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MacBook Air: Apple exaggerates the M1 chip performance enormously


Apple is mightily proud of its own M1 arm chip. According to its own statement, it should make the new MacBook Air faster than 98 percent of all “PC laptops”. However, there is no evidence for this bold claim from Apple.

Claims should also be substantiated. In the case of performance-related information, it is common in the hardware sector to back it up with benchmark results, under which conditions the measurement results were obtained and with which competing products the comparison was made. Detailed information can usually be found in the footnotes. In the

Message from Apple
There are these footnotes for the introduction of the next Mac generation, but there is nothing there about the test conditions or the notebook models with which Apple claims to have compared the new MacBook Air (see also the following screenshot):

Macbook Air M1 footnotes

Does Apple believe that the fanless Macbook Air is faster than the notebook series powered by the AMD Ryzen 4000


Asus Zephyrus G14

or the series


Alienware Area 51m

and


MSI Creator 17

with Intel’s 10th core generation? Of course not.

And what exactly does Apple’s performance rating refer to, CPU or graphics processor performance – or computing power under Windows? And does Apple compare programs that run on both operating systems here – and which programs are they, games like “Red Dead Redemption II”, “Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War” and “Fortnite” or productive applications like CyberLink PowerDirector?

Shopping Cart IconSee Apple MacBook Air 13 Notebook (33.78 cm / 13.3 inches, Intel Core i3, Iris Plus Graphics, 256 GB SSD, incl. Charger with power adapter and Office application software Microsoft 365 Single worth 69 euros) at Otto

Take a closer look at the M1: is it really 3X as fast?

We do not know it. But I am 98 percent sure that all the notebook series linked above with these programs would be devastating to the Macbook Air. I think Apple has compared the Macbook Air with an M1 CPU to Windows notebooks that are powered by an Intel processor from the performance class of an Atom, Celeron N or Core i3. Because Apple does not define the word “performance” more precisely, the claim “faster than 98 percent of PC laptops” reveals itself as a completely exaggerated marketing blah. And the question is allowed: Is it fair to buy a 1000 Euro MacBook Air with 150 Compare Euro Laptops?

A masterpiece – with open questions:

Macbook Air M1

The arm-based Apple M1 is an impressive system on a chip (SoC). But does Apple have to make such absurd marketing contortions when presenting the M1? No question about it, the 64-bit SoC Apple M1 looks promising. Apple has it manufactured at TSMC using the most advanced 5 nm process currently available. The M1 uses four performance and four energy-saving computing cores as well as a 6- or 8-core GPU. All cores have equal access to the main memory via a universal interface. There are also 16 computing cores for artificial intelligence in the form of the bionic unit.

Apple M1 SoC

And yes, if specially optimized software is used, the Apple M1 should achieve impressive computing power. But in reality there are also a lot of programs that don’t run natively on an ARM architecture – and these applications should make the Macbook Air look ridiculously bad compared to x86 notebooks.

So please Apple, do the undignified troll to grab the attention of potential buyers who choose to buy a Windows notebook 93 out of 100 cases each year.

This opinion piece is based on an article by our American colleagues at

pcworld.com

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