Thurrott: Apple and Intel, I told ya so!

“On April 26, 2005, I mentioned in a blog posting on WinInfo Daily Update that ‘Apple is unhappy with the PowerPC production at IBM and will be switching to Intel-compatible chips this very year.’ That blurb touched off a new round of Thurrott bashing by Apple fanatics, but was later followed up by independent reports in The Wall Street Journal, Fortune,, and now The New York Times, all of which corroborated what I had written and added details. Today, according to these reports, Apple CEO Steve Jobs will announce Apple’s transition to Intel chips at the World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco,” Paul Thurrott writes for Paul Thurrott’s WinInfo.

“My, my, my. Predictably, speculation about this transition has been all over the map. In the early days of the rumor, many suggested that Apple wouldn’t use Intel x86-based chips in Macintosh computers but would instead be using Intel XScale microprocessors for a new Tablet PC-like device. Or perhaps Apple has the cachet to commit Intel to manufacturing Power PC-compatible chips, others suggested. My sources have told me that Apple is actually switching to Intel chips for its Macs, however,” Thurrott writes. “None of that really matters. Like most technology enthusiasts, I’m fascinated by the details of this transition, assuming its happening. And I’ll follow Jobs’ WWDC keynote address today like thousands of others. What I’m more concerned with is the Mac community. Where’s the love, guys?”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: iPod success opens door to Mac OS X on Intel – March 04, 2004

MacDailyNews Note: On April 29, 2005, Thurrott wrote, “Apple Ships Its Longhorn on Schedule – At 6:00 pm tonight, Apple Stores around the country will begin selling Apple’s next generation version of Mac OS X, codenamed Tiger. In case you were off visiting remote areas of Burma for the last year and a half, Tiger offers many of the features that Microsoft promises in Longhorn, but it delivers them today. Sadly, Tiger doesn’t run on standard Intel hardware, but if the rumors we heard at WinHEC are true, it may soon: In addition to the Microsoft evangelist who told us that Apple was moving to Intel, we later heard that an Intel engineer was claiming that Intel-compatible versions of Tiger were now running in the company’s Santa Clara labs. True or bogus, what the heck: Rumors like this are just fun.”

Related MacDailyNews articles:
MacDailyNews to present live Steve Jobs’ WWDC Keynote coverage – June 06, 2005

Wall Street Journal, NY Times: Apple has informed industry partners of impending Intel shift – June 06, 2005
Apple’s shift to Intel really all about Hollywood, owning the living room, and Transitive – June 05, 2005
Why would Apple switch? PowerPC is smaller, more efficient, cheaper than comparable Intel chips – June 05, 2005
Intel Inside Apple Macs? – June 04, 2005
Intel in Macs?! How’s Apple CEO Steve Jobs going to spin that switch? – June 04, 2005
Apple to switch to Intel chips starting in 2006 – CNET [updated] – June 03, 2005
Apple and Microsoft battle for control of future living rooms – June 01, 2005
Anticipation, rumors build ahead of Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ June 6 WWDC keynote – May 27, 2005
Intel CEO Otellini: If you want security now, buy a Macintosh instead of a Wintel PC – May 25, 2005
Analyst: Apple-Intel rumor ‘hogwash’ (today marks 11th month that Jobs’ promised 3GHz G5 is late) – May 23, 2005
Apple bundles videos with select music albums via iTunes Music Store – May 10, 2005
Apple releases iTunes 4.8; now supports QuickTime video along with contact, calendar transfers – May 09, 2005
With Mac mini Apple CEO Jobs attacks the Achilles heel of Windows dominance: the living room – January 14, 2005
Apple Computer will own the living room, not Microsoft – January 10, 2005
Can Apple crack the living-room conundrum before Microsoft? – December 30, 2004
NY Times: Can Steve Jobs put Apple in the center of your living room? – March 23, 2004


  1. OS X on x86 has been running in the labs since more than a year, and on AMDs. That is hardly the point “A serious company would not put all its eggs in one basket” one of the “Engineers behind Tigers” told me when discussing chips, Intel and AMD options.

