By Stephen Nellis
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Apple Inc <AAPL.O> on Monday will hold its annual conference for software developers, rolling out new features in its operating systems for iPhones and iPads and possibly signaling a departure from Intel Corp’s <INTC.O> almost 15-year run supplying Mac computer processors.
Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference comes as paid services sold through the App Store have become central to the Cupertino, California, company’s revenue growth as consumers have slowed the growth of iPhone upgrades. Apple takes a 15% to 30% cut of the sales developers make through the App Store, which is the only way to distribute software onto Apple’s mobile devices.
Those fees, and Apple’s strict app review process, have come under antitrust scrutiny in the United States and Europe, where regulators last week unveiled a formal probe into the company.
But developers still gravitate toward Apple’s platform because it is lucrative, with a user base that is willing to spend money on paid apps. The annual developer conference, being held online this year for the first time because of the novel coronavirus, is where Apple often announces access to new hardware capabilities, such as special tools for artificial intelligence and augmented reality.
Apple this year could announce a move to part ways with Intel, which has supplied processors for Mac computers since 2006. Apple could announce a move to use its own house-designed processors as soon as Monday, two people familiar with matter told Reuters. The company, which already uses its own processor designs in iPhones in iPads, could announce one laptop model and one desktop model that will use the new chips, one of the people told Reuters.
An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment on the company’s future plans or products.
If Apple announces the move Monday, it will build on a tool it introduced last year called Catalyst, which aims to make it easier for developers to move their apps from Apple’s mobile operating systems to Mac computers.
(Reporting by Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Nick Zieminski)