NVIDIA: Macs Will Run On ARM Processors Within Five Years

NVIDIA: Macs Will Run On ARM Processors Within Five Years

The iPad has already killed netbooks, and now it’s starting to do the same to laptops. Within five years, the iPad might even kill off the Mac, says NVIDIA… replacing it with ARM-based machines that can outperform even the speediest Intel processors.

That’s the word from NVIDIA head Huang Jen-Hsun, who Sunday stunned a Computex crowd by announcing his company will ship 10 million of its Tegra chips by June. The company’s new line of mobile chips (based on ARM’s processor and NVIDIA’s graphics) is expected to do even more but use less power. The Tegra 3 chips will have five times the performance and is expected to appear in tablets within a few months.

However, one name not mentioned was Intel, maker of the Atom mobile chip. The NVIDIA boss did little to comfort the chipmaker’s shaky tablet position when he remarked that the coming onslaught of tablets should not replace the “traditional notebook.”

Additionally, NVIDIA plans to offer a desktop processor (codenamed “Denver”) to coincide with Windows 8. That Microsoft software will be the first version of Windows to support either Intel or ARM.

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  • aardman

    We should heed this warning because Intel, of course, will not do anything to update its products in the the next five years.  Plus as anyone who’s been following the tech scene these last few years should know by now, the guy who heads Nvidia is not a blowhard who constantly inflates his company’s prospects.

  • Figurative

    I’ve read this article (and the original link) several times now and I still don’t see where anyone said that Macs will run on ARM within 5 years.

  • Mike

    What a joke! The core i7 runs at 3.6 GHz and has 4 cores and 4 more virtual cores for a total of 8 cores. For applications and and OS like OS X 10.6 and the new 10.7 aka Lion that take advantage of the cores, the i7 is 5 to 8 times faster than the ARM processor is now. So that means in five years ARM will be at least five years behind Intel. So tell me again why Apple will switch the Mac to ARM in five years, are they trying too create a Time Machine?

  • Matt

    Why the Light Peak photo?

  • BeholdersEye

    I would not doubt it, the support for intel chips would then end in seven years, to force people to get new mac computers. Remember PPCs?

  • cheesy11

    the ipads far from replacing laptops and netbooks

  • devunish

    If you mean “far” as in the distant past then yes, you’re right…the iPad replaced the netbooks a long long time ago.

  • ??? ?????????? ???

    Licensing; Apple has Arm licenses, thus able to produce and design Arm based processors and in-house derivations of it according to their needs that no other competitor can use, ex: Apple A4.

    Power Consumption; Arm Processors are designed towards the mobile market, and because of it’s architecture simplicity, it consumes less power.

    Closed System; They have more control of their eco-system.
    Less Hackintoshes.. and clones. Not that I mind.

    If you remembered, during the early 2000s AMD unexpectedly gave intel fierce competition with AMD K7s (Athlons, Durons and Semprons); it wasn’t until the mid 2005 intel introduced Core series to regain dominance again. So, anythings posible.

    Previously Apple also wasn’t using the x86 architecture before moving to Intel. They were using PPC which is a RiSC architecture, the same architecture as Arm processors.

    I haven’t seen a roadmap that says Apple will do it though..

  • Morialkar

    i think they mean more of, the iPad (which run on ARM) will replace the mac, therefore, the main version of Mac OS (be it OSX or anything else) will be running on it.. and i think it’s a really bold statement!

  • Rithwik Raghu Ram

    Windows 8 release date http://morldtechgossips.blogsp

  • Jack Schofield

    Intel is toast. I remember seeing that headline in an Apple advert so it must be true ;-)

About the author

Ed SutherlandEd Sutherland is a veteran technology journalist who first heard of Apple when they grew on trees, Yahoo was run out of a Stanford dorm and Google was an unknown upstart. Since then, Sutherland has covered the whole technology landscape, concentrating on tracking the trends and figuring out the finances of large (and small) technology companies.

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