Nov 2, 2012 — by: Karl Johnson

A6ARM has announced a new processor based on their ARMv8 architecture. Current ARM processors support 32-bit software, but the new ones will include support for 64-bit as well. The Mac runs Intel’s x86 processors, which have been running with 64-bit support for several years.

ARM says these new Cortex-A50 series processors will be up to three times faster than today’s ARM chips. That would put the ARM processor at the same speed as a 2011 MacBook Air. This is a huge speed improvement. So, when will we likely see these new chips?

The iPhone and iPad use an Apple modified ARM processor. Their current chips, the A6 and A6X, are believed to be based on the Cortex-A15 processor, which was released two years ago. Using the current product cycle as a guide, Apple could release ARM A50 based products by the end of 2014. Could we see a MacBook Air running an ARM chip in 2014? Will this laptop run Mac OS or iOS?

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  1. alexr ~ Nov. 2, 2012 @ 3:01 pm

    Um, no. A6 and A6X are based on "Swift," an Apple-designed core. Easily fact-checked. #
  2. Karl Johnson ~ Nov. 2, 2012 @ 8:51 pm

    Um, yes. And "Swift" is based on the ARMv7 architecture and uses elements from the Cortex-A15 processor. Easily fact-checked. #

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