After many years of rumors, Apple has made official the launch of its first Macs based on ARM processors. This news marks a new episode in Apple’s history as a computer manufacturer, initiating its separation from Intel as a processor supplier. This is a strategic move only comparable to the abandonment of RISC architecture in 2006.
As the company has revealed, the experience gained with the design of processors for mobile devices has allowed its engineers to create a new generation of high-performance, low-power personal computer chips that will offer specific functions optimised for macOS. Among them, some related to artificial intelligence features.
Apple has not yet released any hardware itself (the first ARM-based computers are expected to be in the MacBook family), limiting itself to an official announcement instead.
Existing applications will have to be adapted to work with the new processors, but according to Apple this process will be quick and easy. Microsoft is already bringing in a version of Office, while Adobe already has demo versions of Lightroom and Photoshop ready.
As announced by Apple, the first ARM-based computers will arrive later this year (even earlier than expected) and the migration to the new designs will spread over the next two years. Once completed, the consumer computer range will have said goodbye to Intel and the x86 architecture to adopt internally designed ARM processors. In the meantime, Apple will continue to launch computers with Intel CPUs.