Rumor: Apple plans to move laptops from Intel to ARM processors

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  • Reply 101 of 156
    macarenamacarena Posts: 364member
    But the real question is not about chip performance. The iPad has made it clear that optimizing hardware and software can give users an experience that is much better than regular software that is not similarly optimized.



    As an example, even the best i7 chip might struggle to run Safari on a machine with 256MB RAM and regular Mac OS X Snow Leopard. Whereas the first iPad managed this easily. Without any appreciable performance impact.



    In 2 years the successors to the A5 would likely be several times faster. The benefits of tightly optimized software would be even higher. And with low power usage, it is conceivable that we have a better implementation of multiprocessing - with multiple independent processors running different processes using their integrated RAM.



    If Apple adds filesystem management to the iPad, the iPad is pretty much a full fledged computer.



    I remember Virginia Tech created the worlds cheapest supercomputer by tying together XServes, and then Mac Minis. They could hypothetically do this by stringing together hundreds of A5 Apple TVs. Would be cheap, low cost, low power, and massively scalable solution. And they just need an iOS version of GCD to get going.
  • Reply 102 of 156
    lemon bon bon.lemon bon bon. Posts: 2,173member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post


    Ha!



    All this talk of running Mac OS X on ARM...



    Through the years, one of the biggest issues with OS X has been:



    FFFinder!



    In the iOS implementation of OS X, Apple resolved this in typical Apple fashion -- they got rid of it!



    Ha!



    ...Now, if iOS 5 can only find a way to share/access files among apps.



    If they can do this elegantly...



    They could port the solution back to Mac OS X and FFFinder!



    Give this guy a cigar.



    Apple have already ported certain ideas from iOS into Lion. Apple are betting the farm on the iOS platform/iPhone/iPad. It's where the future is.



    I can easily see there being no Mac OS 11. It will probably be iOS! (With the Mac finder drop kicked by then...)



    I'm sure Apple will find ways to take the power tools into iOS and 'iOS' them. Didn't they hire a few ex-BeOS file engineers a while back? I wonder if they were working on a new file system for iOS? And maybe port it back to the Mac?



    Let's face it. Mac's file system and finder are pretty clumsy and cludgy reminders of 1984.



    I play on my iPhone. I press something and it just works. There's not alot of clutter. And the iPad seems elegant also.



    I guess the next step is to take more of the power features and harness them in similar elegant ways.



    Can I imagine a day when I'll be 'Photoshopping' or doing 'Lightwave' or 'Final Cut Pro' or 'Poser' on iOS.



    Er. Yes. 2013 is a long way away...but not so long...



    Lemon Bon Bon.
  • Reply 103 of 156
    lemon bon bon.lemon bon bon. Posts: 2,173member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by macarena View Post


    But the real question is not about chip performance. The iPad has made it clear that optimizing hardware and software can give users an experience that is much better than regular software that is not similarly optimized.



    As an example, even the best i7 chip might struggle to run Safari on a machine with 256MB RAM and regular Mac OS X Snow Leopard. Whereas the first iPad managed this easily. Without any appreciable performance impact.



    In 2 years the successors to the A5 would likely be several times faster. The benefits of tightly optimized software would be even higher. And with low power usage, it is conceivable that we have a better implementation of multiprocessing - with multiple independent processors running different processes using their integrated RAM.



    If Apple adds filesystem management to the iPad, the iPad is pretty much a full fledged computer.



    I remember Virginia Tech created the worlds cheapest supercomputer by tying together XServes, and then Mac Minis. They could hypothetically do this by stringing together hundreds of A5 Apple TVs. Would be cheap, low cost, low power, and massively scalable solution. And they just need an iOS version of GCD to get going.



    *nods, Yoda like. 'Mmm...'



    Lemon Bon Bon.
  • Reply 104 of 156
    al_bundyal_bundy Posts: 1,525member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post


    Let's see now. Microsoft ported Windows NT to several RISC platforms. But failed to bring Windows to the mass market on RISC. Why? Because Office, their other cash cow, had pervasive data alignment issues thanks to being developed on the weird, hackish x86 legacy architecture: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_NT



    On the other hand, Mac OS X was (and its apps were) written on RISC and later ported to CISC. Yes, it took years, but Apple has years until ARM chips are ready to run Mac OS X. Or whatever its successor will be called.



