Apple Silicon Roadmap Based on 18-Month Upgrade Cycle, Claims Report

Apple plans to update its Apple silicon chips every 18 months, compared to the annual upgrade cycle of the iPhone and Apple Watch, according to a new report from the Taiwanese Commercial Times.

applesilicon
The report, which largely echoes previously reported information, said that industry sources have pointed towards an 18-month upgrade cycle for Apple silicon chips. With that, the report claims that the next generation of Apple silicon, M2, will launch in the second half of 2022 and is codenamed Staten, with "‌M2‌ Pro" and "‌M2‌ Max" chips expected to launch in the first half of 2023. A machine translation of the report reads:

According to sources in the supply chain industry, Apple Silicon will be updated every 18 months in the future. In the second half of 2022, Apple will first launch the M2 processor code-named Staten, and in the first half of 2023, it will launch the new M2X processor architecture code-named Rhodes, and release two processors such as M2 Pro and M2 Max according to the different graphics cores. Apple's M2 series processors all use the 4-nanometer process, and will be updated to the M3 series processors after an 18-month cycle. It is expected that they will be mass-produced using TSMC's 3-nanometer process.

Before Apple transitioned to Apple silicon, the company had to rely on Intel to innovate and produce new chips. Intel's timeline and ability to create new processors were factors in the timeline for new Mac computers. Now, however, with Apple owning the entire vertical stack of the Mac, it's able to update and upgrade its computers and chips as often as it deems necessary. Even with that added freedom, customers typically don't upgrade their Macs as often as their ‌iPhone‌ or Apple Watch, so a less often upgrade cycle is logical.

Apple announced M1, the first Apple silicon chip, in November of 2020, and expanded the ‌M1‌ family with the M1 Pro and M1 Max less than a year later in October of this year. A similar scenario is expected for 2022, with ‌M2‌ launching first, and ‌M2‌ Pro and ‌M2‌ Max launching in the first half of 2023, according to today's report.

With the end of the year creeping upon us, we won't have to wait long for Apple's next generation of Macs. Rumors have suggested that a new 27-inch iMac with mini-LED, a new design, and ProMotion support will launch in the spring of 2022, with a new redesigned MacBook Air expected in the second half of the year.

Update: This article was updated to correct an error about the source, which is Taiwanese, not Chinese as was previously stated. We apologize for the mistake.

Top Rated Comments

Total Respray Avatar
22 weeks ago
Maybe Apple (and its customers) would benefit from 18 month MacOS and iOS upgrade cycles too.
Score: 61 Votes (Like | Disagree)
omenatarhuri Avatar
22 weeks ago

18 month for a new generation of chip huh. Not quite yearly as crazy as A-series chip but still seems to be quite aggressive. Upgrading Mac every 18 month seems a bit much, especially for those going for $6000 maxed out options.

With that being said though, how much of that performance gain could be for each generation?
You don't always have to have the newest one.
Score: 49 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Wanted797 Avatar
22 weeks ago

You don't always have to have the newest one.
Oh what? Macrumors members had me thinking I had to bin my iPhone 12 in September and the moment a mac becomes vintage it immediately stops working.

Are you telling me this isn’t true?!?!
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DMG35 Avatar
22 weeks ago
That makes sense. A 12 month cycle would be nice but also nearly impossible to show any type of dramatic improvement in that timeframe. The iPhone and iPads are hard enough now to differentiate between years because the chips are so good.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
neuropsychguy Avatar
22 weeks ago

M3 Max MBP is what I am waiting for. Hopefully with HDMI 2.1a for 8k@60Hz. And hopefully a 40-43" 8K display.
Not that I recommend people should wait. But having an i9 16" MBP with 64GB it makes little sense (for me) to upgrade sooner.
You want a MacBook Pro with a 43” screen?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
constructor Avatar
22 weeks ago
18 months look a bit dubious to me because that would mean that in a three-year cycle they would alternate between launching new M chips coinciding with the new iPhones and then in the off-season the next time.

