Apple wants to move Macs away from Intel chips - report



  • Reply 101 of 221
    john.bjohn.b Posts: 2,742member

    Nope, not buying it.  We need a "BS flag" emoticon. 


    Edit:  This will do:


  • Reply 102 of 221
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member

    AMD don't make their own chips anymore. Thats done by Global Foundries which is a separate chip fabricator like Taiwan Semi.


    Buying AMD would be buying a chip designer. 

  • Reply 103 of 221
    cycomikocycomiko Posts: 716member


    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


    This should probably read:


    "... tests have shown that almost any ARM based chip, even non customised versions, are significantly faster and more efficient than any Atom chip yet made."


    would be closer to reality. 


    except the atom chip has a large variety of specs, and the medfield is a low power version set for smartphones.  How does A6 fare against one of their 1.8ghz dual core cederviews? (10w for nettops)

  • Reply 104 of 221
    lilgto64lilgto64 Posts: 1,147member
    I would think that an on-going analysis of what options are available would never be entirely rules out. But keeping an out on options is not the same as active seeking a change.
  • Reply 105 of 221
    macrulezmacrulez Posts: 2,455member


  • Reply 106 of 221

    I don't think we'll ever see ARM-powered Macs.


    We might, however, see iOS, ARM-powered ultrabooks based off the iPad.  And if those take off we could then see iOS devices from Apple slowly supplant the Mac on the desktop.  It wouldn't take a ton of effort for Mac software publishers to convert existing Mac titles to such a platform.  Intel-based desktops would remain for a few years during the transition until ARM performance became sufficient.  Eventually Apple would release high-powered, multiprocessor ARM-based desktops running iOS and OS X, Intel-based Macs would be retired.

  • Reply 107 of 221
    This would kill the Mac. The whole reason I have moved my school to Apple Only is Windows. We are standardized on Mac Minis, 13"Macbook Pros and iPad 2's. But you can choose os. Want windows laptop fine heres a macbook with windows 7. Need a dual boot computer lab, bingo heres 30 minis. A move from intel means no longer being compatible with everything else. Apple makes top end hardware, the machines simply dont fail. A lot more than I can say for the Dell crap we used to buy. 100 machines all needed new motherboards. Win RT is also not the answer. We need windows to be compatible with old crappy software we just can't replace, stuff that wont be out for RT. and what will this do to virtualization?
  • Reply 108 of 221
    bigpicsbigpics Posts: 1,397member

    Really interesting thread - lots of varied and plausible input and minimal pointless zinging - way above the norm. 


    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

    Mac Pro (Early 2013) will be run on two A6 chips. Clocked at a whopping 1.4GHz and utilizing a full 2GB of RAM, they'll be the powerhouse that no one wanted. But thin!


    Joking aside, I do like that Apple's getting into chip design themselves. Years ago, I imagined that doing that would be the final step in truly optimizing a hardware-software ecosystem. 

    As for me, I'm looking forward to my 2013 Haswell MBPr which I'm hoping will have 30-40% longer battery life (please!) than any MacBook yet released.... ...that would make me a happy camper for the next few years as the landscape continues to evolve in whatever direction...


    Originally Posted by mstone View Post

    I don't keep up to date on Windows tech apparently. Anyway, I really don't care about being able to run Windows on a Mac, although, I can understand how it could be a benefit to some. I always have a Win box around the office anyway. As long as OS X is still running UNIX and compatible with Adobe CS it will be fine with me. I'm assuming the performance would also be improved, which is the big question. Can they really build their own chip that performs better than Intel's?

    Not in the next 3-5 years...


    Originally Posted by thataveragejoe View Post


    I would do a little more reading. These aren't those craptastic netbook Atom chips anymore. Intel's made solid advancements with Medfield. It's only slightly short of current gen ARM.

    Anyone who writes off Intel in the mobile space at this point doesn't know much about the history of the company, and does so at their own peril.....  ...PS: "Trinity" notwithstanding I'd be shocked to see Apple buy AMD given the limitations of their x86 development rights among other reasons...  ...but then I've been shocked by things Apple has done before....


    Originally Posted by Arthur123 View Post

    You must be living on another planet. About 99 percent of all businesses use Windows.

