PCs will be special PCs that one can't upgrade to but purchase only. Microsoft will continue support of Windows 11 and may maintain AI PCs, with stricter requirements and additional AI capabilities, next to it.
Microsoft is still tight lipped about its plans. It is expected to announce the next version of Windows later this year.
Now You: how much RAM does your PC have? (via Neowin)Advertisement