    The point is that it HAS to be a 64-bit architecture and that means new generation chips, not the old 32-bit ones.

  2. I’m all for the transition. IBM just can’t seem to produce the G5 fast enough or make it stable enough to run at faster speeds. Plus, I’m sure Jobs is pissed that they can’t get the G5 into laptops. Its definitely time for a change. I only hope they know what they are doing going with Intel over AMD. To me, it seems that AMD is at the head of CPU technology now, not Intel.

    I also hope this doesn’t make my PowerMac G5 worthless in a couple of years. But with my luck, it will be.

  3. It’ll be interesting to see what actually comes out of the WWDC keynote.

    Regardless, a little part of me wants Steve to get up there and release a bunch of new stuff and then at the very end say something to the effect: “All of you analysts and rumor mongers are dipsh*ts. The Intel/Apple partnership doesn’t exist.”

    “P.S. Eat Sh*t Thurrott”

  4. If Apple switches to Intel I’ll be moving over to a different platform. I’m not buying a machine with an Intel chip in ever again. I’ll probably go back to Linux and AMD. Ho hum.

  5. Jeff, todays G5 PPC in two years will be ANYWAY what the B&W G3 are today. No matter what chip Macs in 2007 will sport.

    Worthless? nope. Outdated? You bet, whatever chip will be at the heart of a Mac with OS XII.

  6. I’ll see it when I believe it. I don’t believe it now and even if he says it I still won’t.

    Reality Distortion would have to be in hyper-mode. Look at what Apple/IBM did for supercomputing. Intel could do that? Look at what IBM is going to the gaming industry. Intel didn’t do that. Why would Apple switch to Intel? To be compatible with Intel DRM? Unlikely. To compete directly with Microsoft? Seems crazy enough to work, but mostly foolish.

    A good x86 emulator will do better. An x86 coprocessor running at very low power would be an interesting comprimise. To go to x86 would cause this user to lose respect for Apple. POWER is simply a cleaner, more modern platform.

    Apple would do better to improve their OS X bottle necks than to move to Intel. Now if x86 improves Mac OS X speed by 30% due to better compilers, then there might be an arguement, but I doubt that’s the case.

  7. You guys knocking Intel make me laugh… you’re on crack or something. Listen, given the choice between buying my next Powerbook with a 1.7ghz (or whatever) G4, or a dual-core 3ghz intel processor, I know I’d rather have “Intel Inside” so long as all of my current apps run smoothly.

    Get with the program – its not about the processor. Its about the software. So long as it runs OSX, and so long as all your apps run just fine (and I’m sure that is the absolute #1 priority for Apple), who the hell cares? Actually, I REALLY care – give me a dual-core 3ghz processor in my Powerbook, and right now! 😀

    Don’t you realise the cost benefits of this? Apple doesn’t need to design its own motherboards, or custom chips, and more. Intel provide a total integrated solutions with all the networking and control circuitry built in – including wi-f, bluetooth, wimax, etc etc. This could lower Mac design and manufacturing costs by $100-200/computer – that’s a MASSIVE saving for Apple – and likely to push retail prices down hard, too. This is good news, if it happens – and if the transition is smooth and hassle free – just like classic to OSX was.

  8. Thurrott thought the iPod mini was a flop.

    Remember when he said Apple was hiding ‘mini’ sales figures because they were so godawful?

    Tee Hee.

  9. Sounds on paper like a good move. Keep up with PC speeds and potentially increase the number of software titles through using a WINE style program, while still keeping the most important difference – OS X. Hopefully this’ll help OS X spread; most people I know have no idea what OS X looks like.

    Will they let the likes of HP sell computers with OS X? I hope so… with Longhorn too far away it’s a great time for Tiger.

    MW: Sound…a sound choice?

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