The good and bad
I’ve never been a fan of Apple because of the processor, it is the OS that I like. This is going to be interesting.
- Macs should get cheaper. Thanks to the economies of scale, Intel chips are cheaper than PPC chips because they make a lot more of them. This should make macs using Intel chips significantly less expensive than they are right now.
- Macs should improve faster. Since Intel is developing chips for both PCs and Macs, Apple will get the benefit of the R&D that is done. Since the PPC chips were such a small part of IBM’s business, they weren’t as dedicated to improving them as Intel is.
- This transition will be full of FUD for both users and developers alike. As a OS X developer, I’m now forced to transition my projects to X-Code which I’ve been avoiding until now. X-Code is improving, but it has a long way to go to being a first-class IDE. Not that I’m a big supporter of Metrowerks either. I don’t link having choice be taken away. As a user, I was contemplating getting a new Mac PB this year. Do I wait for the new Intel-based machines next year, or do I get a new one now and hope that apps will still run on it once the transition to the Intel-based macs is complete? If I decide to get a PPC-based mac, do I wait for the inventory clearing sales? Are there going to be any more improvements to the G4 Powerbooks, or are they going to be frozen until the new Intel-based ones come out?
- Is OS X going to be forced to take stuff that Microsoft is forcing into the hardware level? Microsoft has been trying to push more and more security features into the hardware in recent years to try and circumvent the virus writers and the music pirates. Is Apple going to be forced to support these things? I definitely hope not. Having OS X get dragged around by Windows is the last thing mac users and developers want.