Apple is testing a new external display with a dedicated A13 chip as well as a neural engine, according to a recent report. And it may also be working on a less-expensive counterpart.
Citing anonymous sources, 9to5Mac said the Cupertino-based tech giant is internally testing the new display, which might replace the high-end Pro Display XDR that came out in December 2019. That display retails for $5,000 or more.
A13 Bionic chip and neural engine
The project developing the new display carries the code name J327. But so far, other details about technical specifications remain limited. According to sources, an Apple-made system-on-a-chip (SoC) will help power the display. At the moment, that would likely mean the A13 Bionic chip used in the iPhone 11 lineup, 9to5Mac said.
In addition to the A13 chip, the external display comes with a neural engine. That technology accelerates machine learning tasks. It appears nothing else is known yet about its application in the new display.
Rumors of an additional, less-expensive Apple display
Rumors previously hinted that Apple has been developing a less-expensive display for regular users, so the new one with the dedicated SoC is probably a replacement for the current Pro Display XDR.
Prior to the XDR’s release in December 2019, rumors suggested Apple, having discontinued the Thunderbolt Display, had a replacement lined up with a high-resolution display and a built-in GPU. But the Pro Display XDR ended up lacking a GPU.
SoC eases drain on computer’s chip
An external display with a CPU/GPU built in could help Macs deliver high-resolution graphics without hammering the computer’s processor so hard.
As 9to5Mac theorized, “Apple could also combine the power of the display SoC with the Mac’s SoC to provide even more performance for running intensive graphic tasks. Another possibility is to use this SoC to add some smart features to the Pro Display XDR, such as AirPlay.”
As always, take note that Apple’s plans may change. Particular plans for a launch of one or more new displays are, as yet, unknown.