Jeff Wilson, great craftsman of the phenomenal M1 chips, will now make his expertise available to Intel.
Right now, it’s safe to say that Apple’s transition to its own Apple Silicon chips has been a great success. In doing so, the Apple has managed to afford a form of independence that is strategically very important in the tech sector; but it also made a solid technical score, with a simply brilliant M1 chip. So there is something to be puzzled about when we learn that Jeff Wilcox, the genius behind this revolution, recently left the ship.
The information could easily have gone by the wayside if it had not been spotted by the troops of Apple Insider. The specialized site fell on its LinkedIn page, and apparently, the tech world is also having its winter transfer window since Wilcox has now gone under the blue flag!
“I am delighted to announce that I have taken on my role as Intel Partner, CTO of the Design Engineering branch, and Head of Client SoC Architecture at Intel Corporation.“, He announces. “I couldn’t be more excited to come back and work with these amazing teams to help produce breakthrough SoCs. Great things are to come!”
Intel rubs its hands
Whether that last prediction comes true or not, it is definitely a very, very big take from Intel’s point of view. Or rather, a recovery. The person had already worked there between 2010 and 2013, before being seduced by the new adventure of Apple. Moreover, the timing seems more or less ideal, since Intel is finally back on an excellent trajectory after a long crossing of the desert.
With a 12th generation of processors that really look great, a new pragmatic and forward-looking business model, and now a new leading innovator in his camp, the future looks bright for the blue team.
On the other hand, it is a big loss for Apple. The firm loses a real wizard, the chief visionary behind its most significant innovation in years. Indeed, the tech world was unanimous: the M1 chip is a true engineering marvel. And if Wilcox was obviously not alone, he shot a job to which the chip owes a good part of its success. Replacing it will therefore not be easy.
The competition starts again
Should we already sound the death knell for home-made Apple chips? Certainly not. These are long-term multidisciplinary projects. They can never be based on a single individual, even in the case of a visionary like Wilcox. The rest of the teams that worked with Wilcox are therefore probably still there to take over. Unless Apple took the opportunity to do a premature spring cleaning …
But even in this case, the firm will be able to count on a gigantic pool of engineers of very high level. Its incomparable financial strike force will probably constitute a strong argument for the best candidates. It will therefore be able to dig into its own human resources. She could also continue this game of musical chairs by going to poach another big name in the industry to replace Wilcox.
Even though Apple would certainly have preferred to keep it, there is therefore no need to worry about the sustainability of Apple Silicon. On the other hand, we are already anxious to see to what extent this transfer will impact the plans of Intel and Apple for the years to come. But we will have to be patient; the fruits of the labor of a systems architect like Wilcox are unlikely to be visible to the general public for several years.