iOS apps will be available on ARM-powered Macs

Apple announced its transition to ARM-based processors at WWDC earlier this week and followed up with a new video that shows how iPhone and iPad apps will function on new Mac devices with custom CPUs.

The heavily rumoured move to a new architecture was confirmed on Monday, with Apple revealing that the first ARM Macs will go on sale in late 2020 ahead of a full transition that will take about two years.

The use of custom Apple processors opens up a whole new world for Mac users, who will now be able run a huge number of popular iOS and iPadOS apps within macOS without any additional modifications.

Users will be able to download the mobile-optimised apps from the Mac Store and access any in-app purchases they have made on iPhones and iPads.

Apple says that developers won’t be forced to extend their app functionality to Macs with Apple silicon, but it seems that the process of porting them over will be straightforward.

Developers who do not want to do so can simply navigate to App Store Connect and uncheck the ‘iOS App on Mac’ option.

Apple posted the new video on Wednesday just two days after revealing the switch in what CEO Tim Cook called a “historic day for the Mac”.

While ARM CPUs are now the focus, Apple said that it still plans to release Intel-powered Macs in the near future.

Apple also revealed its next Mac operating system, Big Sur, on Monday.

Version 11.0 of macOS promises big changes with a refined user interface that features new “depth, shading and translucency” and reworked icons that resemble iOS.

Safari will also get a speed boost of up to 50% over Chrome and will include a new privacy toolbar, translation tools and more customisation options.

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About the author


I've been a passionate evangelist for Apple and the Macintosh throughout my working life, my first love was a Quadra 605 working with a small creative agency in the south of Norfolk UK in the mid 1990's, I later progressed to other roles in other Macintosh dominated industries, first as a Senior graphic designer at a small printing company and then a production manager at Guardian Media Group. As the publishing and printing sector wained I moved into Internet Marketing and in 2006 co-founded which grew to become one the top 200 visited sites in the US (according to Quantcast), at its peak receiving over 15 million visits per month. For the last ten years I have worked as an Affiliate and Consultant to many different business and start ups, my key skill set being online marketing, on page monetisation, landing page optimisation and traffic generation, if you would like to hire me or discuss your current project please reach out to me here.

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