Apple announced its new M1 Macs with fast internals that outperform most of the PCs in the market. With the new beefed-up internals, Apple also included a few other useful updates to the Macs which include the latest Wi-Fi 6 standard, USB 4 with Thunderbolt, and video output to 6K displays such as Apple’s own Pro Display XDR.
M1 Macs support Wi-Fi 6, USB 4, and 6K video output
Wi-Fi 6 comes to the Mac
802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 is the latest wireless connectivity standard at the moment and it supports data transfer speeds up to 9.6 Gbps. Unlike Wi-Fi 5, it works with both 2.4GHz and 5GHz networks. Apple introduced Wi-Fi 6 support with iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max, and later rolled it out to iPad Pro, iPad Air, 16-inch MacBook Pro, and recently launched iPhone 12 models. With the introduction of the new MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini, Apple has added Wi-Fi 6 support to these new M1 Macs. Along with faster data transfer speeds and low latency, Wi-Fi 6 helps routers connect to more devices at a time, which is a huge benefit considering that most homes now have multiple devices that connect wirelessly.
USB 4 support with Thunderbolt 3
All the three new M1 Macs support USB 4 standard with Thunderbolt 3 support, instead of Thunderbolt 4. USB 4 is the latest standard and supports data transfer speeds up to 40GB/s, and is backward compatible with USB 3.1 Gen 2 for speeds up to 10GB/s. It also supports charging and display over the same cable. It was expected that with USB 4 support, Apple would also bring Thunderbolt 4 to the Mac, but it was not meant to be. Perhaps that is an upgrade reserved for the future.
6K video output
The new M1 MacBooks support 6K video output to a single display over Thunderbolt at 60Hz, or a single 4K display at 60Hz via HDMI, thanks to the powerful integrated graphics in the new SoC. The new M1 Mac mini supports simultaneous video output to two displays: one 6K and one 4K.
- M1 chip brings huge battery life improvements to MacBook Air and MacBook Pro
- M1 MacBook Pro and MacBook Air still ship with a 720p webcam in 2020
- PSA: M1 Macs do not work with eGPUs
- Apple still sells Intel-based MacBook Pro and Mac mini alongside the new M1 Macs