According to a press release published on its Japanese web site, IBM officially announced, today, the release of the PowerPC 970MP.
This processor has longly been rumoured (since last year) to be a candidate for Apple’s next-generation high-end Macs. Some readers had even hinted clues on multi-core processors support in Apple’s developer utilities.
The company has also announced the characteristics of its PowerPC 970FX, the low power version of its 970 processor. It consumes 13W in low clock speeds (1.2 and 1.4Ghz), and 16W at 1.6Ghz.
The PowerPC 970MP is similar with the PowerPC 970 which is currently used in the PowerMacs but features two cores with same clock speeds (from 1.6 to 2.5Ghz).
Apple recently announced that it was swtiching to the Intel architecture by 2007. However, IBM’s processors are still good candidates for the very next generation of PowerMacs, as Intel processors shouldn’t come into high-end Macs before late 2006.
The question that IBM didn’t answer yet and could probably help us to guess if Apple could use that processor is the quantities that will be available for each processor. Volume has been a big issue in the past with PowerPC processor, even with IBM’s PowerPC 970.