The new MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro and Mac mini with the Apple M1 chip let you run Intel-only apps in Rosetta emulation, in addition to native Apple Silicon apps. However, macOS Big Sur doesn’t make it easy to identify which apps are Intel-only from those with code optimized for the M1 chip, but this nifty little app solves that problem in one fell swoop.
The appropriately-dubbed Silicon app detects the CPU architecture of all apps on your Mac:
- Apple Silicon: Apps written for the M1 chip
- Universal: Apps featuring code for both Apple and Intel chips
- Intel 32: Apps written for the 32-bit Intel processors
- Intel 64: Apps written for the 64-bit Intel processors
- Power PC: Legacy PowerPC apps in homage to the original Rosetta
This is one of the simplest-to-use pieces of software you’ve encountered so far. You can drag apps on your Mac to Silicon’s window to check them one by one. For even after results, you can tell the software to analyze all the apps in your Applications folder or scan your entire Mac for apps. You’ll be presented with a list of apps, sorted alphabetically, along with their underlying CPU architecture: Universal, Intel, Apple Silicon or PowerPC.
Whether you’ve just got your M1-powered Mac or are interested in Apple Silicon apps as much as we are, you might be interested in Silicon to check M1-compatible apps on your system.
The software is a passion project of the team behind iMazing, an all-in-one iOS device manager for Mac and Windows. An open-source project, the Silicon app is available on GitHub, with the current 1.0 release available to download for free.