Apple recently revealed a replacement chip called the Apple A15 Bionic, which is confirmed to feature within the iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, and therefore the iPad Mini 6. But how does it compare to Apple’s other famous chip, the Apple M1?
We’ve rounded up all of the knowledge that Apple has provided, detailing a full breakdown of both processors. So without further ado, here’s everything you would like to understand for the Apple A15 vs Apple M1 faceoff.
The M1 is made for Macs and therefore the A15 for phones
The first thing to understand about both chips is that they’re intended for very different devices. The M1 has been designed for Macs, appearing within the likes of the MacBook Air, Mac Mini, and iMac thus far.
Meanwhile, the newly announced A15 Bionic will feature inside the iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, and iPad Mini 6, so essentially anything smaller and more portable than a laptop. While the M1 likely has faster performance, the A15 features a greater specialization in battery life.
However, it’s almost that clear cut, as Apple has also fitted the M1 processor inside the foremost recent iPad Pro tablet. this suggests Apple is seemingly happy to use the M1 outside of the Mac range whenever it wants to spice up the performance to the extent of an entry-level laptop.
They use completely different architectures
Comparing the Apple A15 Bionic to the Apple M1 processor may be a bit like comparing apples with oranges. Despite both chips being supported by Arm, they use different architectures, which suggests albeit that they had an equivalent number of CPU and GPU cores, the performance could still be very different.
Both the Apple A15 Bionic and Apple M1 processors use a 5nm fabrication process, yet have a special number of transistors: 15 billion and 16 billion respectively. a better number of transistors generally allows for speedier performance, giving the Apple M1 the advantage.
The A15 prioritizes battery over performance
As I said before, comparing cores only tells you such a lot when processors are using different architectures. That said, watching Apple’s balance of high-performance and energy-efficient cores still tell us tons about how the Apple A15 and Apple M1 differ.
The Apple Bionic features a total of 6 CPU cores, made from 2 high-performance cores and 4 energy-efficient cores. The Apple M1 has 8 CPU cores, with 4 high-performance cores and 4 energy-efficient cores.
This tells us that Apple is clearly prioritizing battery life for any device with an A15 chip, while the M1 tries to hit an equal balance for both performance and battery life. This makes tons of sense, as battery life is usually more important for a smartphone than it’s for a laptop.
The M1 has more firepower for graphics
It’s not worth getting too trapped about the amount of graphics cores, as there are tons more details you would like to think about to know how the performance will differ. Still, given the intended use case for the M1, it’s safe to assume that it’s the superior chip for GPU-focused workloads like editing videos and playing games.
One of the foremost intriguing aspects about the Apple A15 Bionic is that it’s copied an equivalent tactic because the M1 and disabled a core for lower configurations. This also means the iPhone 13 Pro and iPad Mini have one additional GPU core compared to the iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Mini, despite all of those devices using an Apple A15 Bionic chip.
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