Tech2 news teamJune 23, 2020 2:05:37 AM IST
At WWDC 2020, Apple announced that it will switch to its own Silicon chips for its Mac computers. Apple CEO Tim Cook announced that the first machines equipped with the new Silicon chips will be launched by the end of this year, ending an addiction dependency. nearly 15 years of Intel to provide processors for its main laptops and desktops. Cook also said that the transition to his new chip should take two years.
Tim Cook believes that silicon chips will usher in a great new era for a product line that spurred the company's rise in the 1980s and its resurgence in the late 1990s.
"Silicon is at the heart of our hardware," Cook said during a virtual lecture address recorded at the company's headquarters in Cupertino, California, for its annual developer conference. "Having a world-class silicon design team is a game changer.”
The silicon key aligns the Mac to the company's iPhone and iPads, which already use chips designed by Apple. Cook said that Apple expects the transition to the Mac to take about two years and that Apple still has some Intel-based computers in its pipeline that will be compatible for "many years".
But the move will give software developers from Apple's largest pool of third-party applications – those designed for iPhones and iPads – new access to their laptops and desktops for the first time. Apple's software chief, Craig Federighi, said that for these offerings, "most applications just work, without developer changes" on new Macs. He also said that the "vast majority" of existing applications for Intel-based machines can be modified to work in "just a few days".
The news was published at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference. The conference gained new prominence since paid services sold through the App Store became essential to the company's revenue growth, as consumers slowed the growth of iPhone updates. Apple gets a 15% to 30% cut from sales developers on the App Store, which is the only way to distribute software on Apple's mobile devices.
These fees, and Apple's rigorous application review process, are under antitrust scrutiny in the United States and Europe, where regulators last week revealed a formal investigation into the company. In what appeared to be an acknowledgment from some of its critics, Apple said it would allow users to select non-Apple applications as standard applications for tasks such as email and web browsing on iPhones and iPads.
But developers still gravitate towards the Apple platform because it is profitable, with a user base willing to spend money on paid apps. The annual developer conference, held online this year for the first time because of the new coronavirus, is where Apple often announces access to new hardware features, such as special tools for artificial intelligence and augmented reality.
(Read also: Apple WWDC 2020: Apple announces iOS 14, iPadOS 14, WatchOS 7 and more)
At the event, Apple announced a new system that allows users to share digital car keys with friends and family through the company's iMessage system, which will work with BMW 5 Series vehicles.
The system will work with phones running the current iOS 13 operating system, so owners can start using it when BMW vehicles arrive. Apple said that more cars that work with the system will hit the market next year.
Apple also updated its mapping application with information about charging stations for electric vehicles, working with BMW and Ford Motor Co to show stations compatible with the user's vehicle.
Apple also added new privacy protections, saying it would allow users to share its approximate location with application developers and that it would require users to develop permission before sharing user data with other applications and websites. Apple also said it would require a privacy and security label, similar to the food nutrition label, to be displayed to users before they download the apps.
Besides that, Apple also announced features app clips and app library on iOS 14, new iMessage and Memoji updates on iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur, updates on Apple Maps, face sharing on Apple Watch, Apple Pencil updates, space audio feature for AirPods, Watch's new hand washing app, among other things.
With inputs from Reuters
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