Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Apples to Oranges

The unthinkable has occured. Steve Jobs has announced that Apple will begin using Intel chips in its computers.

Many will wonder what this means. What’s the big deal? Well, first of all, the new hardware will be completely different in structure from all current Macs. That means all new software will have to be written for the new Intel-based Macs which means that the new software won’t run on any Mac that’s been put out so far. This leads to the conclusion that all current Macs will be obsolete by 2007. And since I bought a G4 powerbook only a year ago, I’m less than happy.

This migration should ultimately be good for Apple, but it sure screws consumers for the near future. IBM, Apple’s current chip provider, has been unable to come up with a chip cool enough to run in a laptop and has yet to break the 3 gHz mark (which was promised about 2 years ago). This has caused Apple to lag behind the competition, waiting for IBM to solve its issues. If not for the iPod, Apple probably wouldn’t be sitting too pretty right now. Good thing I didn’t wait around too long for a G5 powerbook to show up. But I’m wondering what people in the market for a new Mac soon, like Gina, are going to do until late 2006. What’s the incentive to buy a Mac that won’t even be able to run Apple software in a year or two?

Apple has just pushed everyone through a tough transition to a completely new OS and the final outcome has been great, but I’m not looking forward to another period like that any time soon. I was hoping to hold on to my computer for at least 5 years. It could be worse, my Mac could be a Dell... oh wait, it just might be in a few years.

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