Can the iPhone 8 run Mac OS ? With the A11’s power?

DBZmusicboy01

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 30, 2011
939
394
Quadcore
With geekbench scores already higher than the MacBook Air’s
I believe the iPhone 8 is more than able to run MacOS with a lightening to display port.
 

UL2RA

Suspended
May 7, 2017
999
1,617
It definitely can, but they're not going to. At least not yet. iOS is starting to become more macOS like though, which is apparent with iOS 11.
 

TheRealAlex

macrumors 68020
Sep 2, 2015
2,133
1,202
Quadcore
With geekbench scores already higher than the MacBook Air’s
I believe the iPhone 8 is more than able to run MacOS with a lightening to display port.
I am looking forward to the A11X in next years iPad Pro. Much less thermal throttling. And the ability to use HMP heterogeneous multiprocessing. And a faster clock and a 12'Core or More GPU I always thought the purpose of the iPad Pro was to run Mac OS. With optional Keyboard.

Now that iPad Pro prices are at a Delta with MacBook Air prices. Just sell us a $899 OLED iPad Pro with 1 USB-C port and Dual Boot option MacOS or iOS. And Keep MacBook Airs at $799
 

robbietop

macrumors regular
Jun 7, 2017
183
214
Good Ol' US of A

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IOS#Kernel

iOS uses the XNU Mach 2.5 derivative that underlies Darwin, the Open Source BSD Unix variant.
Mac OS X is the base off of which iOS is designed.
Obviously, the kernel was ported to ARM type processors. This is not difficult given that Mach was designed for heterogeneous environments (processor agnostic/independent).

Your iPhone and iPad run an optimized Mac OS X, using Cocoa (CocoaTouch) and Darwin BSD.
Both Mac OS Sierra and iOS 10 are running Darwin 16.0.

For all intents and purposes, it already is.

However, you mean the actual Mac OS with its full libraries and APIs.

Let's benchmark the slowest machine Apple lists on its updateable list as the lowest possible requirements.
High Sierra will be used as the benchmark.

This, of course will be the Macbook Air 11 Inch in Late 2010.

1.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor with 3MB on-chip shared L2 cache; or optional 1.6GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor with 3MB shared L2 cache

800MHz frontside bus
2GB of 1066MHz DDR3 SDRAM onboard (4GB maximum)


Now, let's look at the iPhone 7 (not the Plus)
Quad-core (2× Hurricane + 2× Zephyr) 2.34 GHz max clock on Hurricane. Zephyr assumed anything below that.
L1 cache Per core: 64 KB instruction + 64 KB data
L2 cache 3 MB shared
L3 cache 4 MB shared

Although ARM chips used to be severely underpowered versus their mobile and desktop variants, you can still compare based on pure computational scores.
Daring Gruber gives us this info.
https://www.macrumors.com/2016/09/15/iphone-7-faster-than-macbook-air/

The iPhone 7 (not the Plus) outperformed the Macbook Air 2015 in single core score but was in a technical tie on multicore scores (the MacBook Air 2015 barely beat it).

Therefore, the iPhone 7 is capable of running the full Mac OS X, Darwin/Mach/Cocoa and all of their full desktop APIs, calls, and plug-ins.

I hope this answers your questions.
 
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anonymous guy

macrumors 6502a
Mar 18, 2010
505
126
The A11 cannot run Mac OS X because the architecture does not support it.

The A11, and all other common mobile processors use ARM architecture. Mac OS X was originally designed to run on Power PC architecture, but now runs on Intel x86 processors found in other consumer PCs.

If Apple wanted OS X to run on the A11, they would need to have to rewrite the OS to be compatible with ARM. It was originally said that iPhone OS is the spiritual successor of Mac OS X for mobile devices.
 

DNichter

macrumors G3
Apr 27, 2015
8,959
10,063
Philadelphia, PA
It could if were ported to ARM, it has enough power. I just don't really see the point and Apple would never do it. I could see an ARM MacBook at some point though.
 

BruiserB

macrumors 68000
Aug 9, 2008
1,534
390
That is my eventual dream machine...where the iPhone is a portable hub that can plug into a desktop workstation and be a full desktop machine, or even sell a laptop/tablet shell with larger screen and keyboard options. When they kept touting the change to 64 bit processors as having desktop computing power, I thought maybe they were heading in that direction. Would love to have 1 ultra-portable computer (my phone) that can be used as the base for different form factor workstations.
 

DNichter

macrumors G3
Apr 27, 2015
8,959
10,063
Philadelphia, PA
That is my eventual dream machine...where the iPhone is a portable hub that can plug into a desktop workstation and be a full desktop machine, or even sell a laptop/tablet shell with larger screen and keyboard options. When they kept touting the change to 64 bit processors as having desktop computing power, I thought maybe they were heading in that direction. Would love to have 1 ultra-portable computer (my phone) that can be used as the base for different form factor workstations.
I can't remember, but I think there is an old video of Steve Jobs imagining this very thing. Hopefully they keep that same spirit.
 

old-wiz

macrumors G3
Mar 26, 2008
8,315
225
West Suburban Boston Ma
The A11 cannot run Mac OS X because the architecture does not support it.

The A11, and all other common mobile processors use ARM architecture. Mac OS X was originally designed to run on Power PC architecture, but now runs on Intel x86 processors found in other consumer PCs.

If Apple wanted OS X to run on the A11, they would need to have to rewrite the OS to be compatible with ARM. It was originally said that iPhone OS is the spiritual successor of Mac OS X for mobile devices.
Most of MacOS is written in high level language (C++ or such) and would not be a huge job porting it to ARM and I would not be surprised if Apple already has something in their hidden labs. If you are programming in low level such as assembler it would be more difficult though.
 

robbietop

macrumors regular
Jun 7, 2017
183
214
Good Ol' US of A
The A11 cannot run Mac OS X because the architecture does not support it.

iOS is Mac OS X. It is the same codebase. Plus, they would not have to rewrite the entire OS.
The Kernel of both iOS and Mac OS is designed for heterogeneity. Mac OS X was Intel ready from Mac OS 10.0 Beta


It took them 7 months to transition Mac OS X from Power PC to Intel because Mac OS X was ALREADY compiled for x86.
And since iOS is Mac OS X at its core, it would take Apple little under a year to compile and port for two reasons:
  1. iOS has ten years on ARM. So, not too hard to figure out how to work on ARM
  2. They design ARM processors, unlike their PCs that use third party vendor chips.
Will not be hard, and half their work is already done.
 

gpat

macrumors 6502a
Mar 1, 2011
948
1,204
Italy
They should just integrate USB-C with host capabilities and a trackpad with multi-touch gestures.
No other change needed, seriously.
Obviously I'm talking about the iPad, not the iPhone.
 
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