ARM Macs

Bloomberg: “The first Mac processors will have eight high-performance cores, codenamed Firestorm, and at least four energy-efficient cores, known internally as Icestorm. Apple is exploring Mac processors with more than 12 cores for further in the future, the people said.”

Lots of hubbub this week in the developer community around Mac transition to ARM chips has been about how can we build ARM apps without ARM hardware?

Think about how we build iOS, tvOS, and Watch apps today. We run them in a simulator. Xcode builds our iOS apps for x86 so they’re actually running in the simulator app on the intel chipset in our computers.

What if Apple spent time developing an emulator? Yes, an ARM emulator. Why not? They have the resources and it’s not like they couldn’t start with something like Virtual Box or do some crazy licensing deal with VMWare or Parallels for that matter.

Given that you’d either fire up the VM and run your entire environment in the virtual machine or maybe they take it a step further and you use Xcode on your Mac, the way you do today, and it fires up a virtual machine app that your newly ported Mac app runs in?

It could happen.

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