That would cause a production bottleneck every 3 years. Why would they do something like that?

This looks like garbled information. It would seem more plausible to me if they ran a 2-year upgrade cycle, offset from the iPhone SoC upgrade cycle by 6 Months or something like that, but still keeping the product lines synchronized that way.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

m2 feature purple

Evidence of M2 Apple Silicon Chip Spotted Ahead of Apple Event on Tuesday

Sunday March 6, 2022 6:39 am PST by
Evidence that Apple is testing the M2 Apple silicon chip, expected to debut first in a new MacBook Air and refreshed 13-inch MacBook Pro, has been spotted by a developer ahead of Tuesday's "Peek performance" Apple event. As reported by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman in his latest Power On newsletter, a "developer source" has informed him that in recent weeks, Apple has been testing a chip with an...
m3 feature black

Macs With 'M3' Chips Expected to Use TSMC's 3nm Chip Technology With Test Production Reportedly Underway

Thursday December 2, 2021 7:36 am PST by
Apple's chipmaking partner TSMC has kicked off pilot production of chips built on its 3nm process, known as N3, according to Taiwanese supply chain publication DigiTimes. The report, citing unnamed industry sources, claims that TSMC will move the process to volume production by the fourth quarter of 2022 and start shipping 3nm chips to customers like Apple and Intel in the first quarter of...
Intel Not Mac Pro Feature

Macs With Intel Processors Still Coming Amid Transition to Apple Silicon

Tuesday December 21, 2021 10:55 am PST by
While Apple is rapidly transitioning its Mac lineup from Intel processors to its own Apple silicon, it's worth highlighting as 2021 wraps up that the relationship between Apple and Intel hasn't been entirely severed as reports indicate Apple still has one more Intel-based Mac in its pipeline that's yet to be released. With the Mac Pro, Apple is not expected to entirely transition its most...
ternus m1 chip

Today Marks the One Year Anniversary of the First Apple Silicon Macs

Wednesday November 10, 2021 6:25 am PST by
While it may feel rather hard to believe, today marks one year since the first Macs with Apple silicon were unveiled to the world. At a virtual event on November 10, 2020, Apple introduced its custom-designed M1 chip, followed by three new Macs powered by the chip, including the MacBook Air, the lower-end 13-inch MacBook Pro, and the lower-end Mac mini. With the M1 chip, Apple delivered...
microsoft office icons

Microsoft Releases Office for Mac Update With Full Apple Silicon Support in Excel

Tuesday January 18, 2022 4:15 am PST by
Microsoft has released a new version of its Office for Mac productivity suite that includes an updated Excel app with 100% native support for Apple silicon machines. According to the release notes accompanying version 16.57, Excel will now run natively on Macs powered by Apple's M1-series processors without having to use the Rosetta 2 translation layer, which means anyone using a Mac with an ...
f1646764298

Apple Announces 'M1 Ultra' Chip With 20-Core CPU, Up to 64-Core GPU, and Support for 128GB of Memory

Tuesday March 8, 2022 10:28 am PST by
Apple today announced the M1 Ultra chip, the third iteration to the M1 family, and it represents the next "breakthrough" for Apple Silicon. M1 Ultra consists of two M1 Max chips connected with die-to-die technology called "UltraFusion." The new highest-end chip of Apple Silicon features 114 billion transistors, with higher support for bandwidth memory at 800GB/s. "M1 Ultra is another...
mac studio and studio display

M1 Ultra Chip Supports Up to Five External Displays

Tuesday March 8, 2022 12:28 pm PST by
Apple today introduced the M1 Ultra chip with a 20-core CPU, up to a 64-core GPU, and a 32-core Neural Engine. The first Mac to offer the M1 Ultra is the all-new Mac Studio desktop computer, which is available to order starting today. Tech specs for the Mac Studio confirm that the M1 Ultra chip supports up to five external displays. Specifically, a Mac Studio configured with the M1 Ultra...
24 inch imac and macbook monterey

Gurman: Apple to Launch New Macs Next Month, With More to Come Around May or June

Monday February 21, 2022 1:24 am PST by
Apple is preparing to launch at least one new Mac next month during an event rumored to be held on Tuesday, March 8, and that announcement will be followed by another round of new Macs around May or June, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Writing in his latest Power On newsletter, Gurman said, "Apple is already gearing up for another round of Mac releases around May or June," following...

