Naming In The News

Apple mulling 'G6' naming issue due to 'Oprah Car' Pontiac 'G6'

December 13, 2004

Sources have told MacDailyNews that "marketing types" within Apple Computer have discussed skipping the "G6" moniker or ending the "G" CPU naming scheme with the "G5" due to the potential confusion and/or dilution caused by the recent debut of General Motor's Pontiac G6, otherwise known as "The Oprah Car." 276 Pontiac G6s were given to surprised audience members on The Oprah Winfrey Show to celebrate the start of her 19th season on September 14, 2004.

Apple first starting using the "G" moniker with the November 1997 introduction of the Power Macintosh G3, with featured a "generation three" or "G3" PowerPC 750 processor. The "G4" made its debut in September 1999 in the "Power Macintosh G4" which featured a PowerPC 7400. The "Power Mac G5" debuted in June 2003 with a PowerPC 970.

According to sources, the final decision, which would presumably be Steve Jobs' decision, has not yet been made. Of course, Apple has time, as "G5" is very young in its product lifetime and has found it's way only into Power Mac G5 and iMac G5 desktops so far, with PowerBook, eMac, iBook, and "future" products still to go.

MacDailyNews Take: General Motors' Pontiac make is hardly known as a "premium" brand and the Pontiac G6 is a fairly "cheap" car as far as the sticker price goes (base MSRP: US$21,300) - an entry level sedan. Apple might not wish to associate or confuse its future flagship, high-performance CPU with a Pontiac car, even if it's a subconscious association. Beleaguered Gateway is more "The Pontiac" of the personal computer industry, not Apple.