Confirmed: the iMac Pro unveils a new T2 chip designed by Apple for advanced encryption features

Confirmed: the iMac Pro unveils a new T2 chip designed by Apple for advanced encryption features
We had been waiting for some news about the launch of the iMac Pro and finally, we were coming out of doubts yesterday: the new professional computer from Apple will be released tomorrow. The team has been in the hands of some lucky ones who have tried it in recent days, where we have seen that this team releases a new chip designed by Apple: the T2. This is all that is known so far.

iMac Pro T2 chip: everything you need to know

At the end of last year, Apple launched the redesigned MacBook Pro. The superior models incorporated the Touch Bar to show a bar of virtual keys with shortcuts and other characteristics, as well as Touch ID. In order to perform these functions, Apple had integrated a new chip: the so-called T1, designed by Apple.

This chip houses the secure enclave that allows the safe execution of Touch ID, which also allows the Touch Bar to be used independently from the rest of the operating system and processor. In the iMac Pro, Apple has incorporated the second generation of this chip under the name of T2, with a twist:

Sasser is one of the professionals who has been able to test the iMac Pro, where he has found out about the new functions that the Apple T2 chip performs, among which two stand out:

System Management Controller: or SMC, manages the change of the video mode, the energy, and heat released, hibernation of the equipment and the LED indicators of the FaceTime camera.
Image Signal Processing: or ISP, is mainly responsible for managing the FaceTime camera.

In addition to the sound control of the equipment, the SSD memory, the secure enclave and a hardware encryption engine. Encryption and enclave add a new layer of hardware security so that your keys never leave the chip and allowing hardware verification, according to Sasser.

Forget about the A10 Fusion chip on a Mac … for the moment

In mid-November, several reports strongly suggested the arrival of the A10 Fusion chip to the iMac Pro, which would probably bring the functionality of “Hey Siri” for the first time on a Mac. The appearance of this T2 indicates that these rumors were not true, although both chips are based on the ARM architecture used by Apple’s iOS devices.

Although the T2 is a version superior to the T1 of the MacBook Pro, the iMac Pro does incorporate neither Touch ID, neither Face ID nor any form to pay with Apple Pay of form “native”. The existence of some form of hardware authentication would have almost completely eliminated the need for passwords on the computer and opened the doors to payment through Apple Pay without needing an iPhone or an Apple Watch nearby.
The iMac Pro does not bring Touch ID or Face ID but could incorporate “Hey Siri” in the future

That said, it is possible that “Hey Siri” makes its appearance in the iMac Pro by upgrading macOS High Sierra in the future, but for now it is unknown if the T2 would be able to perform the functions necessary for it.

Following the rumor about the incorporation of the A10 Fusion chip from the iPhone 7 to the iMac Pro, doubts began to arise in the Hackintosh community. If the Macs began to integrate Apple chips that can not be purchased separately, this could complicate the task of creating a Mac piece by piece and unofficially in the distant future.

Although this chip is not an A10 Fusion, the T2 also owns Apple and could complicate the assembly of a Mac by pieces. At the moment, macOS still supports equipment in 2009 so having one of these chips to have the most current version of the system is years away.

In any case, the T2 chip is a very interesting step for Apple and its team of experts in silicon. Little by little, all Apple products are incorporating this type of own processors in one way or another.

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