Mac users should have another way to run Windows 10 on their M1-equipped devices soon. VMWare product line manager Michael Roy tweeted yesterday that, if everything goes well, the company will reveal its plans for Apple's silicon next week.
The not-quite-announcement came shortly after Parallels added support for the M1 chip to version 16.5 of Parallels Desktop for Mac, which means people who own Apple's latest hardware can now run Windows 10 on Arm on their devices.
Progress update coming soon... Next week probably :)The @VMwareFusion account is well monitored but Legal has issues with us talking about future stuffs... So we've been largely quiet about it, but we're working through that.April 15, 2021
Roy actually made a few jabs at Parallels in his tweets about VMWare's plans for M1 support. He said: "Yah... It's uncharted waters, so everyone is treading lightly... Like, you can't even BUY Windows for ARM, and folks using it who aren't OEMs could be violating EULA... we're not into doing that for the sake of a press release..."
He isn't wrong. Microsoft doesn't currently sell Windows 10 on Arm to the public. The company offers (opens in new tab) Windows 10 Home, Windows 10 Pro, and Windows 10 Pro for Workstations on its website. (Though there are other ways to get Windows 10 for free or cheap.)
There isn't a ton of hardware that supports Windows 10 on Arm, as Intel and AMD models are more popular. The Lenovo Flex 5G, Microsoft Surface Pro X and Acer Spin 7 are among what's out there, but surely the Mac does brings the potential for more compatibility.
On Mac, that support has to arrive via tools like Parallels and VMWare, however, because Apple doesn't offer an equivalent to Boot Camp (opens in new tab) on Macs featuring its custom chip. That means it's important for those utilities to perform well on M1.
Hopefully that won't be a concern. Parallels said its performance improved with the jump to the M1, and Roy tweeted that his MacBook Air "is currently running 5 VMs, each with 4 cores and 8GB of RAM and not breaking a sweat" with VMWare's utility.
We've reached out to VMWare for more information about when it's looking to add support for the M1 chip to VMWare Fusion and what it has planned for Apple's custom silicon in the future. We'll update this post if the company responds.