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Last Updated: Sunday, 5 June, 2005, 14:29 GMT 15:29 UK
Apple 'to switch to Intel chips'
Apple's boss Steve Jobs holding a Mac Mini
Intel chips may soon be introduced to Apple's Mac Mini
Apple is set to announce plans for phasing out IBM microprocessors in its computers in favour of those produced by Intel, according to a report.

Intel chips could be fitted to new computers such as the Mac Mini by the middle of 2006, CNET News.com reported.

Higher-spec Apple computers such as the Power Mac could be fitted with Intel chips by mid-2007, the technology website said.

An announcement by Apple was expected on Monday, CNET said.

Software challenge

If Apple were to switch to Intel's Pentium chips, the move would bring to an end years of speculation within the industry.

A report last month in the Wall Street Journal, suggesting both companies were in talks which could lead to Apple adopting Intel's chips, sparked a 5% rally in Apple's shares.

However, a move by Apple to introduce Intel chips would not be without complications, according to Kevin Krewell of the Microprocessor Report, a chip industry publication.

Referring to the latest version of Apple's operating system software, he said: "It's going to be a horrendous challenge for the software developers who just completed the transition to OS X from OS 9."

Intel dominates the PC microprocessor business, although IBM has reached deals to supply chips to forthcoming Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony video game consoles.

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