Chinese-language newspaper The China Times says the first Apple Silicon-powered iMac will hit shelves during the first half of 2021 and will be powered by a desktop-class “A14T” chip.
The report claims Apple’s first self-developed desktop processor, codenamed “Mt. Jade,” will be paired with the company’s first self-developed GPU, codenamed “Lifuka.” Both chips are being produced using TSMC’s 5-nanometer process.
In addition to the first Apple Silicon processor A14X for the MacBook, which is already in volume production using TSMC’s 5-nanometer technology, according to Apple’s supply chain, Apple will launch its first self-developed GPU under the research and development code name Lifuka next year, and its first desktop processor A14T under the research and development code name Mt.Jade, both produced using TSMC’s 5-nanometer process.
The report reiterates previous claims that the first ARM-based Apple Silicon Mac will be a MacBook powered by an A14X processor, codenamed “Tonga.” Tonga is said to already be in mass production and will launch by the end of this year. The MacBook is rumored to be a revival of the 12-inch form factor, featuring a lightweight design.
Apple announced in June during its WWDC 2020 Keynote that it will transition its Mac lineup to run on Apple Silicon in the place of Intel processors. The first Mac running on Apple’s custom processors should be available by the end of 2020, and the company expects the transition to be completed within two years.
The transition means all of Apple’s products will use a common architecture, making it easier for developers to write and optimize their apps for the entire Apple ecosystem. The company today demonstrated the new features of its upcoming macOS Big Sur operating system on a Mac running on Apple’s A12Z Bionic System on a Chip (SoC).
Developers can easily convert their existing apps to run on Apple silicon, and for the first time, developers can make their iOS and iPadOS apps available on the Mac without any modifications.
Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said in July that he expects the Apple Silicon 13.3-inch MacBook Pro to go into mass production in the last quarter of this year and that we’ll see an ARM-based MacBook Air either in the same quarter or in the first quarter of 2021.
Kuo said that a 16-inch MacBook Pro and a 14.1-inch MacBook Pro, both sporting a mini-LED display, will likely hit shelves in the second or third quarter of 2021 and that both new Macs will have an “all-new form factor design.”
Today’s report also claims that Apple has already started working on an A15 series chip using TSMC’s 5nm enhanced (N5P) process. The A15 will power next year’s “iPhone 13.” Modified versions of the chip, identified as A15X and A15T will provide the foundation for the second generation of Apple Silicon MacBooks and iMacs.