Intel says ARM-based Macs would be much slower

Intel says ARM-based Macs would be much slower


Photo: Apple
Photo: Apple

Intel’s talking a lot of smack about ARM lately. Around a month ago, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich said that he wasn’t worried about Apple ditching Intel for ARM chips. And today, Intel’s chief financial officer, Stacy Smith, is openly scoffing at the possibility, saying Intel’s way ahead of ARM when it comes to performance.

Smith’s comments were made in an interview with Business Insider late last week, when asked whether or not Intel was feeling the pinch from ARM.

“Our leadership over the rest of the industry is extending,” Smith said. “We’re not delayed relative to the industry. We’re actually ahead of the industry.”

“For a customer like Apple you’d have to take a big step off performance to step off our architecture,” Smith said. “That is what in essence enables us to win across different customers.”

As I’ve argued before, the drawbacks of Apple shifting from Intel to ARM for the Mac platform would be great. Although our iPhones and iPads feel speedy, Intel chips are significantly more powerful than ARM chips, at least as it stands. Apple would effectively be taking a technological step back, and it would have to re-engineer all OS X software to work on the new chipset.

That said, Apple might do it. It likes controlling its own technology, and with ARM, Apple can design its own desktop chips. It’s also worth noting that reputable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that an ARM-based Mac isn’t a matter of if, but when. He’s usually right. That should make Intel very worried.

Source: Business Insider


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