Enlarge / The 2021 MacBook Pro needs an emulator to run Dropbox's app. (credit: Samuel Axon)
Dropbox is working on its promise to support M1-based Macs natively, as a recently released beta version of the company's app for macOS supports Apple Silicon in the current MacBook Air , MacBook Pro , 24-inch iMac , and Mac Mini .
Apple debuted its M1 silicon in 2020. Since then, Dropbox has yet to offer a version of its file-hosting service that runs natively on computers using Apple's chips, frustrating some professional users who rely on and pay for the program for work.
Without the beta, M1 users are required to use Rosetta 2, software that translates apps with x86_64 instructions for Apple's Arm-based silicon, in order to use the Dropbox app. Running Rosetta 2, however, can generally have an effect on battery life, memory, and performance. For most, Rosetta 2 is a sufficient solution for running Intel-based applications. And it's possible that some lesser-known apps will never get transitioned to M1 systems at all.