An Apple spokesman said the official reason for the discontinuation was,
"We have received an enormous number of complaints and
demands for refunds from irate customers. Initially, the reaction to the
PowerPCs was very positive, as users found that their software ran more
quickly than on older machines. However, since the PowerPCs were released
on March 14, more and more native software has become available which runs
much faster on the PowerPCs. Angry customers have called and complained
that the speed of the native software was simply too much for them to
handle. We have decided that the simplest and best solution to the problem
is to discontinue manufacture of Macintoshes with the PowerPC
Unofficially, many experts claimed that Apple had little choice but to end production of the PowerPCs, due to litigation against the company on several fronts.
Last Friday, March 29, a class action lawsuit was filed against Apple on behalf of victims and families of victims who suffered injuries as a result of the faster Macintoshes. Several heart attacks, two of them fatal, are alleged to have been among the injuries.
Microsoft CEO William Gates filed suit against Apple alleging that the
faster Macintoshes disrupted the operation of Microsoft software, which was
designed to run on slow machines. According to Mr. Gates,
"We design our software so it runs slowly enough during
critical tasks for our users to have a coffee break. Now they're lucky if
they can fit in a bathroom break. Ack!
Finally, in anticipation of the rollout of Power Macintoshes, Amiga, IBM, Motorola and a number of other smaller computer manufacturers filed an anti-trust suit against Apple in federal court on February 30. The suit alleges an attempt at achieving a monopoly in the personal computer market by marketing blazingly fast and easy to use machines.
Apple contends that all of these suits are without merit. As for the future
of its Macintosh computers, Apple says it has plans to
"keep our customers happy by providing slower, less
powerful machines. We are currently seeking to license the Pentium
architecture from Intel.
An 800 number has been set up by Apple for customers who have questions or complaints about the Power Macintoshes. The number is 1-800-APRLFOL.
--Matt Bernhardt firstname.lastname@example.org