Apple's new machine so fast its details are on internet before it's even launched

The secretive computer company Apple has seen details of its newest, and fastest, machines leaked on the internet because of an error by its own technicians working on its website.

The glitch will infuriate the company's founder and chief executive, Steve Jobs, who was due to launch the machines today in San Francisco. Mr Jobs is known to be obsessed with achieving maximum surprise for his twice-yearly "keynote" speeches.

Since he returned to the company in 1997, he has imposed stringent restrictions on employees leaking details of forthcoming products, and at one stage monitored employees' e-mail for hints of leaks to outside organisations.

The error was apparently perpetrated by Apple's own staff, who replaced details of the current top-end machines, which have processors running at 1.4 gigahertz (GHz), with those of the new ones on the company's online store.

The image and details appeared for about half an hour on Friday night, adding to speculation among those expecting something big from Mr Jobs's speech today. Then the website went briefly offline. When it returned, the images and details had gone.

If the details that were shown are correct, then the fastest of the new machines would each have two 2GHz processors made by IBM. That would make them faster, in speed terms, than normal Windows PCs, the fastest of which has a single Intel processor running at 3Ghz. This could reignite competition for speed in the personal computer world, where for years Intel has reigned supreme.

The new machines with IBM chips would be able to do "64-bit" arithmetic. That would put them on a par with top-end scientific workstations. The current generation of PC processors, introduced around 1991, do 32-bit arithmetic. The shift would put Apple in the forefront of personal computing.

While the company controls only a tiny percentage of the overall PC market, it is the favourite for graphics, music and video production.

Some observers have suggested that the error was a marketing ploy. "Sites don't 'accidentally' put the wrong image up; the image wouldn't be loaded yet on the servers," said one poster at the online forum Slashdot, a favourite watering-hole for people who build and write websites and computer programs.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Collections Agent

£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company was established in...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE 40k: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 busi...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 ...

Reach Volunteering: Trustees with Finance, Fundraising and IT skills

Voluntary and unpaid, reasonable expenses reimbursable: Reach Volunteering: St...

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent