What I meant was, Vista is coming out in two versions: 32-bit and 64-bit. So obviously, Microsoft--the company that makes the operating systems for most consumer level systems--is not seeing 32-bit processors die out for at least 3-4 years. Plus, you're only looking at new notebooks--what about the millions upon millions of people who still have 32-bit? Because most consumers do not have 64-bit processing, and will not
be getting one for quite some time.
So considering past trends--DVD players, DVD burners, CD burners, optical mice, DDR2, etc.--and considering that this is going to be a much harder switch for most companies, I'd say its a pretty safe bet that you won't even start seeing 64-bit only programs or operating systems for a few years, much less games and other consumer-level programs.
Also remember, 64-bit has been out for quite a while--the Opteron was the first true processor to feature it. For most consumers out there, there's no need for them to jump and get 64-bit, because it offers no real benefits. Its common sense. Think of it like a car... new models are released everyday, and yet people are still
driving cars from 2, 3, 5, 10 years ago--and that's being extremely optimistic. Think of all the cars you've seen that are 20 years old?
So in 3-4 years, when it comes time to buy a new notebook, the choice between a 32-bit processor and a 64-bit processor will probably
be a bit more clear. Afterall, there will almost definitely be many more programs written to take advantage of 64-bit.
Another thing to mind, Dell is the largest computer maker in the United States. The company has said that they weren't interested in going with AMD even though they offer the 64-bit lines, and have chosen to go with Intel for the next several years. Since Intel isn't planning on releasing their 64-bit processors until next year at the earliest, and those will probably remain fairly high-priced items, can you see why I'm not expecting 64-bit to take over the market?
One thing to remember, not everybody is a techie, and the amount of people who care whether or not they have 64-bit is next to none, percentage wise. Basically, you're assuming that everybody, right now, is going to run out and buy 64-bit, and that each developer is going to be waiting on the edge of their seat to release 64-bit software... they're not. So keep in mind what I said... what EVERYBODY has been saying (looking at freak4dell
)... by the time its necessary for a 64-bit processor, you'll need a new computer anyway.