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Mac architecture lead Jeff Wilcox defects to Intel to design new SoCs


Enormous, circular complex surrounded by suburban sprawl.
Enlarge / The Apple Park campus stands in this aerial photograph taken above Cupertino in October 2019.

Jeff Wilcox, Apple’s director of Mac system architecture who oversaw much of the Apple Silicon transition, has left Apple to join Intel. He will head up Intel’s efforts to develop its own system-on-a-chip.

Wilcox makes this move after eight years as a key player in Apple’s desktop and laptop product development. Before those eight years, he was actually at Intel, so the move to Intel is a return for him, not an entirely new frontier.

He announced the change on LinkedIn over the past few weeks. In his initial LinkedIn post, he wrote:

After an amazing eight years I have decided to leave Apple and pursue another opportunity. It has been an incredible ride and I could not be prouder of all we accomplished during my time there, culminating in the Apple Silicon transition with the M1, M1 Pro and M1 Max SOCs and systems. I will dearly miss all of my Apple colleagues and friends, but I am looking forward to the next journey which will start at the first of the year. More to come!

And then a couple of weeks later, he wrote in a new post:

I’m pleased to share that I have started a new position as Intel Fellow, Design Engineering Group CTO, Client SoC Architecture at Intel Corporation. I could not be more thrilled to be back working with the amazing teams there to help create groundbreaking SOCs. Great things are ahead!

The move is quite recent; Wilcox started at Intel at the beginning of this month.

The change is relevant to the wider story of Apple’s development of exceptionally efficient chips and Intel’s struggles to keep up. Intel is working on new silicon that it hopes and claims will rival Apple’s recent breakthroughs. Wilcox may be a key leader in those efforts moving forward.



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