Apple defends 8GB of RAM in the MacBook Pro as ‘analogous to 16GB’ in a PC

Macworld

Apple’s newest MacBooks have just hit shelves and there’s already some controversy. Apple introduced a new entry-level 14-inch model to replace the ancient 13-inch model and brought a load of upgrades: a far superior display, newer design, faster chip, and a better camera and speakers. However, there’s one sticking point: It still starts at 8GB of RAM even with a significantly higher $1,599 price tag.

Many people have argued that Windows laptops in a similar price range all have at least 16GB and in many cases 32GB of RAM. However, in a recent interview, Apple’s VP of worldwide product marketing, Bob Borchers, claimed the comparison wasn’t fair.

As spotted by MacRumors, Bochers was asked about the 8GB in the entry-level MacBook Pro in an interview with Lin YiLYi on the Chinese-language video-sharing site Bilibili and he defended Apple’s decision: “8GB on an M3 MacBook Pro is probably analogous to 16GB on other systems. We just happen to be able to use it much more efficiently.”

When it switched to Apple silicon in the Mac, Apple introduced a unified memory system that integrates the RAM into the processor and can quickly allocate it to different parts of the system. Additionally, the M3 chip introduces Dynamic Caching, which Apple claims “dramatically increases the average utilization of the GPU, which significantly increases performance for the most demanding pro apps and games.”

As Borchers continues, “This is the place where I think people need to see beyond the specs, and actually go and look beyond the capabilities, and listen to trusted people like you who have actually used the systems.”

As someone who has used the systems, I can report that 8GB is still probably too low for most people. Even if you’re not using high-end apps, Safari and Photoshop can use several gigs of RAM. But perhaps more importantly, if you’re buying a Pro machine, you should get more RAM than someone buying a MacBook Air.

MacBook

​Macworld Macworld

Apple’s newest MacBooks have just hit shelves and there’s already some controversy. Apple introduced a new entry-level 14-inch model to replace the ancient 13-inch model and brought a load of upgrades: a far superior display, newer design, faster chip, and a better camera and speakers. However, there’s one sticking point: It still starts at 8GB of RAM even with a significantly higher $1,599 price tag.

Many people have argued that Windows laptops in a similar price range all have at least 16GB and in many cases 32GB of RAM. However, in a recent interview, Apple’s VP of worldwide product marketing, Bob Borchers, claimed the comparison wasn’t fair.

As spotted by MacRumors, Bochers was asked about the 8GB in the entry-level MacBook Pro in an interview with Lin YiLYi on the Chinese-language video-sharing site Bilibili and he defended Apple’s decision: “8GB on an M3 MacBook Pro is probably analogous to 16GB on other systems. We just happen to be able to use it much more efficiently.”

When it switched to Apple silicon in the Mac, Apple introduced a unified memory system that integrates the RAM into the processor and can quickly allocate it to different parts of the system. Additionally, the M3 chip introduces Dynamic Caching, which Apple claims “dramatically increases the average utilization of the GPU, which significantly increases performance for the most demanding pro apps and games.”

As Borchers continues, “This is the place where I think people need to see beyond the specs, and actually go and look beyond the capabilities, and listen to trusted people like you who have actually used the systems.”

As someone who has used the systems, I can report that 8GB is still probably too low for most people. Even if you’re not using high-end apps, Safari and Photoshop can use several gigs of RAM. But perhaps more importantly, if you’re buying a Pro machine, you should get more RAM than someone buying a MacBook Air.

MacBook 

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