Some Mac models will start using Intel processors by this time next year, and by the end of 2007 all Mac systems will feature a processor from Intel. Previewed at the conference was a version of Mac OS X Tiger running on an Intel-based Mac.
“Our goal is to provide our customers with the best personal computers in the world, and looking ahead Intel has the strongest processor roadmap by far,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “It’s been ten years since our transition to the PowerPC, and we think Intel’s technology will help us create the best personal computers for the next ten years.”
“We are thrilled to have the world’s most innovative personal computer company as a customer,” said Paul Otellini, president and CEO of Intel. “Apple helped found the PC industry and throughout the years has been known for fresh ideas and new approaches. We look forward to providing advanced chip technologies, and to collaborating on new initiatives, to help Apple continue to deliver innovative products for years to come.”
“We plan to create future versions of Microsoft Office for the Mac that support both PowerPC and Intel processors,” said Roz Ho, general manager of Microsoft’s Macintosh Business Unit. “We have a strong relationship with Apple and will work closely with them to continue our long tradition of making great applications for a great platform.”
“We think this is a really smart move on Apple’s part and plan to create future versions of our Creative Suite for Macintosh that support both PowerPC and Intel processors,” said Bruce Chizen, CEO of Adobe.
The company also made a Devloper Transition Kit available today, consisting of an Intel-based Mac development system along wiht preview versions of Apple’s software, which will allow developers to prepare versions of their applications which will run on both PowerPC and Intel-based Macs. It will be available for $999 to all Apple Developer Connection Select and Premier members.
Later this year Intel will provide development tools for Apple, including the Intel C/C++ Compiler for Apple, Intel Fortan Compiler for Apple, Intel Math Kernel Libraries for Apple and Intel Integrated Performance Primitives for Apple.
Also interested to know is that during the past five years Apple has compiled x86 versions of its Mac OS X operating system for each release of the operating system. And the main reason for the move is because IBM didn't manage to turn out a broad range of PowerPC processors for Apple.
Apple already promised a 3GHz PowerPC processor two years ago but IBM wasn't able to deliver it. Steve Jobs explained the switch to Intel will lower the power consumption of Mac systems while increasing the performance.
Photos of the keynote speech can be found at AnandTech.
We also noticed at CNET that users will be able to run Windows on Intel-based Macintosh systems. However, running Mas OS X on anything else than an Apple Mac won't be possible.