Apple, Tech, and Gaming

iLife 11: Another Nail in the PowerPC Coffin

- 2010.10.21 - Tip Jar

Yes, it's true my 5-year-old hi-res PowerBook and Power Mac G5 Quad. I'm afraid it's so, my friends still running Leopard and Tiger, there will be no more iLife support for us (excuse the pun). With the announcement of iLife 11 with no PowerPC support, we are officially obsolete in this age of Intel Macs.

It was a sad day when Leopard arrived, leaving all G3 Macs and many G4s high and dry and eliminating Classic Mode, but it was a much sadder day when Snow Leopard pulled an ambush and slammed the door shut on even the most powerful G5s, marking the beginning of the end of support for PowerPCs.

Then came the non-PowerPC Adobe CS5, followed by that nifty Magic Trackpad, which is only supported under Snow Leopard. The writing was always on the wall, and the buzzards have been circling for quite some time.

The final deathblow has been dealt, with Apple killing off support altogether for PowerPC machines under the latest version of iLife (not to mention FaceTime and the forthcoming Mac App Store). Say it ain't so Apple!

It just doesn't seem right, but the end was nigh and had to come sooner or later.

Apple could have at least kept Universal Binary versions of iPhoto and iMovie available, but progress is progress, and it may be the final push that PowerPC holdouts, including myself and many others, needed.

Still Useful

My PowerPC Macs will always serve a purpose and will work to do many productive (and nonproductive) tasks, but if you want to enjoy some of the latest hardware and some of the newest software, upgrading is inevitable. At least Apple gave PowerPC users five full years from the release of the final PowerPC Macs before pulling the plug. Those same Macs, all introduced over five years ago, running Tiger or Leopard still have iLife '08 and iLife '09 to fall back on.

You can still can easily edit and share on Facebook. You can still shoot HD video and edit it using iMovie HD '06 on a 1 GHz or better G4. Many possibilities still exist to get the most out of our older Macs, but the PowerPC generation is about to fall two or three steps further behind, depending on whether you are running Leopard or Tiger. Each new Snow Leopard-only application released or updated adds compelling new features that can only be accessed with the latest version of Mac OS.

The Intel Only Future

With the release of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion coming next summer and an exclusive Mac App Store that will only be available to Snow Leopard users, it appears that Steve Jobs has finally given PowerPC users an ultimatum: Go Intel or be left behind.

It also would appear that the "free" section on Craigslist, along with computer recycling centers, will be a bit busier in the foreseeable future as perfectly functional, aging PowerPC machines hit the junk heaps. I've already seen iMac G3s for $10 and eMacs for as low as $30 on my local Craigslist. That's just a step away from someone literally placing no salvage value whatsoever on these machines.

As for earlier Intel Macs that will run the latest OS - expect continued premium resale values until another line is drawn in the sand. The eventual exclusion of "Core Duo" Macs as everything moves to 64-bit is not so far fetched a thought. LEM

Join us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or Google+, or subscribe to our RSS news feed

Dan Bashur lives in central Ohio with his wife and children. He uses various PowerPC G3 and G4 Macs running Tiger and Leopard. Besides finding new uses for Macs and other tech, Dan enjoys writing (fantasy novel series in the works), is an avid gamer, and a member of Sony's Gamer Advisor Panel. You can read more of Dan Bashur's work on, where he contributes regular articles about the PSP, classic gaming, and ways you can use Sony gaming hardware with your Mac.

Today's Links

Recent Content

About LEM Support Usage Privacy Contact

Follow Low End Mac on Twitter
Join Low End Mac on Facebook

Favorite Sites

Cult of Mac
Shrine of Apple
The Mac Observer
Accelerate Your Mac
The Vintage Mac Museum
Deal Brothers
Mac Driver Museum
JAG's House
System 6 Heaven
System 7 Today
the pickle's Low-End Mac FAQ

The iTunes Store
PC Connection Express
Macgo Blu-ray Player
Parallels Desktop for Mac

Low End Mac's store


Open Link