In a move that looks to cement Apple’s transition to an ARM-forward Mac environment, Apple is reportedly planning to remove support for AMD GPUs on the ARM64 version of MacOS.
Tipster @never_released stated that upcoming ARM-powered MacBooks will feature an unannounced “Apple GPU” to potentially complement their customer ARM-derived CPUs. A leaked slide the tipster shared indicates that the “Apple GPU” will use a tile-based deferred rendering architecture. This is something we’ve seen before on Imagination’s PowerVR GPUs that have, until recently powered Apple devices. This leads to speculation that the “Apple GPU” could be a derivative of or at least related to PowerVR’s mobile solutions.
In either case, ditching AMD GPU support in MacOS for ARM is a strong signal that Apple is looking towards a mobile and ARM-centric future. While a dedicated AMD GPU could theoretically work with an ARM64 part (we’ve seen NVIDIA’s Tegra GPUs do something similar), power consumption and efficiency would almost certainly be lower than with Apple’s in-house GPU. One of the big reasons for the move to ARM-based Macs is increased battery life and flexibility – doing away with a desktop-grade graphics card could be one way of accomplishing that: