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News Date: Thursday 30th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
Transmeta - AMD - Western Digital
  • PC makers work to replace recalled Western drives
    Time: 20:10 EDT/01:10 GMT Source: Posted By: Matt

    PC makers are grappling with a customer service nightmare following the recall of 400,000 hard drives.

    Western Digital on Tuesday voluntarily recalled about a half month's production of Caviar hard drives, its flagship product, manufactured between August 27 and September 24.

    Although the initial problem may be Western Digital's, PC manufacturers must face the ire of customers and the expense of replacing affected drives, said analysts.

    "It's a problem, because customers don't blame the drive maker, they point the finger at whose name is on the system," said one PC manufacturer, who asked not to be identified.

    PC makers generally applauded Western Digital for acting before too many drives made it into customer systems. Privately, the prospect of replacing potentially defective drives outraged them.

  • AMD's K8, a Merced competitor, among chips detailed next week
    Time: 18:40 EDT/23:40 GMT Source: Posted By: Matt

    Following its architectural triumph with the Athlon chip, Advanced Micro Devices next week will detail the K8, a 64-bit chip that will compete against Intel's Merced.

    The K8, along with the upcoming Athlon Ultra chips, will constitute AMD's attempt to get into the lucrative market for server and workstation processors, a segment that the struggling chipmaker has long coveted.

    AMD microprocessors now almost exclusively go into desktop and notebook computers, and mostly into the cost-conscious consumer segment.

    If successful, the Ultra and the K8 could help the company's sagging bottom line. That is, because the K8 and Ultra will go into higher-end machines, they can demand a greater price. That stands to boost revenue for the chipmaker and could help it pull out of its financial tailspin.

  • Secretive start-up Transmeta takes aim at Intel
    Time: 18:33 EDT/23:33 GMT Source: Posted By: Matt

    Transmeta, a top-secret Silicon Valley start-up, apparently hopes to offer Intel-compatible chips while sidestepping legal landmines, a new patent reveals.

    A patent awarded to the Silicon Valley chip design firm yesterday, along with another patent issued in 1998, show that Transmeta is working on a new chip that can emulate an Intel chip.

    But the newest patent indicates that Transmeta is taking a very different tack than what other Intel chip cloners such as AMD and Cyrix have used, according to independent patent consultant Richard Belgard.

    "Transmeta will not have a problem with...two of the principal [Intel chip] patents," Belgard said.

    The result: Transmeta could be able to sell its chips at a lower, more-competitive cost by avoiding fees it would otherwise have to pay to license Intel patents, Belgard said. That's something current Intel cloners haven't been able to do, because Intel has defended the two patents so vigorously.

    Intel declined to comment on the issue, and Transmeta representatives did not return phone calls.

News Date: Monday 27th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • Dell breaks $1,000 mark for high-end PCs
    Time: 16:20 EDT/21:20 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    Dell Computer today broke the $1,000 barrier for high-performance commercial PCs. Dell introduced the OptiPlex GX110 at $999, making it the first large PC maker to offer a sub-$1,000 Pentium III-based commercial PC with a monitor.

    The move is part of a significant shift in Dell¹s strategy, as it maximizes efficiencies realized through online sales and tight control over components to take on low-cost leaders.

    Compaq Computer created the sub-$1,000 market, first for consumer PCs and then for business computers. In July, for example, systems priced $999 or lower made up 72 percent of Compaq¹s retail sales, according to PC Data.

    "There is no question there has been a shift toward under $1,000," said PC Data analyst Stephen Baker. "It¹s what you have to do to compete, but you have to be ready for what that does to your bottom line."

  • Taiwan update: Graphics chips hit harder
    Time: 16:18 EDT/21:18 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    The Taiwan earthquake may have inflicted less damage on chip and computer facilities than originally forecast, but it is becoming clear that certain segments such as graphics chips will be affected more than others.

    Although it is still impossible to quantify the damage with precision, some analysts are cautiously estimating that the net effect on the PC supply chain is a disruption of a few weeks.

