In a note to clients — as noted by AppleInsider — Cowen and Company analyst Timothy Acuri says the A9X CPU found in the iPad Pro poses a threat to Intel as it surpasses the Intel Core M processor (the one used in the new 12-inch MacBook).
The CPU also compares favorably to the Core i5 processor used in the baseline Macbook Air, although it’s still far behind the Core i5 and i7 processors used in higher-end Macbook Pros, the investment firm analyst notes. Acura says the A9X outperformed all Apple laptops that use integrated Intel graphics, registering a three-to-four-times improvement in frame rate of the 12-inch MacBook with Retina display.
The iPad Pro processor also posted an improvement of as much as 40 percent over the Intel Iris 5200 integrated graphics featured on the 15-inch MacBook Pro. However, he points out that what remains to be seen if developers can and will create experiences for the iPad that compare favorably to the same software on a desktop or notebook. If they can, Arcuri believes Intel's mobile CPU business might be most at risk, despite the potential for cannibalization within Apple's own line of higher-end Mac products.