CNet News: Apple Will Announce Intel Switch on Monday

| Reports

Apple Computer will finally make the long called-for, long rumored, and often speculated move to Intel, according to a report by CNet News. The news outlet reported Friday evening that Apple would be announcing Monday, June 6th that the company would switch from the PowerPC processor family to Intelis family of processors .

According to the report, Apple will be moving low-end Macs such as the Mac mini to Intel in mid-2006, while high-end models will begin the transition in mid-2007.

The most recent speculation about such a switch was prompted by a report from the Wall Street Journal in May that said Apple and Intel were in talks.

The report, citing two industry executives with knowledge of recent discussions between the companies, said Apple will agree to use Intel Pentium processors, but gave no further details.

"Talks between Apple and Intel could founder, as they have before, or Apple could be engaging in negotiations with Intel to gain leverage over IBM," the WSJ report said.

Since that report was first published, a variety of analysts have expressed various levels of skepticism; these reactions ranged from the idea that Apple was simply trying to pressure IBM, the maker of Appleis G5 PowerPC processors, to the fact that Apple would have enormous difficulty moving its developer base to yet another change in processors.

So far, Apple has moved from the 68k processor, to the original PowerPC line, to the G4 processor with AltiVec, to the 64-bit G5 processor made by IBM. It is unclear what message Apple will deliver to its developers, but Monday marks the beginning of the World Wide Developeris Conference in San Francisco, with a keynote by Apple CEO Steve Jobs.

Appleis policy is to not comment on unannounced products, and the CNet News story did not name its sources. After the Wall Street Journalis story, however, Intel CEO Paul Ortellini simply said that a switch to Intel for Apple was "the Haleyis Comet of rumors."

Brad Gibson contributed to this article.

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