Apple preps 9 Macs with new M2 processor


M2 MacBook Pro
Is a new M2 chip right around the corner?
Image: Apple/Cult of Mac

Apple reportedly has half a dozen Macs with the next-generation M2 processor in testing. These are a mix of MacBooks and desktops.

Some supposedly will arrive later in 2022, but Apple won’t release the rest until 2023.

Apple silicon moves to a new generation

M-series processors are Apple’s replacements for Intel chips. The M1 debuted in 2020, and versions of it appear in most Mac models, and even the iPad Pro. But it’s about the be replaced by the M2.

The second-gen chip supposedly will be a faster iteration made with an eight-core CPU — with four high-performance cores named “Avalanche” and four efficiency cores known as “Blizzard” — and a 10-core GPU.

A move to a smaller 4nm chipmaking process increases efficiency, allowing MacBook models to run longer on a single charge and reducing heat in all Macs.

Apple readies a broad array of Macs with M2 processor

A variety of Apple computers running versions of the M2 turned up in third-party developer logs recently. “The company is testing at least nine new Macs with four different M2-based chips — the successors to the current M1 line — with third-party apps in its App Store, according to the logs,” according to Bloomberg.

The logs reportedly show a MacBook Air, an entry-level MacBook Pro and a Mac mini using a basic M2 with eight CPU cores and 10 graphics cores.

Enhanced M2 Pro and M2 Max processors are being tested in a 14-inch MacBook Pro and a 16-inch MacBook Pro. The M2 Max supposedly includes 12 CPU cores and 38 graphics cores. The current versions of these notebooks from 2021 run on M1 Pro and M1 Max chips.

The developer logs also turned up a long-awaited Mac Pro running what’s apparently the M2 Ultra, a successor to the M1 Ultra in the new Mac Studio.

Mac mini with M1 Pro?

It’s not an M2, but Apple is reportedly testing a Mac mini with the M1 Pro chip. The current version of this desktop contains the basic M1.

Bloomberg predicts that “the new MacBook Air, low-end MacBook Pro and new Mac mini are scheduled to debut as early as this year, with at least two Macs planned for launch around the middle of the year.” In addition, the 2022 iPad Pro supposedly will debut in autumn with the basic M2.

The others, likely including the new Mac Pro, could come out in 2023. That said, Apple could be exploring other options, and not every device in testing might make it to customers.


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