We have been talking for a long time about the first Apple ARM processor for Mac, a chip that has been the subject of much speculation and that, certainly, has not fulfilled the forecasts given by both analysts and experts. Last year it was taken for granted that Apple was going to make the leap to ARM processors on their Mac computers sometime in 2020, and now all sources point to 2021.
According to a new report published by Bloomberg, and which fits the estimates released by well-known analysts such as Ming-Chi Kuo, the first Apple ARM processor for Mac computers will arrive in 2021, and it will have a rather interesting configuration, since it will be integrated for a total of 12 cores. To give you an idea, the processors that Apple uses right now in the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro have six cores, and the chip present in the iPad Pro 2020 has eight cores.
At the architecture level, that processor will have the same base as the A14 Bionic SoC that we will see in the iPhone 12, a chip that, as many of our readers will know, will be manufactured in 5nm process by TSMC. Those twelve cores will be divided into a big.LITTLE structure made up of eight high-performance cores and four high-efficiency cores, which can work simultaneously if necessary.
Apple ARM processors will bet on a high number of cores
There is no doubt that a twelve-core processor is, today, a chip that can be considered as high-end. Processors based on ARM architecture cannot be purchased directly with those based on the x86 architecture, but seeing what Apple has achieved with the iPad Pro 2020 A12Z Bionic SoC we have reason to be optimistic about the future of Apple ARM processor-based Macs.
The source of the news has commented that Apple is already immersed in the initial stage of development of the A15 SoC, a chip that will succeed the A14 and that should be integrated into the iPhone of 2021, and that will break the barrier of the 12 cores. We don’t have concrete details, but the next “natural” evolutionary leap should lead the apple company to the 16 cores.
I know what you are thinking, and what about the operating system? It is an excellent question. We could think that Apple would have it easier by opting for an adaptation of iOS for Mac, but nothing is further from reality. According to the source of this information Apple plans to use macOS on computers that have an Apple ARM processor. To achieve an optimal and seamless experience, the apple company is working on tools and solutions that guarantee the correct operation of the entire ecosystem of current applications for Intel processors.
ARM is coming to Mac next year, but on a limited basis
That is the idea that the main analysts hold. Some believe that the debut of the first Apple ARM processor will be limited to an ultralight and low-power MacBook, but Ming-Chi Kuo is sure that it will also We will see a first desktop Mac based on said CPU.
Right now all the doors are open, so we can’t rule out any of those options. A debut limited to the MacBook series makes more sense, but it wouldn’t be far-fetched to see a desktop variant as well, as it would allow Apple to further accelerate its plans for transition to ARM architecture.
It will be interesting to see what happens when that transition begins, and especially how it evolves in the coming years. Completing a jump of this type is complicated, especially for what it means in terms of platform and software ecosystem, but it is clear that Apple has all the resources it needs to overcome this change without problems.