Sorry, that was not what I meant at all. What I meant is: "The specific techniques Apple is using to improve their CPUs are the same that Intel has done." This should not be taken as derogatory of Apple -- being the second guy to implement a really good branch predictor, or L1 cache, or really fast register rename, is not substantially easier than being the first guy. However, Apple is not doing anything radically new, they are just doing the same things Intel has done and executing better on their design teams, and using a better process. The thing Intel needs to do to compete is not to figure out something radical -- that is typically how they lose, just think of Pentium 4, IA64 and iAPX-432. What they need to do to compete better is start executing better on refining the tech they have, and move to a better process.
For proof that Apple is fundamentally going for the same solution space as Intel, just look at any microarchitectural deep dive of an Apple core.
Are you or are you not acknowledging that Intel execs are on the record (in this very article we are commenting on!) stating that over the past few years they have developed new microarchitectural IP, but which has not been shipped to customers because they designed it all for 10nm, and since 10nm got so delayed they just shipped the same cores over and over? Please just give a straight yes or no answer.
Because if you acknowledge that, it should be very easy to understand why they have not shipped any kind of real improvements for years, and yet why there is reason to expect that they might ship that real improvement with Sunny Cove.