The iPad Pro might be the ARM-based Mac that we’re waiting for: Apple is paving the way with iPadOS

iPadOS features a new Home screen with more apps and a Today View for information at a glance.
iPadOS features a new Home screen with more apps and a Today View for information at a glance.

Abbas Ali for TechRadar UK:

There’s been plenty of speculation over the past few months on Apple porting MacOS to the ARM platform. Apple’s SoC team has been on fire, producing industry-leading processors for the iPhone and iPad that can match, or even beat Intel’s offerings in certain tasks.

But with the announcement of iPadOS, I wonder if Apple has now changed directions and instead, is looking to bridge the gap between MacOS and iPadOS.

From a hardware perspective, the iPad has always been ahead of the curve but its iPhone-based operating system has always held it back. That changed with the announcement of iPadOS at WWDC 2019. Maybe that ARM-based Mac that we’ve been hoping for is actually the iPad growing up to become a replacement for some of our Macs.

MacDailyNews Take: We think there’s more to come on the ARM-based Mac front beyond iPads running iPadOS.

24 Comments

  1. Intel Macs for the pro market will have to be supported for years to come as ARM builds sufficient speed to compete. ARM may be fine for lower powered Mac tasks but the objective will be to create powerful chips faster than the current Intel or AMD multi-core chips today on top of improvements in those chips in the future. A serious pro ARM Mac sounds 5-7 years away. Maybe longer.

    1. Yes probably right. In a related matter however I remember 3 matbe 4 years back Arm announcing that they planned to hit the high end pro/Server market with further developments of its architecture with few details hiwever though I haven’t heard anything since concerning this plan so have no idea if it is still in place and what repercussions if it is it might have generally or what if any effects upon Apples own plans for higher end Arm based chips.

  2. I think Apple should have an ARM-based MacBook Air running a version of OSX with great power and battery life to absolutely crush the competition. Apple’s A-series processors will have no peers and Apple should be able to generate huge market share. If Apple gets the pricing right (which isn’t likely) even schools might take to it instead of buying Chromebooks. Apple is always giving market share away to some Alphabet-based OS and it’s quite disappointing to loyal Apple followers.

    1. 1) Apple build A-series based Mac with low power consumption.
      2) Apple reduces battery size so they can brag about how light the A-Mac is.
      3) Users get even less battery life out of the machine.

      4) Apple Profits!

      1. And then there’s physics!
        There is a minimum amount of energy required to do any calculation. The larger the calculation (work), the more energy (battery) required. ARM reduces wasted energy (heat), no more.

    2. “even schools might take to it”
      With Google are essentially paying schools to use their product (giving away hardware, big discounts on software), no one is going to usurp their control. The ONLY schools that take to anything Apple are the rich ones with the money to spend on all the things Google gives away for free.

      And anyway, schools are not an important market anymore. A lot of people are thinking about when they used an Apple II or a Mac in school a LOOOOONG time ago and how they used Apple products ever since then. What they don’t realize is that there wasn’t an option back then for them to have an Apple product like an iPhone in their pocket. That personal device is the one kids are connecting to and their future purchases will be aligned with that. Chromebook will be that ratty system they used to take tests on… could ACTUALLY drive more kids away from it LOL

  3. Welcome to the mainframe, controlled IT environment.
    Just don’t call it a PC, a PC is fully personally controlled.
    Apple PCs (Intel?) will be high price niche machines.

      1. Satire only to those that don’t understand what “personal” means.
        Hint- Opposite of “most people”, self determination, and self control.

        Even Apple has (some) PCs, some Macs. The non-upgradable ones less so.

    1. agree – new paradigm of content presentation is not to my taste, have started avoiding the site – sorry guys. I click on a story and it goes to the top of my feed, appears lower down the page, and in the meantime newer stories are included – VERY confusing – like I said, have started not visiting anymore – was daily visitor, now less so

    2. I read the desktop version and the comment column being off-center to the left drives me nuts. As a whole, the two columns (comments and ADS ADS ADS ADS/Poll/Feed) are centered together but it still doesn’t look visually proper.

  4. I like the idea of an iPad-like computer. Definitely not a replacement for the Mac but certainly an attractive solution to many applications.
    Just don’t call it a Mac.

    1. I don’t like the idea of an iPad-like MDN site, Definitely a type of replacement for the old MDN site and in some ways an attractive solution for those who like simpler outlooks on life.
      Just don’t call it iPadDailyNews.

  5. If this is Apple’s strategy it makes sense. Desktops are now almost legacy platforms that doesn’t make sense to go through another processor change. Desktops will always be around because some people need that power. But a huge majority of people could do well with an iPad with the new features.

    I already use an iPad for most of my work and this new OS will increase that. The only thing holding me back are a few key apps and Office365 that are functionally limited because they needed to work on an smartphone. Hopefully that will change soon as Apple makes it easier for developers to better manage software than be easily managed for each platform.

    1. The best news related to this is from Intel indicating that they think Apple will begin the transition next year. However, I believe Intel is saying that just because Apple has not contracted orders for specific processors for delivery next year. This COULD mean that some of Apple’s macOS systems next year will have ARM. But, it could also be that some future iPad form factor becomes a significantly compelling choice, replacing a good chunk of those Intel system sales..

  6. Sure you can buy tactile keyboards and mice to finally have precise inputs with an iPad. However the price ends up being as much as a more powerful multiport Mac. You have to deal with a crippled file system and a dearth of software. Each file you create is tied to one app, heaven help you if you want to share anything outside Apple’s little consumer/rental ecosystem. Can you conveniently visualize large format works on large screens with your iPad? What is the best display resolution you can push? What multiprocessing can you actually do on your thin smudged screen? How much can your store offline? Thin clients suck.

    Long live the Mac, and don’t waste my time with some ultraportable touchscreen approximation thereof.

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