by Eben Griger
Technology giant Apple has announced its plans to create their own proprietary Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) to use in all products. Previously, Apple’s retina-display has been provided by Imagination Technologies.
This is not Apple’s first proprietary processor. Everything from the Airpods to the Apple Watch has a different one, but this processor does mark the transition to an Apple product that is almost entirely Apple technology. This change can be good or bad, depending on how you look at it.
On the plus side, no one can deny that Apple makes solid technology. Besides the questionable decision of removing certain inputs like AUX and USB and rumors of “forced obsolescence,” Apple devices are consistently powerful, reliable and relatively easy to use. So consumers can expect this GPU to be up to Apple’s own high standards and will most likely be an improvement over old designs.
According to Moor Insights & Strategies, Apple’s iPhone processor, for example, improves it’s performance by about 25% per year. This pace isn’t matched by any other company in the industry, and with GPUs being a whole lot more powerful than Central Processing Units (CPU), this proprietary technology opens up a lot of room for new features and an increase in power for future Apple devices.
On the down side, however, Apple products just became a whole lot harder to fix. A cornerstone of Apple’s business model is the idea that only Apple can fix your Apple device. The solid body of an iPhone prevents anyone from opening the phone up to modify or repair it, and the screen being a part of that body functions as the same deterrent. Any attempt to repair Apple products alone is a notoriously difficult thing to do, and will most likely void any warranty on the device. Having Apple repair your device isn’t exactly a cheap.
This new GPU adds a whole new level of difficulty to the process, and Apple won’t likely make the old fixes any easier to accomplish on future versions of their devices. This move to a true Apple iPhone won’t be coming any time soon. No announcements have been made as to whether Apple has even started development of the GPU, so the release of this technology is likely pretty far off.
Image: Apple Insider