Many claims of an ARM based MacBook Air have been floating around the web since early last year, suggesting that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is looking to move away from Intel’s processors to something a little bit more unorthodox in desktop and laptop computers.
The ARM processor is the same one used in AAPL’s current iPhone 4S and iPad 2, which use far less power than the average processor and handles memory and app switching without many glitches or errors.
The ARM processor in next Macbook Air could possibly reduce power-requirements, but could experience a severe drop in computing power. CNet reported on a recent interview with Tim Cook and CFO Peter Oppenheimer on Thursday by Citigroup analyst Richard Gardner who addressed the issue regarding an ARM based Macbook Air.
Tim Cook reiterated his view that rapid innovation on the iOS platform (and mobile OS platforms in general) will significantly broaden the use case for tablets, eventually pushing annual tablet volumes above those of traditional PCs. We have wondered whether Apple might offer an ARM-based version of MacBook Air at some point; we walked away from this meeting with the impression that Apple feels iPad satisfies–or will soon satisfy–the needs of those who might have been interested in such a product.
With Gardner’s claims gaining attention around the web and his meetings with Apple executives being taken very seriously, it is safe to say that the iPad will eventually evolve and adapt to handle many functions that the proposed ARM based Macbook Air could.
Rumors since early last year have suggested that the iPad will be gaining a significant upgrade in the coming months. The iPad 3 is expected to receive a higher resolution display, a new A6 chip, and better cameras and is slated for release later this year.