Today Apple is moving away from Intel processors to employ internally designed Apple Silicon, but the first real migration – revolution happened at the end of the last century. In 1994, Apple undertook the transition from Motorola 680 × 0 processors to PowerPCs, in collaboration with IBM and Motorola, a critical step in facing competition from PC manufacturers offering machines with Intel’s Pentium processors. From the web emerges a video for internal use created at the time by the European team of Apple that dealt with communication. It is a classic 90s-style video, overflowing with various effects, typical of promotional films of the time.
In the unnecessarily long video – dated in style but perfectly suited to the audio-visual styles of the time, you can see the testimonies of Apple managers and marketing managers of the time, passages with the humorous dubbing of old films and comparisons with the Pentium. Apple promised PowerMacs more “human” and above all more powerful.
Desktop machines were particularly taken into consideration, laptops being much less popular than they are now. The processor was seen as the central element that could make the difference between the various systems. Today it is not only the CPU that counts but also aspects such as energy-saving and autonomy are taken into account.
PowerPCs were RISC processors. In 1991 the PowerPC was just one component of the alliance between Apple, IBM, and Motorola. At that time the market was dominated by the combination of Microsoft and Intel, with Windows and the Pentium providing a significant increase in performance over the generation of 80386 and 80486 processors.
PowerPC processors aroused the interest of various companies in the market. Microsoft ported Windows NT 3.51 to PowerPC, Sun Microsystems ported Solaris to PowerPC, IBM developed a version of AIX for PowerPC and planned an OS / 2 version for the new processors. In the mid-1990s, PowerPCs were the most powerful processors available for personal computers.
Back then, Apple’s migration from Motorola processors to the powerful new PowerPCs was an attempt by a few, none of the tech greats. No one could have imagined that another migration – revolution, from PowerPCs to Intel processors would follow over the years. Let alone get to the present day, with Apple announcing the abandonment of Intel processors to use its internally designed Apple Silicon, with the first Mac M1 chip, the third evolution migration.