Skip to main content

Apple working on monstrous 32-core chips for future Macs

When Apple launched the first M1 Macs packing its custom-designed processors, the company made it clear that it was just the beginning. Now, if a new report from Bloomberg is to be believed, future Macs could get an enormous boost from these chips.

The report says Apple is working on the next generation of its in-house Mac chips to succeed the M1 that launched in the revamped MacBook Air, MacBook Pro 13, and Mac Mini. Many of the new chips will be aimed squarely at Intel’s top-end processors and be featured in a new, half-size Mac Pro set for launch in 2022. We may not have to wait that long, though, as upgraded chips are due to arrive in spring and fall 2021.

Related Videos

For future versions of the MacBook Pro and iMac, Apple is working on a chip with as many as 16 high-performance cores and four high-efficiency cores. In contrast, the current M1 possesses the same number of efficiency cores but only four performance cores. Given that the M1 offers a huge step up over its Intel predecessors, this upcoming chip could be even more impressive.

The next-generation chip might not arrive in the next Macs, however. In the event it is not ready in time, Apple may choose to release a version of the chip with eight or 12 high-performance cores (both of which would still be an improvement over the M1 and far better than the Intel processors in previous Macs).

It does not stop there. According to Bloomberg, the chip in the next Mac Pro could contain as many as 32 high-performance cores, in addition to its high-efficiency cores. Such a level of power would be unprecedented in a Mac. The current Mac Pro can be configured to come with a 28-core Intel Xeon W processor, but even that would likely come nowhere near the chip Apple has in its workshop.

Unlike the standard CPU and GPU combination found in most computers, where the processor and graphics chip are kept separate, Apple’s M1 chip contains both in a single package known as a system on a chip (SoC). Bloomberg reports that Apple is also working to ramp up graphics performance in future Apple-designed SoCs. Where the M1 comes in variants with either seven- or eight-core graphics processors, Apple’s road map contains both 16-core and 32-core graphics processors. Finally, in late 2021 or early 2022, the company is hoping to release 64-core and 128-core graphics chips in its high-end machines, marking a phenomenal leap in performance.

With so much power up its sleeve, Apple’s decision to ditch Intel and make its own chips seems to get better by the day. Will Intel be able to keep up? The ball is now firmly in its court.

Editors' Recommendations

Your next MacBook Pro could be even faster than expected
The MacBook Pro on a wooden table.

If you thought Apple’s existing Mac chips were impressive, wait until you see what’s coming next. According to a new report from DigiTimes (via Wccftech), the next generation will be better than anything Apple offers at the moment -- much, much better.

That’s great news for Mac enthusiasts. Right now, Apple’s M-series chips are made by TSMC using a 5-nanometer process. They’re widely expected to shift to a smaller 3nm process soon, and according to DigiTimes, TSMC’s testing shows its 3nm process is surpassing even its own expectations.

Read more
Apple spring event: massive Mac launch, XR headset, and more
Tim Cook at WWDC 2022.

Apple only held one event in the second half of 2022: its iPhone 14 launch show. That meant a bunch of expected devices, from Macs to a mixed-reality headset, never saw the light of day. But that could soon change.

That’s because rumors have been swirling that Apple is planning a product extravaganza this spring where it will unveil a host of new devices to the world. If that’s true, what should we expect to see? Well, you’re in the right place to find out, as we’ve collected all the latest rumors here. Wondering what’s next on Apple’s 2023 calendar? Read on to find out.
Mixed-reality headset
Apple AR/VR headset render Ian Zelbo

Read more
You can finally run Windows 11 natively on an Apple silicon Mac
parallels desktop 18 mac gaming

Apple and Microsoft may be eternal rivals, but that doesn’t mean they never work together. Yet Microsoft has never officially supported the idea of running Windows 11 on an Apple silicon Mac, leaving the practice in something of a gray area -- until now.

Installing Windows on a Mac has been pretty straightforward over the years, but the introduction of Apple silicon chips in Apple’s Macs complicated matters a little. Sure, there were ways to do it, but without Microsoft’s official approval, they required workarounds.

Read more