Saturday, January 30, 2010

Apple vs. Intel?

The iPad is powered by the new Apple A4 chip. I don't know a lot of specifics but the consensus on line is that it is an ARM A9 core with its own graphics core (Imagination Power VR series). The ARM architecture is not surprising at all given that iPhone and iPod touch have used them for years. That Apple designed and had produced its own chips is also not surprising since that what Steve Jobs said would happen with the acquisition of P.A. Semi a couple years ago.

What is surprising is the sudden realization that most of iLife (except maybe iMovie), all of iWork, and pretty much all of OS X runs on it.

Can anyone imagine a MacBook Air running on an A4 (or even an A8, assuming the number refers to how many cores there are)?

I know there are limitations to splitting software over multiple cores effectively, but Apple has also been investing in GCD and OpenCL to best use multiple CPU and GPU cores as well.

So how about a MacBook Air with 128 GB of solid state storage and 10 hours of battery life? For a lower price than the current one?

I'd consider it.

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