Enderle FUD Alert: Apple MacBook firmware steps down processor to stop random shutdowns

“Apple Computer issued a software update Thursday to fix a problem that caused hundreds of newer MacBook laptops to shut down suddenly — but one longtime industry analyst suspects Apple’s solution might force the computers to run more slowly,” Jon Fortt blogs for Business 2.0.

Fortt reports, “Rob Enderle, principal analyst with Enderle Group, said that based on user comments in Apple’s online support forums he suspects the laptops have been shutting down because of overheating problems with the main logic board and ‘heat sink,’ a device that’s meant to cool the machine. ‘What they appear to be doing is doing a firmware update to step down the processor,’ Enderle said. ‘If you can step down the processor, say, 5 or 10 percent, you can lower heat dramatically.'”

Fortt reports, “But if indeed Apple is doing that, another result is decreased laptop performance. Enderle likened it to throttling back a V8 engine to make it behave like a V6. It won’t get as hot, but it won’t go as fast either. ‘It would be really good to see if we can find someone who’s gotten the problem and measure the performance before and after the firmware update,’ Enderle said. Unless support forum users are misinformed about the logic board and heat sink being the issue, ‘the only way you can fix a problem like this without physically taking the machine apart is to step down the processor.'”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Darkness” for the heads up.]

MacDailyNews Take: Anyone who uses Rob Enderle, principal analyst (and only analyst, unless, for some reason, you count his wife Mary) with Enderle Group, as an expert in basically anything except the act of talking out of one’s ass is seriously unwise. You’d get sounder advice asking Rob Glaser how to finish a marathon than you would asking Rob Enderle what a specific Mac firmware update accomplishes. Our sources tell us that the firmware update issued by Apple yesterday does not step down the MacBook processor, it corrects an issue with the MacBook’s temperature sensor that caused some MacBooks to shut down too early when protecting against thermal damage.

If Rob Enderle isn’t on a mission to spoof the term “tech analyst” in an effort to expose the total lack of qualifications necessary to become one, he should be.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Apple releases MacBook SMC Firmware Update 1.1, addresses issues with random shutdowns – October 26, 2006
What is Apple doing about MacBooks suffering from ‘Random Shutdown Syndrome?’ – October 21, 2006
Apple to repair ‘random shutdown MacBooks’ free of charge – September 08, 2006

Enderle: ‘4th quarter will be Apple’s hardest since the first iPod Christmas’ – September 18, 2006
Enderle spouts some incredible nonsense about Apple iPod+iTunes – July 07, 2006
Enderle: If Apple can’t double market share it will abandon Macs – May 02, 2006
Big surprise: Enderle was wrong about Apple’s holiday quarter Mac sales – January 19, 2006
Tech pundit Enderle: ‘Microsoft wrote the first Mac OS’ – September 28, 2005
Tech Pundit Enderle: ‘fourth quarter should be ugly for Apple’ – August 09, 2005
Enderle: ‘Surveys indicate demand for Apple’s products is dropping like a rock’ due to Intel switch – August 01, 2005
Tech Pundit Enderle: ‘This year will be more difficult for Apple Computer’ and iMacs in earthquakes – January 24, 2005


  1. Enderle is a complete tool. He has 0% evidence for his conjecture. There are so many things this update could be doing thathis idle speculation is just that. Its also grossly irresponsible to make owners fear their laptops are being forced to run slower, when as one poster points out, the fans could just be sped up or set to run more frequently.

    Almost every observation Enderle has to make about Apple products is laughable. Do you remember the one about the iMac when it came out? He said that he would be wary of owning one – especially if he lived in San Francisco – in case an earthquake caused it to fall off a table and break the screen.

    And he gets paid to write this stuff! Unreal!

  2. Reason #1,037,265 why I read MDN:

    If Rob Enderle isn’t on a mission to spoof the term “tech analyst” in an effort to expose the total lack of qualifications necessary to become one, he should be.

  3. Yeh, I don’t understand why big media companies seem to quote him all the time, he knows jack sh*t about Macs, spouting out this nonsense is irresponsible, could Apple not sue him and put him out of business, he’d suit a job in BestBuy selling Zunes to schmucks.

  4. Gavron,

    Here’s what I did:
    1. I clicked the MacDailyNews related articles link to “Tech Pundit Enderle: ‘This year will be more difficult for Apple Computer’ and iMacs in earthquakes” – January 24, 2005
    2. Then I read the article and found that it was Rob Enderle who wrote for DesignTechnica, “I live in California, earthquake country, and the old iMac was one of the most stable products in its class, the new one places the weight too high and relies on a base that is too narrow making it likely that it would fall. Falling glass can be a huge hazard in a home late at night when you are trying to get the kids and family to safety during an earthquake.”

    Hope this helps.

  5. Ah, so Enderle is now using the same principles of responsible analysis as Republican commentators who just “put the question out there” when they have no proof or corroborating evidence of any sort.

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