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Apple Businesses

Another Theory on Apple's Move To Intel 316

Posted by Zonk
from the got-to-love-theories dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Why did Apple really switch to Intel? Larry Loeb thinks that it has everything to do with the Trusted Computing Group's TNC (Trusted Network Connect)." From the article: "The Trusted Computer Group is a multivendor association that grew out of Microsoft's pre-emptive Trusted Computing Platform effort. Microsoft realized it couldn't force this down the manufacturers' throats, so it formed the TCG to give it the veneer of respectability and 'open standards.'"
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Another Theory on Apple's Move To Intel

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:29PM (#13083694)
    If there was any sense to the English language, the word "trust" would be a four-letter word.
    • Re:Risky Business (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:10PM (#13083883)
      here's the funny thing with apple's switch to intel.

      1. G5s are slow. really slow. OK, not in an absolute sense but there are very few areas where they excel in speed over x86 chips. PPC vs x86 ISA design notwithstanding, the actual speed of the real products at any one moment in time reveals the intels to be quicker.

      2. Apple want quicker machines.

      So what's with all the conspiracy theories? It's like a guy going out to pick up, and chasing the red-hot sexy young thing instead of the fat 35 year old in the corner who doesn't wash, and having all his friends go "whoa. wonder why he's going for the hot one?"
      • Re:Risky Business (Score:3, Interesting)

        by BitGeek (19506)
        The reason for the conspiracy theories is that your assertion about G5s being slow is just false.

        But I think the truth is obvious and was given to us by Apple: The ROADMAP for intel is superior for thier needs, possibly including DRM or other features.

        People look at IBMs recent announcements of processors and assume Apple was making a decision about the next 10 months, not the next 10 years.

        Even with IBM releasing chips significantly faster than intel, what the next 10 years holds is more important for
        • Re:Risky Business (Score:5, Insightful)

          by bnenning (58349) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @09:42PM (#13084710)
          The reason for the conspiracy theories is that your assertion about G5s being slow is just false.

          Yes and no. The G5 is competitive in desktop Macs. But for laptops, the Pentium-M slaughters the G4 today, and Intel's upcoming dual-core Yonah will do the same to the "low power" 1.6GHz 970FX. Because the market is moving towards portables that's a big problem for Apple, and moving to Intel solves it.
          • Re:Risky Business (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Golias (176380) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @10:15PM (#13084828)
            You hit the nail on the head. This is all about laptops.

            This is especially an issue with Apple, because they are, and have been for more than a decade, a computer company who relies on the notebook market.

            There are precious few people out there who chose Macs over desktop PC's, but an informal walk through your local "Free Wi-Fi" coffee shop reveals quite another story when it comes to laptop systems. Apple lives and dies by the PowerBook & iBook, and the way the G4/G5 roadmap was going, they would have died if they had not done something soon.

            (Disclaimer: Current iBook user. I don't give a fuck what CPU is inside as long as it's fast enough, it's cheap enough, the battery lasts long enough, and it runs OS X. If Intel gets it done better than IBM, then so be it.)
  • Trusted computing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MyLongNickName (822545) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:30PM (#13083702) Journal
    Mod this flamebait if you like, but Apple isn't the paragon of virtue that many in the Slashdot community have made it out to be. DRM in iTunes. Okay. I get that one. They are out to portect the musicians and groups that make it possible to have iTunes in the first place.

    But then explain to me why Apple has been so against 3rd party extenders to iTunes. For example, try to get your Pocket PC with iTunes. Until recently, you haven't been able to. Why? Companies that provide the apps get sued by Apple. How does this fit the "protect the musicians" model? It doesn't.

    Suing folks who scoop them on news. Embracing trusted computing (misnomer if I ever heard of one). Sorry folks, this ain't the apple of the 80's.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:42PM (#13083759)
      I've got a better theory, it's quite simple

      G5s are fine
      G5s cannot go into laptops
      Laptops use G4
      G4 delevopment stalled
      Laptops account for MORE THAN HALF of apple computer sales.
      going intel takes the risk out of competition with wintel, as they will never be greatly faster or slower.

      so stop it with the conspiracy theories ok, it's pretty simple reason to change when more than half of your product line is stalled. Do you see a mobile G5 in thinkpads? Do you see motorola improving the clock on the G4?

      STFU you troll journalists who make up these STUPID stories to get slashdot-driven ad revenue.

      Next up "Linux performance sucked, so steve jobs engineered the intel switch with the help of darl mcbride, a beowulf cluster of the new PCs will be used to render the newst Lucas movie in the star wars series in which Jar jar binks returns!!!1" or maybe a dupe.
      • But they will be greatly faster. Each OSX revision gets faster and cleaner. This is opposed to certain other companies' operating systems which tend to do the opposite.
        • My boss swears Tiger is slower than 10.3 on his 15" powerbook. I haven't noticed it on my 12" powerbook, but I alternate betwen that machine and two non apple machines often enough that I might miss the change.
      • When you say ''Laptops account for MORE THAN HALF of apple computer sales,'' you are in error. If you were to look at Apple's most recent financial release here [apple.com] (note: PDF), you would see that laptops, described here as "portables" are outpaced by desktops in both unit sales AND revenue, by a fair amount. This is not to say you aren't necessarily right about Apple's motivation, just that you have made a mistake.
      • Oh, bloody please (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Moraelin (679338)
        DRM isn't as much a conspirac theory as a fact of life, and regardless of whether that's the reason for the Intel migration, it _will_ happen.

