Thursday, Jan 07, 2021, 14:19 Hardware

Microsoft also Intending to Make the Switch to In-House Processors

The new Macs with M1 chips have been available for several weeks now and buyers and the press are in agreement – the new Macs are a big hit. The performance, battery capacity, and price-performance ratio are best in class. Starting with the Apple A4, Apple has been developing its own processors for iPhone and iPad for almost 10 years now. In the last 5 years especially, Apple's processors have very clearly managed to distinguish themselves from the competition. The current A14 is even capable of achieving a performance level which most laptop and desktop chips aren't – and with considerably lower power input. Apple based their first in-house processor for Mac on the A14, now present in the Mac mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro 13".

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First Server, then Surface
Bloomberg reports that Microsoft is now following in suit and is currently working towards achieving independence from Intel and AMD. Microsoft is planning to switch out the chips for their own data centers for in-house or adapted ARM processors. Amazon has already been providing servers with ARM processors for quite some time with their hosting service AWS.

Should these efforts bear fruit, then Microsoft will also begin equipping their Surface laptops with in-house ARM processors. Microsoft currently offers models with Intel chips and ARM processors from Qualcomm – which means that Microsoft's Surface laptops stand no chance in a performance battle against the current M1 Macs.

Intel Share Price Falling
After the release of the recent Bloomberg article, Intel's share price sunk 6%, adding to the total drop of 21% in 2020. Were the world of chip development a battlefield, then Intel would be surrounded. In the last few years AMD has managed to catch up with their x86 processors, beating out the chip giant in terms of price and performance in many cases. As if the competition from AMD wasn't enough, Apple has also released their new generation of desktop and laptop computers, which are vastly superior to even x86 equipped computers. If the rumors are true, the current M1 is only the start, with more impressive versions coming in 2021 and 2022. Should this be the case, then it appears as if Intel certainly has their work cut out for them. Perhaps the age old sayings about children doing their homework are actually true.

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