Apple might have decided its partnership with Intel doesn't mean it has to use all of Intel's products.
AppleInsider reports that Apple could be using a chipset from a different company--or even an internally developed one--in the next iteration of the MacBook, . Like other notebook vendors, Apple had been using Intel's mobile Centrino chipsets in its MacBook line ever since 2006 but it's going to pass on the this time around, according to the report.
Intel has done an excellent job reinventing the company around mobile processors, starting with the original Pentium M design back in 2004 and carrying forward to today's Core 2 Duo. But it has done a much less stellar job with the integrated graphics chipsets that connect those processors to the rest of the system, such as the memory chips and hard drives.
Most notebooks use integrated graphics chipsets over discrete graphics chips to cut down on power consumption, but the graphics performance of Intel's chipsets leave a lot to be desired. Windows Vista, and Intel has had problems getting .about the performance of the chipsets that were scheduled to arrive with
If it's an internally designed chipset that Apple has in place for the new systems, history would be repeating itself at the company, which used to design much of the internal hardware that went along with IBM's PowerPC chips back in the day. Apple recently acquired a passel of chip designers from P.A. Semi, but Steve Jobs has said those folks are.
AppleInsider thinks Apple might have contracted with Advanced Micro Devices or Via for the new chipsets, but offers no details on what might actually be inside the new systems. Giventhis summer, it is probably not in the running if Apple's looking at other suppliers.
In other pending MacBook news, Computerworld reports that the new systems will arrive in September with glass touchpads, which seems a bit curious. Glass might allow for all kinds of , but it seems like a warranty nightmare to me.
The new notebooks are expected to borrow design cues from the MacBook Air and bring the aluminum casing on the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air to the MacBook.