        The fact is, being a monopoly is every CEO's wet dream. Pure idea capitalism, neo-classical theory style, is where no-name white boxes are now: a place where everyone and their grandma can start building their own and undercutting your prices. _That_ is what an ideal free market is. It's good for the consumer, but it's not where you want your company to be, if you ha
    • Re:Trusted computing (Score:3, Informative)

      by goMac2500 (741295)
      Huh? Plenty of applications sync iTunes to PocketPC, and they haven't been sued. I can think of Mark/Space right off the top of my head. They're well back by both Palm and Apple.
    • Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by LKM (227954)

      For example, try to get your Pocket PC with iTunes. Until recently, you haven't been able to.

      Do you realize that your whole point is based on this nonsensical sentence? What do you mean by "try to get your Pocket PC with iTunes"? Are you castigating Apple for not releasing iTunes for Pocket PCs? Or is your problem that you can't buy a Pocket PC with iTunes preinstalled? Or were you not able to sync iTunes with your Pocket PC? Or what? And who exactly got sued by Apple? I don't know of any Pocket PC sof

    • Re:Trusted computing (Score:2, Informative)

      by kponto (821962)

      But then explain to me why Apple has been so against 3rd party extenders to iTunes. For example, try to get your Pocket PC with iTunes. Until recently, you haven't been able to. Why? Companies that provide the apps get sued by Apple. How does this fit the "protect the musicians" model? It doesn't.

      The reason that 3rd party plugs aren't allowed in iTunes is because they would be used to circumvent the measures that Apple has taken to apease the labels, and I think we can all agree that if they were allowe

      • by Infonaut (96956) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:15PM (#13083897) Homepage Journal
        The reason that 3rd party plugs aren't allowed in iTunes is because they would be used to circumvent the measures that Apple has taken to apease the labels, and I think we can all agree that if they were allowed, that's exactly what most of them would do.

        I agree. One of the problems with these conspiracy theories is that they ignore the realities of give and take in a competitive environment. Apple had to get in bed with the RIAA in order to get the ball rolling with the iTunes store, which was a critical component of their iPod strategy. Apple seems to have figured that there's money to be made in a legal download market that doesn't include draconian DRM.

        Apple may or may not like the RIAA, but that's beside the point. Their goal is to grow the digital music market and take a slice of that growing market. The only way for them to do that was to come up with a compromise solution, and they only way to protect that compromise is to keep iTunes from becoming a Trojan Horse for pirating.

        You can look at Apple's use of DRM as the first step on the road to further restrictions on fair use rights, or you can look at it as the first step toward getting the RIAA to see that there's middle ground between totally unlimited sharing and no sharing at all.

        • by shams42 (562402)
          Do you see the iTunes model as "sharing?" Downloading, sure, but the model is clearly focused on a single provider. Maybe I misunderstood your last sentence, but it seemed a bit inaccurate.
    • But then explain to me why Apple has been so against 3rd party extenders to iTunes.

      They haven't. They haven't sued a *single* company for merely "extending iTunes".

      For example, try to get your Pocket PC with iTunes. Until recently, you haven't been able to. Why? Companies that provide the apps get sued by Apple.

      Again, wrong. Any company that wants to can write a plug-in to enable a PocketPC to sync with iTunes. What they *can't* do is circumvent the iTunes Music Store's DRM. If you want to listen to t
    • Re:Trusted computing (Score:4, Interesting)

      by King_TJ (85913) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:38PM (#13084000) Journal
      Any time you build a product that's popular enough with a niche market, you get a certain group of fanatics who try to describe the business as something greater than what is really is.

      Those folks aside though, I think Apple is focused more on becoming a "media company" than a "computer company" these days. That's the biggest difference between the Apple of today, and the Apple of the 80's.

      After all, when your C.E.O. also happens to run a major motion picture studio, and when your "flagship software applications" include such things as Final Cut Pro, Motion, DVD Studio Pro and Shake - you have to think this is a company with a primary goal of being a big player in media production and editing.

      Computers go hand-in-hand with all of that, of course, but success in offering the "whole package" includes such concepts as retaining control and big market-share of your music downloads and playback mechanisms, tools to ensure your products "play nicely" with copyright restrictions on the use of commercial media, and so on.

