APPLE'S LONG-RUMOURED ARM-based desktop processors might not arrive as soon as first thought, as the firm's lead chip designer has reportedly left the company.
CNET has the scoop and reports that Gerard Williams III, the Apple's senior director in platform architecture, left the company in February after a nine-year stint in Cupertino. Williams joined the company in 2010 after a 12-year stint at ARM, and prior to that he was was design team lead at Texas Instruments.
The report doesn't say why Williams left his position at Apple, and he's yet to update his LinkedIn page, which reads: "Chief Architect for all Apple CPU and SOC development. For CPU, lead the Cyclone, Typhoon, Twister, Hurricane, Monsoon, and Vortex architecture work. And every day, I still work on very very cool stuff."
While not a well-known name like Jony Ive or Philip Schiller, Williams - who is listed as an inventor on more than 60 Apple patents - lead the development of Apple's custom processors from the A7, the firm's first 64-bit processor which made its debut in 2013's iPhone 5S, to the 7nm A12X used in Apple's latest iPad Pro models.
According to CNET's report, Williams initially lead the design of the custom CPU cores for Apple's chips, but more recently oversaw the layout of the various parts of the SoC, such as the GPU, CPU and memory, inside the company's iDevices.
Williams' departure comes potentially just months before Apple is expected to launch its first custom ARM-based Mac processors, with rumours claiming the firm is planning to move away from Intel chips in 2020.
The shift will, according to a Bloomberg report, be part of a "multi-step transition" in a larger effort to make iOS devices and Macs "work more similarly and seamlessly together." µ
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