Arstechnica on the Big Switch


Hannibal over at Arstechnica gives a very thought provoking commentary on the switch from PPC to Intel. He looks beyond the Steve Jobs RDF and backs his statements up with facts, and quotes from industry sources. Sure, it's a bit late, but it's a very well written piece and I suggest everyone have a read.
nice. what i gather from that is, IBM wanted a bushel of money, apple have been crying wolf and playing arrogant, and Intel will give them more than what they want, with a slight performance hit.

i'm still in the intel corner.
the only thing is if Apple continues to act as a prima donna, when will be the next switch coming?
I liked the update at the bottom. :D

It makes sense to me, I dare say we'll never know all the gory details until someone writes a book or something. I'm not sure I agree that a video iPod is necessary to combat the PSP - after all, as many of us have been discussing they are really aimed at different customer types, but with media players coming through thick and fast, Apple need to get on-board asap with an iPod which does more (I like the shuffle but the big beasties seem very dated to me). Intel supplying CPUs for the desktop and iPod with the inevitable volume discounts seems logical (I'm also thinking DRM is missing from the equation).

Something an Apple tech told me, I'm sure I posted about this, was that things weren't going to be the same again, the days of the Apple being all about the Mac is over, Apple is all about the iPod and iTMS (neither of which appeal to me much) and that is where the focus is now, the Macs will continue but there will be enourmous savings on R&D.

As Bob said " oh, time will tell.."
Yeah, Apple are putting heaps of focus onto the iTMS and iPod, but then again why shouldn't they? It's that popular, so go ahead I say. Just as long as they don't lose focus of what they really are: a computer company. I'm sure they won't.
an apple tech told you that the days of the mac are over?
how would he be privvy to that sort of info?

in essence how can the days of mac be over? if they were, why would apple bother switching chips to ADVANCE the mac product if it thought that the days of mac are over?! they'd just stick with IBM and let them dictate the speed of development of their own business.

i think exercising a degree of common sense might be prudent in this situation.

days of mac are far from over.

Absolutely, I noticed on the update at the end, he'd obviously fought off some vicious attacks but I think it's just a simple fact. Of course, Apple are a computer company, but if they are able to ride a wave of sucess with the iPod, go for it. It raises brand awareness and the halo effect leads to some buying Apple hardware, it's good all round I think.
parb.johal@ante said:
an apple tech told you that the days of the mac are over?
That's not what I said, read it again. It's about emphasis, the emphasis is no longer solely on the Mac, the iPod is the current star product.
Veljo said:
Yeah, Apple are putting heaps of focus onto the iTMS and iPod, but then again why shouldn't they? It's that popular, so go ahead I say. Just as long as they don't lose focus of what they really are: a computer company. I'm sure they won't.

I think they are pushing the iPod product line because it has more mass appeal than Macs because people will have to learn how to use them, buy Mac software that they've probably already bought for PC, etc.

I think the Intel switch is a step closer to mass-market Mac appeal.
I don't think things will change too much overall, too early to make predictions though. Even after the change, a switcher will still need to buy new software etc. unless they plan to run Windows all the time and we still don't know if there will be any compexities in the production machines that which would preclude a normal user from trying that kind of unsupported configuration.

(should have put some commas in there ;) )
Well yes, we _do_ have Phil Schiller's statement that Apple _won't_ prevent users from installing Windows. I think the mass appeal might very well be an important point.
I think the notion that apple will focus the majority of its resources on iPod development & research is a bit misleading. It gives the impression that the computer side of things is going away.

I may be wrong here, but it seems that the mp3 player market isn't as exciting as it was a year ago. I think I even read somewhere that the market is becoming saturated. That doesn't seem like a good market to throw your focus into.
the market has become staid, so has the ipod. a colour screen is not what people want to see, or at least not something people are gonna choke on their cornflakes on at the announcement of.

there is the portable media device, but these are all crap, and the PSP, which is something entirely different, but has the same appeal, and price tag, and the ipod.

the other mp3 players don't get much of a look in anymore, IMO, unless you're a complete PC fanboy and swear by your iRiver (i swapped my ipod for my friends iRiver for a week, with similar music. i couldn't wait to get my ipod back after about 3 days. needless to say, he now has an iPod)

it would be naiive to ignore the multimedia device market, as it's a logical progression, and the public will see it this way also. if the ipod doesn't go this route, the public will see it as falling behind the times, and therefore not the must-have-it gadget that it is (or was)

remember, 'iPod', purely as a name, doesn't denote any connection to music, or any media for that matter. as much as i'm against portable video (it sucks ATM), i think it is the way forward.

hence, R+D is needed, as are portable, scalable, powerful chips.

Macs will always be around. they now have the finances to do what they want with macs, so the focus has to stay on keeping the revenues coming in (ie selling ipods and songs on iTMS)

Without question Apple are and should push this iPod thing as far as it will go. But, make no mistake about it, Apple are fully aware that the Mac is the epicenter of it all.

I mentioned in another thread a while back, but I'll repeat…I met with a tech consultant recently (looking to be a consultant for my company, believe it or not) who turned out to be a former high level exec for Apple and was basically in many of the strategy meetings with Jobs. According to him, even in the midst of "The Rise of the iPod", the team recognized the creative industry (the Mac buyers) as a priority.

Jobs absolutely plays hardball. He does petty things. He does things for spite. But he sure as hell isn't going to let his company get on a train moving backwards. I'm convinced he believes Intel will deliver an excellent product(s).

In case you haven't noticed recently, Apple's software is increasingly in the Pro arena. Final Cut, Logic, Shake and more are not "consumer" level products. They demand high end hardware, with no end in site for speed, RAM and hard drive speed demands. Apple wants to keep plowing ahead in this market and you can believe that they want to see Final Cut running realtime high def as fast as possible. They're not going with Intel just because they can get some discounts (though having a $200 Mac mini will be huge).