      I don't say any of this as an "excuse" for Apple's behavior. Rather, it's just important to understand that they *are* looking at things differently than they used to. And not doing so would leave them in a much more place, financially speaking - since they'd be in the exact same marketspace as the rest of the PC clone builders (HP, IBM, Dell, Sony, etc. etc.).
      • by Doctor_Jest (688315) * on Saturday July 16, 2005 @09:20PM (#13084630)
        EVERY computer company is becoming a "media" company instead of just selling PCs. They are just expanding their business beyond simply laptops and desktops. Selling computers alone these days is not necessarily a growth business.

        Ever get a Dell catalog in the mail? (I haven't bought one since 1997, and I still get catalogs.) Dell sells TELEVISIONS. No company can be pinned down today simply a "computer maker" anymore. Even though Dell isn't even in the same league as Apple, I use them as an example of how companies across the board are no longer only about the grey boxes.

        IBM farmed out their home computers. Sony has a computer division, but is much more of a "media company" than Apple will ever be. HP sells printers too. So the "clone" builders are more like your vision of Apple than even Apple. (Sony's got their own online music store too...)

        Apple never wanted to compete in the "clone" sector. They tried, and nearly went under. Nowadays, their computers aren't priced to the lowest common denominator Wal-Mart shoppers, but are made for a different audience. ("fanatics" you might say...)

        Apple's business is still computers, but it encompasses what a computer has become more than a transition AWAY from them. Don't kid yourself, EVERY commercial hardware vendor is going to make their equipment "play nice" wit the media companies. Not just Apple. It's the fault of bought politcians, judges, and everyone who continues to feed the fat fucking bastards known as "commercial media companies." The entire industrialized world has put a higher importance upon entertainment above everything else. Apple, Sony, IBM, Dell, HP, Gateway, Toshiba, etc. are just reflecting and perpetuating that idiotic notion.

        • There's truth in what you're saying (especially in the case of Sony, IMHO), but I still think Apple is focusing more on media from a slightly different angle than the others.

          Basically, Apple is courting the artists who create the media. They already had a foot in that door since the early days, when graphics artists and creative types started comprising a large part of Mac sales. But now they're leveraging those connections in new ways.

          Dell may be selling televisions in their catalogs now, but that does
    • 5 years ago all the apple articles were talking about how they were dead and didn't know it, on their way to dead, getting ready to be bought by ____, etc...

      Now it's all "the real reason they dumped IBM."

      It's simple. There isn't anything they want built that IBM can't build. They might not like the cost, they might not want to pay for the rapid revs that Intel does, but it's all possible. THis is simply a case of Apple expecting to get their ass kissed by IBM and treated like the only thing in the

    • Sorry folks, this ain't the apple of the 80's.

      Ummm, the Apple of the 80's was one of the most litigious computer companies in the business.

      All those Apple II clone companies didn't just up and go out of business on their own. And Apple was the bad guy in the Look-n-feel lawsuits. If they had won, there wouldn't be a non-Apple GUI in existence, save by their good graces.
  • Nice theory (Score:5, Insightful)

    by utlemming (654269) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:32PM (#13083709) Homepage
    but wouldn't anti-trust get involved real quick? If the Intel Silcon is exclusive for the TNC protocols, I can guarentee that a competing scheme will come up or the government will force it out to other people. And if it is on the Intel CPU, then AMD is really going to scream. So while it is a nice theory, I think that have a protocol which identifies the computer via a chip and then forces it to use the TNC scheme is doomed to failure.
    • AMD is also a member of the TNC initiative. Perhaps because they had no choice but to join.

      Its coming whether we want it or not and both Apple and Microsoft want their platforms the center as the media hub of the future of the home. To do this means backing by hollywood and of course they want a standard and Microsoft is doing everything possible to cater to them so they can be the new gatekeeper of data and information.
    • by msobkow (48369) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:55PM (#13083821) Homepage Journal

      From http://www.intel.com/technology/magazine/standards /st01041.pdf [intel.com]:

      TCG is currently comprised of a variety of vendors, including PC platform, operating system, and TPM vendors, with the board of directors consisting of representatives from Intel, IBM, HP, Microsoft, Sony, Sun Microsystems, Seagate, Verisign, and AMD. TPM vendors include Atmel, Infineon, National Semiconductor, and STMicroelectronics. Until now, TCG has focused on specifying a TPM for the PC.
      Over four million PCs have been shipped with version 1.1 TPMs installed, mostly by IBM and HP. However, Intel has also begun delivering this technology and has just released the Intel® D865GRH Desktop Board, which has a version 1.1 TPM and ships with a software suite that provides better security for users' personal information. Version 1.2 of the TPM specification was recently released, and TPMs conforming to the new specification are under development.
      Now that TPM definition for the PC platform has evolved, the TCG is expanding its membership and beginning to define TPMs for cell phones, handhelds, and servers--continuing to work toward the vision where all devices can talk to one another and communicate their trust state. Work is also moving forward on defining protocols necessary for communicating and interpreting the trust state.

      In other words, there are other vendors producing TPM silicon. Intel is one of the late-comers for sample hardware, not the sole driving vendor that Larry Loeb seems to think they are.

      I'd file Larry's theory under "Tinfoil/Paranoia."