    An executive from Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing, one of the world's largest chipmakers, said companies are preparing for the return of more power this week. "In many respects, we're ahead of where we expected to be," said Magnus Ryde, president of TSMC North America.


  • Via gaining clients in wake of Intel-Rambus delay
    Time: 16:16 EDT/21:16 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    With the delay of Intel's 820 chipset, scrappy Via Technologies is finding itself rapidly growing in popularity among computer makers.

    IBM will announce tomorrow that it is using chipsets from Taiwan-based Via for three new systems in the wake of the delay of the 820 chipset, sources at IBM said. Today, Micron Electronics said it is incorporating Via products into its boxes for the first time.

    As reported earlier, Intel today delayed the release of its 820 chipset, which is the component that will eventually allow Intel processors to "speak" to the next-generation Rambus memory, because of technical problems.


  • Intel delays new chipset as Rambus falls further
    Time: 16:14 EDT/21:14 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    As expected, memory firm Rambus and chipmaker Intel today acknowledged a serious glitch with the new 820 chipset, which will be delayed.

    The companies also said in a prepared statement that they are working closely with PC manufacturers to quickly resolve the problem.

    As previously reported by CNET, Intel delayed today's scheduled 820 chipset announcement because of compatibility issues with next-generation Rambus memory.

    Intel alerted PC makers to the problem late last week, which sent shock waves through the industry. Rambus stock dropped as much as 19 percent Friday. In early trading today, it was down another 9.81 to 61.31, a drop of 13.8 percent.

    One analyst has estimated that hundreds of thousands of high-end computers are affected by the glitch.

    The 820 chipset, also known as Camino, is a package of chips necessary to use Rambus memory. Camino is one of several chipsets supporting Rambus Direct RAM, or RDRAM. Intel anointed Rambus as a long-term solution for making sure that computers keep up with ever-faster processors. But the new development is the latest misstep in the adoption of the next-generation technology.

News Date: Friday 24th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • Sony to unveil digital music Walkman today
    Time: 02:55 EDT/07:55 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Sony is set to launch its entry into the digital music player market today, the twentieth birthday of the Walkman portable stereo.

    Sony's move follows MP3 player pioneer Diamond Multimedia announcement yesterday of its lastest Rio.

    As previously discussed by Sony president Nobuyuki Idei, the new machine, to be put out under the Walkman brand, will store music files on Sony's Memory Stick technology.

    Sony sees Memory Stick as an alternative to transferring data by cable -- users will just copy data from their PC to a Memory Stick (itself the size and shape of a chewing gum stick) which then plugs into the digital Walkman.

  • Via poised to ship 500MHz+ Socket 370 Cyrix chip
    Time: 02:53 EDT/07:53 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Via is putting the Cyrix roadmap back on track with the launch of a 500MHz-plus Socket 370-compliant chip, codenamed Joshua, this year. Cyrix had this and other chips on the stocks, but had to all intents and purposes suspended operations pending its acquisition by Via.

    Joshua is based on the Cayenne core, and is a modification of Cyrix's MII with 3Dnow! instructions added. It has 64k of primary cache and 256k secondary cache.


  • IBM finds gold in copper
    Time: 02:50 EDT/07:50 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    IBM is making a good living from copper, and expanding its horizons. Two years ago, IBM (NYSE:IBM) invested in performance-improving copper interconnect technology, and Thursday said it had shipped its 1 millionth copper chip. The chips use copper instead of aluminum to bridge the gaps, or interconnects, between their transistors. An IBM spokesman said the company expects to ship another million copper chips by the end of this year.

    The high volumes come even though the only major PC maker using processors based on the technology is Apple Computer Inc. (Nasdaq:AAPL). With just one big customer, it raises the question, what's so great about copper?

    For one thing, it's faster. Because copper is a more efficient conductor than aluminum, electrons traveling down a copper wire move faster than they would if they were moving down an aluminum wire of similar length. That translates into increased performance inside a chip. Speeds can increase by 10 percent.

