NPR: Apple In Talks With Intel

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astro_rob's picture
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This morning, it was announced on NPR's business broadcast Marketplace that Apple Computer is in talks with Intel. While the radio host did not go into the technical aspects of the talks, he did cover the business aspect and explained that IBM would be on the losing end of the stick.
Has anyone else heard about this, and is this for the CPU itself, or other chips? Also, what will this do to the dynamics of the computer industry if indeed this is for an Intel-based processor for future products from Apple?

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astro_rob's picture
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Yahoo News Item To This Effect...

Seems like it's true...

Apple said to explore use of Intel chips for Macs

Fancy that.

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Highly doubtful

It might or might not be good marketing, but it would be terrible engineering to put an Intel CPU in an XServe. G5s have more crunch for less watts and are cheaper than Intel's server class CPUs. So unless IBM have some bad news about the G5s (doubtful as they depend on the POWER CPUs for their own hardware) or Intel has something amazing up their sleeves, I think the "leverage" theory is more likely the truth, if there is any truth. The Cell CPUs look like a much better bet for future Apple plans. A third platform change (68k to PPC, OS 9 to X, PPC to x86) in a decade would annoy developers too.

But then I'm not the WSJ. I'm just summarising what I've read on this question from other news/Macfan sites.

And Intel make more than just x86 derivatives these days. Maybe Apple's shopping around for a new iPod/PDA chip. Souped up XScale/ARM Newton Mk II anyone?

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Intel Inside?

Back in my telecom days, our outfit used SPARCStations (really choice machines, by the way), and we used to joke that "Intel Inside" was a warning label.
I reread the piece, and noticed that this news did not come from Apple directly, so this still might fall under the aegis of "unsubstantiated rumor". This sort of thing has been circulating the 'Net for almost a decade anyway, so perhaps I jumped the gun.
And we may be surprised. It might only be for support chips, not primary processors.
We can only hope.

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If I had to take a wild guess...

I'd suggest they're talking to Intel regarding the possibilities of having Intel supply a PCI Express motherboard chipset. Again, that's just a guess, but it seems a lot more likely then a CPU change.

--Peace

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I'm thinking your on the righ

I'm thinking your on the right track there.

Intel makes lots of things beside CPUs so this could be as boring as Apple buying flash ram chips to store the firmware on.

There is a snowballs chance in hell that Apple would switch to a non-PPC compatible CPU right now. They just finished the migration to OS X witch required a rewrite of nearly every application. Emulating a PPC code on x86 is very slow due to the number of registers in a PPC chip. So all the applications would to be at minimum recompiled and released again. I am also fairly confidant that Apple paid for some of the development costs of the PPC 970. There just has not been enough time to get a good return on either of those investments.

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I would add that I think Inte

I would add that I think Intel's clock speed advantage is diminishing, and it seems like Intel itself realized that clock speed isn't everything. Certainly it's been disappointing not to see the G5 hit 3Ghz as was promised oh-so long ago, but in the meanwhile Intel pushed its speeds from 3 Ghz to... 3.4 or 3.6? It's not a big enough advantage to switch, not like back in the darker hours of the G4. Perhaps I'm being optimistic, but I also think the consumer level (i.e. non-hardcore-gamer/non-scientific) computer buying public is becoming more aware that there isn't anything you can do at 3.2 Ghz that you can't do at 2 Ghz, and that the overall user experience is as important as clock speed.

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Laptop chip

Intel does make VERY fast laptop chips so that could be the reason. But what would it be called????

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Re: Laptop chip

timmyishot wrote:

But what would it be called????

The iChip..... What else ?

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Apple / Intel ?

NBC news announced last night that Apple had reached
an agreement with Intel where Intel would be supplying
chips for their new computers. NBC was nonspecific as
to what models of Apples were to be affected.

iChip....I like it!

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[i]If[/i] Apple was looking t

If Apple was looking to switch from the PPC to an x86 chip, it would be a very, very poor move on Apple's part.

I remember reading on the The Register that there was some development out of Intel that the Pentium line, given current technology, was unable to break the 4Ghz mark. There was also some speculation that Intel was going to have to either come up with a new way to make a 32bit CISC chip run faster than 4Ghz, or come up with a new chip archetecture.

Either way, moving to x86 chips these days is a bad decision, as it looks like the Pentium line is nearing the end of it's life.

Cheers,

The Czar

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Apple & Intel ...

