Rumor: Apple: Giving Motorola the Pink Slip?


After a 20-year CPU partnership, Apple may be about to jettison Motorola as a chip supplier, Apple Insider reports. Instead, Apple will reportedly turn to IBM for CPUs for its iBooks.

AppleInsider states that Motorola's inability to produce sufficient quantities of the PPC7457 (notably absent from the recently-refreshed PowerBook G4s), has pushed Apple to switch to IBM entirely.

The iBook is expected to be equipped with the PPC750VX, a G3 derivative. Its successor will be the 750VXe, which is expected to top 2GHz by 2005. The PPC750, despite its G3 antecedents, will not be a step backwards from the current iBook G4; it will sport Altivec, additional pipeline stages and advanced power management.

Analysis: It's long been thought that Apple would eventually turn to IBM's fast G3s, which could easily be taken beyond 1GHz. Clearly, if this report proves accurate, Motorola has breached the terms of its contract to supply certain chips in volume. This gives Apple an out, something it's probably wanted for a long time. Reports earlier this year had Steve Jobs allegedly flaying Moto execs and castigating the G4 as a 'tonka toy' compared with the G5.