Apple is ditching Intel technology that rejuvenated the Mac computer over the past 15 years, in a split aimed at tightening the tech giant’s control over its products, customers and software developers, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Chief Executive Tim Cook said Monday that Apple would begin jettisoning Intel processors from its Macs later this year in favor of more efficient integrated chips designed by the tech giant’s silicon engineers.
The change reflects a turnabout in Silicon Valley since Steve Jobs revealed the Intel partnership in 2005. At the time, Apple was a fraction of Intel’s size and counted computers as its largest business.
Now, it boasts a market value six times larger than its longtime supplier and a semiconductor division that has been designing mobile processors with performance capabilities rivaling Intel’s computer chips.
During a digital keynote to kick off the tech giant’s first virtual conference for developers, Apple said the transition from Intel to its own processors would occur over the next two years, with the first Macs with custom-designed chips shipping by year-end.
The company said the chips, based on Arm Holdings technology, will improve battery life and allow for faster processing speeds and new security features.
“At Apple, integrating hardware and software is fundamental to everything we do,” Cook said. “That’s what makes our products so great, and silicon is at the heart of our hardware.”
The chip transition headlined a day of software updates that included the introduction of a language translation service, features that improve group messaging on iPhones and sleep-tracking capabilities for the Apple Watch.