Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Apple may introduce ARM-based Mac models soon

The rumour of Apple launching ARM processor-based Macs is back. According to a news report by French website MacBidouille, the Cupertino giant is testing ARM-powered Mac hardware which will also feature a Magic trackpad built into the keyboard of the device. Apple is also said to be working with an ARM-compatible version of OS X, its desktop operating system.

The report, citing sources familiar with the development, claims that the company is working on three new machines including an iMac and Mac mini and a 13-inch MacBook, most likely a MacBook Air.

It mentions that iMac and notebook will both have "4 or 8" quad-core Arm 64 processors, while the Mac mini will have 4 ARM 64 processor with four cores.

The report suggests that the devices are almost ready but Apple is keeping them under wraps because it fears the transition of architecture may have a negative effect.

Apple uses its own ARM processors for the iPhone and iPad devices with its iOS operating system but making the switch to ARM-based computers may involve changes to its desktop OS or use of an emulation layer.

It's not the first time that Apple desktops will switch to chips of a different architecture. In 2005, Apple had switched from its proprietary PowerPC processors to Intel's x86 chips. As a result, users had to rely on emulation layer Rosetta to enable PowerPC apps/programmes to run on Intel-based Mac computers till developers introduced native Intel versions of their programmes.

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