Where's *my* intel Mac?
iBook G4, PowerBook G4 (12/17 inch models), eMac G4, PowerMac G5 and Xserve. These are the Mac models that are still using PowerPC processors at the moment. We can probably strike that eMac from the list, since it kinda falls out of the normal product line, sometimes is only available for the edu-market and sometimes not, yadda-yadda...
So... When can we expect the MacBook (iBook), other MacBook Pro (PowerBook), Mac Pro (PowerMac) and Xserve computers with intel processors? It seems clear by now that Apple doesn't want to use the older P4-type processors that use more energy than an average house - if you power down the P4-type computers inside of it, that is. So the assumption is that the Mac Pro line, and maybe the Xserve line, too, will wait for Conroe to appear, which is based on Yonah, but will bring 64-bit extensions. Last week, we mentioned
that Apple could make use of the Sossaman processor in the Xserve line and maybe even in the Mac Pro line to surprise us with earlier and more intel-based Macs. However: It might not make much sense to move the PowerMacs over to intel just yet. First: The quad-core PowerMac G5 is still a very powerful machine, and probably the one PowerPC machine where Apple still has decent sales (measured by how many of the top end Macs Apple actually sells, that is...). The Xserves lack an operating system just yet. Apple hasn't released the intel version of Mac OS X Server, although it'll probably be ready by the time the hardware is without too many problems.
What about the MBs and MBPs? The processors are there, so what's taking Apple so long? Probably just "the plan". The intel iBook replacements have been rumoured to be ready a couple of times in the past, and from what we hear, they are. But Apple wanted to do this transition in steps. Say: If the MBP 15" had sold badly, Apple would've probably further postponed the introduction of the 17" MBP model. But it probably was planned from the beginning to give the 15" model a couple of months in the test waters.
But I'd say the time has come. The end of March should show us both the iBook and PowerBook G4 12" models' replacement: The 13" widescreen MacBook. It'll sell like hot cakes.