It's official. Steve Jobs has confirmed that Apple will transition from PowerPC to Intel processors starting next year. Interestingly, Jobs cited performance per watt as one of the motivating factors in the switch to Intel chips.
Intel processors provide more performance per watt than PowerPC processors do, said Jobs. "When we look at future roadmaps, mid-2006 and beyond, we see PoweRPC gives us 15 units of perfomance per watt, but Intel's roadmap gives us 70. And so this tells us what we have to do," he explained.Perhaps Jobs has missed our our coverage of processor power consumption.
Apple expects to be shipping Intel-powered Macs within a year and to finish its transition to Intel processors by the end of 2007. Jobs also confirmed that Apple has been working on an Intel-compatible version of OS X for the last five years, and he even demonstrated the OS on a Pentium 4 3.6GHz system. The Pentium 4 3.6GHz hasn't fared so well against PowerPC processors in Apple's own benchmarks, though.
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