Jack Writes: Apple Computer will start shipping its first Intel-based notebook this week, but with faster processors than originally specced out when Steve Jobs introduced the new Macs in January.
The $2,499 MacBook Pro, which now sports a 2.0 GHz Intel Core Duo CPU, up from the previously announced 1.83 GHz processor, will ship later this week, Apple said. The less expensive $1,999 MacBook Pro, meanwhile, will be powered by a 1.83 GHz Core Duo, not the 1.67GHz processor originally specified. That model will begin shipping next week.
Customers can also custom order a MacBook Pro with the 2.16GHz Core Duo for an additional $300.
Both models feature a 15.4-inch display, a DVDRW/CD-RW optical drive, either 512MB or 1GB of memory, and a hard drive with either 80GB or 100GB capacity. Wireless and Bluetooth connectivity are included, and the laptops are bundled with Mac OS X 10.4.4.
Although Apple executives warned of possible MacBook Pro shortages shortly after its introduction, the ship date slipped only slightly. Originally, Apple had said it would start shipping the notebooks Feb. 15; the lower-priced notebook will ship approximately a week later than that.
According to the online Apple store, customers ordering now should expect 3- to 4-week delays.
In other Intel Mac news, the cash prize created by a Houston, Tex.-based Mac user for creating the first dual-boot machine capable of starting up both Windows XP and Mac OS X has broken the $11,000 mark.
Colin Nederkoorn has raised $11,318 as of Monday, but has yet to award the prize for a dual-boot procedure.
Nederkoorn began asking for contributions in January, and on his Web site, said that he had put in an early order for a MacBook Pro laptop to replace the PC desktop system he used at his job for a shipping company.