Wednesday, June 04, 2003

Moto monkey!

In the midst of constant PowerPC 970 rumors and Powerbook 970 debates regarding the 970 motherboards reportedly being produced for 970 workstations, or could it be a 970 Xserve, with never ending chatter regarding the Powermac 970 (of course), we forget about another very important processor. No, not the PowerPC 980. But the G4.

That's right, Motorola, the company whose processor development has limped along for years, dragging Apple pitifully far behind in clock speed and power, is making some noise. No, nothing about the legendary "G5" that may have once been an actual concept to the folks at Moto. Instead we're getting news about possibly faster G4s that may in fact reach 2 GHz some day (but not soon).

One major obstacle for such a G4 would be its clock speed of only 1.3 GHz. Sure, Moto would overclock it to 1.5 GHz, but that's never a fun process. Especially when IBM's producing 1.8 GHz PowerPC 970s right now at their plant named "Fishkill" (yeah, it's just kinda disturbing).

So, "what's going on?" you ask? Well, it looks like Motorola has finally wised up to the whole "Apple is totally pissed at Moto and is leaving them for IBM" thing. With the 970 weeks away, and the 980 on its way early next year, Apple's got a surprisingly bright future with Big Blue.

Now Motorola's trying to save itself from losing the company that buys around two-thirds of all the PPC processors they produce. I think it's just a little late for that. I read something in a forum post that sums this whole situation up quite nicely: "The best thing Apple can do is get that monkey (Motorola) off their back." It's a noisy little monkey, too.

The true irony is that Moto has treated Apple like dirt for years, and they've truly taken that for granted. Without Apple's business, Moto's stock will take yet another major hit, and their PPC operations may fold completely.

Let's get this monkey off our backs.

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