    Therefore by extension if you own a MAC computer and want to work from home and connect to your company'sWindows only world the only way to do that on a MAC is to use Parallels or Boot Camp.

    FTR, I'm not totally knowledgeable about the pros and cons, but there are already alternatives like "Go to my PC" where you can access your Win desktop not only from your Mac but your iPad as well...

  • Reply 109 of 221
    msimpsonmsimpson Posts: 452member
    I would bet my left ARM?

    Actually Steve thought it would be insanely great to run everything on an updated, super fast version of a 6502 processor so it would be easy to run IIe games without an emulator.

    If you don't think a company as big as Apple with their deep pockets is not researching all options for the future, then you are crazy. Apple's release of new Macs has been delayed because of Intel. The Ivy Bridge chips releases were delayed by Intel and this has helped to cause the long waits for Apple to release new Macs.

    While Apple did not come out and say it, the reason there has been no updates to the Mac Pro's is directly related to waiting on Intel. Xeons did not get upgraded to Sandy Bridge until earlier this year, and were not a huge increase in performance over past Xeons. Plus Intel is transitioning the Xeons to a new socket config and their support chip sets don't include integrated Thunderbolt support at this time. Don't expect new Mac Pro's until there are Ivy Bridge Xeons with supporting chipsets that include Thunderbolt integration.

    That said I don't see Apple dropping Intel completely for quite a while, if ever - as long as they make Macs. But they will certainly research it as an option - if only to keep Intel on their toes.

    Inspired by Intel.

    Damn this would never have happened with Steve. And Tim Cook stole my french fries.
  • Reply 110 of 221
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    jollypaul wrote: »
    Well said, though I would change it slightly to "makes sense to switch ANY supplier". Apple depends on suppliers delivering cutting edge tech reliably and in large quantity. Currently that means Intel for Macs.
    AMD would have no problem delivering the volume needed for the Mini. AMD has a problem with Power in their APUs but they are delivering significantly more performance for that power. I would not dismiss AMD but I don't see Apple leaving Intel anytime soon, things like Thunderbolt and XEON Phi are just what Apple needs.
  • Reply 111 of 221
    smalmsmalm Posts: 677member


    Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post

    Apple moving to their own chips is a no-brainer. We have a phone that's faster than some laptops.

    Oh yes. Slow Netbooks. Really exciting.


    We are talking about Macs meaning at least an i5 with 1,7GHz (turbo up to 2.6 GHz) running circles around any ARM CPU.

    And that's the weakest Mac you can get.


    Next year Haswell will make the biggest step forward since Intel introduced Core 2.

    Apple would be stupid not to use it.

  • Reply 112 of 221
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member

    Originally Posted by MacRulez View Post

    In the outside world…


    *broken rolleyes emoticon*

    …those are called net tops, fairly popular among those who need slender power-efficient systems.


    Nettops have Xeon chips now?

  • Reply 113 of 221
    cash907cash907 Posts: 893member


    Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post

    Apple moving to their own chips is a no-brainer. We have a phone that's faster than some laptops.


    Yeah, some 5 year old laptops, while running highly customized software in a controlled environment.

  • Reply 114 of 221
    vaelianvaelian Posts: 446member
    What Apple intends to do is to move to massively parallel systems; think shit with 64, 128, 256 ARM cores. The parallel / concurrent programming fags like me should be happy. I've been waiting for the moment a company would finally bet on massively parallel computing for a long time and am more than ready to jump in with both feet thanks to personal projects and research I've been conducting in that field.
  • Reply 115 of 221
    macrulezmacrulez Posts: 2,455member


  • Reply 116 of 221
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member

    Originally Posted by MacRulez View Post

    Does the model shown there have one?


    Oh, right, it doesn't exist.


    So yes, in the fantasy world that product exists in, sure, you can air-cool a Xeon.


    But of course in the real world if you tried to run a Xeon with passive cooling you'd fry not only the mobo, but likely also burn a hole in your desk.


    1. Who said ANYTHING about passive cooling?

    2. The mockup illustrates a design idea more than it does a content idea, otherwise the content would also be listed. If a product like it existed and was intended to serve the professional market as the (somewhat silly) name describes, it would be 1U (so thicker than we're seeing here, size given by the ODD) and keep the Xeon. Remove the optical drive slot from this image and all illusions of size disappear.

