Get an Apple M1 or Wait for Apple M2 in 2021

Apple has released MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini with their own silicon chip, M1, for quite a long time. M1 is having a good reputation after four months of its launch. Apple silicon is faster than intel chips in MacBooks and MacMinis. M1 is not just a chip rather Apple calls it the System-on-a-Chip or SoC. Apple claims that their Silicon chip is faster than any other MacBooks ever made. Apple M1 chipset with 8 core CPU, GPU, 16 core Neural Engine, Up to 16GB unified memory, Up to 2TB, Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), 58.2 WHr, Up to 20 hours of battery life.

Why so Fast! 

Apple M1 is the pioneer in house silicon chip made by Apple. The M1 SoC has reasons to be faster. For Apple M1 to perform well, all the units work together inside the chip. It’s like dividing all the works into a team where everyone has to play their roles. If everyone does it smoothly the system runs smoothly. Therefore no one is stressed which maintains a healthy work environment for all. Inside Apple M1, Processing units are utilized properly based on their purpose, functionality, and efficiency. Thus M1 runs faster without any stress. Let’s have a look at the processing units,

The central processing unit (CPU) — Soc “Brain” is used for running apps and other processes.

The graphics processing unit (GPU) — handles the overall graphics rendering, starting from games, 2D/3D renders, Videos, and so on. 

The image processing unit (ISP) — used to done tasks based on image processing.

Digital signal processor (DSP) — deals with precise calculations to manage compression and decompression of files, contents, and their modifications.

The neural processing unit (NPU) — AI, Voice control, and other complex tasks are handled by this unit here.

Secure Enclave — Ensures security, Authentication, Validation, and Permissions.

Unified memory — Control the transportation of tasks by CPU and GPU. this unit here determines who is going to do what. And assigns them with their tasks every now and then.

Thus, M1 divides the work among different units. This process makes M1 the fastest chip right now, Geekbench 5 test scores give a very basic idea of the speed of the chip.

Apple MacBook Pro (2020, M1) scored 1749 on single-core and 7771 on multi-core where MacBook Pro (2020, Intel) scored 1256 on single-core and 4487 on multi-core.

Apple MacBook Air (2020, M1) scored 1734 on single-core and 7579 on multi-core where MacBook Air (2019, Intel) scored 851 in single-core and 1858 on multi-core.

Keep or Pass

Apple M1 is doing great but there are always some negative sides to everything. M1 is not optimized for the Apps and Software that are out there. Apple is forcing developers to optimize their applications and software so that the M1 chip can give the most to its owner. Optimizing any digital product takes time. There will be bugs to fix, updates to push, and several quality assurance tests with new features to add. Therefore, optimized apps and software may take several more months. By that time Apple M1’s first iteration or modification, M2 or whatever Apple names them, will hit the market. 

First-generation items are more like guinea pigs for the upcoming ones. M1 is more of an experimental unit. Therefore, upcoming iterations will be much more optimized and efficient. Have you ever heard Apple saying that their newer product is slower than the previous models! 

M2 leaks 

Surely there will be an upgraded M1 in 2021. Reliable leaks are there always about Apple M2 MacBooks. The release date for M2 Soc is around the third quarter of 2021. There will be several hardware and performance improvements on the upcoming M2 MacBooks.

Ming-Chi Kuo, who leaks a lot about Apple products, says, there might be flat-like designs for next-gen MacBooks. Apple will be making aesthetically all the products alike. iPhone 12 series already has the box type design in a flat-edged design. Therefore, there will be no curve MacBooks in 2021.

Pro models will be 14-inch and 16-inch screen sizes. The brighter, sharper screen of the MacBook 2021 will have an LED display. There might be reverse USB-C ports and there might be more ports in M2 MacBooks. MacBook 2021 will support HDMI port, SD card slot, and probably MagSafe will return. Upcoming MacBooks might also have compatibility of USB 4.0.

Apart from all these, M2 will absolutely offer faster and incredible speed and performance. MacBooks will be much optimized, these devices might get slightly thicker. 

Even though M1 

Even though awesome new features will be added to M2 MacBooks but M1 is not totally ignorable. M2 MacBooks will come with a bigger price tag for sure. There will not be a ton of features on 2021 MacBooks. 

Looking back to the previous years, Apple adds up really little to the newer products. Back in 2017, When the iPhone x came out, Apple added a newer chip, upgraded the RAM, and which came entirely new, was the Face ID. In 2018 iPhone XS series had nothing but fewer upgrades of the internal specs, the aesthetic was the same until iPhone 12 came out. In 2019, iPhone 11 came with new camera modules and a frosted back glass panel. These are barely unnoticeable. 

Considering an upgrade from the 2016 iPhone 7 to a 2017 iPhone X can be a bigger concern. Here you gave up Touch ID and adopt Face ID, You get rid of Bigger bezels and accept smaller notch. You get a new camera alignment with a lot of new photo and video features.

The point here to bring iPhone examples is, Like iPhone X and iPhone 11 there are no major noticeable differences. Similarly, there are no major differences in the features of the iPhone 11 and iPhone 12.

MacBook M1 and MacBook M2 series will have such unnoticeable differences. There will be definitely a few changes but even though it is not uncommon to skip newer models. M1 will not be as fast as M2 but certainly, M1 will serve better than all previous models and obviously the intel chips. In fact, there are certain results that M1 took more time to render a 4K video compared to an Intel Macbook.

Along with the release of newer iterations, Apple will push several updates to M1. Those updates will optimize M1 to a great extent. Thus M1 would be an ideal pick in 2021. 

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