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

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  • Reply 121 of 156
    sheffsheff Posts: 1,407member
    I dunno, 2012 - 2013 is pretty far away I think. I guess if ARM gets crazy performance upgrades, while keeping battery consumption way below intel it could happen, but right now I just don't see it.
  • Reply 122 of 156
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by paxman View Post


    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.



    I agree it?s tedious but I think if Apple really wanted to pull people from the OS? file system they?d be working on putting iTunes, iPhoto, into the Finder sidebar to acclimate us to an app-centric system



    As well as let iTunes import any and all audio and video containers as we see fit even if iTunes can?t understand how to decode the contents. My reasoning is so iTunes becomes our go to media ?locker.? Limiting iTunes to Apple approved containers and codecs cements the need for Finder in a battle I can?t image they can win if they truly are focused on marginalizing Finder.
  • Reply 123 of 156
    ecsecs Posts: 307member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bigdaddyguido View Post


    This. Apple said it when they released the air, they feel that it's the future of computing. If they can put a ton of low power, multiple-core chips in an air-esque form factor and have it be even close to as powerful as the bulkier version, why wouldn't apple do that? Not just for mbp, but paper thin iMacs and apple tv sized minis. And if anyone would know if/when this is possible, it'd probably be the people making the iPad 2, no?



    I agree the Macbook Air form factor is the future of computing, because once you use one for some time, you realize how comfortable it is to have a computer like that, and when you go back to a weightier computer you feel it as a step backwards... you miss the Air. So, yes, the market will demand the Air form factor soon, no matter how hard MBP users try to think otherwise



    However, this form factor is only useful if it has software, and I'm afraid a transition from Intel to Arm would be a severe problem in lack of software (the best known Mac developers would support Arm soon, but other developers would take years to support Arm, and that would be a problem).



    I use my (4GB RAM, 256GB SSD, 2.13GHz) Air for serious work (finite element analysis, CAD, OpenGL graphics, and photo retouching) (yes, the Air is not a netbook, and can be used for such tasks, even if a lot of people are completely wrong believing the opposite), but if it had an Arm processor I could only use it as a netbook or as an ipad... I wouldn't buy a netbook, I don't need one.



    The future is the power of the MBP on the form factor of the MBA. Anybody who believes the opposite will be proven wrong by the market evolution in the coming years. Period. But that needs software, and Arm would be a problem.
  • Reply 124 of 156
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,520member
    Hmmm......



    Rumor 1: Apple looking to Intel to manufacture Apple ARM chips...



    Rumor 2: Apple going to put ARM chips on laptops and desktops (instead of Intel x86 chips)...





    What if both these conflicting rumors are somewhat true?





    ...What if Apple commissions Intel to manufacture its custom ARM chips on the same die as an Intel x86 chip -- a hybrid?



    Others. with more knowledge, will have to determine if this practical -- or crazy-speak!



    But, with the incentive of manufacturing millions of standalone ARM chips for iDevices -- it would seem that Apple has some negotiating power to get Intel to build hybrids for Mac devices.
  • Reply 125 of 156
    mactelmactel Posts: 1,275member
    Been saying this for over a year now. Lion is the last version of OSX. Top of the cats. It is more like iOS because iOS will replace OSX. Look to the MBA being the first to go to ARM and the Mini.
  • Reply 126 of 156
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MacTel View Post


    Been saying this for over a year now. Lion is the last version of OSX. Top of the cats. It is more like iOS because iOS will replace OSX. Look to the MBA being the first to go to ARM and the Mini.



    Does that mean your definition of iOS is that it?s OS X running on ARM as opposed to Mac OS running on x86(x64), and that no version of Mac OS will run on x86(x64) hardware after Lion?
  • Reply 127 of 156
    monstrositymonstrosity Posts: 2,209member
    I can see most of you think this story is nonsense. But I think it is inevitable and have done for a few years now.
  • Reply 128 of 156
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by monstrosity View Post


    I can see most of you think this story is nonsense. But I think it is inevitable and have done for a few years now.



