Intel disses the MacBook Pro — and insults its own CPU in the process

Intel CPU Chip
(Image credit: Intel)

Intel fired shots at Apple, claiming that its brand-spankin' new 11th Gen Intel Core i5 H-series chip performs better than the 16-inch MacBook Pro's internals.

However, as Digital Trends pointed out, Intel's attacks backfired. The CPU inside the MacBook Pro in question is Intel's own i9-9980HK processor. Yikes! Apple's been tight-lipped throughout Intel's crusade to divert consumers' attention away from the dazzling M1 chip, but if it did break its silence, we'd imagine that it'd say, "Yeah, we know the CPU is lacking. That's why we ditched Intel for the M1 chip!"

Intel insults itself while trying to throw shade at Apple

Ryan Shrout, Intel's Chief Performance Strategist, recently hopped on a call with PCGamer to rave about Intel's new 11th Gen Tiger Lake H-series CPUs — processors that give gaming laptops a significant speed boost. 

Shrout showed PCGamer a slide titled, "The best Mac laptop for gaming can't keep up."


Intel (Image credit: Intel)

It featured a chart that compares an "Intel-branded system" to a 16-inch MacBook Pro. The former is packed with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 GPU while the latter is equipped with an AMD Radeon Pro 5600M GPU. The MacBook Pro, unsurprisingly, got slaughtered in all the gaming benchmarks. It's widely known that Macs are not ideal for gaming (and they still aren't, even with the M1).

However, there's something wrong with this picture that is impelling pundits to raise their eyebrows.

First, as Digital Trends pointed out, GPUs — not processors — are the true measure of gaming performance. Second, Intel boasted that its new CPU outpaced the MacBook Pro's processor, which led to another head-scratcher: the MacBook Pro is equipped with an Intel i9 chip. How is an Intel vs. Intel comparison supposed to besmirch Apple? As the old saying goes, Intel cut off its own nose to spite its face.

Although Intel has Apple in its crosshairs with his chart, the Cupertino-based tech giant would likely agree with the chip manufacturer: Intel just doesn't cut it. At WWDC 2020, Apple called its decision to ditch Intel in favor of the M1 chip a "game-changer and a "huge leap forward for the Mac." 

We were skeptical at first, but the zippy performance of the M1-equipped MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro knocked us off our feet. Interestingly, Intel didn't compare any of its new 11th Gen Tiger Lake H-series CPUs with Apple's M1 chip — probably for a good reason.

Kimberly Gedeon

Kimberly Gedeon, holding a Master's degree in International Journalism, launched her career as a journalist for MadameNoire's business beat in 2013. She loved translating stuffy stories about the economy, personal finance and investing into digestible, easy-to-understand, entertaining stories for young women of color. During her time on the business beat, she discovered her passion for tech as she dove into articles about tech entrepreneurship, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and the latest tablets. After eight years of freelancing, dabbling in a myriad of beats, she's finally found a home at Laptop Mag that accepts her as the crypto-addicted, virtual reality-loving, investing-focused, tech-fascinated nerd she is. Woot!