A recently released beta of the Dropbox app for macOS added support for Apple Silicon in current MacBook Airs, MacBook Pros, 24-inch iMacs, and Mac Minis. This release is the first step towards fulfilling the company’s promise of native support for M1-based Macs.
Apple launched its M1 silicon in 2020. Until now, Dropbox did not offer a native version of its file hosting service for computers using Apple’s chips, frustrating some business users who rely on the program and pay him for the work.
Without the beta, M1 users must use Rosetta 2, software that translates apps with x86_64 instructions for Apple’s Arm-based silicon, in order to use the Dropbox app. However, running Rosetta 2 can generally affect battery life, memory, and performance. For most users, Rosetta 2 is sufficient for running Intel-based applications. And it’s possible that some lesser-known apps may never transfer to M1 systems at all.
But with Apple continuing to cut ties with Intel and planning to have all of its systems on its own chips by the end of 2022, the number of applications requiring Rosetta 2 should continue to decline. We’re still waiting for more apps to come from the M1 side, including OneDrive, which has also promised to add support.
Dropbox sparked controversy last year when a forum moderator responded to requests for native M1 support by suggesting more interest was needed. Dropbox quickly changed tack, telling 9to5Mac that an M1 version of Dropbox would be coming soon.
Now, as the site reported yesterday, citing a Dropbox user, testing for this M1 build is currently underway. An arm64 ID confirms Arm support in the latest macOS beta from Dropbox.
Again, this is only a beta version. Dropbox has yet to say when native Apple Silicon support will be available to the general public.