More details on IBM's 64-bit Power4

— 4:38 AM on October 10, 2002

More details are emerging on IBM's new 64-bit Power4 processor, which will be formally discussed at next week's Microprocessor forum. EE Times has the dirt:

Unlike IBM's original Power4, the device to be described next week will use one, not two, internal processor core and will support extensions that make the Power4 compatible with the PowerPC architecture. "Because it supports a full 32-bit environment, this chip should be able to boot the Mac OS just fine," Glaskowsky said.
A single-core design is sure to disappoint some power users, but Mac fans can take solace in the fact that the new chips should be able to boot OS X. To fully take advantage of the 64-bit chip, OS X will need to be reworked, and that's not a trivial task. However, if the new chip's performance is good, I can't see Apple not jumping all over it.

AMD's 64-bit plans for Hammer on the desktop are quite clear, and if Apple joins the 64-bit world along with IBM, Intel could be the odd man out. Well, unless you count Itanium and VIA. If everyone else goes 64-bit, Intel may be forced to follow suit, if only so it can toss around the 64-bit buzzword for consumers.

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