Apple Computer's latest G4 Power Macs are selling in Hong Kong, just two weeks after they were introduced at MacWorld Expo by Apple chief Steve Jobs. The new Power Macs are faster machines running at 867 megahertz, up from 733MHz. Apple is attempting to narrow the megahertz gap between Macs and Intel-based systems. Intel's chips run at up to 1.8GHz - more than double the clock speed of the fastest Mac. Apple machines run on the PowerPC chip designed by Motorola and Apple. Apple has carved a niche as the preferred platform for Web design and graphics houses and game developers due to the ability of the machines to handle complex graphics and Web-design better than Intel-based systems. Even as it closes the gap, Apple is trying to break the megahertz myth, mostly perpetuated by Intel, as it races with Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) to get the faster processor to market. Apple is trying to educate consumers on an accepted fact in technical circles - that central processing unit (CPU) clock speed is not the only measure of performance. William Chan, marketing manager at Apple Hong Kong, said the average consumer in Hong Kong thought the best system had the fastest CPU. He said 'the average consumer in Hong Kong is not at all savvy' regarding what affects a computer's performance. With the help of the media, he would put out a series of articles to help the market understand about maximising computer performance and how CPU clock speed was one of many factors that contributed towards system performance. At MacWorld Expo, Apple hardware expert Jon Rubinstein used graphics to show chips with long pipelines, such as the Pentium 4, could perform slower than those with shorter pipelines, such as the PowerPC chips built by Motorola and IBM. The odds are stacking up against Apple even as it tries to secure more market share. PC sales worldwide are slowing and there is no evidence the market will pick up in the next few quarters. However, Apple reported increased sales of the iBook, mainly in the education sector - a trend reflected in the latest PC shipment figures from IDC that sales of laptops were growing faster than desktops. When Apple introduced the iMac more than two years ago, there was a resurgence of the Mac craze. As with all fads, the interest is waning and Apple recently reported a 70 per cent decline in the most recent quarter over the same period a year ago. Apple said it shipped 827,000 Macs in the quarter to June 30, compared with 1.02 million units a year earlier and 751,000 during the second quarter. The PowerMac G4 includes a CD-rewritable and DVD-recordable drive. A PowerMac G4 with an 867MHz CPU costs HK$19,900.