Parallels Desktop 16.5 for Mac has been announced, and it “features complete native support for Mac computers equipped with either Apple M1 or Intel chips,” according to the company. On Apple M1 Mac computers, Windows 10 for ARM processors is available via the “Windows 10 ARM Insider Preview” and its applications.
The M1 chip’s superior performance enables the world’s fastest integrated graphics in a personal computer, groundbreaking power quality, and compatibility with macOS Big Sur3—which Parallels Desktop 16.5 turns into a new standard for a smooth Windows-on-Mac experience.
Developing Parallels for M1 Macs has been a significant software engineering task, as it isn’t like a typical application that can sit nonchalantly on top of Apple’s OS/Rosetta technology. “Apple’s M1 chip is a significant breakthrough for Mac users,” said Nick Dobrovolskiy, Parallels Senior Vice President of Engineering and Support. “The transition has been smooth for most Mac applications, thanks to Rosetta technology. However, virtual machines are an exception and thus Parallels engineers implemented native virtualization support for the Mac with M1 chip. This enables our users to enjoy the best Windows-on-Mac experience available.”
Some of the highlights about the performance of Apple M1 and Parallels Desktop 16.5 for Mac are given below:
Up to 250 percent less energy used: Parallels Desktop 16.5 uses 2.5 times less energy on a Mac with an Apple M1 chip than a 2020 Intel-based MacBook Air phone.
Up to 60 percent better DirectX 11 performance: Parallels Desktop 16.5 on an M1 Mac improves DirectX 11 performance by up to 60% over an Intel-based MacBook Pro with Radeon Pro 555X GPU.
Up to 30 percent better virtual machine performance (Windows): A Windows 10 VM running on ARM Insider Preview on Parallels Desktop 16.5 on an M1 Mac outperforms a Windows 10 VM running on an Intel-based MacBook Pro with Intel Core i9 processor by up to 30%.
Microsoft currently does not sell an ARM-based retail version of Windows. However, Microsoft does have a Windows 10 on ARM preview build for participants of the Windows Insider programme, which is available on the Microsoft website.
A new subscription to Parallels Desktop 16.5 for Mac costs $79.99, and a new perpetual license costs $99.99. Similarly, a perpetual license upgrade from Parallels Desktop 14 or 15 costs $49.99. You can read more at Parallels for more detail.