It finally happened. Apple has just announced that it will begin to make the transition from Intel-based CPUs to using its own ARM-based, in-house built processors for its future MacBooks. The announcement was made during Apple’s WWDC event and was dubbed as “a historic day for the Mac” by Apple CEO Tim Cook.
Apple Announces Transition to ARM-based MacBooks
This transition to using its own ARM-based processors brings a plethora of exciting prospects for when they’re released. For instance, given that the architecture of Apple’s upcoming ARM-based processor will be similar to that found in its other devices, existing apps developed for iOS and iPadOS will work natively on Apple’s new laptops. Apple even boldly claimed that “most apps will just work.”
Additionally, Apple has also shown several well-known applications running surprisingly well on an ARM-powered (A12Z Bionic) machine. These include: Adobe Photoshop, Final Cut Pro, along with Microsoft Office applications such as Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint. Judging from the demonstration by Apple, the ARM-based processor looks to be quite powerful.
But with increased power, comes increased power consumption—at least when it comes to ‘traditional’ desktop CPUs. Apple mentioned that its upcoming processors will apparently provide not only great performance, but also low power consumption; which isn’t surprising when looking at the chips it has made for the iPad and iPhone.
What about software and applications that may not come with support for Apple’s new ARM-based processors on day one? For this, Apple has introduced Rosetta 2, which will automatically enable applications to run on Apple’s ARM-based machines without any modifications.
That being said, Apple has mentioned that it is not completely shifting away from using Intel CPUs. New Intel-powered MacBooks are still planned for release in the near future. However, Apple stated that the first Apple silicon-powered Mac will be unveiled later this year and the full transition to using ARM-based chips will take place over the span of 2 years.