To be fair the rumour was started in the Tame Apple Press which has been baying at Apple to come up with its own chip like punters in a Geordie bar fight encouraging fisticuffs from one patron after another patron dissed his missus.
The core of the rumour is that next MacBook Air and MacBook Pro could be running on the company’s homegrown A10X processor and not Skylake. The logic is that the iPad Pro runs on an A9X processor which has proven to be pretty reliable so far. If Apple did make its own chip, then it would be independent as possible from its partners.
However at no point has the Tame Apple Press actually looked at what the A10X can do in comparison to Skylake offerings. Sure the iPad Pro might be able to run on what is a glorified mobile phone chip because it is essentially a tablet. Keyboard-less netbooks don’t require much processing power, even when they have a keyboard.
Rumours that Apple will develop a chip for its notebooks have been going for a while. The Tame Apple Press has highlighted Jobs’ Mob’s presence in Israel as proof that it is looking to beef up its ARM based chips.
The rumour is that the next generation A10 architecture, will focus on the development of multi-threading and have up to six cores and based around 10nm or 14nm processing. The increase in cores is a huge step up from the twin core effort in the mobile A9 but is also incredibly unlikely. What is more likely is that the A10 will have three cores, but each core will include simultaneous multi-threading to use the chip’s resources better.
But all this is nothing like the power and ability of Intel’s Skylake offering. Chipzilla has been using hyperthreading in its mainstream processors for many years now.
Here is the heart of the problem. Apple might have a handle on the mobile market but it is not even close to what Intel can put under the bonnet of its MacBook’s now.
Like most Apple products these days the MacBook Pro 2016 is expected to offer pretty much the same specs though with more RAM and probably a better battery instead. The fact it is offering the same specs has suggested to some observers that it means to shove its own lower powered A10x mobile chip in the MacBook Pro.
But it is pretty clear that eating your own dogfood would give MacBook Pro users a low powered notebook which has less power than a netbook. While the Tame Apple Press is deluded enough to believe that this is a “high-spec” offering it is unlikely that even under Jobs’ Mob’s reality distortion field, Apple is stupid enough to think that.
Its chip effort has been pretty good, but it is an ARM-based mobile effort with none of the performance required for a serious desktop. Apple has not poured years of development and cash into chip research to anything like Intel levels.