One of the most important aspects of product success is differentiation. For example, beyond the Apple ecosystem, the Mac is differentiated from most Windows PCs and Chromebooks by quality components and MacOS Sierra. Similarly, the iPhone is differentiated from most Android devices by quality components, iOS 10 and Apple's own CPU design in the A10 Fusion, which is based on the ARM architecture.
Differentiation is an important part of Apple's success. Based on the performance of the iPhone A10 Fusion, many Apple observers believe the company can develop and introduce an Intel-less Mac Pad; a touch screen Mac with an ARM CPU inside. Is there another option? Yes.
ARM vs. AMD
In the world of fake news, there is no news that Intel has struggled to produce new CPUs according to plan. To put it all, it is difficult to create more powerful CPUs that are also smaller than previous models. More powerful? It seems that every new generation of Intel's best is a marginal improvement over the past.
It explains why Apple's own A1
Enter Advanced Micro Devices, or, AMD; a continuous tower on Intel's side as a company other than producing x86-based microprocessors – such as Intel and Nvidia discrete graphics processors (GPUs), which penetrate various high-end Macs.
AMD has a new series of desktop CPUs called the Ryzen 7 line that compete with Intel's most expensive and powerful Core i7-6900K CPUs. At less than half the price. These are desktop class CPUs located between what Apple uses in the iMac line and Intel Xeon multi-core CPUs found in the aging Mac Pro.
This provides a couple of interesting high end and low-end scenarios and opportunities for Apple.
Differentiation is a key to product marketing, and Apple separates iPhone and iPad from its own ARM-based A10 and A9X processors. AMD separates the new Ryzen 7-CPU line by surpassing half-price comparable Intel CPUs.
What can Apple do with such a differentiation?
First, the aforementioned Mac Pad, a touch screen, input-level Mac with its own A-Series CPU that already exceeds the performance of many Intel consumer PCs. Sorry, this model probably wouldn't run Windows or Linux, but it would make an excellent Mac at the entry level.
Second, the iMac and Mac Pro models suffer. IMac peaks out in quad core, while Mac Pro hasn't seen an upgrade in any component since it was launched in 2013; an ice age in technology. Enter the AMD's Ryzen 7 family, capable of putting some real power into an iMac, or fully capable of setting the stage for a mid-sized Mac Pro.
Anyway, AMD or ARM, a little competition for Intel is good for the soul. For a new look at Apple's latest chip pain, check out Wil Gomez's article on Apple Chip Pain Again.