The MacBooks with the M1 are a leap forward for computers. Now bring 5G

The MacBooks with the M1 are a leap forward for computers. Now bring 5G

MacBook Pro will get M1 processing in a new update.

Apple / Screenshot by Sarah Tew / CNET

This story is part of Apple eventOur full coverage of the latest news from Apple headquarters.

Apple spent Tuesday 45 minutes describing benefits Specially designed slide, M1And the Run the latest Mac devices. Craig Federighi, Senior Vice President, Software Engineering, Talk about the benefits of saving energy, Which allows for Longest battery life ever For MacBook Air and MacBook Pro. He also talked about how quickly computers can run and run programs, such as Mac mini.

However, what Apple did not spend at the time could be more promising for this new line of silicon-based Macs: 5G.

Cell laptops have been around for years, but they were largely a niche class serving common road fighters. Then came the Coronavirus, which changed, like many other things, the way we saw connectivity and how we all work. Pair that with a 5G network that’s starting to mature, promising faster speeds and better coverage in the years to come, and the idea of ​​constantly connecting a MacBook Air or Pro looks appealing.

“Given that remote work will be a fixed component of an organization in one way, shape or form, 5G laptops can become a mainstay of the enterprise,” said Lin Huang, an analyst at IDC.

Since Apple’s chips rely on the Arm architecture of the mobile processors that power all smartphones and tablets, they are really very comfortable with cellular radios. Specifically, these types of processors know how to balance the power management issues that come with constant cellular connectivity, so adding these radios is quick.

So why isn’t there a 5G MacBook yet?

This represents the first generation of Mac computers to run on Apple silicon, and it is possible that the company did not want to take a flyer about a relatively new technology because there are several other fundamentals to take care of, such as processor speed, application compatibility, and power management. The set of hardware and features is identical to previous Macs, so Apple never risked any opportunity.

An Apple spokesman was not immediately available to comment.

Adding 5G – a feature that customers aren’t claiming yet – is meaningless at this point.

“Apple’s impressive results in the fourth quarter of the year definitely indicate that the lack of cellular connectivity is not holding back Apple,” said Avi Greengart, an analyst at Techsponential.

The company’s sales of Mac computers accounted for 7.7% of the total PC market, an increase over last year. According to Gartner.

Apple has also just finished unveiling its iPhone 12 family, with 5G playing a prominent role. The company has been behind the competition by more than a year and a half when it comes to launching the 5G phone, so you probably won’t be in a hurry to add it to another class of devices.

With 5G networks still in their infancy – nationwide coverage is disappointingly slow and blazing speeds are only found in small pockets of major population centers – the immediate tangible benefits of connectivity remain very limited.

But analysts believe 5G will play an increasingly important role in laptops at some point – think a generation or two from now. Telecom companies will be keen to offer another product that they can connect to with their networks. And while you might hate the idea of ​​adding another to your wireless bill, it might be an option for your employer to provide you with a connected laptop.


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The idea of ​​opening up your laptop almost anywhere and getting connected without searching for a Wi-Fi hotspot is, after all, very appealing.

While Apple uses Qualcomm modems for its iPhones, the company is quietly working on its modems. The company, after all, It spent $ 1 billion acquiring Intel’s cellular radio business And talent.

Your IT manager might like the idea, too. 5G connection is more secure than public Wi-Fi. Huang noted that paying for 5G service on a Mac is a lot cleaner than trying to figure out how much the company should give for a home broadband connection. With the coronavirus lockdown forcing companies to rethink how and where their employees work, and as remote work has become an enduring standard, 5G technology can provide your company a lifeline.

Apple’s new Mac review event is the third major product to be revealed within several months. Going this route, rather than announcing it in a press release or quiet briefing with the media, shows that the company believes these Macs, and where they want to drive their development with Apple silicon, is a big problem.

There is a strong possibility that evolution will take a path to 5G in the coming years.

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