  • by shmlco (594907) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:34PM (#13083718) Homepage
    Or for the slightly less paranoid... Cringely [pbs.org].

    Personally, I think the Cringe is on target, as the "iFlicks" version of iTunes has been on the radar for years now.

    Of course, being on /., I suppose we have to support the conspiracy theorists...

    • His argument is somewhat logical, except when Cringely starts talking about the retinal scan viewer for the movie iPods. That is lunacy, as is his comparison to Apple's Cinema Displays.

      LCD displays were proven technology before Apple picked it up, but as far as I know, these "retinal scan" things exist only in tech demos and have never been mass produced(and apple has to do that succesfully with good yields, which is even harder).

      • Actually, calling them "retinal scan" implies something they aren't even though it is literally true.

        These devices have been around for about a decade, they work really well, and they HAVE been mass produced, just not economically... though that has always been the goal of the company.

        If the company has developed a full color display (it was green when I tried it) and worked out production problems, theres absolutely no reason it can't be mass produced.

        Not saying Apple is goign to use it... but its the k
  • by Anonymous Coward
    It figures slashdot would post anything than comes back to some half-baked Microsoft conspiracy. On the other hand, you can also read this ars technica article [arstechnica.com] that is well-founded, and much more reasonable than this claptrap.

    Of course, if slashdot posted somehting more reasonable, it would hurt their ad revenues and click-thrus as it would generate the flamewars and trolling than the typical slashdot articles nowadays.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:39PM (#13083748)
    It was all about laptops. Just before the merger was announced, a study was released showing that something like 40% of new PC purchases were laptops, rather than desktops. For Apple, the ratio is probably even more heavily-skewed in favor of portables.

    Laptop CPUs were one key area where IBM just could not seem to get their act together. When it came to mobile G5 CPUs, Jobs probably just got tired of hearing one empty promise after another from IBM. You can't blame him.

    I doubt the conspiracy goes any deeper than that. Laptops == the only PCs that still have any meaningful profit margins. Any computer vendor that wants to prosper has to have its laptop act together, and IBM was holding Apple back big-time.
    • It was all about laptops. Just before the merger was announced, a study was released showing that something like 40% of new PC purchases were laptops, rather than desktops. For Apple, the ratio is probably even more heavily-skewed in favor of portables.

      Actually, according to their quarterly earning's report [thinksecret.com], Apple laptops were 42% of there Mac sales, so just about even with your quoted industry average. Now, I agree laptops are a huge reason for Apple jumping ship to Intel, and they're probably hoping th
  • You serious??? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by lurch_mojoff (867210) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:41PM (#13083753)
    What's wrong with you people? Enough with all this conspiracy theories. Does this dude really expect us to believe that Apple got into all this trouble of switching CPU architectures because of some not-really-ready not-really-standard? He himself says:
    Microsoft realized it couldn't force this down the manufacturers' throats, so it formed the TCG to give it the veneer of respectability and "open standards."
    My dictionary sais that "open standard" is by definition platform independant!

    Seriously, every reason beyond simple economics is complete nonsence. Apple switches to Intel x86 because thus they will get very, very cheap CPUs, which are just as fast as everybody else's, without investing huge sums in R&D, and geting nice chipsets as a bonus. That's it, period!
    • I just typed out a big tirade and then hit back and found this post which echoes my sentiment exactly.

      Pure economics, mod parent up.

    • Re:You serious??? (Score:3, Informative)

      by Zo0ok (209803)
      Also, Apple started OSX x86-development before 2000, before the release of OSX 10.0. That is, long before Microsofts trustworthy computing initiative.
  • Right... so (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mcc (14761) <amcclure@purdue.edu> on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:44PM (#13083766) Homepage
    Apple switched processor architectures, an incredibly expensive and complicated multi-year undertaking... so that they could jump on to an unproven MICROSOFT technology, a technology that Microsoft isn't even using yet, a technology which consumers so far are reacting EXTREMELY badly to, and a technology that is based around a "Trusted Computing Group" that Apple isn't even part of?

    Oh, and furthermore-- Apple did this by way of a cunning plan which keeps their developers totally in the dark about their Palladium plans, even after developers begin using receiving their developer transition kits? Great plan, that. Implement a major hardware change, go to great effort to get prototype hardware in the hands of developers so they can port their apps BEFORE the hardware change hits consumers, then suddenly spring "Hey guys, guess what? Here's ANOTHER major hardware change [Palladium] that your programs may or may not need to take advantage/caution of!" on the developers at the last minute.

    Even if any of this made sense, why would Apple need to switch instruction sets? AMD is part of the Trusted Computing Group, and Apple's been using AMD technology (HyperTransport) since the G5. I see no reason treacherous computing and the PPC would be inherently incompatible.

    I hate "analysts".
    • That is a very good analysis of why the original article was 100% navelgazing. But given your talent for critical analysis, you're last sentence seems a bit off.
    • a technology which consumers so far are reacting EXTREMELY badly to

      and these consumers are to be found where?:

      certainly not among subscribers to XM Radio, Rhapsody, Y! Unlimited, Live365, Virgin, etc.

      the DRM based subscription sales model is looking very good right now.

