Windows Will Return To Apple Computers

The new Macs with M1 processors are not compatible with Windows right now, which could be installed in previous models.

Apple has been immersed for a year in a transition process for its Mac computers. The company will abandon the Intel processors and the X86 architecture and from the next year it will exclusively use processors designed by the company itself.

The first processors, the M1, M1 Pro and M1 Max have already reached some of the machines in the catalog and, in general, with good results. Laptops and desktops made with them are more powerful and efficient than those that used Intel processors until now.

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But there is a small problem: they cannot negatively run the Windows operating system. Since 2006, Apple has allowed Mac users to create a partition on the Mac's hard drive and install a copy of Windows on it. 

This option, known as Boot Camp, allows you to use applications that would not otherwise be available in the macOS operating system. It is especially useful for games, as there are many titles that do not have support for macOS.

But the existence of Boot Camp was possible because both the Mac and most computers PC with Windows using the same processors. Apple just had to add support for the different components of the computer (keyboards, screen and so on) and everything worked quite well.

The jump to a new architecture of its own has ended this possibility. Microsoft has a version of Windows designed for computers with similar architecture to Apple's new M1 ( ARM ) processors, but at the moment there is no such thing as Boot Camp on new Macs that allows it to be installed.

The only option, so far, is to run this special version of Windows within a virtualized environment, such as those offered by software tools such as Parallels or VMWare.

These solutions, which simulate a completely independent computer in the memory of the Mac , nevertheless have an impact on the power of the machines and are not compatible with all applications. Windows 11 for ARM includes the option to emulate a processor with similar architecture to Intel to run unsupported applications, but this also detracts from the processor. The experience, therefore, is not very good.

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The problem could be fixed soon. According to the publication XDA, the reason why there is still no solution similar to Boot Camp that allows Windows to be installed natively on a Mac is that Microsoft has an exclusive agreement with Qualcomm for the ARM version of Windows.

Qualcomm and Microsoft began working on ARM processor-based notebooks in 2016, and as part of the initiative, Qualcomm negotiated to be the sole processor vendor.

This agreement will expire soon, which would allow other semiconductor companies, such as Samsung or Mediatek, to create ARM architecture processors for future PCs.

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But it will also make it easier for Microsoft to distribute copies of Windows 11 ready to install on Macs with M1, M1 Pro and M1 Max processors, or any future models with Apple processors.

So far, Qualcomm has only made minor adaptations of its more powerful mobile chips for this version of Windows. There are laptops for sale that use Windows for ARM and Snapdragon processors (Qualcomm's line of processor chips that is common to see in many Android phones), but they are machines very focused on portability and very little powerful.

Qualcomm has already confirmed that it works on processors specifically designed for computers, not mobiles, and that they will be comparable in power with the solutions that Apple has created for its Macs.

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