Ummm, Apple has actually been using Intel chips for years. The iPod and the Newton utilize the StrongARM processor family, which is made by cough cough, a subsidiary of Intel. Honestly, I'm kinda shocked that this is even news. Also, Intel makes more than the just the x86 family of chips. They've made a good number of RISC chips in the past, just none that really picked up the market share of the PowerPC. Take the i860 for example. It was Intel's mid 1990's risc chip, ended up finding its way into embedded systems. I wouldn't be shocked if Intel has a high end 64 bit risc chip in the works.

It would be doubtful for Apple to make Intel a sole supplier of processing units. Considering how all the consoles went from Intel and their own proprietary chips to the PowerPC architecture is pretty telling as to who will be wearing the pants in the next few years chipwise. Though, I wouldn't be surprised if Intel were brought into the PowerPC project. The days of Motorola really contributing much to the PowerPC are pretty much gone, so some fresh blood in the project may not be such a bad thing.

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ARG!

What part about Apple wants to use a pc chip do you not understand!?!?!?!

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Re: ARG!

timmyishot wrote:

What part about Apple wants to use a pc chip do you not understand!?!?!?!

The part that says which chip they're possibly looking at, and for what use.
Neither Apple nor Intel has actually said anything yet, so this is all just rumour, and could be nothing more than Apple putting a bit of pressure on IBM, if even that.
The article quotes "two industry executives with knowledge of recent discussions between the companies" which is really nothing more concrete than saying "some bloke down at pub said".
Heck, it could be "two industry executives" looking to pump and dump some recently acquired Apple stock.
It's very interesting, and I'm dying to know what's actually up, but until there's something official, there's nothing to understand.

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iTablet

It could be for the "iTablet" thats as been rumored about for the past month.

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Re: iTablet

timmyishot wrote:

It could be for the "iTablet" thats as been rumored about for the past month.

Make that the last 6 years, and you would be correct about the tablet speculation timeframe. Seriously now, the most common Apple rumors are Apple is going to x86 and that Apple is making a tablet/PDA. Both are generally unfounded.

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What about servers?

i know that IBM uses x86 chips as well as PPC chips in their servers, do you think apple could actually be thinkin about amybe a cheap backup solution for home business's? since they can make a x86 machine cheaper than apple, maybe apple could be making a home server that uses an x85 version of darwin that could be configed through the web browser (perhaps a plugin to saari , I.E. Firefox) that would be kinda cool, or how about apple coming back oput with printers? it is a possibility that apple might be back in the market for for laserwriters.

and OS X has been proven that it will work on and Arm /x86 Proc. it shouldn't be that hard, even a stripped down version with a different front end could be possible...
meh, only time will tell
I personally swing to apple making printers again. I would buy one...

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Apple Rumors

Basically, I don't give any real credence to the Apple handheld tablet machine or Apple going with Intel since they've been around longer than the iMac. Granted, I had not given any credence to the cheap headless mac rumors that had been going around for a while and ultimately led to the Mac mini. The flash based iPod was another rumor I didn't give credence to. I've been wrong on some of the long lived mac rumors, but the Apple goin x86 has been around longer than the PowerPC based Macs.

Apple may go with intel for future macs, but my money would be on the chipset being something other than x86. I know that IBM has a good deal of goodness awaiting us internal. My father works in the PowerPC based server group within ibm and from what I'm told, we haven't seen anything yet. For starters, the 970 is a lowend 64bit PowerPC, and it's only a matter of time before we see the dual core version, which it was originally based on be implemented within Apple.

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Hot Off The (Digital) Presses...

Here we go...

Apple Expected to Announce Switch to Intel

Hmmm. Don't like it. Don't like it one bit.

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from AppleInsider: INTEL RU

from AppleInsider:
INTEL RUMORS TRUE: Jobs says there have been two major transitions for Mac: 68K to PowerPC and then Mac OS 9 to Mac OS X. Now it's time for third transition to Intel-based Macs. Developers will begin to make the transition now. While users can begin to switch next year. Apple is making the move "because we want to make the best computers for our customers.
There is no G5 PowerBook yet. Future products can't be build on IBM PowerPC processors, Jobs says. Intel has better performance and delivers much better performance per watt. Starting next year the first Macs with Intel processors will debut. They'll begin shipping by next WWDC (June). The transition will be mostly complete by 2007 WWDC. It's a two-year transition.

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