    • Hey, the US public, by and large, believed Bush when he said that Iraq was all about 9/11 and all about fighting terrorism. We are a country made up of a majority of morons...

      The author is probably a Microsoft shill. Windows is so freaking bad that they have to rely on hardware to attempt to fix all their software holes. At the same time, this "technology" can also be used to prevent all kinds of non-Microsoft stuff from working and all in the name of security.

      The article is bogus IMO.

      LoB
  • by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:44PM (#13083767)
    Just my $/50 but, if it's a true Open Standard, Apple should have had to go to Intel to get it. If it's a true and valuable Open Standard then other manufacturer's would also provide methods of implementing it.
  • 'Open standards' for closed computing?

    I've been a Mac user for almost twenty years. But I'm not inclined to sign over control of my own computer. If that means I don't get the newest and coolest toys, I suppose I'll just have to suffer.

    Long live Linux.

  • by overshoot (39700) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:48PM (#13083783)
    IBM is also a member of the TCG. Getting a nub from IBM would be a whole lot less work than switching CPU architectures. Sheesh, Apple could do their own nub if it comes to that; they do their own system chips all the time.
    • Aye. Moreover, Microsoft seem determined to position the XBox2 as the PC of the future. That way they get to control the platform in hardware and software, right?

      So why would MS migrate this shining new hope of theirs to an arcitechture that was going to be locked out of the net by a standard they created? That makes no sense at all.

      If Loeb is right, there'd need to be a lot more to the story than is printed in TFA. I think I'm going to apply Occam's Razor here and assume he's just plain wrong

  • i've been thinking this very thing for the past several days. on a hunch, i checked the registration for 'iflicks.' its no surprise that its already registered, but its registered to tucows!

    seriously, maybe you've heard of East Fork [theinquirer.net], and Secure Premium Content Module? in the inquirer article they talk about how this technology will be used to keep linux out of the contant market. and the article about 'Longhorn to Require Monitor-Based DRM' here [slashdot.org] makes it quite plain why apple 'switched.'

    in another report [cabledigitalnews.com]
  • That they felt that the x86 had a better roadmap, and would unlimitedly be the right platform. I honestly don't see the need for alternate theories (some of them quite out there). While not defending DRM, you have to admit that Apple's approach to DRM hasn't been especially draconian (when compared to others out there). This latest theory would make more sense to me if we saw an existing push by Apple to stronger DRM.
    • Being burned as many times as Apple has, the explanation Steve Jobs presented certainly makes sense to me. I love the design of the PowerPC, but damned if the suppliers haven't bitten Apple in the butt repeatedly.

      PPC hasn't exactly been stagnation-free for Apple with the G3, the G4, and now the G5. Even worse, though, are the shortages Apple has run into with nearly every new system launch because suppliers -- often IBM or Motorola -- weren't able to churn components out fast enough.

      Intel has the capacity
  • by craXORjack (726120) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:56PM (#13083825)

    I have my own theory on why Apple fell.

    Gravity.
  • F) All of the Above (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Marillion (33728) <ericbardes.gmail@com> on Saturday July 16, 2005 @05:59PM (#13083834)
    It seems a lot of really bright people have come up with "The Reason" Apple switched. It's as if there is only one reason.

    I'm sure I've missed one, but we've heard, A) Faster CPUs, B) Less power consumption, C) Cheaper CPUs (preferred vendor prices), D) Cheaper iPod CPUs (XScale is an Intel), E) Trusted Computing Platform.

    I think Apple weighed several factors before switching. In short, F) All of the Above.

    • Apple doesn't get preferred vendor pricing. They don't come anywhere near the volume necessary
      • I thought Apple was around the 6th largest computer manufacturer - are you saying only the top 5 get "preferred vendor pricing"? You're also forgetting all those iPods, or did you forget that those have computers in them as well?

    • I'm getting tired of all these Apple/Intel stories too. I think Apple makes some nice stuff, although certainly not the end-all of consumer electronics or computing.

      To me, the chip architecture that is inside all their stuff doesn't really matter as long as it runs well.
  • by Lord Satri (609291) <alexandreleroux@noSpaM.gmail.com> on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:00PM (#13083839) Homepage Journal
    Ok, that's almost completely off-topic, but not looking for bad karma, I find strange that /. eds haven't published anything about Apple's financial release last week: best quarter *ever*.

    Apple has announced their Q3 2005 Financial Results today:
    Apple said net income for its third fiscal quarter ended June 25 rose to $320 million, or 37 cents per share, from $61 million, or 8 cents a share, a year ago, on a split-adjusted basis.

    Revenue rose 75 percent to $3.52 billion from $2.01 billion.

