Apple has poached a top engineer from ARM to place custom processors in Macs in the coming years. As noted by Bloomberg, Apple has hired Mike Filippo, the leading architect on a number of ARM CPU designs, including the Cortex-A76, recently presented on Qualcomm's top-of-the-line Snapdragon 855 chip.
Bloomberg speculates that Filippo would occupy a key position with Apple that had remained vacant after Gerard Williams III, chief architect of Apple & # 39; s processors, left the company earlier this year. Apple did not comment on the rent or what Filippo is going to do, but ARM confirmed that Bloomberg that he left. A LinkedIn account for Filippo has named him at Apple as & # 39; architect & # 39; since May. He previously held a similar position at Intel and AMD:
When the Cortex-A76 was announced last year, Filippo told CNET that he thought the chip design "would do well against Apple." Apple has for many years made smartphone and tablet processors that perform much better than rival chips by designing its own cores instead of licensing them from ARM, and that has remained so with the latest ARM designs.
However, ARM and Apple are not entirely in competition. Although Apple does not explicitly use ARM's processor designs – as other companies, such as Qualcomm, do – it does rely on ARM's instruction set when designing its own processors. Bringing in someone who is deeply familiar with creating chip designs based on ARM & # 39; s technology is a natural step because Apple is trying to go further with what his own chips can do.
With Apple's chips that have already achieved an overwhelming lead on smartphones and tablets, the company would strive to place them within Macs in the coming years. It would be a huge shift for Apple & # 39; s laptops and desktops that could require a lot of rewritten code. But it would allow Apple to disconnect from Intel, which has been slow in recent years to make progress with the processor, and achieve even tighter integration of hardware and software within its devices.