Apple’s commitment to its own SoCs has had a huge impact on the tech world, so much so that it has led some experts to think that Windows 10 and the jump to ARM is the only option that the Redmond giant has, and the main original equipment manufacturers, to continue to compete effectively with the Cupertino giant.
That idea, that of Windows 10 and the jump to ARM, has the support of ex-head of the Mac division at Apple, Jean-Louis Gassée. His approach is very simple and easy to understand, he believes that Apple’s A-series SoCs will offer increasing performance and that they will have a minimum consumption, that is, they will be very efficient, which will place the company of the apple in a “privileged” position, and It will make the x86 architecture appear “what it really is: old.”
This is how forceful Jean-Louis Gassée has been, a well-known and respected professional who, of course, knows very well what he is talking about. In terms of efficiency, chips based on the ARM architecture have been demonstrating for years that they are capable of offering very solid value, and it is true that its performance has noticeably improvedSo much so that the A12Z SoC present in the iPad Pro 2020 and in the Mac Mini for developers is capable of surpassing the MacBook Pro that Jean-Louis Gassée himself uses.
It is a simplistic but very important comparison, since it allows us to verify something that a few years ago would have been impossible, to find an ARM-based chip capable of surpassing a processor integrated in a high-performance laptop such as the MacBook Pro. Yes, it is quite an achievement, and the best thing is that the Apple SoC has a TDP of just 18 watts and a much lower production cost than its x86-based equivalents.
Windows 10 and the jump to ARM: more performance, more autonomy and less heat
Under the prism of Jean-Louis Gassée, ARM architecture and Apple SoCs are emerging as the best option for the good value they will offer in terms of performance, autonomy and working temperatures. The former Apple has acknowledged that right now the performance of the A12Z SoC is not at the level that would be expected, but he explained that this is due the impact of the Rosetta 2 emulation layer, and he is convinced that it will improve over time.
Those improvements, together with the development of future architectures, will gradually displace the x86 architecture, especially in laptops, and according to Jean-Louis Gassée both Microsoft and the large OEMs will have no choice but to reinforce their commitment to ARM if they want to aspire to offer products with the same value as Apple in terms of performance, autonomy and temperatures of job.
Microsoft has been thinking about that for a while Windows 10 and the jump to ARM. This operating system works without problems with said architecture, although it still has some limitations that, together with the high cost of the equipment based on said configuration, have prevented its takeoff in the general consumer market, a reality that, except for surprise, will not change neither in the short nor in the medium term.
Will Apple’s move to ARM mark the end of the x86 architecture? Frankly i think not, I am convinced that both Intel and AMD will develop architectures and alternatives that will improve the value of their chips based on this architecture, in fact we already have some examples, such as the Lakefield architecture, which combines a high-performance core with four low-consumption cores , and in 2022 Alder Lake-S will arrive, which will maintain that focus, but with configurations of up to 16 cores.