NVIDIA to Purchase ARM in Unprecedented Acquisition

By Eric Londo

I guess Apple screwed up by switching all their CPUs to ARM. Now they have only one source for video, and CPUs, unless they switch to AMD GPUs

Apple has a perpetual license to ARM tech thanks to the Apple Newton. They also design their own silicon in house so they don’t really need ARM in that manner. This doesn’t hurt them at all.

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One of the first things Steve Jobs did when he became Apple CEO again was to pull the licenses of all the clone makers for the MacOS.

I am not saying nVidia would do this, but depending what nVidia does with ARM, it may cease to become a company, possibly rendering that license invalid because one of the parties may no longer exist.

You’re comparing apples to oranges. Apple’s licenses for clone manufacturers are not the same as the architectural licenses that ARM sold. Apple clone manufacturers were licensing software in the form of ROMs, not the source code to create a spinoff of Mac OS. The clones still functioned as computers.

IANAL, but I’m pretty sure NVIDIA assumes those existing agreements. Also, Apple isn’t dependent on ARM for any of its silicon.

That’s a bit incorrect. They were licensing the Mac OS 7 operating system. ROMs were optional to be fully 100% compatible with the Mac OS. The ROM issue was resolved many years before when the IBM PC compatible ROMs were made, giving us what we are using now.

So this is the same. ARM itself does not even build anything either, they always have a third party make it. It such licensing was to be pulled from Apple from this purchase of ARM, Apple would further be unable to make any ARM processors.

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Except it can’t be pulled and they won’t have a problem manufacturing ARM processors. It’s a non issue. They don’t even use any ARM processor designs, it is all in house implementation.

And why is that? You have some for sure information on?
If they are not even using any ARM processor designs, then why is it they are stating they are moving to ARM?

Apple’s first ARM-based Mac will be available later this year

It’s clear that you’re not making an effort to understand the ARM licensing and manufacturing process.

Apple, holding a perpetual license to the ARMv8 ISA, is designing and manufacturing — through outside fabs— custom made processors that implement ARMv8 instruction sets in addition to Apple’s custom tech.

This is unlike, for example, Samsung (who also has a perpetual ARM license too, BTW), which is currently using ARM developed reference designs.

Therefore you can say that Apple is designing and fabricating ARM based chips that aren’t ARM chips.

I do understand. While Apple may be making their own designs, but if they are using ARM design as a foundation, then there has to be a licensing agreement.