Popular Stories

Prosser Series 8 3

Apple Watch Series 8 Rumored to Feature New Design With Flat Display

Wednesday May 18, 2022 6:21 am PDT by
The Apple Watch Series 8 could feature an all-new design with a flat display, according to the leaker known as "ShrimpApplePro." In his latest video on the YouTube channel Front Page Tech, Jon Prosser highlighted information from ShrimpApplePro that suggests the Apple Watch Series 8 could feature a flat display in what seems to be a design originally rumored for the Apple Watch Series 7. ...
anker 563 dock ports

Anker's Latest USB-C Docking Station Brings Triple-Display Support to M1 Macs

Wednesday May 18, 2022 7:06 am PDT by
While Apple's early M1-based Macs can only officially support a single external display, there are ways around the limitation. Anker is launching a new 10-in-1 USB-C docking station today which delivers just that. The Anker 563 USB-C dock includes two HDMI ports and a DisplayPort port, and it leverages DisplayLink to carry multiple video signals over a single connection. Given that this hub...
macOS Monterey 2

Apple Releases macOS Monterey 12.4 With Support for Studio Display Webcam Update

Monday May 16, 2022 10:10 am PDT by
Apple today released macOS Monterey 12.4, the fourth major update to the macOS Monterey operating system that launched in October 2021. macOS Monterey 12.4 comes over two months after the launch of macOS Monterey 12.3, an update that added Universal Control. The ‌‌‌‌‌macOS Monterey‌‌ 12.4 update can be downloaded on all eligible Macs using the Software Update section of System...
Whatsapp Feature

WhatsApp to Let Users Leave Group Chats 'Silently' and View Rich Link Previews in Status Updates

Tuesday May 17, 2022 3:07 am PDT by
WhatsApp is working on a new feature that will allow users to "silently" leave group chats hosted by the messaging platform instead of all members of the group being notified when they do. As it stands, when someone leaves a group chat, WhatsApp announces their exit to the entire group, making the act of leaving very public. It's not possible right now to leave a group quietly, but WhatsApp...
apple data auction iphone privacy ad

Apple Highlights iPhone's Latest Privacy Features in New 'Data Auction' Ad

Wednesday May 18, 2022 9:00 am PDT by
Apple today shared a new ad highlighting iPhone privacy features like App Tracking Transparency and Mail Privacy Protection that are designed to give users more transparency and control when it comes to their personal data being collected. The ad revolves around a young woman named Ellie who discovers that her personal data is being sold at an auction house, with bids being placed on her...
airpodsproinear

Apple Facing Lawsuit After AirPods Allegedly Ruptured Child's Eardrums With Amber Alert

Tuesday May 17, 2022 11:40 am PDT by
Apple's AirPods ruptured the eardrums of a 12-year-old boy in 2020 when a loud Amber Alert was issued, according to a lawsuit filed against Apple in California (via Law360). The child, identified as B.G. in the filing, was watching a movie on Netflix on his iPhone in 2020 while wearing AirPods Pro. The AirPods Pro were allegedly set at a low volume, but an Amber Alert sounded without warning ...
apple store palo alto

Apple Reinstating Employee Mask Mandate at Approximately 100 U.S. Retail Stores

Tuesday May 17, 2022 11:11 am PDT by
Apple retail employees at around 100 stores will need to go back to wearing a mask while working, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Apple is mandating masks for employees again due to a rising number of COVID cases across the United States. Customers who visit an Apple Store are not required to wear a mask at this time, but Apple is continuing to recommend masks for all Apple Store...