    If any company can plan ahead, it's Apple. I'm sure the Mac OS X-on-ARM scenario was mapped out even before the PA Semi acquisition. There can be no doubt that Apple's Holy Grail is a unified OS for Macs and iDevices. (No, not multi-touch iMacs. That will never happen.) A common core OS that can drive UIs for display sizes from iPod to HDTV and a single unified App Store would give Apple a huge advantage.



    (You'll note that I said "Holy Grail." I didn't say "future plans." Just wanted to deflect any knee-jerk reactionary "keep the status quo" comments.)



    RISC chips were way more expensive in those days. it's the reason Intel won on the server as well. DEC Alpha was faster along with others, but Compaq servers were cheap and good enough for most workloads. Just like the iPad today.
  • Reply 105 of 156
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,608member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. View Post


    Give this guy a cigar.



    Apple have already ported certain ideas from iOS into Lion. Apple are betting the farm on the iOS platform/iPhone/iPad. It's where the future is.



    I can easily see there being no Mac OS 11. It will probably be iOS! (With the Mac finder drop kicked by then...)



    I'm sure Apple will find ways to take the power tools into iOS and 'iOS' them. Didn't they hire a few ex-BeOS file engineers a while back? I wonder if they were working on a new file system for iOS? And maybe port it back to the Mac?



    Let's face it. Mac's file system and finder are pretty clumsy and cludgy reminders of 1984.



    I play on my iPhone. I press something and it just works. There's not alot of clutter. And the iPad seems elegant also.



    I guess the next step is to take more of the power features and harness them in similar elegant ways.



    Can I imagine a day when I'll be 'Photoshopping' or doing 'Lightwave' or 'Final Cut Pro' or 'Poser' on iOS.



    Er. Yes. 2013 is a long way away...but not so long...



    Lemon Bon Bon.



    Were IOS to become the main OS there would have to be a gui for the filesystem. For powerusers it is an essential part of file management. But there would be an app for that, of course. (The Finder as we now know it is an App, no?) For most people this would perhaps not be needed. I suspect that most people use the finder very little - they just open the app they want to use and find their files there.
  • Reply 106 of 156
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,520member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by macarena View Post


    But the real question is not about chip performance. The iPad has made it clear that optimizing hardware and software can give users an experience that is much better than regular software that is not similarly optimized.



    As an example, even the best i7 chip might struggle to run Safari on a machine with 256MB RAM and regular Mac OS X Snow Leopard. Whereas the first iPad managed this easily. Without any appreciable performance impact.



    In 2 years the successors to the A5 would likely be several times faster. The benefits of tightly optimized software would be even higher. And with low power usage, it is conceivable that we have a better implementation of multiprocessing - with multiple independent processors running different processes using their integrated RAM.



    If Apple adds filesystem management to the iPad, the iPad is pretty much a full fledged computer.



    I remember Virginia Tech created the worlds cheapest supercomputer by tying together XServes, and then Mac Minis. They could hypothetically do this by stringing together hundreds of A5 Apple TVs. Would be cheap, low cost, low power, and massively scalable solution. And they just need an iOS version of GCD to get going.



    I agree with everything...



    I haven't JailBroken an Apple TV 2 -- so I don't know what iOS equivalent it runs...



    But, iOS 4 has GCD!





    So it should not be too difficult to string together A4 Apple TV 2s...
  • Reply 107 of 156
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by paxman View Post


    Were IOS to become the main OS there would have to be a gui for the filesystem. For powerusers it is an essential part of file management. But there would be an app for that, of course. (The Finder as we now know it is an App, no?) For most people this would perhaps not be needed. I suspect that most people use the finder very little - they just open the app they want to use and find their files there.



    The file structure isn’t’ going away but I can see Apple moving to a more app centric system like in iOS.



    Still, it seems like it’s far off when the only icon that Apple doesn’t let you remove from the Dock is the Finder app. Maybe in Mac OS X 10.8 “Mountain Lion” we’ll see Finder replaced with Desktop that is your "dropbox” and we’ll have to jump through some hoops to access the hierarchal file structure but I have a hard time picturing that when Lion hasn’t begun migrating from using various folders (e.g.: Documents, Downloads, Movies) within your Home folder.



    iPhoto and iTunes structures are app based from the average user’s PoV but that I have trouble seeing how the entire OS could migrate to such a setup.





