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  • M2 Extreme Mac Pro due in 2023, MacBook Pro still in 2022

    Perhaps Apple will start Mac Pro on 3nm, possibly branded as M3, or maybe just it’s own thing separate from the M series
    It’s doubtful. The Mac Pro is a type of computer that tends to use very mature fabs due to the amount of silicon needed, the amount of verification and qualification needed, etc. 

    What holds it back is that it only sells something like 100k units a year. They aren’t going to devote a lot of resources to updating it, it is not going to have schedule pressure to update it, etc. 

    The technological challenge for the Mac Pro is probably the silicon bridges and the PCIe IO. The core chip is just the M2 Max CPU, which goes into the MBP. The rest is bridging 2 to 4 of them together in manner where they don’t lose too much performance, and having enough PCIe IO. 

    They still have to answer how more GPU performance gets in the box. 172 cores isn’t enough. It should be however many that a 1400 W PSU can power. So about 600 GPU cores?
  • Jony Ive's replacement Evans Hankey is leaving Apple

    She’s awesome. This sucks. She did great keeping the Ive aesthetic while expanding possibilities. The new MacBooks and iPads look and perform better than ever. 

    Massive loss for apple. Really concerning actually. 

    If someone comes in that wasn’t part of the Ive team, it’s even more separation from so much of the heart. , thinking, and aesthetic that went into everything. 

    Hiring just another industrial designer will turn apple into a Sony, Samsung, etc. 

    this sucks really bad. 
    Next person up. It's inevitable. She should do what she wants. She's earned it after what, 25 years at Apple?

    Tim Cook will be retiring sooner or later too. It will be sooner than we think imo, like within the next 3 years. The CEO of Apple is basically that of a leader of a powerful nation state now. If they maintain such a position or even grow bigger, very few people are willing to take on such a responsibility. It's going to be interesting to see who it is.
  • Apple rumored to be testing macOS for M2 iPad Pro

    MplsP said:
    DAalseth said:
    To me this smells more like the kind of story Apple itself would seed in order to ferret out leakers. My guess someone is about to find their keycard access revoked. 
    That or it’s a misinterpretation of apple working on cross-platform app compatibility.

    Personally, I’d love it if my Ipad Pro had more feature parity with MacOS. I’ve said for several years that iPads are being constrained by iPadOS. That’s still true and many things that they technically can do are kind of kludgy and much more difficult than they are on MacOS
    "That or it’s a misinterpretation of apple working on cross-platform app compatibility." => Apple already has that.  It's called Catalyst

    "Personally, I’d love it if my Ipad Pro had more feature parity with MacOS." => Dan Moren posted an article regarding the vision behind the iPad and he summarized it well:

    "When the iPad came out, it felt like a burgeoning third revolution, but a decade-on much of that potential has been squandered. None of this is to say that the iPad hasn’t been a success, but that it hasn’t been all that it could be. The real opportunity is for the iPad to be the best of both worlds: taking the modern aspects of iOS and combining what worked well on the Mac, and turning it into a device that’s more than the sum of its parts."
    Catalyst enables UIKit apps - iPhone and iPad apps - to run on macOS with a minimum of work. macOS has an implementation of UIKit (essentially code libraries that apps are built with) to make Catalyst apps work, especially on Intel. For ARM, macOS basically hosts the entire iOS environment stack and unmodified iPhone and iPad apps can run on macOS/ARM. Some developers are intransigent. A lot of them don't want even that and prevent their unmodified apps to run on macOS. They surely want money for that. Anyways, I digress.

    There isn't anything to go the other way. For FCPX, LPX to run on iPadOS with a minimum of changes in FCP itself, Apple would have to have iPadOS host an implementation of AppKit - the macOS code library - to make that happen. An iPadOS AppKit library would change UI conventions from WIMP to Touch. Apple doesn't want to do that yet, because unknown reasons. The biggest one is that only recently are there iPads with enough RAM to do it, and perhaps even more recently, some iPads don't have the storage performance to really do it. The hard way is to rewrite FCP in some combination of Swift+ObjC+SwiftUI+UIKit.

