Intel Corporation Core M Makes MacBook Better But With Limitations

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By The original uploader was VD64992 at English Wikipedia [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Intel Core M chips enable the new 12-inch MacBooks to be quieter and fan-less, although the chips also impart them with a few disadvantages. Intel launched its Core M chips last year to power extremely light notebooks and tablets. However, the new chips have their own benefits and limitations, which may not sit very well with users, considering other MacBook models, says a report from Apple Insider.

Lighter, more efficient with Intel chips

One of the major advantages of Intel’s Core M chips is its low power consumption of almost 4.5 W compared to the 10 W of power easily sucked by other laptop processors. This increased efficiency of the Core M chips is due to the first-of-its-kind 14nm architecture used by Intel.

Moreover, these chips aid to produce less heat, allowing notebooks to run without a fan until they have proper ventilation channels. In addition, they offer smaller chip and die packages, as the whole logic board for the new MacBook is three times smaller than that of its Air counterpart, a possible reason contributing to the notebook’s thin and light attributes.

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No battery advantage, slow speed

However, these notebooks could disappoint some when it comes to performance. Even after upgrading the processor to 1.3 GHz, the notebooks will still remain slower than the current 1.6 GHz dual-core i5 MacBook Air processor.

Intel’s Core M chips may not be able to provide any significant improvement in battery life, says the report. Considering the battery life, the new MacBook is in line with the 11-inch Air, as both of them provide nine hours of web browsing and 10 hours of iTunes movie playback. In contrast, the 13-inch Air is capable of 12 hours for each of those tasks. Integrating Retina-quality graphics on the Intel Core M chip could adversely affect the working of the laptop as high-quality graphics tend to hinder battery life and could create speed issues as well.

However, Apple does not seem to target gamers or media producers with their new laptop. Nevertheless, priced at an exorbitant $1,299 for the ultra-sleek design and sharper display, it will certainly be difficult for the new MacBook to woo people, especially when better substitutes are available in the market.