    The headline states from Intel to ARM processors. If the rumour was “Apple plans to incorporate ARM-based notebooks into Mac line” I think a lot more people could get behind that scenario.
  • Reply 129 of 156
    fusionfusion Posts: 9member
    Think about it. The rumor is only laptops. But what about desktops? Are we suggesting that laptops would use ARM but desktops would use i7? But that's crazy! Then Apple would have to maintain full support for OS X (or whatever it is by then) for 2 CPU's... Rosetta all over again...



    But, if you think about it... it's not so crazy. If a universal binary can target PowerPC & Intel, then why not ARM & Intel? Pursuing the thought even further, it would enable Apple to fuse the iPhone/iPod/iPad line and the "low end" laptop segment together - consolidating parts and OS work.



    The fact is, Apple has proven it can bring forth a viable cross-compiling development environment with XCode - and it's already done a lot of legwork in the ARM + XCode dept. Why not take it from iOS app development all the way to full OS?



    Who knows what those clever devils are truly up to. But it isn't the craziest move after all.
  • Reply 130 of 156
    bettiebluebettieblue Posts: 294member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    I seem to recall Apple cycling between Nvidia and AMD(ATI) for there discrete GPUs on several occasions.



    Yes they have. The NVIDIA 8600 problems were thought to be the end of Nvidia with Apple. It was not. They have changed probably 5-6 times in the last 10 years.



    This article is total bs.
  • Reply 131 of 156
    bettiebluebettieblue Posts: 294member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by filburt View Post


    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.



    It would take nothing to port OS X to ARM, exactly because iOS is just a stripped down version of OS X.
  • Reply 132 of 156
    bettiebluebettieblue Posts: 294member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sheff View Post


    I dunno, 2012 - 2013 is pretty far away I think. I guess if ARM gets crazy performance upgrades, while keeping battery consumption way below intel it could happen, but right now I just don't see it.



    There is irony in all of this. If ARM gets crazy performance upgrades it will degrade the battery life. So bascially it would be what you get today from intel, power at a cost.



    You just cant have it both ways.
  • Reply 133 of 156
    bettiebluebettieblue Posts: 294member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by filburt View Post


    Let's look at the facts. Intel's x86-64 CPUs run significantly hotter than ARM processors. True, ARM processors trail Intel's x86-64 ULV processors (used by MBA) by a great deal. Specifically, iPad 2 is about 3 times slower than entry level MBA. Although I wouldn't go far and say the performance gap is closing, it is certainly narrowing.



    Meanwhile, at 18W of TDP, Intel's Sandy Bridge ULV processors (which are destined for MBA) is even hotter than Core 2 ULV used on MBA (10W). iPad 2 has mere 0.5W TDP.



    At some point, Apple's ARM processors will be fast enough for mainstream notebooks, starting with MBA. It would be foolish of Apple to not invest in ARM-flavor Mac OS X, just as it invested in both PowerPC and Intel Mac OS X nearly a decade ago.



    At some point if the ARM is powerful enough it will get hotter, and suck more power. ARM will meet Intel in the middle.



    There is no getting around it. It might be called "ARM" but it will be a CPU that has power but needs more power than today.



    At the same time Intel will get push its Atom line to be like ARM. There brand new 3D Atom CPU's are very close.
  • Reply 134 of 156
    This is probably an inevitable transition, I have to agree. When XCode can provide fat binaries with no effort, the primer is there.



    I won't believe this is an option for a long time. First off, lack of Windoze virtualization would be a slow and painful death for the info warrior set. I recently started work for a company that issued me a PC laptop, which I promptly slurped in as a VMWare guest. It would have been a disaster not to be able to do that, regardless of what anyone thinks about Win.



    As a developer, what I'm more interested in seeing is all the Apple devs in Cupertino use iOS for XCode for a few years before they foist this off on The Rest Of Us. Please. Let's make sure this new Apple pie is fully baked before eliminating our other options.



    Lastly, I develop server-side webapps on Java, but a lot of others do it on Ruby, Python, etc. We rely on MacPorts, Bash shell, etc. It would be another disaster if these were EOL.



    Don't get me wrong, I'd love to see OS innovation, but Intel is not going to sit still, and developers are still going to need real operating systems.
  • Reply 135 of 156
    monstrositymonstrosity Posts: 2,209member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ViktorCode View Post


    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.



