Monday, Nov 22, 2021, 16:57 Hardware

Leaker – Apple Developing M-Chips For Servers

Apple's switch from Intel to Apple Silicon is in full swing, but as is well known – not complete yet. The California-based company has thus far concentrated on M-SoCs ("systems on a chip": the M1, M1 Pro, & M1 Max Apple Silicon processors) intended mostly for usage in its recently released notebooks. The iMac 24" is the biggest Mac to have received the Apple Silicon treatment. Next year, the remaining devices are in the queue – a larger "all in one" computer (big iMac) and the iMac Pro.

M-Chips Would Be Interesting For Data Centers
M-chips have qualities that are attractive for more than just desktops and notebooks. As the Apple Silicon processors are high performing, whilst simultaneously remaining extremely energy efficient – the chips would also be well suited for usage in data centers. The reliable YouTube leaker "Moore's Law Is Dead" (Moore's Law is an interesting law in computer science dictating that "that the number of transistors in a dense integrated circuit (IC) doubles about every two years") claims to have knowledge that Apple is currently working on a server variant of Apple Silicon. In his most recent video, the YouTuber claims that he can 100% confirm similar reports that have popped up repeatedly over the last few months.

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In-House Being Developed For Internal Purposes
What at first might simply appear to be speculation might not appear so crazy after all at second glance. Apple's service division, largely based around iCloud services, has taken on an increasingly important role for Cupertino over the last few years. This is made even more so apparent by the fact that Apple now runs 11 of its own data centers. Thus, the advantage for Apple in switching to its own simultaneously powerful and energy efficient chips isn't entirely unreasonable from a simple financial perspective. The development of its own server chips would also provide Cupertino with the means of adapting the chips to its own individual needs. "Moore's Law Is Dead" predicts that the company is developing the chips for solely internal purposes.

Amazon & Google Already Using Own Chips
Via usage of its own chips, Apple would be adopting a current trend in the industry for cloud computing services. Both Amazon with its own Graviton processor and Google with its in-house Tensor Processing Unit (TPU) rely strongly on internally developed, unique chips. Microsoft and Facebook will soon be following along, although the projects are still in the early stages. The iPhone company could make itself 100% independent from third party chip manufacturers similarly as with the iPhone, iPad, and Mac by switching to specially designed "server M-SoCs" – which would be more economically viable due to lack of reliance on an internal GPU. Potential server chips from Cupertino would also be conceivably applicable in devices for data centers run as a service for other companies.

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