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Walter Soyka
Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 5, 2012 at 10:25:35 pm

More grist for the rumor mill:

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-11-05/apple-said-to-be-exploring-switch-...

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
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RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
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Bret Williams
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 5, 2012 at 10:29:24 pm

They're not even using the best intel has to offer. Not sure why they'd want to so this. More evidence that there's an iMac pro in the works, and not a MacPro.


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Tim Wilson
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 5, 2012 at 10:45:06 pm

[Bret Williams] "More evidence that there's an iMac pro in the works, and not a MacPro."

Probably truer than not, but not based on the Intel intel. (See what I did there?)

Apple has been the top OEM semiconductor buyer since 2010 - they bought 24% of everything out there in 2011. (#2 was Samsung, with 14.8%.) And Apple is expected to show a 12% increase over that in 2012! Linky.

When you're buying up 27% of an entire tech sector all by yourself, you're in a position to dictate pretty strong terms. They've also bought a number of chip companies, and entered into strong partnerships with others. I know that building desktop chips isn't the same as building mobile chips, which is what most of their custom fab has been until now....but who knows? This could be the shot fired over Intel's bow for them to get more aligned with Apple's needs...or maybe Apple is ready to put its stamp on another business.

Tim Wilson
Vice President, Editor-in-Chief
Creative COW



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willy pimentel
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 5, 2012 at 11:40:20 pm

If apple is able to match intel Oferings that will result in bigger profits.

Willy Pimentel
Motion Graphics Editor
Macbook Pro 2011 thunderbolt/ TBolt Displey/ 2 SSD Hds /lacie Tbolt


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Devin Crane
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 6, 2012 at 2:49:14 am

This is just a negotiation ploy to get a better deal from Intel. I don't buy it, Apple is selling more Macs than ever to new users based on they can install and run Windows programs on them. My bosses who made fun of me for years for being a "Mac guy" bought their first Macs this year since they can install Parralles on them and run there PC software.



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Walter Soyka
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 6, 2012 at 1:57:38 pm

[Devin Crane] "Apple is selling more Macs than ever to new users based on they can install and run Windows programs on them. My bosses who made fun of me for years for being a "Mac guy" bought their first Macs this year since they can install Parralles on them and run there PC software."

Apple sure doesn't market Macs this way. The big reason a couple years ago to buy a Mac was that it was better than Vista ("it was a really good paper!"). The big reason to buy a Mac today is that iCloud on your laptop or desktop will be sweet with your iPhone and iPad.

I think that the Parallels/Fusion/Boot Camp thing has become progressively less important as the Mac has gained popularity and attracted developers building more native apps.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
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Walter Soyka
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 6, 2012 at 1:47:24 pm

[willy pimentel] "If apple is able to match intel Oferings that will result in bigger profits."

I think one of the points in the article is that Apple doesn't need to match Intel's offerings. If computers are "fast enough" for the general population now, how can you sell them faster computers?

If the expectation for what a computer should do changes, then the expectation for how to build one can change, too. Sizzle cores don't help with email, web browsing, and watching videos.

Check out the new iPad 4 benchmarks [link] -- they're comparable to G5 systems [link], and just a touch under the original MacBook Air. Not bad for a $500 handheld device that runs for 10 hours on battery.

If mobility matters more than performance, Intel loses.

The question is whether Apple will pursue this shift with the Mac line.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Bret Williams
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 6, 2012 at 5:07:20 pm

It's kinda screwy how a company solely dedicated to making computer processors for it's entire existence isn't the number one seller of mobile processors. It makes you wonder just what is going on.

I've said before I kinda wonder the same thing about Adobe. They've been making video editing software as long or longer than pretty much anyone, and their other apps are across the board the standard in their retrospective fields, yet they're continually chasing the market. I feel like after X came out, they thought they were sitting pretty, but then all of the sudden Apple is jumping ahead with the multicam editor, and they were already better at the whole logging thing right out of the gate. Skimming was cool enough that Adobe added some form of it, a form that only skims on the computer monitor, but is still a little less smooth.

I guess my point is, how is Intel not hands down owning this market? And I pose the same question to Adobe (or Avid). Apple is making computers, software, iPads, phones, etc. Their resources are certainly stretched to the hilt. How is it that they can even compete in the video editing world at all? Especially with how long FCP legacy languished while Adobe and Avid kept innovating. And especially after the colossal FCP X launch screwup. I know they have lots of cash to throw around, but I get the feeling they don't.


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Mark Bein
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 6, 2012 at 10:49:54 am

Even if Bloomberg made that up, there would e a 99% chance that they are right.
You'd expect one of the biggest companies in the world to look a few years ahead.


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 6, 2012 at 12:52:51 pm

This type of reasoning seems to be some sort of meme, i.e. Everything Apple will do will be for iOS.

While its a good chunk of biz, they still need OSX to build iOS, which means they'll need traditional personal computers.

And Thunderbolt goes down the tubes without intel.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 6, 2012 at 1:51:02 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "This type of reasoning seems to be some sort of meme, i.e. Everything Apple will do will be for iOS. While its a good chunk of biz, they still need OSX to build iOS, which means they'll need traditional personal computers. "

There's no reason OS X couldn't run on ARM. I think the question of iOS/OSX merging and Intel vs. ARM architectures in desktop machines are separate.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Marcus Moore
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 6, 2012 at 1:47:46 pm

Good take on this:

http://allthingsd.com/20121106/will-apple-switch-the-mac-to-arm-why-the-rum...