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post


    I haven't JailBroken an Apple TV 2 -- so I don't know what iOS equivalent it runs...



    According to Wikipedia it’s iOS 4.3, Darwin 10.3.1.
  • Reply 108 of 156
    ronboronbo Posts: 669member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jmmx View Post


    A5 most certainly is a fantastic chip, but it ain't no i7.



    Is it still April 1???



    Precisely. 64 bits addressing is one thing, but it's not a measure of compute performance like a SpecMARK or anything.



    They could triple the performance of the A5... and imagine using Maya on it.



    This is pure silliness.
  • Reply 109 of 156
    shaun, ukshaun, uk Posts: 1,050member
    Don't forget we are not talking here about the current ARM processor but a future version. Maybe Apple knows something about their potential that we don't.



    If they brought out an iOS based MBA with ARM processor it would have access to the thousands of iPad Apps. Maybe a hybrid tablet/laptop? Or maybe the MBA will morph into a tablet format in the future. iPad for entertainment & MBA Tablet for pro/business users willing to pay more for a larger screen?
  • Reply 110 of 156
    adonissmuadonissmu Posts: 1,772member
    What about TriGate?
  • Reply 111 of 156
    ahrubikahrubik Posts: 80member
    This is not likely and would be a big mistake. Not only would all the software written for OS X instantly become unusable (at least without an emulation layer) but they would lose a comparative edge when it comes to the rest of the PC world. A lot of the Mac success as of late is it's ability to run not only OS X but any other x86 OS as well.



    Now if Apple is planning on abandoning OS X in favor of iOS then this rumor has more credibility. Though I can't see anyone buying a Mac running iOS. I certainly wouldn't.
  • Reply 112 of 156
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,215member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ascii View Post


    This is highly dubious, unless they want to make iOS laptops. Essentially an iPad with a keyboard attached.



    I agree that it is dubious, for now. Mac OS can likely work or be made to work on an these processors but they are no where strong enough to be useful regardless of OS.



    When they are equal in power to Intel then this rumor might come true
  • Reply 113 of 156
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,520member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by paxman View Post


    Were IOS to become the main OS there would have to be a gui for the filesystem. For powerusers it is an essential part of file management. But there would be an app for that, of course. (The Finder as we now know it is an App, no?) For most people this would perhaps not be needed. I suspect that most people use the finder very little - they just open the app they want to use and find their files there.



    Ya know...



    FFFinder -- A GUI for the file system -- File Management for iOS...





    1) Apple's biggest "heavy-lifting" apps are the Pro Apps -- e.g. Final Cut.



    These generate lots of links to files -- lots of versions of lots of really big files.



    Final Cut's file management Sucks.



    Last month, at NAB, Apple previewed the new Final Cut to good reviews -- but missing was any discussion of file management.



    FCP X will be released in July.





    2) Apples next tier of power apps are the ProSumer Apps e.g. iMovie



    These, also, generate links to lots of big files.



    iMovie does a better job (though not perfect) of managing large files than the Pro Apps.



    Rumors suggest a new iMovie in the 2nd half 2011,





    3) iOS apps have no visible file system



    There is no [Apple provided] sharing of files among apps except Copy/Paste and email



    There is a kludgey sharing of files between a Mac and an iDevice



    iOS file management sucks -- but only if/when you need it.





    4) Mac OS X Lion is in the hands Mac developers



    It doesn't address any of the above problems -- and still the same old, same old FFFinder







    So Apple is going to have this WWDC on June 6 -- D-Day, on the Beaches of Mosconi -- and introduce a new Mac OS X, may be a new iOS version...



    What if they could resolve the above file management problems across apps and OSes.





    How would they do that?





    1) keep the FFFinder so current users could still do things the way they are currently doing them



    2) introduce a new GUI (and programmable/scriptable) File Manager



    3) Update all the Apple Mac and iOS apps to use the new File Manager by default



    4) Mac apps could override the default and revert to the FFFinder





    The new File Manager would be responsible for:



    1) storing a single master copy of a file



    2) managing expendable work copies of files



    3) versioning files



    4) file interchange and sync among devices



    5) backup and recovery



    6) staging to and from secondary cloud storage





    It's 10 o'clock -- do you know where your files are?