News Date: Tuesday 22nd September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • Intel faces pressure over new chipset
    Time: 03:50 EDT/08:50 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    Giant Intel is continuing to have problems with the introduction of a somewhat mundane product that enables the main processor work with the rest of the computer.

    Next Monday, Intel will debut its 820 chipset, but the advanced set of ancillary processors has been resisted by PC manufacturers. The 820 utilizes a new memory technology called Rambus, but PC makers so far prefer the established standard, synchronous dynamic random access memory (SDRAM), which is cheaper. Analysts say that the 820 is facing limited demand, and at least one asserts that Intel has reduced its production plans.

News Date: Tuesday 21st September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • AMD mobiles outsmoke Intel
    Time: 08:55 EDT/13:55 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    The mobile chip race is turning into a two-horse race with AMD completing its re-invention from also-ran to strong contender.

    With its latest mobile CPUs, AMD is running ahead in the MHz race, outclocking Intel’s fastest equivalents.

    AMD is stepping out six new mobile CPUs, three apiece for the Mobile K6-III-P and K6-2-P lines. For the K6-111-P line, clock speeds come in at a useful 400MHz, 433MHz and 450MHz, compared with 400MHz for Intel’s fastest mobile Pentium -- the 400MHz Pentium II.

  • Intel takes on Olicom R&D team
    Time: 08:55 EDT/13:55 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Olicom, the moribund networking equipment vendor, has sold its 220-strong R&D team to Intel for an undisclosed sum.

    Intel has an affinity with Denmark and networking: in 1997 it stumped up £46 million for the Danish operations of Case,(the rump of which is now called Anite) to take it into Fast Ethernet for the first time.

    Through Olicom’s R&D team, Intel gains new staff in Copenhagen and Gdansk, in Poland. But technology? We'll let you know as soon as someone tells us.

    All that’s left of Olicom is a controlling stake in a company called Digianswer. Olicom says it expects to sell this share for a substantial premium to book value. Which is not saying much. As group book value is currently hovering around zero.

  • S3 Savages Packard Bell-NEC PCs
    Time: 08:54 EDT/13:54 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    S3 has won a deal to supply Packard Bell-NEC Europe with its Savage4 accelerator. S3's graphics accelerator will power Packard Bell's new range of consumer Spirit PCs, according to Business Wire.

    The US manufacturer's Spirit line of computers is due to start shipping this month and will use the Pentium III chip along with the Savage4.

    Pascal Cagni, Packard Bell-NEC Europe vice president, said Savage4 offered excellent 3D and digital video performance at a good price point.

    "We look forward to continuing our relationship with S3 and expect great things of their forthcoming Savage2000 accelerator," he said.

  • Seagate boxes clever with new packaging
    Time: 08:53 EDT/13:53 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Seagate has developed new packaging technology for its hard drives that would make a cardboard-box blush with inadequacy. Seagate claims that the SeaShell 3D Defence System - which shields the drive from electrostatic discharge during installation - can also withstand 1000 Gs of shock.

    The whole system is designed to reduce the number of damaged drives that need returning. As well as the shock and ESD protection, the SeaShell, a thermoformed, shock-ribbed, translucent package, comes with a diagnostic toolbox allowing users to monitor performance after installation.

    Seagate estimates that damage from handling accounts for nearly half of all returns. Tests show that the SeaShell can reduce the shock from a 12-in drop by a factor of 10.


  • Micron decks Rambus, chins Taiwanese government
    Time: 08:51 EDT/13:51 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Micron Technology has spurned Rambus-ready tipsiest by Intel in favour of VIA Technologies, as well as hitting back at the Taiwanese government over dumping allegations.

    The vendor will use VIA's VT82C694X chipset in its next generation computer platform, saving between $200 and $300 on the price of systems, according to PC World News.

