Right now, Macs use Intel processors, but there is a growing suspicion that Apple is starting to make headway into making a change.
Specifically, a change to AMD processors. Hints at a switch of some kind have been around since the early beta seeds of macOS Catalina 10.15.2, and have once again appeared in the first developer beta of macOS Catalina 10.15.4 the company seeded earlier this week (via @_rogame, MacRumors). However, nothing is confirmed just yet, and even if Apple is technically planning to switch to AMD processors in its Mac lineup, things could change and that shift could still be a ways off.
Still, the hints are there. The latest are codenames for AMD-branded Accelerated Processing Units (APUs) like “Picasso”, “Renoir”, “Van Gogh”, and “Raven”. An APU is AMD’s marketing language for a CPU and a GPU on a single chip. So it’s probably a good time to point out that Apple does use AMD for its graphics processors in some of its Mac desktop machines, including the iMac Pro and MacBook Pro.
MacOS 10.15.4 Beta 1
VANGOGH_A0 😳 pic.twitter.com/qFBHg5L0q0
— _rogame (@_rogame) February 6, 2020
Before the end of 2019 there was a rumor that said Apple was planning to unveil a high-end Mac focused on gaming, and that would feature AMD processor options, at the Worldwide Developers Conference in 2020. If that is indeed the case, these hints could be an unofficial preview of what Apple will unveil in early June.
Still, take all of this with a grain of salt for now. These “hints” might not lead to anything at all.