    Yes, Virginia... there is [could be] an App for that!
  • Reply 114 of 156
    brucepbrucep Posts: 2,823member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by patranus View Post


    how about a laptop with an arm and x86 cpu.



    agreed





    9
  • Reply 115 of 156
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,520member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by patranus

    how about a laptop with an arm and x86 cpu.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by brucep View Post


    agreed





    9



    I like the idea of that...



    But how would that work -- Isn't the A5 RAM part of the PoP SoC?
  • Reply 116 of 156
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by rbonner View Post


    Pretty sure this would kill products like VMWare, which IMHO has encouraged a ton of sales for Mac.



    I agree. Bootcamp/vmware/paralells/intel inside makes it very easy to buy a Mac.
  • Reply 117 of 156
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,608member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    The file structure isn?t? going away but I can see Apple moving to a more app centric system like in iOS.



    Still, it seems like it?s far off when the only icon that Apple doesn?t let you remove from the Dock is the Finder app. Maybe in Mac OS X 10.8 ?Mountain Lion? we?ll see Finder replaced with Desktop that is your "dropbox? and we?ll have to jump through some hoops to access the hierarchal file structure but I have a hard time picturing that when Lion hasn?t begun migrating from using various folders (e.g.: Documents, Downloads, Movies) within your Home folder.



    iPhoto and iTunes structures are app based from the average user?s PoV but that I have trouble seeing how the entire OS could migrate to such a setup.



    According to Wikipedia it?s iOS 4.3, Darwin 10.3.1.



    But Apple would only have to hide the Finder by default, allowing it to become visible through prefs settings. I really think an awful lot of people never use the file structure (gui) at all. At best they use the Documents folder. The desktop is the thing that everybody does use (and make a huge mess of). That is the one part of the visible file structure that users will not like to see go (remember the first iteration of OSX? Wasn't it impossible to place anything on the desktop?)

    I don't think Apple will ever improve the file structure as such. I think the file structure is logical and as good as it is going to get. The fact that people have a hard time organizing files and folders is because it is bloody DIFFICULT and tedious. The way Apple will deal with this (they are doing it) is through the apps themselves.



    It is a long way off being unified and easy to use however. I sometimes attach images to emails by going the Photo Browser route. It is a pain in the arse but you can see how this could be a great way to access photos. So we are talking app media browsers.



    But keeping track of thousands of media files - is difficult at the best of times.
  • Reply 118 of 156
    viktorcodeviktorcode Posts: 33member
    The most shocking is not this senseless rumour from a long time BS provider, no. It is the reaction of some of Apple Insider readers who actually think this could happen.



    Are. You. Nuts? According to you, yes, you, Apple would cut the performance of Macs manyfold while bringing software incompatibility for the sake of... lower power bills?



    ARM won't have desktop level performance, not now, not 2 years later, not ever. To reach where Intel soars ARM would have to create new chip architecture from the ground up, and there's no way to keep it compatible with ARMs of today AND have that level of performance at the same time. No amount of magic would help either.
  • Reply 119 of 156
    nicolbolasnicolbolas Posts: 254member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    You are basing your entire opinion on this:

    ... which is not true and basically just marketing talk from intel.



    no thats benchmarks.... i would hope that it eventually smash's intel, as I find the countless shit they have done to AMD... they deserve an upcoming, also:



    If ARM cpu's could be used in a basic macbook to lower price while keeping performance enough for basic usage (word, video streaming, light gaming, etc) i would love it
  • Reply 120 of 156
    filburtfilburt Posts: 398member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ViktorCode View Post


    Are. You. Nuts? According to you, yes, you, Apple would cut the performance of Macs manyfold while bringing software incompatibility for the sake of... lower power bills?



    ARM won't have desktop level performance, not now, not 2 years later, not ever. To reach where Intel soars ARM would have to create new chip architecture from the ground up, and there's no way to keep it compatible with ARMs of today AND have that level of performance at the same time. No amount of magic would help either.



    You are thinking too narrowly. If ARM is coming to Macs, it will be destined for lightweight portables, such as MacBook Air.



    Power efficient processors aren't just about lowering power bills, but about increasing battery life for portables, as well as (1) allowing silent fan-free computing and (2) smaller and lighter form factor.



    I believe ARM-based Mac OS X is at least in R&D mode, especially since iOS is a subset of Mac OS X with additional components and layers.
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