Thanks to the M1, Apple now dominates the ARM-based PC market

Macs have been running on Apple's ARM-based processors for over one and a half years, and according to a new report, Apple now dominates the PC market for ARM-based silicon.

This report from analyst firm Strategy Analytics, first highlighted by Tom's Hardware, illustrates just how dominant Apple has become when it comes to ARM chips in PCs, with the company grabbing almost 90% of the revenue from this market in 2021.

Strategy Analytics estimates that ARM-based machines now represent 9% of all PC hardware on the market.

Apple's main competitors in this field? There are Chromebooks with ARM chips inside, as well as a few Windows on ARM laptops (with Snapdragon SoCs from Qualcomm) that have been around for a few years now, although not in large quantities.

'Apple's M-series family of processors set the benchmark and gave it a 2-3-year lead over the rest of the ARM-based PC processor vendors,' said Sravan Kundojjala, Director of Handset Component Technologies service at Strategy Analytics. In 2021, Qualcomm captured just 3% of the market for ARM-based notebook PC processors, lagging behind Apple in CPU performance.'

The first M1-powered MacBooks appeared on the scene late in 2020, and their big advantage over other ARM-based notebooks was their impressive performance - as opposed to Windows on ARM laptops, which are comparatively rather feeble.

As Apple has developed its own processors for various Mac products - the Mac mini and the iMac, as well as the best MacBooks and the best laptops overall - the company recently released the M2 chip, the next-generation chip.

This report confirms that this momentum is already having an effect on the laptop market, with Apple's strategy of ditching Intel for its own silicon clearly paying off.

Though Apple controls not only the hardware side of the equation but also the software, with Rosetta - a technology that allows its ARM CPUs to run x86 software (written for Intel chips) - being an important piece of the puzzle.

We can expect Apple to continue to move forward with its ARM-based Macs and new MacBooks with the M2 processor. However, we have to consider the impact of a factor lockdown in China on future production and shipping numbers.

It's already been reported that there will be a delay for the new MacBook Pro 13-inch (M2, 2022), and the MacBook Pro 14-inch and MacBook Pro 16-inch will also face delays (see below). 

Plus, Apple hasn't yet confirmed the new MacBook Air's launch date, telling us that it will arrive some point in July, so there are a lot of concerns about available stock.

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