Apple Introduces New M4 Chip with Enhanced Performance

Apple Introduces New M4 Chip with Enhanced Performance

Kazuki Tanaka
2 min read

Apple Introduces New M4 Chip for iPad Pro, Tying CPU Performance to Storage Capacity

Apple has unveiled the latest M4 chip, featuring three high-performance CPU cores and six efficiency cores. Notably, higher-end models will contain all four high-performance cores. Interestingly, the lower-tier M4 version is exclusively available in iPad Pro models with either 256GB or 512GB of storage, accompanied by 8GB of RAM. This marks a departure from past models as previous configurations were limited to higher-end models with more RAM. Apple's novel approach to linking CPU performance to storage capacity represents an industry first, potentially limiting the upgrade impact on the base-model iPad Pros compared to the more expensive versions. This practice is reminiscent of the existing RAM model but marks its debut in terms of the iPad's CPU performance. Apple has adopted the use of partially disabled chip versions to utilize imperfect silicon dies rather than discarding them, known as "binning."

Key Takeaways

  • Apple's new M4 chip for iPad Pro is available in versions with either 3 or 4 high-performance CPU cores.
  • Exclusive to iPad Pro models with 1TB or 2TB storage, the M4 chip with all 4 high-performance cores is featured.
  • Lower-capacity M4 iPads possess less RAM (8GB vs. 16GB) compared to higher-capacity models.
  • This marks the first instance of Apple tying iPad CPU performance to storage capacity.
  • The adoption of "binned" chips reduces waste by utilizing imperfect dies.


Apple's latest M4 chip strategy intertwines CPU performance with storage capacity, favoring higher-end models with 1TB or 2TB storage. While this approach could potentially spur upgrades and increase revenue, it also risks consumer discontent and potential short-term sales decline. In the larger scope, this move may set a precedent for other manufacturers, influencing the tech industry's approach to chip production and resource management. This shift could prompt companies like Intel, AMD, and Qualcomm to adjust their production and sales strategies, potentially leading to more effective use of silicon dies, reduced waste, and higher-performance devices for premium consumers.

Did You Know?

  • High-performance CPU cores and efficiency cores: The M4 chip for the iPad Pro comes in versions with 3 or 4 high-performance CPU cores and 6 efficiency cores. High-performance cores are tailored for demanding tasks and applications, while efficiency cores handle less intensive tasks to conserve power.
  • Binning: Binning is a process utilized by chipmakers, such as Apple, to categorize and utilize imperfect silicon dies instead of disposing of them. The chips are sorted based on their performance and power consumption characteristics, subsequently sold at different price points.
  • Tying CPU performance to storage capacity: Apple's decision to associate the iPad's CPU performance with storage capacity represents a new phenomenon. Only higher-end iPad Pro models with 1TB or 2TB of storage will feature the M4 chip with all 4 high-performance cores, whereas lower-storage models will have fewer cores and less RAM. This approach enables Apple to minimize waste and production costs by utilizing flawed chips.

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