- Editorial: Apple and Intel Rumors
the past week, there have been rumours in the press (firstly in
the Wall Street Journal) about possible talks between Intel and
Apple. The subject of the talks is said to be the possible adoption
of Intel processors in Apple computers.
the moment Apple uses IBM's PowerPC processors, the G5 and the older
G4. There are several problems at present with this. Given the heat
generated by the G5, it is not currently being used in Apple's Powerbook
portable range. In addition, IBM have been slower than Intel in
the "megahertz" race, though to be fair the number of
clock cycles in not the only measure of a CPU's speed. Currently
the fastest G5 runs at 2.7GHz, compared to Intel's 3.7 GHz. So it
might just be seen as a ploy by Apple to get IBM to work more quickly
at sorting out these issues.
would be several benefits to switching to Intel. Firstly, Intel
chips are much cheaper. In the past Apple have dismissed using Intel
chips sighting the superiority of the PowerPC platform. However,
in the recent months we've seen the introduction of 32-bit/64-bit
Pentium 4 processors and also previously 64-bit Itanium. It is conceivable
that Apple may opt to skip the Pentium range, and go straight to
the Itanium. There are problems with switching, most notably that
software running on Apple's currently would need to be recompiled.
This has been done in the past by Apple, however, with their switch
to PowerPC several years ago. There has been talk that this problem
could be got around for the moment using smart emulators. Of course
there might have been talks about something else such as Intel networks
or Intel's power saving technology in laptops.
difficult to say what will happen, but what is sure is that both
Intel and Apple got a lot free publicity!