For many years now, one of the standards of having a top-line desktop or portable computer was a logo consisting of two words inside an open circle: Intel Inside. That meant that the computer is powered by a microprocessor from Intel, along with any number of similarly branded components from semi-conductor chips to motherboards. Such has been Intel’s ubiquitous presence that it was the trusted processor for computer manufacturers like HP, Dell, Lenovo and Apple. The last of these started partnering with Intel since the iMac and MacBook Pro of 2006, but over a decade later, their paths are diverging.
The Verge reports that Apple has begun taking steps towards ending its internal processor deal with Intel for its Mac computers. Should their plans succeed, the world’s biggest name in computers is looking to have its own in-house manufactured chips replacing the “Intel Inside” by 2020, some 14 years after the release of the first Intel-based iMac and friends. It is shaping up to be a sad parting between Apple and the most popular CPU brand following some of their best collaborations in computing, but considering some of the most recent developments for the two, the reasons are simple enough.
One factor for Apple’s eventual dropping of Intel some two years from now is due to the fact that the brand has recently been meager to lackluster in any advancements of their tech. The Silicon Valley-based chip-making giant has fallen into a pattern of offering huge leaps in CPU capabilities every five years or so. That unfortunately is too “stagnant” for Apple, notorious for getting their customers to gleefully discard their iPhone for a higher-number new model every other year on average. Another concern on Intel’s end is that it may soon reach the possible max potential of silicon-based microchips.
On Apple’s end, their major factor for ditching Intel was the ultimate ambition of wholly integrating every one of the tech and computing devices with their brand name under a single unified ecosystem under their full oversight. The iPhones, after all, are already moving on from Qualcomm chips and started using replacements developed by Apple itself. The same goes for graphics processors (goodbye Imagination Technologies). In the future Apple devices would be 100% Apple components.
And Intel’s worries go beyond Apple abandonment. Microsoft too appears to be switching over to Qualcomm ARM-based processors. Google meanwhile is following Apple’s lead with its own in-house development initiatives. It seems the portable and mobile computing scene has left Intel in the dust, to the point that sometime soon “Intel Inside” will be on desktop rigs only; and all because their rate of development has been deemed to slow.
Photo courtesy of starterincubator.com