With every iPhone or iPad release, Apple routinely points out how it controls the entire product, and in turn, how the overall experience benefits from that granular authority. From iOS or iPadOS, to the entire hardware experience, right down to the processor — Apple owns it all.
For the Mac, however, Apple hasn’t yet had that level of control. Sure, Apple controls the software and — for the most part — the hardware; but until now, the company hasn’t controlled what’s arguably the most important aspect of any computer: The processor. Instead, Apple has had to rely on Intel’s product schedule and roadmap when trying to steer the future of its computer lineup, including updates and refreshes.
For the last few years, rumors and reports bubbled to the surface that Apple was working on porting MacOS over to the same ARM-based processors that power its iPhone and iPad devices. From performance gains to release schedule — it would all be Apple’s doing. The iPhone maker would, for the first time, own the entirety of the Mac experience.
In June, Apple announced it would begin to transition away from Intel with its own processors dubbed Apple Silicon. The first computers would launch by the end of the year, and the transition would take a couple of years to reach the entire Mac lineup.
Last week, Apple announced its M1 System on a Chip, the first Apple Silicon product that would power a new MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro and the Mac Mini. Preorders for the trio of new computers started later that same day, with orders starting to arrive today.
For the past five days I’ve been testing the base 13-inch MacBook Pro model, replacing my myriad of daily computers and tablets. At times, I’ve used the MacBook Pro connected to an external monitor; other times, it’s been in my lap while I’m sitting on my couch.