Ex-Windows chief Sinofsky: Apple silicon-powered Macs ‘will be the ultimate developer PC’

Former Microsoft Windows chief Steven Sinofsky says the new Macs powered by Apple silicon will become the “ultimate developer PC.” According to Sinofsky, Apple’s shift to Apple-designed ARM-based Macs is the death knell for Intel and potentially Windows too, with the all-new Macs set to become the preferred platform for software developers.

Ex-Windows chief Sinofsky: Apple silicon-powered Macs 'will be the ultimate developer PC'. Apple on Monday, June 22, 2020 announced it will transition the Mac to its world-class custom silicon to deliver industry-leading performance and powerful technologies.
Apple on Monday, June 22, 2020 announced it will transition the Mac to its world-class custom silicon to deliver industry-leading performance and powerful technologies.

Liam Tung for ZDNet:

“In two years, there is only Arm hardware and in four Intel will be ancient memory. The ecosystem will have rolled over. And Mac will be the ultimate developer PC. iPad will be used for more and more ‘work’,” he said in a Twitter post, sub-tweeting a comment about Arm-based Macs from well-known developer Steve Troughton-Smith.

Troughton-Smith raised the issue of Apple’s macOS laptops and desktops lacking iOS touchscreen support. With the transition to Arm, it’s an open question whether Apple will release a MacBook or iMac with a touchscreen.

MacDailyNews Take:

Of course, he would say that, given he was responsible for Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows RT for Arm-based PCs – the first versions of Windows that enabled touchscreen interaction.

Sinofsky left Microsoft in late 2012, a few weeks after Microsoft commercially released Windows 8 and shortly after the release of the Surface RT, Microsoft’s first answer to Apple’s iPad, which would lead to a $900m write-down a year later.

MacDailyNews Take: Sinofsky is right that Macs powered by Apple silicon will become the ultimate developer personal computers, but he’s as wrong about touchscreens on computers that already have keyboards, mics, and trackpads for input.

Apple is approaching this correctly — as opposed to Microsoft’s Surface toaster-fridge — exactly as we suspected Apple would many years ago:

To us longtime Apple watchers, Cupertino seems to be saying, “Multi-Touch on the screen only when trackpads are not part of the device.”MacDailyNews, November 19, 2008


Does it make more sense to be smearing your fingers around on your notebook’s screen or on a spacious trackpad (built-in or on your desk) that’s designed specifically and solely to be touched? Apple thinks things through much more than do other companies. The iPhone’s and iPad’s screens have to be touched; that’s all they has available. A MacBook’s screen doesn’t not have to be touched in order to offer Multi-Touch. There is a better way: Apple’s way. And, no Gorilla Arm, either.

The only computers using Multi-Touch properly, using device-appropriate Multi-Touch input areas are Macintosh personal computers from Apple that run OS X (and Linux and can even slum it with Windows, if need be) and iOS even more personal computers (EMPCs), namely: iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, and iPad mini.MacDailyNews, May 4, 2013


Think code convergence (more so than today) with UI modifications per device. A unified underlying codebase for Intel, Apple A-series, and, in Apple’s labs, likely other chips, too (just in case). This would allow for a single App Store for Mac, iPhone, and iPad users that features a mix of apps: Some that are touch-only, some that are Mac-only, and some that are universal (can run on both traditional notebooks and desktops as well as on multi-touch computers like iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and – pretty please, Apple – Apple TV). Don’t be surprised to see Apple A-series-powered Macs, either.MacDailyNews Take, January 9, 2014

6 Comments

  1. I believe this post makes applecyinc pace back in forth in his self-imposed anti-Apple cage. As well, it’s been reported he was heard mumbling, “why do I regularly come to this site, anyways? I can’t imagine a world with no toaster-fridges.”

    1. I come here because this is where your bullshit is. But don’t worry, an ever more insular, and self-contained Apple with poor to no user serviceability is ever further off my radar. Issues like censorship and mocking BS remain though.

      My main computer is my self built desktop. Eventually it will be replaced by another. Very likely AMD. My trashcan Mac was last turned on for an OS update.

  2. Don’t know if MDN will be right in their prediction for much longer, but two things immediately come to mind.
    1) the ‘touch only where there are no track pads’ claim is surely now broken already with the latest Magic Keyboard, it’s certainly for more a grey area in the iPad arena and surely will only become more so if not broken entirely later on there.
    2) Apple’s unwillingness to combine the two historically clearly was logical as long as they were using Intel. As MDN itself has admitted though, the move to Arm on Macs has been planned for years so any work to put touch on Mac would have been for the most part a dead end, a temporary kludge or/and complicated any transfer of Mac OS to Arm substantially, had it already been implemented on the Mac in some form. So the Apple trope on this matter may well be valid, but equally it would also make a lot of sense to perpetuate it as hard as possible until the ideal solution to implement both forms of input was available to the design and engineering teams so they can do so seamlessly, exploiting the underlying technology to the full in a single effort while not accepting serious compromises and complexity and/or wasted efforts.

    Time will tell if MDN is correct or otherwise then. As there are times when both on the same device will be useful, especially to designers who are some of the core users, then my money is on overlap taking place where it is thought appropriate on existing or a new range of devices. What may have been true when Jobs said it is arguably not the case now.

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