    Micron will still use Pentium III chips, but the chipset will come from Taiwanese VIA, thus Micron has decided against using the upcoming Intel i820 chipset with Rambus DRAM memory.

    Micron said the high cost of RDRAM did not yet equal its performance gains.

News Date: Monday 20th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • 800MHz Athlon games systems to launch next month
    Time: 06:54 EDT/11:54 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    High end games hardware specialist GamePC has added Athlon machines to its range, and is promising Kryotech cooled versions overclocked to 800MHz in early October. The company, which offers off the shelf or build to order high-powered PC gaming systems, is currently offering the Titan system, based on a 600MHz Athlon,and the Disrupter, a 550MHz version.

  • Merced Tru64 next on Compaq's death list?
    Time: 06:52 EDT/11:52 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Compaq's next move in the OS shootout will be to put a couple of rounds into the IA-64 version of Tru64, according to US reports (which we suspect of being spread around by our good friend Terry Shannon of Shannon Knows Compaq). Our take is that it's virtually certain to happen, and that it's just a matter of timing.

    Compaq has already terminated its twin track Intel-Alpha software development by stopping development of Alpha Windows 2000, and consequently ringing the curtain down on Microsoft operating systems on Alpha. That move was justified because of the relatively low level of sales of NT on Alpha - there was absolutely no way sales could, could ever, justify development costs.

    But turn it around the other way and it's not entirely clear that there's going to be much of a market for Tru64 on IA-64. Compaq is officially committed to doing it, but Compaq officials currently seem reluctant to reaffirm that commitment with any degree of enthusiasm.


  • AMD suffers further Gateway blow
    Time: 06:50 EDT/11:50 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Chip manufacturer AMD suffered a further setback over the weekend after Gateway said it would shift to an Intel-only policy. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, it will begin to phase out K6-2s and K6-IIIs from its platform.

    Earlier this year, Gateway declined to use AMD's Athlon K7 in its products. That is believed to have happened after Intel offered Gateway more favorable deals on its microprocessors, estimated to be worth a cool $20 million.

News Date: Saturday 18th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • 3dfx to take on S3 texture comp. in open source move
    Time: 04:50 EDT/09:50 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    3dfx this week unveiled the latest new technology to be added to its upcoming Voodoo 3D graphics chip, codenamed Napalm. In a move set to tackle rival graphics specialist S3 head on, 3dfx announced its own texture compression technology, FXT1.

    And in a bid to grab mindshare from S3's S3TC, the company said it will release the spec. and code the powers FXT1 under an open source licence.

    FXT1 can squeeze textures down by a ratio as high as 8:1, 3dfx claimed. The scheme uses multiple compression algorithms, mixing and matching the best techniques not only for given textures but for given elements within the overall texture.

  • Athlon price cuts confirmed for 4 October
    Time: 04:48 EDT/09:48 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    We have now had independent confirmation from a number of PC manufacturers that AMD will, as we reported yesterday, cut its Athlon prices on 4 October.

    But the cuts this time are from a position of strength, rather than weakness, according to independent vendors of the products. Athlon products are selling well, in Europe at least. While AMD was forced in the past to cut prices in order to sell products as a result of aggressive pricing strategies by Intel, this price move is part of AMD's long term strategy, we are given to understand.

  • AMD takeover rumors re-emerge
    Time: 04:47 EDT/09:47 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Rumors are circulating in Germany that AMD may be snapped up by giant conglomerate Siemens. But AMD has said "it has no knowledge of such a move" and we think it's highly unlikely too.

    According to the speculation, Siemens is preparing to offer as much as $40 a share for AMD stock. That is double its current share value on the New York trading floors.


  • Motorola already touting next generation G5
    Time: 04:46 EDT/09:46 GMT Source: ZDNet Posted By: Alex H

    Motorola already touting next generation G5 It just recently introduced the PowerPC 7400 processor -- aka the G4. But Motorola Inc. (NYSE:MOT), its creator, is already touting its successor chip, the G5, and even though it's still two years away. Will Swearingen, PowerPC marketing director at Motorola's Networks and Computing Systems Group in Austin, Texas, is claiming that the G5, which is properly known as the PowerPC 7500, should more than match Intel Corp.'s forthcoming 64-bit processor code-named Merced.

