Intel has reacted to what some tech commentators have cited as one of the biggest tech snubs in recent memory, with Apple finally lifting the lid on its own-brand chip for its MacBook and iMac ranges.
The news broke at WWDC 2020 on 22 June, ending years of speculation about Apple’s plans for the MacBook ARM and iMac 2020. During the developer conference’s opening keynote, Apple triumphantly announced it will be making its own silicon for the iMac and MacBook lines, forecasting a full migration away from Intel within two years.
But, is that a huge deal for Intel which has supplied the Apple devices’ CPUs for longer than any tech fan can count? Apparently not, as the company sent Trusted Reviews the below statement.
“Apple is a customer across several areas of business, and we will continue to support them. Intel remains focused on delivering the most advanced PC experiences and a wide range of technology choices that redefine computing.
“We believe Intel-powered PCs – like those based on our forthcoming Tiger Lake mobile platform – provide global customers the best experience in the areas they value most, as well as the most open platform for developers, both today and into the future.”
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This may sound like a standard response, but if you break it down it’s pretty clear the Intel’s not too bothered.
Focus on the “choices that redefine computing” part. Intel’s been clear it’s not as focused on consumer laptop chips as it used to be for ages now. It wants to command the next wave of computing tech. Raja Koduri, Intel chief architect and senior vice president, made this clear during an event attended by Trusted Review last year. During it he listed Xe graphics and cloud as the company’s biggest priorities in the consumer market.
Most of the data centres running big name services, like Google Stadia, already use Intel tech and that’s a much bigger money maker than laptop chips for Apple, which as it stands doesn’t represent a huge chunk of the market – Netmarketshare pegs it with a roughly 9% stake, and that’s in line with most other analyst houses’ estimates.
A source familiar with the matter also told Trusted Reviews the firm isn’t too concerned about “ARM CPUs” in general as they’re a long way off being a threat to its core business. ARM is a separate chip architecture traditionally used on mobile devices. A very small number of laptops currently use it, like the Snapdragon-powered Galaxy Book S, which despite being a great device is still plagued by app compatibility issues.
The new Apple silicon was one of many announcements to come out of WWDC 2020. The firm also used the event to unveil its latest iOS 14, iPadOS 14, WatchOS 7, tvOS 14 and macOS Big Sur operating systems.