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Apple Developing ARM-Based Mac Chip to Handle Low-Power Functions Alongside Intel Processors

Apple is developing a new ARM-based chip for its Mac lineup that would "take on more of the functionality" handled by Intel processors, reports Bloomberg.

In development since last year, the chip, codenamed T310, is said to be similar to the chip used to power the Touch Bar in the new 2016 Macbook Pro. It's built using ARM technology and will work with the standard Intel processor, handling "Power Nap" low-power mode functionality.

Apple engineers are planning to offload the Mac's low-power mode, a feature marketed as "Power Nap," to the next-generation ARM-based chip. This function allows Mac laptops to retrieve e-mails, install software updates, and synchronize calendar appointments with the display shut and not in use. The feature currently uses little battery life while run on the Intel chip, but the move to ARM would conserve even more power, according to one of the people.
Apple's 2016 MacBook Pro uses an independent ARM-based chip called the T1 to power the Touch Bar, the Touch ID fingerprint sensor built into the Touch Bar, and the secure enclave that stores payment and biometric data.

According to Bloomberg's report, the upcoming ARM-based chip will "go further," connecting to storage and wireless components to take on additional power management capabilities.

Apple could begin using the new chip in an upgraded version of the MacBook Pro set to launch later this year, but it could be introduced as a quiet update with little fanfare as the chip that powers the Touch Bar was not promoted by Apple.

Despite Apple's plans to offload some tasks to a new ARM chip, Apple is said to have no intention of abandoning Intel chips in its laptop and desktop computers.

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro
Tags: Intel, ARM, bloomberg.com
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Pro (Neutral)


Top Rated Comments

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8 weeks ago
Or you know, instead of devoting more resources to this project, they could just put a *GASP* normal-sized battery in their laptops (and make them slightly thicker) and use those resources to update the Mac Pro, Mini, etc...
Rating: 52 Votes
8 weeks ago
Great news. Now just make it a bit thicker, allow us swap out ram and drives and put in a decent GPU.
Rating: 40 Votes
8 weeks ago
A ARM coprocessor would rule, specially to simulate iOS apps in Xcode.
Rating: 36 Votes
8 weeks ago
Looks like the Apple-is-Doomed circlejerk is going to need some extra courage in the coming months.
Rating: 22 Votes
8 weeks ago

Or you know, instead of devoting more resources to this project, they could just put a *GASP* normal-sized battery in their laptops (and make them slightly thicker)


I actually want a thinner MBP. Seriously.
Rating: 21 Votes
8 weeks ago
Apple is DOOM

[MEDIA=youtube]GD0L46y3IqI[/MEDIA]
Rating: 17 Votes
8 weeks ago
2018: Macs with lower power consumption but same battery life because they're even thinner.
Rating: 16 Votes
8 weeks ago

Great news. Now just make it a bit thicker, allow us swap out ram and drives and put in a decent GPU.


Actually as soon as Apple realises that they save some energy, they immediately shrink the battery to make the device thinner.
Does have an impact on power usage tho. Except one does consider himself a power user , when using the touchbar nonstop to post emojis.
Rating: 11 Votes
8 weeks ago
Meanwhile Microsoft has a new Windows 10 update in the works that runs x86 code on ARM processors with no code changes. NOT RT but the full Windows 10.. Here is full Adobe Photoshop running on Windows 10 FULL VERSION on a Snapdragon ARM 835;

[MEDIA=youtube]PaSmZzo3Y_c[/MEDIA]
Rating: 10 Votes
8 weeks ago
* also includes a 500 EUR price increase
Rating: 9 Votes

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