Apple Computer has adopted technology developed by its rivals in the Wintel world ,in a bid to offer a wider range of hardware add-ons.
Apple has traditionally developed its own hardware and shied away from standards used by PC vendors. But now it is in the process of making hardware changes to allow its customers access to the host of peripherals currently available to Wintel users.
One such technology is the Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP), created by Intel to run fast 3D graphics. Apple plans to incorporate support for AGP by mid-1999, even though the company is unsure of the possible applications of the new technology. Intel itself targets AGP mainly at games playing.
Apple's latest offering, the iMac, will feature the Universal Serial Bus (USB) technology offered by vendors such as Compaq and Dell, allowing Mac customers to use peripherals developed for PCs. The iMac is due to be launched in August this year.
Analysts believe that Apple's decision to adopt the USB standard was prompted by the fact that large developers are reluctant to build exclusive peripherals for the company's much reduced customer base.
But Apple's UK product marketing manager, John Ferman, denied that his company had been forced into making its new machines more PC friendly.
"Adopting USB gives our customers more choice and allows us to be more competitive," he explained.
Ferman also rejected the idea that the company had plans to move away from its PowerPC processor.
"We have no plans to use Intel processors, we are only making changes that we believe will benefit our customers," he added.
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