We took ownership today of a brand spankin’ new Apple Powerbook. Normally, we’d be ecstatic to have such a sweet piece of machinery in our hands. But we’re feeling a bit like a fool today. That’s because the laptop arrived on our doorstep about two hours after Steve Jobs announced Apple’s shift to Intel processors. Even before we cracked open the box, our shiny new Powerbook was a legacy machine.

A machine that we hoped would last us three, four, maybe five years will officially be obsolete in two, when the new Intel-powered Powerbooks land in Apple stores. Oh sure, the laptop itself will still work fine. But chances are, all the relevant software updates we need to keep the laptop current (from both Apple and independent developers) will begin to disappear, and our Apple flag will be firmly planted in the land of the old.

We’re not blaming Apple; we’re all about innovation here at SiliconBeat. But we wonder how Apple consumers will respond to the latest news. Had we known what we know today, we probably would have invested much less in our newest computer, perhaps buying a far less-expensive iBook laptop or even a used Powerbook to see us through the next couple of years (Osborne Effect, anyone?). It was hard enough to justify the Powerbook’s premium pricing to our iBook-toting wife. But now, knowing that its days are officially numbered? Ouch.