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  • How Apple Silicon Macs can supercharge computing in the 2020s

    lmasanti said:
    One point in the PowerPC to x86 transition that you forgot to mention is that the NeXT OS was already running in x86 hardware.
    The Motorola to PowerPC was a ‘new writing.’
    This is the same situation in x86 to ARM on Macs: the OS is already written-at-large in iOS.
    This makes this transition more similar to the 2005 transition that to the 1990.
    NeXT ported to x86 in 1995 but Apple didn't actually use any of that x86 port until 2006 (it did ship early DR releases shortly after buying NeXT). So that wasn't very relevant to the development of OS X that initially shipped for PPC. NeXT also ported its OS to PPC, which did end up being useful for Apple in shipping OS X. None of that was very relevant to the point of this article, which is detailing the strategic reasons Apple made various processor transitions and the outcomes.  

    Also, the port of Classic Mac OS from Motorola to PPC largely continued to use emulated, not new, code. From 94 thru the early 2000s, Macs dragged a lot of 68k code along that wasn't entirely let go until the OS X transition to x86! 

  • How Apple Silicon Macs can supercharge computing in the 2020s

    dinoone said:
    ARM recent vulnerabilities (incl. Checkm8, Spectre and Meltdown) surfacing in past Apple silicon efforts, including the currently pervasive T2, are concerning indeed. 
    Hope Apple is finally reacting to such Achilles’ heel in its Apple Silicon strategy. Which, if appropriately handled, could turn into a strategic advantage on competing mainstream silicon.
    Checkm8 could affect T2 Macs with an intel processor, but Spectre and Meltdown are vulnerabilities that relate to branch processing, which isn't something a T2 would be doing and says nothing about Apple's silicon itself. These vulnerabilities affected all modern CPUs, and Apple was best positioned to protect users with OS-level fixes. 

    None of this is "concerning indeed."
  • Mac with T2 Security Chip required to play 4K Netflix streams in macOS Big Sur

    The T2 chip includes Apple’s hardware accelerated video encoder for video. If Netflix were to “just use Chrome” it could perhaps “do” 4K video in software but it would be lower quality and cause a major implosion of battery life while the fans ran at full tilt as you’re trying to watch Netflix (and would force users to run Chrome.

    Capture a 4K video on your iOS device and then try to play that on a pre-T2 Mac and it will be readily obvious. 

    As we have been noting for some time, T2 was the first step towards Apple Silicon. 
  • Apple preparing for folding iPhone with Samsung screen order

    dedgecko said:
    Isn’t the iPhone OLED displays already a foldable screen? And this would be a future iPhone prototype. Once those pass muster, then their may be a future iPhone model. Semantics one may argue, but this is how Apple’s designers work if the stories are true.
    Yes, Apple tapped Samsung’s flexible OLED panels to deliver the slim bezels of iPhone X a long time ago, folding the display over itself to create a thin, dramatic design that sold massive volumes of ultra premium smartphones. Samsung has never similarly made any high volume phone from its own flexible technology, despite many attempts including the limited run fad of Edge models and the ridiculous $2000+ hinge book fablets 
  • Apple Silicon Mac mini dev kit looks like a desktop iPad Pro

    jdb8167 said:
    This makes it pretty clear that the developer transition kit isn't a Mac mini outfitted with an Apple Silicon SoC, but rather an iPad Pro logic board hooked up to multiple USB ports, Ethernet, and HDMI for convenience. It sports the same Bluetooth 5.0 and 802.11ac WiFi, and can attach to an SSD for storage using USB-C.

    This jumped out at me. The 2020 iPad Pro does not have 802.11ac WiFi but instead the latest standard 802.11ax WiFi 6. It is weird that this Developer Transition Kit doesn't support WiFi 6 when clearly Apple has the silicon to support it. It must be a driver problem. They have an iOS driver for whatever chipset they are using but not a macOS 11 driver.

    Obviously, this isn't a serious lack on the DTK. I just found it interesting.

    Yes - Apple just added WiFi 6 (80211.ax) support to iPhone 11 a few months ago, and to the A12Z this year. No Macs support it it yet. But beyond support in the SoC, WiFi 6 also needs the right supporting hardware and antennas to actually call itself WiFi 6. If the DTKit is just a temporary hack to enable non-public development for a few months, that would certainly explain why Apple shipped it with only "802.11ac" even if the SoC itself could support ax. Why would Apple develop and certify a temporary Mac Mini design it will never ship just to slightly improve WiFi on a test box that most developers will be using over Ethernet anyway?