  • Reply 117 of 221


    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    *low whistle, slow nod*


    Talk about a blade computer. Make it 1U height and rackable but have it come with feet on the bottom and a stand that lets it also run vertically as you have it and… 


    …oh, and drop the ODD entirely and… 


    …got yourself an interesting computer there. Though it would leave GPU to be desired.



    Originally Posted by MacRulez View Post

    In the outside world those are called nettops, fairly popular among those who need slender power-efficient systems.

    Actually, I made that a while back after I read a post on Neven Mrgan's Tumblr. Never did get around to modelling any of the others. :P

  • Reply 118 of 221
    hmmhmm Posts: 3,405member


    Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post

    Apple moving to their own chips is a no-brainer. We have a phone that's faster than some laptops.


    I haven't looked at comparisons to atom based netbooks. I remember the 4S being on par with some of the G4 era towers. This is really impressive, but I don't know where you got "faster than some laptops".



    Originally Posted by mstone View Post

    Do you think Apple is also ready to give up Thunderbolt? As I recall that requires Intel chip set, right?

    Apple drops a lot of things at times. Thunderbolt is a very quirky solution, and it doesn't match any set of needs particularly well. I've always been of the opinion that cables would be consolidated. At some point I expect visible wires to be something viewed as archaic. It's just that this wasn't really a brilliant execution. It's bundled with a display connection. Higher quality displays tend to use displayport connections. Cheaper displays frequently use hdmi, which tends to be quite popular among home users. It's not really a good match up for hdmi, and it doesn't fully support displayport 1.2. I've mentioned this before, but in terms of data bandwidth, it's sitting between consumer grade connections like usb3 and things like mini SAS. It doesn't really push the high end out further. It merely brings the upper mid range to a wider group of consumers. In many cases they're served just as well by usb3. The other guys may have existing solutions that are already faster. Combine that with the fact that the Xeon chips don't have integrated graphics, so you can't count on the lighter workstation market for support. It's just a case where usb3 will often perform equally well without displacing existing peripherals (I hate premature e-waste).



    Originally Posted by v5v View Post


    The Mac Pro towers in our graphics department have Windows on them for running Autodesk apps.  It's more convenient than having to set up additional workstations.

    It still puzzles me when people buy mac pros to run Windows, especially when much of the Autodesk stuff runs on OSX these days. 3ds Max and XSI are Windows only. There are probably others, but they publish quite a lot of software that runs under OSX.


    Originally Posted by v5v View Post


    Funny, but not unprecedented.  Apple sacrificed cost-effective storage just to make the RMBP thinner.



    That is a different situation. You'd be better off killing the line than creating something that will not adequately service enough people.



    Originally Posted by v5v View Post


    Using an "alternative" to Thunderbolt still means giving up on Thunderbolt.


    Not that I imagine it would really matter to many users.  The rate at which it's being adopted might be described as "glacial" and the cost "exorbitant."  I suspect that for all but a very few super-power users, a USB3 world makes Thunderbolt a solution in search of a problem.


    It's really more intel's thing. They'd have to get it into more machines to ensure its long term health. I'm not sure whether that will happen. I'm also curious if the connector type will remain consistent with future revisions.

  • Reply 119 of 221
    y2any2an Posts: 196member
    Apple's PowerPC chips were made by Motorola, not IBM (who owned the architecture). The key reason Apple moved to Intel was that Motorola was more interested in embedded systems where the integrated peripherals matter more, than driving to maximize absolute CPU performance.
  • Reply 120 of 221


    Originally Posted by tundraboy View Post

    Defies logic for Apple to move out of Intel chips after dragging its customers through the pain of moving into Intel chips a few years ago. I also see no benefit and a major downside to chucking the ability to run Windows smoothly on a Mac.

    I say, as a well run company, Apple regularly goes through an exercise to see if it makes sense to drop Intel CPUs, and someone picked up on this and blew it way out of proportion.

    I would think that as long as Apple is seriously investigating ways to drop any vendor, Intel included, it would keep the vendor on its toes and offering maximum competitive pricing and services. Apple is the ONLY major manufacturer that is not tied to Intel's butt like another centipede segment, and Apple is letting Intel know that.

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