Apple to Use a 12 Core ARM Processor in a 2021 Mac: Report

Long have we been hearing rumours about an ARM-powered Mac coming out, and even as Apple’s ARM-based A-series chipsets become more and more powerful every year, it’s unclear when the Cupertino giant will try an ARM-based MacBook or iMac.

Well, if a new report is to be believed, Apple’s first ARM Mac will be coming out in 2021. This comes from Bloomberg, which reports that the company is working on three Mac processors based on the A14 chip that will be used in this year’s iPhone 12 line up. Apple is working on these chips under the name of the Kalamata project, and Bloomberg claims that the first of these chips is a 12-core processor with 8 high performance ‘Firestorm’ cores and 4 high efficiency ‘Icestorm’ cores.

The report also mentions that the Mac SoC will be fabricated by TSMC on its 5nm process, and it will feature an embedded GPU as well. While I’m usually cautious about getting my hopes up based on leaks and reports, this latest report does corroborate Ming-chi Kuo’s analyst note stating that Apple will launch an ARM MacBook in 2021, so there is a high chance this report turns out to be true.

Apple’s ambitions to use a self-developed chip for the Mac makes sense considering it will give the company tighter control over the hardware in the Mac line-up of devices, and also steer away from Intel which has been struggling to give significant performance improvements with each new generation of processors it launches.

As always, the usual warnings about taking information from leaks with a pinch of salt apply to this piece of news as well. That said, we are keeping our eyes and ears open for more information about an ARM Mac, and we will give you regular updates as more information becomes available.


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