Back in June, Apple announced that Mac products will begin using in-house processors instead of Intel starting this year. Fast forward five months later, the company has taken the drape off the new Apple M1 which is the first processor under the Apple Silicon family.
Built using 5nm process technology, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook refers to M1 as the most powerful chip that Apple has created so far. At the same time, the company has also pointed out that the M1 is the first-ever SoC made for Mac and features 18 billion transistors.
Inside the chip is an 8-core CPU that contains four high-performance cores alongside another set of four efficiency-oriented cores that are meant to process lighter workloads. The M1 also comes with up to 8-core GPU as well as a 16-core Neural Engine that helps boost the chip’s machine learning capability.
While Apple didn’t reveal M1’s actual clock speed, the company did claim that the chip has the world’s fastest CPU core within the low-power silicon class as well as the world’s fastest integrated graphics. M1 is apparently able to deliver up to 2x faster CPU and GPU performance as well as 15x faster machine learning performance than Intel Core chips.
Apple has also credited M1’s unified memory architecture as another factor that allows the chip to deliver high-performance output. Other than that, the chip also comes with its own Secure Enclave coprocessor that provides hardware-based security protection on M1-based Macs.
The arrival of M1 will also finally make it possible for iPhone and iPad apps to be run directly on a Mac. Speaking of M1-based Macs, the new chip will be first equipped into MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro, and Mac mini.
Despite that, M1 is just the beginning of Apple’s new journey though as it will take around two years for the company to complete its transition to Apple Silicon. So, expect to hear more from Apple regarding its new family of processors in the coming months.