The “bad quality assurance of Skylake” was responsible for Apple finally making the decision to dump Intel and focus on its own ARM-based processors for high-performance Macs, former Intel principal engineer François Piednoël tells PC Gamer.
[Most observers believe that Apple’s main consideration was for moving the Mac from Intel to Apple-designed ARM-based silicon was] to consolidate the architectures across all its different platforms, from iPhone, through iPad, and finally into its laptop and desktop range.
That makes complete sense from a business and an architectural point of view, but while it’s something Piednoël says was always under consideration by Apple, he believes if the company hadn’t found so many issues within the Skylake architecture it would still be onboard the Intel chip train. It was the straw that broke the Apple’s back, so to speak.
“The quality assurance of Skylake was more than a problem,” says Piednoël during a casual Xplane chat and stream session. “It was abnormally bad. We were getting way too much citing for little things inside Skylake. Basically our buddies at Apple became the number one filer of problems in the architecture. And that went really, really bad… When your customer starts finding almost as much bugs as you found yourself, you’re not leading into the right place.”
It has to be said that this is just the publicly stated opinion of one former Intel engineer and can’t necessarily be taken as fact, and obviously isn’t the only reason for the switch either.
MacDailyNews Take: Apple’s plan is being executed. If Skylake caused anything, it merely accelerated Apple’s timetable.