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Christian Schumacher
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 7, 2012 at 6:10:30 pm

Don't get me wrong, but if it is on Bloomberg's it's no rumor, this is a controlled leak to lay out their proposed roadmap regarding their future strategies. Specially now that there's a lot of doubt in how Apple will keep growing and re-inventing themselves, it helps to prop up stocks at least...In 3-4 years there will be no desktop made by Apple any longer, just portable devices and accessories to set them in a desktop fashion, that's it.


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Michael Gissing
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 7, 2012 at 7:55:03 pm

This story is turning up in Australian tech media. It makes perfect sense to me that a company with plenty of cash, run by control freaks and with patents for everything would move to their own chips. In the recent patent wars with Samsung, it seemed strange to sue a company that was a major parts supplier.

Apple will want to control more of its parts supply in the future so it can prevent competition.


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Steve Connor
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 7, 2012 at 8:01:30 pm

[Michael Gissing] "Apple will want to control more of its parts supply in the future so it can prevent competition.
"


How does that prevent competition?

Steve Connor
'It's just my opinion, with an occasional fact thrown in for good measure"


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Michael Gissing
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 7, 2012 at 8:14:17 pm

The competition makes parts for you. Suing them might make them reluctant to supply or give priority.

Control parts supply yourself and be aggressive with patents and you have more leverage over your competition. Simply put, it removes a potential vulnerability to aggressively sue.


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Michael Gissing
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 7, 2012 at 8:30:58 pm

Playing devils advocate, I found this article that argues why Apple will likely not use ARM chips in the next five years

http://www.cultofmac.com/144942/why-youll-probably-never-own-a-mac-with-an-...


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Scott Thomas
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 10, 2012 at 9:00:38 am

What is ARM and where did it come from?

ARM stands for Acorn RISC Machine. It was conceived and built as a desktop computer processor. It's history goes back to the 1980's. That means that the architecture is only about 10 years younger than Intel's.

AMD has just announced that they are going to work on a 64 bit ARM processor.

Intel has had an amazing run with the x86, and I'm sure they're not standing still. There have been more elegant CPU architectures that have come and gone, and Intel has always been able to refine their processes and microcode to do an end-run around them. Will ARM best them where IBM could not? (With the PowerRISC derived G5)

So, if Apple does move to ARM for desktop CPUs, I will not be shocked. Apple has done this kind of switch more times than anyone else, and have an advantage in that area (over other platforms). I would hope it's a decision not taken lightly.

Wikipedia entry on ARM: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ARM_architecture


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Marcus Moore
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 17, 2012 at 8:00:17 pm

That's ridiculous. Bloomberg is not an untarnished bastion of journalistic integrity, and there's no evidence that they're on the shortlist of "PR channels" (Pogue, Mossberg, Gruber, Dalrymple) that Apple uses to get a news message out.

And as to your assertion that Apple will only be making mobile computing devices in a few years is even more crazy. Do you think video/audio pros are the only ones who need powerful desktop machines? What other task uses multi-core processing to burn thru intense calculations? Hmmm... how about, I dunno, iOS development! Xcode development can be very CPU intensive. Are you suggesting that Apple is going to abandon the people developing the applications for it's oh so important iOS platform? Let them develop on Windows perhaps?

Of course not.



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Christian Schumacher
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 18, 2012 at 2:58:52 am

[Marcus Moore] "And as to your assertion that Apple will only be making mobile computing devices in a few years is even more crazy"

Bloomberg might not represent the finest of journalism but I guess it's a pretty big channel for APPL to talk to. Just saying. Apple's stock is big, big news. My clue is that smaller Apple's devices will share a lot more with its "computer" counterparts - which will be, of course, only notebooks. Yet, powerful enough to run plenty of things Apple will need - and that is it - "control" is the keyword - and so is "small footprint". X-Serves, Mac Pros, FCP Servers? That's the kind of things you think they're planning to make? I'm not sure, but could be wrong though. I see them boosting their touch device business, integrating them tightly with their notebook business and selling tons of accessories while at it. Call me ridiculous then...Sadly, I don't think this desktop line will last much longer than a few years. Let's see how this Mac Pro thing pans out. Ridiculousness comes to mind?


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Marcus Moore
Re: Bloomberg: Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel Chips for the Mac
on Nov 18, 2012 at 4:35:39 am

I don't think ANY aspect of the computer business is going to exist in it's current state for another 10 years. Things are moving much too rapidly.

But until Apple can find an alternate answer to the key benefits of the MacPro: a machine that can use server-class chips for intensive operations, AND multi-lane PCI expandability... I think they're going to need to keep making a machine in this class.

I'm intensely curious to see what they'll come up with for the 2013 MacPro replacement. And I don't have a damn clue what is could be- we might be thinking about it all to much and they'll maintain the MacPro's tried and true form factor, but bring it up to spec with the latest Intel Xeon CPUs and I/O. OR maybe it will be something completely different.

But for me the bottom line on this is if everyone thinks the iOS side of the business is SO important to Apple (which it is), then the Mac side of the business is just as important to develop the software for it. If Apple wants the control you say they do, then they need to provide the tools their developers require. And there's still way to much of a spread between the performance of mobile, desktop, and server class CPUs to think that Apple will hobble those developers.

Apologies if my initial response came off as a bit harsh.



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