Apple knows how to make very good MacBooks, but they still lack one thing: connection to cellular networks alone, without the help of an iPhone. The manufacturer is working on this function, but you will have to be very patient.
PCs running the Arm version of Windows are not great: certainly, they have good battery life, but the performance is rarely there and the software optimization often leaves something to be desired. Perhaps that will change with the first computers featuring Qualcomm’s new system-on-a-chip, the Snapdragon X Elite. Meanwhile, Macs with M1/M2/M3 chips (which also rely on Arm architecture) are far ahead in every department, with the notable exception of cellular connectivity.
Macs finally at the level of PCs
Apple has still not seen fit to integrate a modem into its Macs, unlike iPads which have always been available in cellular versions. Obviously, the manufacturer did not want to make room for Qualcomm modems in its Macs, which is a shame: you still have to go through connection sharing with an iPhone or iPad to be able to access 4G or 5G on a Mac. A MacBook capable of connecting a cellular network without the help of a kickstand would nevertheless be very practical…
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Courage ! Things could change, but not right away. Apple has been working on its own modem for years, a development that is behind schedule – the chip is now expected in 2026, it should first equip iPhones. It should subsequently find a small place in the iPad, the Apple Watch and the Mac… but not before two or three additional years of work, Mark Gurman believes.
At best, we could therefore see a Mac equipped with a cellular chip in 2028. In the iPhone, the component would be placed alongside the Ax system-on-chip (SoC); in other devices, the manufacturer would like to integrate it into the SoC, at the same level as the processor, the graphics circuit, the memory or even the neural engine. A great project, but we still need to finalize the cellular chip first…