Reports suggest that the Apple M2 will be the first second-generation chip in the Apple Silicon range, offering a more efficient performance than the existing Apple M1 processor.

This shouldn’t be confused with the recently confirmed M1 Pro and M1 Max chips, which power the MacBook Pro 2021 laptop or the new M1 Ultra that launched with the Mac Studio.

These are souped-up versions of the M1 chip, intended for high-performance devices. The M2 has seemingly been designed for entry-level Macs instead, such as the 13-inch MacBook Pro 2022, MacBook Air 2022 and the next iMac.

The M2 will reportedly use a new Apple Silicon architecture, reducing the 5nm node to 4nm, which should boost the processor’s performance and power efficiency. Reports suggest that Apple won’t increase the number of CPU cores, although the maximum number of GPU cores could be boosted from 8 to 10.

For more details on the Apple M2 processor, keep reading on and keep this page bookmarked for future updates. 

Release date

The Apple M2 processor is expected to debut inside the 13-inch MacBook Pro or MacBook Air. This laptop was previously rumoured to be unveiled during Apple’s Spring product event on 8 March 2022, but its absence means that fans may need to wait until the second half of the year.

Apple tends to unveils its biggest laptops during an October/November event, so we’ll likely have to wait until the latter end of the year for an official reveal of the M2 chip.

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Specs 

The Apple M2 chip is expected to mark the beginning of Apple’s second-generation of Apple Silicon processors, with Apple making the move from a 5nm node to a 4nm one. 

Reducing the size of a node typically improves a processor’s efficiency and performance power, and is usually what separates the different generations of AMD and Intel processors. 

Mac Rumors claims Apple won’t increase the number of CPU cores, and so will stick to the balance of 4 high-performance cores and 4 energy-efficient cores. 

Architecture CPU cores GPU Cores
Apple M2 4nm 8 Up to 10
Apple M1 5nm 8 Up to 8
Apple M1 Pro 5nm 10 Up to 16
Apple M1 Max 5nm 10 32

However, MacRumors also claims that Apple could increase the maximum GPU core count from 8 to 10. This would see the 13-inch MacBook Pro become more competent at demanding tasks such as video editing.

It’s worth pointing out that M2 is not expected to be competitive with the existing M1 Pro chip, which packs a whopping 16 GPU cores. The M2 chip’s performance power is aimed at casual users rather than professionals.

Of course, Apple hasn’t confirmed any of these details just yet, so it’s worth being a little sceptical until Apple makes an official announcement. Hopefully that happens next week.

The Trusted Take

I’m impressed that Apple is reportedly already planning to make the jump to its second generation of Apple Silicon processors. From the benchmark results shown by the MacBook Air M1, Apple already has the lead over AMD and Intel in terms of multi-core performance in the ultrabook market, so it’s good to see Apple doing everything it can to retain its crown. 

By

Ryan Jones

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Computing and Gaming Editor

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