Friday, May 6, 2011

In the Unlikely Event That Apple Switches Away From Intel in Mac, This Is How It Can Happen

There's been a rumor going around that Apple will make the switch from Intel's chips in Macbooks and switch over to the ARM architecture by around 2013.  There are a lot of posts on the Web about it.  Some think it'll happen and some think it'll never happen.  I'm in the camp that says "never say never".  However, you have to wonder why would Apple do such a thing?

Here begins my speculation and let me say that in no way do I think this will happen.  Arstechnica laid out a good argument that while Apple can make the switch, there is no good reason why it would.  So, in what case would Apple use ARM chips over Intel?  

How about this?  The Macbook.  The low-end Macbook.  Apple can begin to use the ARM chip in the Macbook.  One of the selling points about the Intel-based Macs is that they are Windows compatible.  It's less likely that Macbook buyers is likely to use Bootcamp and switch over to Windows.  And let's not forget that Microsoft is developing a version of Windows for the ARM chips for use in tablets to compete with the iPad.  So, it is possible that apps can allow an ARM-based Macbook to boot into Windows still.

And by introducing ARM chips in the Macbooks, Apple can give the market time to slowly adjust itself to the idea that "Intel Inside" is no longer necessary.

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