In what could be described as Hell freezing over in the PC world, Apple and Intel have decided to join forces, and next year on June 6, 2006 (666 :P), Apple will begin to ship out computers powered by Intel Pentium chips. Apparently every iteration of OS X had both a PowerPC and x86 version, and Apple was just waiting for the right moment to pull the trigger. About a year or so ago, Steve Jobs had promised that the Mac would hit 3 GHz, but apparently due to IBM's lackluster efforts, Macs have still yet to hit 3 GHz. Although I'm not completely up to date on the details, an Intel-powered Mac will apparently be able to run BOTH OS X and Windows, but those looking to run OS X on their current x86 PCs will be disappointed to hear that OS X will only run on an Intel Mac. This transition is projected to last 2 years.
As far as I can see, in the short run, Mac sales might take a big hit since there will be people (like me :P) who will probably wait and see how the first iteration of the Intel Mac will run. Although Apple said they will likely continue support of PowerPC applications, other software writers may drop writing for PowerPC altogether since it would likely save time and money, making a PowerPC Mac even less attractive. The next 2 years will definately be interesting for Apple, but if they manage to offer a Mac Mini with a dual-core Pentium M, 1 gig of ram, and a decent graphics card for $499, I'll be the first to line up and get one :)