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3/8/2006
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Apple CFO: 1,000 Apps Running On Intel Mac Platform

But some key Mac software is encountering performance issues on new machines.

Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer said Tuesday that more than 1,000 applications have been ported to the Intel-based Macintosh platform, but he admitted that some key software is experiencing performance challenges.

Speaking at the Morgan Stanley Semiconductor and Systems Conference, Oppenheimer said Apple is still running about a year ahead of its planned transition to the Intel platform. "There are 1,000 applications that are universal today, with more coming," he said.

But some applications, such as Adobe Photoshop, haven’t been optimized for the Intel Macs, Oppenheimer added. "For power users, they are going to notice a difference [in performance],” he said. "They may or may not find that acceptable."

Apple announced last year that it expected to begin shipping Intel-based Mac computers by midyear 2006, but the first Intel systems--the new MacBook Pro notebook and a new iMac desktop--came out in January. And earlier this month, Apple unveiled its first Intel-based Mac mini desktop.

Some solution providers, however, have said much of the software for commercial applications hasn’t performed as well on the Intel Macs as their customers would like.

At the Morgan Stanley conference, Oppenheimer sought to reassure the market that major Mac applications are on track to be optimized for the Intel-based Mac platform.

"We have commitments from our major developers," he said. "They will release universal versions of their applications--not only Adobe, but also Quark and Microsoft."

Oppenheimer also reiterated Apple's strategy of allowing Intel Macs to run virtual versions of Windows operating systems, but he stopped short of saying that Apple would do technical work to make that possible. "We will do nothing to preclude Windows from running on Intel-based Macs," he said.

He also characterized recent security threats for the Mac OS X operating system as "harmless, proof-of-concept threats," adding that they have had "negligible impact."

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