Apple is expected to launch its first MacBook with its own processor in the first half of 2021, it has been reported.
Reliable Apple analyst Ming Chi Kuo told investors the company was on track to launch a notebook with its own processor, called ARM, in house for the first time.
Unfortunately, details on what the new MacBook will involve are scarce, but the confirmation backs up previous rumors that Apple has been working on its own ARM-based processors.
The idea is that Apple wants to move away from relying on third-party processors such as Intel, with Apple having to release its products in Intel chip release cycles, dampening the firm’s ability to innovate and introduce new MacBooks as and when it wishes to do so.
Some earlier reports had suggested that Apple would launch its first ARM-based MacBooks in 2020, but it appears that this deadline has been missed with the ongoing coronavirus in China, affecting production.
Apple wants to bring together its Macs, iPhones, and iPhones to run the same apps, and whilst iPhones and iPads are already using ARM-based chips, and modern iMac Pro and MacBook Pro models are running Apple’s T2 chips for security, swapping out Intel for their ARM-based chips would give Apple more control on the products and software it can create.
Speaking in his research note, Ming Chi Kuo said that: “We expect that Apple’s new products in 12-18 months will adopt processors made by 5nm process, including the new 2H20 5G iPhone, new 2H20 iPad equipped with mini LED, and new 1H21 Mac equipped with the own-design processor.
“We think that iPhone 5G support, iPad’s adoption of innovative mid-size panel technology, and Mac’s first adoption of the own-design processor are all Apple’s critical product and technology strategies.
“Given that the processor is the core component of new products, we believe that Apple had increased 5nm-related investments after the epidemic outbreak. Further, Apple occupying more resources of related suppliers will hinder competitors’ developments.”
According to reports, Apple has become “more aggressive’ on research and development and has been working flat out to launch its 5-nanometer chip technology to reduce the uncertainty of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.
The long-term implications for Apple are unknown, but if production is halted in China for extended periods, Apple could look to diversify its production into other countries, and perhaps bring more to the United States.
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