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A leaker asserts that an M1 MacBook is capable of running Windows on ARM faster than a Surface Pro X

Is Parallels really working for the M1 chipset? (Source: Parallels)
Is Parallels really working for the M1 chipset? (Source: Parallels)
A Twitter-based leaker claims to have found new Geekbench listings that show Mac devices based on the new M1 silicon running Windows on ARM (WoA) via the Parallels desktop. Not only that, but this new combination apparently results in scores about double those achieved by the SQ2-powered Surface Pro X, which runs this kind of OS by default.

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The M1 is an ARM-based in-house chipset that, as such, comes with several advantages for the Apple software ecosystem. However, they may not apply to those who like to run Windows on their Macs. An earlier report indicated that the group behind Parallels was working on compatibility for their virtualization software with this new SoC. Now, there is a preliminary hint that they may have succeeded.

It comes from the tipster Tron/@cozyplanes on Twitter, who has compared Geekbench 5 scores for a Surface Pro X with others that, as it is claimed, were posted by an "Apple M1 Mac" running Parallels. This, then, would pit a Microsoft SQ2-based device running WoA by default against one resorting to virtualization for the same.

Surprisingly, the "Parallels M1 Mac" (or "Parallels Parallels ARM Virtual Machine", as it is titled on Geekbench) achieved roughly double the single- and multi-core scores of the Pro X while apparently running Windows 10 Pro's Insider Preview. On the other hand, the former is actually listed as having an Intel Pentium platform - with an anomalous 6-processor set-up clocked at 1GHz to boot.

This suspicious detriment to the leak's veracity does not get any better in the face of other alleged M1 machines running Windows 10 that show up with a "Virtual CPU" and at least have a more accurate 8 cores. Then again, this may just be down to Geekbench's inability to detect an M1 on Parallels for what it really is.

In addition, Tron has posted just one listing for a device under these new apparent M1-on-WoA conditions, whereas there are in fact nearly 6 whole pages of identical results, all showing the same specs (with similar Pro X-beating results) and submitted on the same day (December 18, 2020). Therefore, this may be a clue that a version of the Parallels desktop for the M1 is incoming after all.

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The Surface Pro X vs. the "M1 Mac on Parallels". (Source: Geekbench via Twitter)
The Surface Pro X vs. the "M1 Mac on Parallels". (Source: Geekbench via Twitter)
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Deirdre O'Donnell
Deirdre O'Donnell - Senior Tech Writer - 3865 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
I became a professional writer and editor shortly after graduation. My degrees are in biomedical sciences; however, they led to some experience in the biotech area, which convinced me of its potential to revolutionize our health, environment and lives in general. This developed into an all-consuming interest in more aspects of tech over time: I can never write enough on the latest electronics, gadgets and innovations. My other interests include imaging, astronomy, and streaming all the things. Oh, and coffee.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 12 > A leaker asserts that an M1 MacBook is capable of running Windows on ARM faster than a Surface Pro X
Deirdre O'Donnell, 2020-12-19 (Update: 2020-12-19)