Apple's move away from IBM processors to Intel may have been a mutual break, a report explains.

The move was perceived as being driven by IBM's apparent inability to deliver 3Ghz processors, a move that appeared so likely Apple CEO Steve Jobs even promised a 3Ghz Power Mac would be released last year. It never happened.

Murky truth of business haggles

The truth behind this may perhaps be murkier, or at least that's what columnist Jason Miller believes.

Citing "insider reports" (from Ars Technica), he writes: "Did Apple really dump IBM, or did IBM just allow things to dissolve because it had other, more lucrative interests?"

Apple, a "low-profit prima donna"?

Apple is described in this story as a: "Low-profit prima donna - high maintenance and more trouble than it was worth".

Because the Cupertino computer company would have insisted that the processors it used were customized and only worked with Macs, IBM had to be wary of the levels of inventory it built-up. Any overstocks would "sit in storage" until Apple used them. And the report suggests that Apple was prepared to haggle over the price per chip, becoming a "nuisance" to Big Blue (IBM).

It could all be smoke and mirrors, the report concludes, saying: "Others question that the switch had anything to do with IBM at all. The contention that a switch to Intel improves Apple's market positioning for a transition into a multimedia-centred future is still pretty tantalizing," it states.