    Highlights
    - 1.182 Million Macs shipped for quarter (35% growth)
    - 687,00 desktops; 495,000 portables shipped
    - 6.155 million iPods shipped for quarter (616% growth)
    - iTunes Music Store market share 80% according to Neilsen
    - Tiger revenue $100 million in quarter; installed base of Mac OS X is close to 16 million
    - Still planning on Intel based Macs to be available at this time next year.
    - Apple noticed no significant drop in Mac sales following the Intel announcement, but only have a few weeks of data. Still are being cautious about 4th Quarter predictions/results. (maybe I'm not that much off-topic ;-)
    - Question asked if Apple has considered advertising the Mac further especially surrounding the iPod "halo" effect, but no real answer was given.
    - Question about Apple's thoughts on subscription vs purchased music model. Apple still feels that users was to purchase songs, not rent them and feels the 80% market share reflects this.

    Apple also release updates to iPhoto and iSync.

    Mod me off-topic if you want. It *is* off-topic. But the financial results are worth the read... well, to me at least! ;-)

  • How is this "Another Theory on Apple's Move To Intel"? I've heard it a dozen times before, like in every bloody Slashdot story on the switch. But then I realized that this article is one fucking month old. So it may have been new then.
  • YATOASTI (Score:5, Funny)

    by LightningBolt! (664763) <lightningboltlig ... RASPom minus ber> on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:03PM (#13083855) Homepage
    Your post postulates a
    (x ) technical ( ) corporate-rivalry ( ) market-based ( ) long-term strategic

    explanation for Apple's decision to switch to Intel processors. Your reasoning is incorrect. Here is why it is incorrect. (One or more of the following may apply to your particular idea, and it may have other flaws which used to vary from state to state before a bad federal law was passed.)

    ( ) Apple has enough cash to keep it afloat for some time.
    ( ) Steve Jobs is not the only employee at Apple.
    ( ) IBM is a large corporation and does not get "upset".
    ( ) Intel has larger customers than Apple.
    (x) Intel does not begrudge Microsoft for using an IBM processor in XBox 360.
    ( ) Linux is completely unrelated to this decision.
    ( ) Apple will not reconsider Mac clones, even if it would mean Dell-branded machines.
    ( ) The next generation Macs will not be Itanium-based.
    ( ) The next generation iPod will not be x86-based.
    ( ) Most of Apple's customers don't write Altivec assembly.
    ( ) XServe machines are not a significant percentage of Mac sales.
    (x) Obscure functionality of Intel processors does not drive purchases.
    • I love these. Where do they come from?
    • I like that "Steve Jobs is not the only employee at Apple" argument. These days we hear too much "Steve Jobs does this" and "Steve Jobs will do that", as if Apple was actually one man doing every single fucking thing. That's just dumb.
  • by MrLint (519792) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:18PM (#13083906) Journal
    This is the 3rd major article I have seen about apple 'could' use the DRM for something or another.

    If the only goal was to go and keep OSX from running on beige x86 boxes they would have kept using open firmware instead of switching to BIOS. (which I still think OF was a better choice).

    And clearly Apple doesn't do the bidding of the RIAA, otherwise iTMS would have crippling DRM. Which it doesnt.

    I really wish these talking heads would meet the guillotine. Their speculation doesn't fit.

    The only speculation i have seen that makes sense is to get a volume discount on doodads for all the products from ipods up.

    My personal suspicion is that there may be some connection between apple, who tends to be on the innovation vanguard, and a number of Intel's 'gee whiz' doohickeys. Apple is exactly the kind of company that would grab a new technology and try to use it quickly, whereas intel has to go and try and shop around the stuff to slow moving wintel vendors. For instance, Apple came out with the mac mini, Intel slapped together a x86 look-alike, but it made no waves and the wintel vendors mainly ignored it. I think there is a hot steamy semiconductor romance brewing here.
    • Remember: Apple haven't 'switched' to using BIOS yet. While the official line is that Mactels won't be using Open Firmware, they've yet to tell us what they will be using. Certainly, the Developer Preview Macs are BIOS-based, but I would expect some serious changes to come.
      • Agreed. However that would mean that if its not BIOS based then those dev boxes are singularly useless in developing HW drivers.
        • I'm not sure, basically the role of the firmware on currents macs is to figure out the general settings of the machine, find a kernel on some device and start it. So long that your hardware is not used in this phase, the drivers don't need to know about the firmware. So this is mainly an issue for network cards (for network booting) and I/O cards like USB, Firewire, or ATA (again only for booting purposes) that cannot be handled using the generic drivers. Ok maybe also display adaptors that can't go to a de
  • by Rick Zeman (15628) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:24PM (#13083935)
    ...is that this is supposed to be for Longhorn. Longhorn is (roughly) a year a way. Significant market penetration of Longhorn is YEARS away (look at how many people are still using Win2k today 3 years later).
    You think there's going to be such a thing as a TC-only network in any immediate future? No way; I'd guess 2010 at the earliest.

    It's all about $$$.
  • Switching to a chip that makes buffer overflow attacks easier because it's got a dense instruction set that lets you avoid string-truncating NULLs? To fight malware?

