Apple Shift to Intel Wont Alter IBMs PowerPC Focus
"Servers and embedded" remain the target markets for PowerPC CPUs, IBM says at the In-Stat chip forum.SAN JOSE, Calif.Apple Computer Inc.s plan to switch to Intel Corp. processors from PowerPC CPUs will not change IBMs marketing focus for the chips. Regardless of Apples plans, "both servers and embedded" will remain the target markets for these CPUs, including the PowerPC 970MP, the latest version, said Norman Rohrer, distinguished engineer and one of IBMs top chip designers, in his presentation at the In-Stat Fall Processor Forum here Tuesday. Rohrer provided a detailed view of the new PowerPC 970MP multicore processor, the chip behind Apples new Power Mac line. The PowerPC 970MP, which will be available in clock speeds from 1.2GHz to 2.5GHz, is a "low-power, high-performance" processor, he said.
Based on the single-core POWER4 processor, the 970MP features twin cores, each with its own CPU, AltiVec SIMD unit and 1MB of L2 cache, Rohrer said. Though the chip itself is 64-bit, it is also compatible with 32-bit instructions, meaning that users will not have to upgrade software when migrating from previous PowerPC-based systems, he said.