Apple's Roadmap?

boyfarrell

Registered
What do you think for the roadmap over the next two years? Here is my take (however I don't know much about processors replease dates?):

November/December 2005 - PowerBook - New low power PPC (if available then??)

June 2006 - PowerMac - Intel

August 2006 - iBook & PowerBook - Low power PPC introduction in iBook (and spec boosts for the PowerBook)

December 2006 - PowerBook - Intel

June 2007 - iBook and iMac - Intel

December 2008 - Servers - Intel

(I have left out the MacMini and the eMac but I guess they would mirror the iBook, on a delayed schedule?)
 

fjdouse

UNIX - Live Free or Die
The mini will be the first intel machine, shipping BY june, i.e. it could be announced before I think.
 

CreativeEye

Registered
you also have to remember that the new intel chips will allow for completely new form factors - all new mac looks.

so - i think as well as faster macs we'll also get brand new looking macs!

a smaller G5 (or whatever it'll be called by then) tower will certainly be great!
 

fryke

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
Since people will have to wait for software to be native on the intel Macs, I believe we'll see the pro Macs to go intel last. So it's going to be Mac mini/iBook/eMac/iMac/PowerBook/PowerMac/Xserve rather than the other way 'round. Also, it's the G4 that is old, not the G5. That, too, makes sense in my line.

I personally guess that the first intel Macs won't be pre-announced. They'll be announced and released on the same date. WWDC 2006.
 

moav

Hunter of Muffins
I really hope they bring on one more product to the matrix. camera, video camera, tablet, dvd/tivo recorder, new home wireless home servers, programable calculators. etc. Now that they have been able to penetrate the consumer market with the ipod what business product will they bring to the table of the corporate world? I think they were hoping that ichat would bring some business on but I guess video confrencing just isn't used by molly little lady worker. They do have Filemaker which I wonder if they will ever bring back under the Apple name. But beside that and a few products in the proffesional creative fields Apple really doesn't have any serious business products be it software or hardware that can be used by the business masses. Maybe a laser activated stapler that cuts a small foldable slit into piles of papers.
 

ElDiabloConCaca

U.S.D.A. Prime
parb.johal@ante said:
you also have to remember that the new intel chips will allow for completely new form factors - all new mac looks.
All-new Mac-looks can be had with the current crop of PPC chips -- the chip will not affect the outward appearance of the Mac.

Apple could make the new Intel-based Macs look exactly the same, or they could make them look different -- it's not the chip that's driving that, though. The chip takes up about 2% of the Mac's total self, and is not a driving factor in what the form factor of the Mac looks like.

All chips are basically shaped the same: small, square wafers with a chip on them. Just because Apple goes from PPC to Intel doesn't mean that suddenly new form factor options are available.
 

MisterMe

Registered
This is not quite true. The low operating temperatures of G3's and some G4's allowed fanless iMacs. These were not possible with the with the available processors from Intel at the time. It is not possible with the G5 today. The G5 places tremendous contraints on your form factor because it requires a massive cooling system.
 

boyfarrell

Registered
Jobs stated that the transition to Intel would be complete in 2007. Is there any reason to doubt him?
Sorry, I started counting my two years from January 2006! (i.e. I ended up in 2008).

It seems strange that people are saying the mini will go first. I would expect people who buy the mini, on the whole, (I know there are users here that are very sophisticated and use Minies - no offence) not to care or even understand the significance of a processor other than it has a number and the bigger the better i.e. my mum. The only advantage from Apple's point of view would be that these people see 'Oh wow, "Intel inside"' and hand over the money (unless I'm completely misreading the Mini's fan base?)

The people that care the most about the change, I would say, are PowerMac and PowerBook users. In particular PowerBook users, as they are suffering most when surveying Apple's current 'professional portable' product line. So I for one, would expect these to change first - it just seems 'right'.

(Also, can you imagine the PowerBook selling when you can go and get a cheaper iBook that out performs it! Something bloody spectacular must come along for the PowerBook users if this is the case!)

That said, what roadmap makes the most (cold and objective) business sense? Lower end or high end first change?

Since people will have to wait for software to be native on the Intel Macs, I believe we'll see the pro Macs to go Intel last.
Is there evidence to doubt that all the major applications won't be on board? What apps do 'pros' use that others don't? Really specialised stuff?

Do you think that Apple might grade it's product lines, that is to have Intel and PowerPC versions of any one model available at the same time? This could open up many interesting options, but again does it make business sense?
 

Lt Major Burns

"Dicky" Charlteston-Burns
the one that is in most need of a processor upgrade, is the powerbook (it lags. a lot. and now the ibook is encroaching. again). the one in least need is the imac. the newest form factor (most expensive to change, therefore) is the mini (but it is small)
 

fryke

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
boyfarrell said: "Is there evidence to doubt that all the major applications won't be on board? What apps do 'pros' use that others don't? Really specialised stuff?" --- Evidence might be that it took Adobe and Microsoft more than a year to release Mac OS X versions of their applications. This transition should be easier, Steve Jobs said, but I still think that some apps might lag behind Apple. Pros per definitionem use higher-end software. A consumer might or might not buy Adobe's Creative Suite, but his job doesn't depend on it, so it's still more important to the pro.

then boyfarrell said: "Do you think that Apple might grade it's product lines, that is to have Intel and PowerPC versions of any one model available at the same time? This could open up many interesting options, but again does it make business sense?" No, I don't think so. The intel machines will replace PPC machines. I.e. if there's a new low-end desktop Mac, the former Mac mini will be discontinued. Because as you yourself hinted at, it wouldn't make sense.
 

steven_lufc

Registered
MisterMe said:
Jobs stated that the transition to Intel would be complete in 2007. Is there any reason to doubt him?
3ghz G5's anyone??
 

fryke

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
Hehe... Okay. That's a good one. Still: I think until there's reason to believe otherwise, we should assume Apple at least _plans_ on sticking to the plan. June 2006: First intel Mac. End of 2007: All products on intel instead of PPC.
 

mindbend

Registered
Apple's between a rock and hard place on this one. Let's say they throw a 3.5 GHZ P4 in the Mac mini and roll that out first. That machine could conceivably (depending on the operation) be faster than anything else in Apple's line. So then the high end users are going to stop buying boxes because they aren't about to drop $3,000 on something that is marginally faster than a $500 mini. Yeah, I know there's all kinds of things that go into overall speed, plus expansion options and such, but in general I'm just saying it's a tricky position trying to balance the line during this transition. Once it's all in, it will be a lot easier, you just put the fastest chips in the big boxes.

Maybe the mini becomes the testbed for the transition. That audience would probably be responsive to seeing "Intel inside". They could put a low/mid level chip in it and try to avoid stepping on the high end boxes.

You could get away with putting a faster chip in the laptops and still not step on the big boxes just because the other laptop bottlenecks will still keep it down (for now).

Starting on the "low" end also allows Apple to fine tune things for what should be their premium boxes.

In the end I think Apple has to start low end first. The PowerBooks really need it the most. The G5 DP towers are really quite good machines today. Most users can hold out for what should be a behemoth in 2007. I'm drooling now just anticipating something like a Dual 5 GHZ with all the next gen serial-ATA (or whatever rules then), super fast RAM, hyper-transport-express-xpress-whatever-super-duper-fast-thing, pro-level graphics card (finally). Yum.

Here's my prediction, which is almost guaranteed to be way off:

1. Mac mini (test bed machine)
2. iBooks/Pbooks (iBooks keep old look mostly, PBooks get very new look)
3. iMacs (new form factor)
4. PowerMacs (with a new name and new box)
5. Xserves (just they're always last it seems)
 
Top