    Ha! Re-read your comment in a few years, and i think you will find that the people best described as "nuts" are those such as yourself who are incapable of perceiving logical progression.
  • Reply 136 of 156
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fusion View Post


    Think about it. The rumor is only laptops. But what about desktops? Are we suggesting that laptops would use ARM but desktops would use i7? But that's crazy! Then Apple would have to maintain full support for OS X (or whatever it is by then) for 2 CPU's... Rosetta all over again...



    But, if you think about it... it's not so crazy. If a universal binary can target PowerPC & Intel, then why not ARM & Intel? Pursuing the thought even further, it would enable Apple to fuse the iPhone/iPod/iPad line and the "low end" laptop segment together - consolidating parts and OS work.



    The fact is, Apple has proven it can bring forth a viable cross-compiling development environment with XCode - and it's already done a lot of legwork in the ARM + XCode dept. Why not take it from iOS app development all the way to full OS?



    Who knows what those clever devils are truly up to. But it isn't the craziest move after all.



    I think you?re talking about two different options here.



    The one you say seems ridiculous is ridiculous because of inherent performance loss and lack of need for excessive power savings for a desktop system. The one you say isn?t so crazy isn?t so crazy if you look at the Motorola Atrix and and Chrome OS which are both ?desktop OSes? running on ARM. With the former I can see the potential for Apple to leverage their iOS/OS X/Darwin foundation with CocoaTouch UI for the included touchscreen but when connected to applicable peripherals it instantly switches to the Mac OS Aqua UI like any other app.



    Within this Mac OS Aqua UI you can launch any series of windowed or fullscreen apps from LaunchPad, Finder, Dock or Spotlight. App Store apps will be have an option in Xcode by then to be Universal for iOS for iPhone/Touch, iOS iPad, IOS for Aqua UI, and Mac OS. with a possible inclusion for AppleTV despite it?s unique UI.



    For example, this would allow you to use your iPhone in the same manner for accessing webpages but a simple dock setup with a display and keyboard and mouse would turn off the iPhone?s display (or use as a Magic Trackpad) that is now displaying a the same Safari window you are used to on Mac OS X. You finish what you?re doing, charging your device or simply need to take off and the phone kicks back to CocoaTouch when you disconnect the device.



    If anyone can do this it?s Apple. They have all the Doozers and all the candy radishes (obscure reference) to make it work. Motorola had to start from scratch to give their Atrix a UI and it fails because of it.



    That is the only way I can see Apple bringing the Mac OS UI to iOS in a sensible way.
  • Reply 137 of 156
    bigpicsbigpics Posts: 1,376member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Gwydion View Post


    Ein? iPad doesn't do any virtualization



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by OllieWallieWhiskers View Post


    VMWare runs pretty well on the iPad...



    I doubted this too but by gollies, you are right!



    ahttp://www.vmware.com/company/news/releases/view-ipad-3-9.html

    http://blogs.vmware.com/view/2011/03...-for-ipad.html



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hudson1 View Post


    I took the point to mean that since Windows 8 will end up running on ARM architecture then so will Windows applications before long. If that turns out to be true then the whole virtualization question becomes much simpler.



    See above.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by doh123 View Post


    Windows 8 will mostly likely have an ARM variant, yes... but that doesn't mean that all Software written for Windows 8 will run on any install of Windows 8 on any hardware. The software will still specify and only run on certain processors. most of the high end software people will want that runs on Win8 will still require an x86-64 cpu.



    They [Apple] are not moving... and Win8 x86 software will not run on Win8 ARM OS... its not the same thing.



    Windows 8 is going to run across MS' "3 screens" philosophy - PC's, slates and phones - in fairly much the same sense that Apple has claimed from day one that iOS "is OS X" or is the mobile version of OS X. Win 8-x86 is going to run on PC's and MS' planned "full Windows" slates (and "convertibles" and "hybrids") - with the kicker that Win Tab 8-x86 will also incorporate interface elements derived from "Metro" on Win Phone 7 so that the Win OS will be much more touch enabled, and probably at least the versions of Office and Outlook will also be so. These machines - while an ergonomic improvement on Win 7 slates, will still be much heavier than iPads and will remain a niche market - but one that's apparently established that niche after 10 years. So let's use this variant to call it a "3 and a half screen" philosophy.



