[quote]Originally posted by Bodhi:
<strong>Consumer and Pro-Sumer Models: AMD type PPC processor with AltiVec and nVidia nForce. Don't forget that AMD and Mot are partners on many things and AMD and nVidia are very very close and Apple is very close to nVidia.
All sorts of arrangements could happen... perhaps AMD just becomes a fab for Moto so that Moto doesn't need to spend all the money to build these expensive fabs. They already did this with IBM. Perhaps they (AMD) will use this to slip into the PPC design business. If their core is general enough then they may want to maximize their return on investment in it, and spending a bit more (or having Apple fund) to put a PPC decoder on it could get them a new steady stream of revenue. Remember the chip margins in the x86 world have been cut to the bone, and beyond. AMD might be able to charge Apple a bit more since Apple actually has margins, unlike the PC makers.
Servers: IBM Power4 or at least a variation of it.
Just because the POWER4 is a server processor doesn't mean that IBM can't build really fast desktop processors. The core of the POWER4 is similar in concept and complexity to the PentiumIV. On the next generation of process (0.13 or 0.1 micron) we could see a POWER4-derived desktop PowerPC that can give Intel a run for its money. IBM hasn't built it yet because the machines they sell are servers. Given a customer who sells desktops, they would design a desktop chip.
That way Apple is still not putting all of thier eggs in one basket like they did with Mot. And that way Apple has a very very serious server processor.
In a way it still pigeonholes Apple though -- their servers are dependent on IBM and their desktops on somebody else, and their notebooks on somebody else. Better would be multiple choices for each line of product. If they can get all of their suppliers to build PowerPC w/ AltiVec & HyperTransport (for example) then they can suddenly mix and match parts depending on whatever their requirements are.
To the person who said that Apple would not go with AMD cause they are not making money. Almost every single major corporation out there is having trouble right now including Motorola, Intel and AMD. (IBM posted a profit though
) So is Apple as well. That arguement means nothing.
Except that AMD is probably hungry for more business!
Dual Boot. Man this has been the subject of many heated debates between my friend and I these past few days. He swears that at every turn with the people at Apple he knows and that he bullshits with about rumors, they do not deny this rumor, ever. One guy he spoke to recently just sat quiet for a miniute or two and then changed the subject, didn't even say "that's ridiculous" or anything like that. My friend said his reaction was more like: "how did that get out?"</strong><hr></blockquote>
It could always be an internal Apple project that won't necessarily see the light of day. In a practical sense such a machine has never been a commercial success -- processors are fairly expensive (in terms of cost, space in the machine, power and heat) so any machine that has to have two of them is going to be at a disadvantage. Having two that use the same bus (i.e. SMP G4s) is much cheaper and more efficient. Running two OS's means you have to pay for two (in terms of money, memory, and disk space). OSX's fat binaries might let you have a mutant OS that knows how to load the appropriate binary onto two different processors, but that gets into all sorts of weird issues as well. Interesting project, but I really hope that Apple isn't seriously entertaining the idea -- if you think the Xserve is a "hack", its got nothing on this idea.
The Itanium isn't going to be an option, at least not for another generation or two -- except at the server level. When the EPIC project was in its early days didn't Jobs come out and say something about it? I only vaguely remember, but at one stage or another pretty much everybody was talking about it. Since then pretty much everybody has been ignoring it.