Apple Probably Moving its Desktop Line to the ARM Platform As Well


Mon, Aug 4th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

The imminent end of the Macintel chipset is being predicted by Jean-Louis Gassée, with Apple converting its line of Intel-powered desktop PCs to ARM-based chipsets. This part is particularly telling not only of the technical advantages of such a switch, but of Apple's overall vision even in a post Steve Jobs era:

Cost is the foremost consideration, but power dissipation runs a close second. The aging x86 architecture is beset by layers of architectural silt accreted from a succession of additions to the instruction set. Emerging media formats demand new extensions, while obsolete constructs must be maintained for the sake of Microsoft’s backward compatibility religion. (I’ll hasten to say this has been admirably successful for more than three decades. The x86 nickname used to designate Wintel chips originates from the 8086 processor introduced in 1978 – itself a backward-compatible extension of the 8088…) Because of this excess baggage, an x86 chip needs more transistors than its ARM-based equivalent, and thus it consumes more power and must dissipate more heat.

Last but not least, Richman quotes Steve Jobs:

“I’ve always wanted to own and control the primary technology in everything we do.”



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