    (I assume Win x-86 applications will have to be specifically programmed to be touch-enabled. Win Apps vary too much for some layer that would translate the menus and controls of most apps at an OS-level conversion. Just think of the difference between the interface of Word and Photoshop. This probably means these machines will include a stylus as previous Win Slates have. It also means this machine class will remain a niche market. However, it may also mean that all Win x-86 apps in the future will start to include both mouse and touch UI's.)



    Win Tab 8-Arm and and Win Phone 8 (obviously Arm I would think) will be MS's analog to iOS - fully touch-enabled. I would certainly expect a Metro-ized version of the Office Apps, much as Apple's released Pages and Keynote on the iPad.



    They are also already heavily subsidizing app development for these new lines, so that unlike RIM, they'll come out the gate with tablets loaded for business (and for decent consumer uptake as well).



    Yes, Redmond has started their Xerox machines again in attempting to keep Windows relevant and to support a more unified code base across their lines (which also include three or four levels of discrete servers [home, small business, enterprise, etc.], whereas Apple's adopted a new low-end server strategy with Lion).
  • Reply 138 of 156
    monstrositymonstrosity Posts: 2,209member
    The story itself has clearly been cobbled together for publicity in the mind of someone with at least grain of vision.

    A laptop as we now know it, could already be described as catering for a niche market of computer professionals who require specialist applications and faster speed.

    For everyone else, a cheap, convenient and 'Good enough' processor will dominate and power mainstream devices (it could be argued that this has already happened).



    Future iterations of IOS will blur the line with Mac OSX, but will also redefine (more than they already have) how we interact with computers.

    And beyond that, I have absolutely no doubt that almost all software, even processor intensive apps such as Logic or Maya will be rewritten for IOS.



    So do not fear, because what you fear losing now, really has no practical reason for existence tomorrow. The issue will merge and melt away as ARM bit by bit eat Intel's lunch, and IOS and Mac progress.
  • Reply 139 of 156
    bigpicsbigpics Posts: 1,376member


    90% of the people calling "bogus" here are a) not looking far enough ahead, b) haven't checked the evidence (see the link above - real companies are working on this) and c) as in the next post below blows away are simply making straight-line projections that the future will just be more of the present.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. View Post


    I noted the earlier post when someone noted Arm starting life out on the Acorn computers. Yes. Desktop computers. It pretty much kicked the snot out of Amiga and PC computers back then. It was very, very fast.



    The stuff in the iPad 2. A 'second gen' chip...is what? 'Four' times faster? Twice as fast? Take your pick. It's significant. Try to imagine that evolution to 2013. The gpu power is 9 times faster now? Imagine PVR in 2013?



    It's pretty academic saying what Intel is now or will be then. It's more a case of where Apple is heading with the iOS platform and frankly, the Mac OS platform is going to blow bubbles keeping pace with the growth of the iOS platform. And we clearly haven't seen the next few cards of Apple's iOS hand played yet. A tv? A bigger tablet? An expanded range of sizes... An iOS 'Air' or 'iMac'. Who knows.



    An iPad can already do nine tenths of what I use my computer for...and do it very, very quickly. Having played with an iPad 2...it's very quick. Imagine this with a retina display in 2012? With yet another leap in cpu and gpu performance? Gulp.



    Double it's size and you have a very workable iOS 'mini iMac' that takes iOS and Apple into the unchartered territory.



    You only have to look at the video effects on the latest iPad 2. It's pretty astonishing in something so thin. The gpu performance is impressive. It's closing in on the PS3/xbox 360.



    You could pretty much stick a keyboard on it now. Oh. You can dock with with a keyboard.



    With the 'concurrent' WWDC in June featuring Mac Os X and iOS development in tandem...



    You'd have to be in serious denial to see this is classic Apple at work here.



    I can easily see a super thin iMac tablet equivalent. iOS apps dwarf those of the Mac OS. (Same thing but with the 'fat' cut off?)



    Just look at how many iPod, iPhone, iPads have been sold. Getting on for 200 million? More? It eclipsed Mac total sales and installed base some time ago.



    Never say 'never' with Apple. I remember when the Intel news dropped. They'll flog the Mac for all it's worth. But I think the ongoing amalgamation is happening before our eyes.