    Apple has an incredible amount of balls that they are juggling. FCPX surely has a bunch of crappy C++ code with Objective-C wrapped around it with AppKit code wrapped around everything. Then, there are probably custom Intel, PPC, and ARM machine code in it to make some things fast. On top of this, they are transitioning to Swift and SwiftUI, both themselves are moving targets. It's an incredibly capital intensive effort to get everything to Swift and SwiftUI. Basically a nation state effort.
  • Apple chose a bad year to launch expensive iPads that aren't compelling

    designr said:
    Apple is certainly fighting upward price pressure on the input side (parts, labor, etc.) and trying to maintain margins and trying to maintain a lineup of products at various price points to not destroy the demand side. No small feat.

    Some might argue they can and should take a hit on margins. Maybe. But they have a business model built on their margin level. They are also a publicly traded company. I'm certain they would take a big hit if they started showing weakness on margins.

    Others might argue that taking lower margins (through lower prices) will spur greater demand and they'll make up for it. Demand curves do slope downward of course. But I'm sure Apple has modeled this. They almost certainly have a pretty good sense of what the price-elasticity-of-demand (how much more they could sell at lower prices) is for their products and their brand.

    Apple does need to clean up an increasingly cluttered and confusing product catalog. This clutter may be a symptom of trying to manage all of the above and may be reduced when some aspect of these pressures eases up or stabilizes. Maybe. Then again, this might be a bunch of marketing, sales, and supply chain people trying to optimize market segmentation.
    Loved your thoughtful post, but I disagree with the last paragraph. iPads are something like a $40b business for Apple. I don't think it is possible to sell more units with a simpler lineup because the use cases are so varied. Software and services is a huge part of it, but hardware is a big chunk of it. The lineup serves the most casual users with the iPad 9 and iPad 10 at lower price tiers. These will be discounted to $270 and $380 or something like that for holiday sales and such. The iPad Air and Pro 11 are the upsell choices for more demanding users. Note taking, music notation, games, business stuff, PDF documents, more premium, etc. The Pro models are for people who are essentially using them as their primary machine or as a specialist device.

    They've basically filled out every price tier from $330 to $1100. It's a sliding scale of what you get per dollar, designed to upsell. Even the iPad mini, which is a special edition type of device, basically a small iPad Air which doesn't fit in an easily discerned display/$ type curve, doesn't overlap in price tier. The iPhone lineup, currently at 8 models, overlaps in price, and the benefits between the iPhone 12 and the iPhone 14 aren't that big, but it doesn't present issues for Apple's iPhone sales of people choosing what phone to get. People do understand. 

    If there is an iPad Pro 14", it's going to be $1500. It's another product in the lineup but won't cause confusion with its price point. I half think an 7" iPod Touch, basically an iPad with a different aspect ratio, at $250 could be a viable product. Just something to play music and watch videos with. Something is easily pocketable. That's just the mundane established stuff. They could go really different if they wanted.
  • Apple chose a bad year to launch expensive iPads that aren't compelling

    Totally disagree with the takes in this article.

    I hear people saying the lack of Ethernet is bad on the $130 Apple TV. When I hear that, I immediately think those people are crazy. Crazy for not understanding what the mass market is, crazy for not being introspective of their desires versus the mass market. The mass market does not have Ethernet. They aren't going to wire their house with it. If their house or home has it, they won't use it. It's WiFi all the time. This Apple TV is a Christmas gift fare for the mass market. Perhaps Apple needs to cut it to $100, but at $130, it's a great price for what you get relative to other TV dongles.

    If you are buyer that wants Ethernet, you can get an Apple TV with it for $150. This used to be the price of the lower end Apple TV 4K. The new one is basically 50% to 100% more in everything: CPU, GPU, RAM and storage. And it is fanless to boot. That's a pretty good deal.

    I would recommend the $450 iPad 10th gen over the $330 iPad 9th gen. There is 1 GB more RAM, a 10% larger display, faster CPU, GPU, and RAM. It's simply a better machine, and it's worth $120 more. There is perhaps 2 reasons for getting the 9th gen model: a buyer doesn't want to spend $450 and buyer wants the home button. The former will be solved with time, the latter is one of those things that can't be solved and people will have to live with it.

    If people want better iPads, they spend more. Same as it always is. That ~11" iPad form factor now scales from $450 to $2100. The more the buyer is willing to pay, the more and better they get. From 10th gen to Air to Pro, the quality improves. The case gets thinner. The displays get better, the performance gets better, the stylus performance gets better. If you are just a news browser, iPad 10th gen is the way to go. You like to play games, step up to the Air. If the iPad is the primary computing device you plan on using for years, get the Pro or perhaps the 12.9".