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Thursday, August 04, 2005, 09:00 am PT (12:00 pm ET)

PlayStation 3 processor could support Mac OS X Tiger

The processor in Sony's PlayStation 3 gaming console can potentially support Apple's Mac OS X Tiger operating system according to a recent posting to Sony's UK website.

The highly anticipated successor to the PlayStation 2 is expected to hit the streets in 2006, shortly after Microsoft releases its rival XBox 360 system.

"Sony is expected to offer optional hard drives for the PlayStation 3 with potential memory capacity of 80 or 120 GB. It remains to be decided whether the standard version of the PS3 will come complete with a hard drive," reads a company statement.

"The operating system has also yet to be clarified. The integrated Cell processor will be able to support a variety of operating systems (such as Linux or Apple's Tiger)."

It's unclear at the moment exactly what this will mean for Mac or PlayStation 3 users. Sony's Cell processor is a derivative of IBM's PowerPC chip used by Apple in its personal computers.

Previous mumblings had presented the possibility that Apple was looking to form a partnership with Sony on the PlayStation 3 that would make some of the console's games compatible with the Mac OS X operating system. With Apple's announced switch to Intel processors, this now seems less likely.

Analysts at Wedbush Morgan Securities recently said that Sony may delay the release of the PlayStation 3 until 2007 if the Microsoft's Xbox 360 launch is less than stellar.