    It will be very interesting to see where we end up in two years time.



    The writing is on the wall.



    Lemon Bon Bon.



    Thanks to Lemon Bon Bon (interesting handle) for saving me a lot of writing. To concentrate on a point below.....



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by xsu View Post


    The only way I can see a unified chip line up happening, is if Intel finally get their act together and design an x86 that can compete in the mobile arena.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by palegolas View Post


    Also, Apple is famous for not looking back, but instead looking forward. I'm sure they have great insight in the ARM vs x86 roadmaps, and their in house expertise too, for years to come.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by quinney View Post


    Better yet, how long would it take them if they started in 2008 (when Apple acquired PA semi)?



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post


    [Intel's new] 3D Transistors ... will double the processing speed of existing processors. And, they will simultaneously lower Intel processor power requirements to the point they are equivalent to ARM's.



    Intel is very very aggressive since processors are their life-blood.



    I can see, however, Apple going to Intel to fabricate Apple's A5+ ARM chips. After all, with 3D [transistor] processor and 22mm process technologies, Intel can make Apple's A5 and future ARM chips much much more powerful than non-Intel ARM chips. This will give Apple a huge lead on its competitors.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Galbi View Post


    This is why Intel wont supply Apple with chips.



    It's a conflict of interest for them. By making chips for Apple, Intel is indirectly killing its own market share in the PC business.



    Lots of venerable companies are in trouble. Including both halves of the long-dominant WinTel duopoly.



    Office and its file formats are the only things tethering many 10's of millions of MS's customers to its products. Even if Win 8 and all its variants all hit their marks and then some, MS has years of fighting to reclaim position in smart phones and tablets (which may have been supplanted by new device classes by then, introduced at least partially by guess who?). MS's biggest OEM, HP, is trying to re-invent itself in the Apple mode, controlling its own hardware and software stack with Web OS even as we talk about this.



    As for Intel, neither MS nor Apple has the slightest interest in Atom - that point where the x86' basic architectural flaws - a kludged design dating back to the original IBM PC - have finally become the limiting factor they always were destined to be - the computing power/power-for-speed roadblock that is keeping Atom from being a serious rival to ARM. And iDevices are the growth story for CPU's for the next decade most likely.



    At this point then, x-86 volumes aside Apple is arguably already Intel's most important customer, both for their imprimatur (consider how openly Intel partnered with Apple on Thunderbolt even tho' it hopes the volume will eventually go into non-Apple PC's and peripherals) and the volume they could throw Intel's way with their mobile business.



    So.... ....Intel wants to fab for Apple. Apple wants a fab with companies it's in less litigation with. Intel and Apple seem to be working fairly well together and there are few areas where they're in competition unlike Apple's former friend Google. And Intel's realizing Atom is likely to stay a bomb. And both Win 8 and iOS are Arm systems.



    But Intel doesn't want to be reduced to a commodity chip vendor to stay in the game....



    So.... ....Apple's ARM implementation via the chops of their recent acquisitions is arguably the best ARM around or close to it. Intel has gobs of talent, the most modern fabs and that new 3D tech noted above.



    Another collaboration - much bigger than Thunderbolt - suggests itself. An Apple-Intel leveraged ARM design as suggested by Jameskatt2 could easily stand out in the commoditized ARM market.



    Intel would be rescued from its Atom box canyon.



    Apple would - by virtue of its IP contributions - get the best deal by far on the chips - and - collect royalties on every one of the chips sold to anyone else (i.e., Apple would be making money on the internals of the most advanced Android and Windows smart phones and tablets on the planet as well as the highest margins on its own). They would also ensure that Intel's future iterations would be designed with their specific new device designs in mind.



    All cotton candy thinking for the moment, but Intel really needs to make some kind of out of the box move. Atom's not cutting the mustard.
  • Reply 140 of 156
    gwydiongwydion Posts: 1,073member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bigpics View Post


    I doubted this too but by gollies, you are right!



    ahttp://www.vmware.com/company/news/releases/view-ipad-3-9.html

    http://blogs.vmware.com/view/2011/03...-for-ipad.html



    And as the press release says, there is any virtualization, is a client viewer to desktop.
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