Kuo: Apple-designed ARM chips to pop up in Macs no later than 2021

We’ve been hearing rumblings about Apple’s internal project to ditch Intel processors for its own in-house designed chips since that 2012 Bloomberg report, and now a revered analyst has predicted that ARM-based Macs would be coming in 2020 or 2021.

TF Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo wrote in a note to clients seen by AppleInsider that future Macs will adopt the company’s own A-series processor “in some form” beginning 2020 or 2021. Chip foundry Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) will be the sole manufacturer of Apple’s A13 and A14 chips in 2019 and 2020, respectively.

Aside from optimized cost structure potentially leading to potentially lower Mac prices, the main benefit of using its own chips to power Mac notebooks entails increasing battery life significantly, stemming from a full-stack control of all of the Mac and the fact that ARM-based CPUs like those in iPhone and iPad are a lot power-friendlier than Intel chips.

MacRumors has the full quote:

We also expect that Mac models will adopt Apple’s in-house-designed processor starting 2020 or 2021, which will create four advantages for Apple: (1) Apple could control everything about the Mac’s design and production and be rid of negative impacts from Intel’s processor shipment schedule changes. (2) Better profits thanks to lower processor cost. (3) Mac market share gain if Apple lowers the price. (4) It could differentiate Mac from peers’ products.

The analyst report corroborated earlier findings.

A supply-chain report published recently by the Taiwanese trade publication DigiTimes asserted that TSCM would exclusively build Apple A13 chips for 2019 iPhone and iPad models and remain the sole supplier of the Apple A14 silicon in 2020.

TSMC’s been the sole builder these iPhone and iPad chips since 2016’s A10 system-on-a-chip.

2018 MacBook Pro teardown image courtesy of iFixit.com