    I don't think so.
  • wrong in the axioms (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mstone (8523) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:31PM (#13083970)
    People love to analyze big changes like this after they happen, but the analyses are almost always wrong. The problem is that the explanations carry an underlying assumption that only evolutionary changes make any sense.

    Is there any real reason to assume that Steve Jobs, with his history of making big and frequently unpopular decisions, would refuse to call a switch like this just because he was unhappy with the price/performance numbers IBM was quoting him? Not really. Is there any reason to assume that his decision to call the switch took place in a vacuum? Not really.

    One difference between leaders and followers is the willingness to make big changes on small justification. The people capable of thinking farthest outside the standard comfort zone are the ones who see the interesting possibilities first. You can build a retroactive chain of continuity after the fact, but those 'reasons' are *not* the reasons for taking the leap. They're merely reasons the person in charge (in this case Jobs) didn't reject that particular leap out of hand.

    FOSS is doing the same thing to the entire software business model. People in the industry who Just Don't Get It (*cough*DarlMcBride*cough*) talk about how FOSS needs to be made 'acceptable to business' if it wants to 'succeed', because they can't think far enough out of their comfort zone to see how 'giving stuff away' works better for everyone.

    One hallmark of genius is the ability to bridge the gap between "nobody ever thought of that before" and "totally obvious to anyone who sees it." I don't think this particular change rates as high as 'genius', but there's a similar gap between "unthinkable" and "justifiable after the fact".

  • by SiliconEntity (448450) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @06:50PM (#13084043)
    Although Trusted Network Connect (TNC) is being created under the auspices of the Trusted Computing Group (TCG), formerly TCPA, TNC is really not "trusted computing" as it is known and hated [cam.ac.uk] on the net.

    Trusted Computing is a technology where user computers can be configured to report what programs the user is running in an unspoofable way, and to keep the user from being able to hack on various programs and data that he has downloaded. Many people object to this because of the need to give up control over their own computers in exchange for being allowed to download certain data. It has many uses for DRM.

    I don't think TNC has these properties. It is a way of authenticating on a network. Yes, it can use the same TPM chip that is used in the regular TCG specification, but the protocol is not nearly as all-encompassing and doesn't have those features that are so objectionable, limiting what people can do on their computers.

    So the whole conspiracy-theory angle loses one of its key selling points, namely that this is all tied into DRM and restrictions on user actions. TNC is completely different and there is no tie in to the kinds of things that conspiracy theory fans are interested in.
    • I don't think TNC has these properties. It is a way of authenticating on a network.

      What happens when the local broadband ISP starts to require all devices on your network to support TNC before you get a routable IP address? And if you don't believe me, ask Alsee.

  • Ok this article is way out there. First of all if this is going to be an Intel only network protocal the hardware will not be cpu based but network chipset based. Going to Intel has nothing to do with this. The ars tech post makes a grat point as to why no more IBM chips. The Apple/IBM partnership was just not working out for either. Apple needed specific chips that mfg and research costs did not make sense to IBM any more.

    The bigger question is why Intel or AMD. AMD is the leader in 64bit tech, as
  • by DavidinAla (639952) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @07:24PM (#13084180)
    I believe that Apple is switching to Intel because Steve Jobs was kidnapped by aliens and taken to the Mother Ship. While he was there, he was brainwashed and ordered to switch Macs to Intel's X86 architecture. So he did. End of story.

    OK. So there might not be any evidence to support my theory, but there's at least as much evidence to support mine as there is to support the rest of the theories I've been reading. They're ALL just pure speculation, including my little green men. :-)
  • Going to Intel and buying PC and handheld chips from them will give Apple a single vendor to purchase from. This will cut parts costs, engineering costs and a ton of other costs. Intel is big enough that it can also provide engineering support so Apple doesn't have to design chipsets from scratch. Apple is about the experience and software. They don't care what the hardware is under the hood. Just like Microsoft.
  • I doubt if a proposed hardware fix for flaws in the Windows OS has anything to do with Apple changing to the Intel CPUs. IMO, Apple/Jobs knows that OS X is ready to take on Windows and they just want to get the hardware platform difference behind them. No more arguments on PPC vs x86. The public will consider the x86 Mac a PC and "feel" more comfortable with a head to head comparison with Microsofts OS(s).

    Just watch and see where it all goes. Apple will be releasing a how truckload of x86 machines, ready t
  • by SideshowBob (82333) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @08:37PM (#13084468)
    If Apple had wanted this they could've just paid whatever licensing fees are involved and implemented it in their next PPC chipset.

    So I really doubt this had anything to do with the switch to x86.
  • I doubt this. TCG is no secret, has not been for a long time, and Apple does not need to panic-move. They could just have added such a feature to their own systems when people first started talking about trusted PCs, or made efforts to provide this on their own systems. I doubt that Intel is interested in using this to shut Apple out, but as a means to enter the home entertainment market. Sony is the one to get twitchy, not Apple.

    I think that the simplest explanation is the best -- Intel/AMD just provi
  • One of the "carrots" of trusted computing is, To get access to this site (or perhaps even to get past this router) you have to turn on your trusted computing.

