We’ve been hearing the rumor for years. Now it’s official. Macs will transition to Apple CPUs
Macs Will Transition to Apple CPUs
Apple’s press relese notes:
Developers can start building apps today and first system ships by year’s end, beginning a two-year transition.
The transition allow for greater computational power per watt of consumed power, better integration of Apple hardware and software, native iOS apps, and Apple control of product rollouts.
Developers can easily convert their existing apps to run on Apple silicon, taking advantage of its powerful technologies and performance. And for the first time, developers can make their iOS and iPadOS apps available on the Mac without any modifications.
To help developers get started, Apple is offering the “Universal App Quick Start Program” consisting of documentation, beta versions of macOS Big Sur Xcode 12, and a Mac mini with an Apple A12Z CPU.
The two-year transition will give developers time to recompile their apps, creating “Universal 2” apps that run on both Intel and Apple silicon—even as Intel-based Macs remain in the product pipeline. For apps that have not been recompiled, Apple is offering, as part of Big Sur, “Rosetta 2,” a tool that translates Intel CPU instructions into ARM instructions—on the fly and very quickly.
Apple will continue to support and release new versions of macOS for Intel-based Macs for years to come….
Also mentioned was a virtualization system which allows Big Sur to run other operating systems and apps. A brief demo showed Linux running in a Big Sur window, See: “Apple’s WWDC Features Parallels Desktop for Mac Running on Mac with Apple Silicon.”
Apple has already recompiled all its own apps to the new hardware. The company has made this kind of traniotion before, and it appears all the components will be in place to make the transition smooth and painless.