    The thing I came away from the article with was: Apple is going to Intel, so they can have Trusted Computing, so Apple users can surf the Internet without getting "Error 666 Your trusted computing is not turned on, Turn on Trusted Computing and re-load"
  • This is a good theory, but the journalist truly doesn't get the Trusted topic, nor even ties it to a company making a MASSIVE transistion to a new platform.

    I don't even want to waste my time with explaining how wrong the assertions in the article are.

    If the PowerPC (CPU) Architecture was UNABLE to implement TNC, then all NON Intel networked devices would also not be TNC compatible. This is NOT how it works or would work.

    Microsoft is NOT tied to the Intel platform, nor did they force TNC on manufacturers,
  • So, Apple looks at this up-and-coming networking protocol that will be supported by Microsoft's upcoming Longhorn OS. It sees the advantages it will give to users if implemented correctly. Apple realizes it will be shut out of these networks for years using its current hardware. Apple collectively freaks.

    Except for one thing. The question of Macs (and other non-PC devices with Ethernet ports) on the network with 802.1x type stuff is implemented has been an issue in the company where I work, which wants to

  • TFA is BS (Score:4, Informative)

    by cyberformer (257332) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @10:28PM (#13084855)
    Trusted computing is (mostly) bad, as has been discussed many times on Slashdot, but TFA makes so many mistakes that his whole argument is BS. Among them:
    • He gets the basic acronyms wrong: The chip is called a Trusted Platform Module (TPM), not "Trusted Computer Module". I know that seems like a minor nitpick, but if he can't even get the name of the technology right (despite working for a magazine that I assume has copy-editors and perhaps even fact-checkers or access to Google), what else has he got wrong?

    • Intel isn't the only manufacturer of TPMs (or TCMs as he calls them). Right now, it doesn't officially* make them at all, though several other companies do. Intel has a long-term plan to build the TPM into the CPU, but so do AMD and others. (*: I say officially because many people suspect that Intel might already be building TPMs into CPUs and not enabling them, a bit like it did with x86-64. But that's still speculation, and it doesn't make a lot of difference.)

    • The Trusted Network Connect spec that he talks about is only one of the TPM's applications, and not the most important. Depending on who you believe, it was designed for DRM or for encryption (most likely the former).

    • Trusted Network Connect isn't a Microsoft inititative. Like most standards, MS would prefer not to use it, and so is developing a proprietary system ("NAP") instead. That's still vaporware, of course (supposdely built into Longhorn).

    This doesn't mean that we shouldn't be extremely concerned about TNC and its proprietary counterparts. (As well as NAP, there's a Cisco one called "NAC", which isn't entirely vaporware.) The Bush administration has even suggested making something like it mandatory for everyone who wants to access the Internet, which would scare me a lot if I thought the technology would actually work. But none of that has anynthing to do with Apple using Intel.
  • by kongit (758125) on Saturday July 16, 2005 @11:09PM (#13084972)
    Sorry to be malcontent, but why should I care whether or not apple uses ibm or intel inside their computers. Will it effect the outcome of apple's computing might in the near future? Doubtful. Additionally the manner in which apple operates supposes that the end interface and integrity of their computers will change very little. Perhaps the only difference will be an ugly sticker on the case that says "Intel Inside". Perhaps apple will ritz that up also...
  • by TitanBL (637189) <brandon@tCOWitan ... minus herbivore> on Saturday July 16, 2005 @11:46PM (#13085088)
    Larry Loeb is just recylcling this article [wired.com]. which I came across the day the Intel switch was announced.

    "Apple -- or rather, Hollywood -- wants the Pentium D to secure an online movie store (iFlicks if you will), that will allow consumers to buy or rent new movies on demand, over the internet.

    According to News.com, the Intel transition will occur first in the summer with the Mac mini, which I'll bet will become a mini-Tivo-cum-home-server.

    Hooked to the internet, it will allow movies to be ordered and stored, and if this News.com piece is correct, loaded onto the video iPod that's in the works.

    Intel's DRM scheme has been kept under wraps -- to prevent giving clues to crackers -- but the company has said it will allow content to be moved around a home network, and onto suitably-equipped portable devices.

    And that's why the whole Mac platform has to shift to Intel. Consumers will want to move content from one device to another -- or one computer to another -- and Intel's DRM scheme will keep it all nicely locked down."


    I don't think this was the SOLE reason for Apple's decision. but I bet it was the deciding factor. Bottom line is that the success of the iPod has influenced Apple's focus. Now a majority of people associate Apple with iPod and iTunes not OS X or PCs. They pretty much own the portable music player market and will try to extend this to video as well,.. blah blah blah... Anyways, The real question is whether they will be able to use this newfound brand awareness coupled with cheaper systems to increase their share of the PC market. Maybe, just maybe, they can generate enough revenue selling media devices and start licensing OS X to run on non-Apple hardware. Would you like your new Dell with OS X or Windows? Ha. Its not unimaginable anymore.

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