  • What's next for Palm?
    Time: 04:44 EDT/09:44 GMT Source: ZDNet Posted By: Alex H

    What's next for Palm Computing now that 3Com Corp. is spinning it off? As an independent entity, Palm's focus will be less on hardware and more on Internet services, enterprise computing partners and licensing its handheld operating system, according to Palm president Alan Kessler, who will keep his post at the Santa Clara, Calif., company even after Palm hires a new CEO.


  • Jilted again! Amiga scraps PC plan
    Time: 04:42 EDT/09:42 GMT Source: ZDNet Posted By: Alex H

    Users of the Amiga PC -- the computer industry's equivalent of the perennially disappointed Chicago Cubs fans -- have again seen defeat snatched from the jaws of victory.

    Amiga, a unit of Gateway Inc. (NYSE:GTW), notified its customers via a murky announcement on the Amiga Web site that it is changing its strategy yet again, and will not bring to market a much-anticipated multimedia computer.

News Date: Wednesday 15th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
 Savage 3D
  • Savage 3D or Savage 4 Users: Hate the drivers? Sign Savage News' Petition
    Time: 16:34 EDT/21:35 GMT Source: E-Mail Posted By: Dennis

    We have received information that Savage 3D and Savage 4 users are not satistified with their service.  Here's a quote of the petition to give you an idea of what they mean:

    "We, the undersigned, are users of your Savage3D or Savage4 chipsets.
    The quality of currently available drivers for both the Savage3D and Savage4 based cards leaves much to be desired.
    Not only do they not match the promised features listed on your site, we face incompatibilities and bugs almost on a daily basis.
    Looking at the history of these drivers, we see little or no progress and the loss of features and performance.
    The availability of recent drivers is also an issue. Your site doesn't update very often, and most of the time the drivers listed there
    are much older then drivers obtained via other sources.
    We also request a list of fixes and modifications with each set of drivers.
    We would like a quick response to these issues."


News Date: Tuesday 14th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • Compaq aims for simpler, wireless PC
    Time: 10:15 EDT/15:15 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    Compaq Computer is gearing up for a complete redefinition of the PC and working on alliances to produce simpler, redesigned devices with wireless links, its chief executive said today.

    "Our goal should be to build really cool stuff," Michael Capellas, the computer maker's newly hired president and chief executive, told a news briefing as he completed a European tour aimed at outlining strategy for the company.

    Houston-based Compaq's direction has been blurred since predecessor CEO Eckhard Pfeiffer was forced out in April by a board unhappy with repeated sales problems and slow progress in expanding beyond PCs.

    Capellas told a conference organized by research group International Data Corporation that he believed one key outcome from the Internet explosion would be a dramatic change in what the PC is.

    "The new wave says how do we make these machines simpler and simpler--with specialized functions. Wireless connectivity becomes the actual baseline," he said.

    Asked if this focus meant fresh alliances, he said: "You can assume we are aggressively pursuing that, and no, I won't say who." He added that Compaq aimed to have established "close relations with somebody before the end of the year."

  • Handspring Visor Somersaults Over Palm
    Time: 10:11 EDT/15:11 GMT Source: PC World Posted By: Alex H

    Handspring's Visor is the best personal digital assistant to come down the pike since the Palm itself--not much of a surprise since the team behind the original PalmPilot created this sleek, new shirt-pocket device.

    Not only does the Visor mimic the Palm's size and shape, but it's based on the Palm operating system, so right out of the box it can run hundreds of Palm applications. On the preproduction unit I tested, I was able to HotSync my contacts, datebook, and other data using the same IntelliSync software that works with my Palm IIIx.

    Where the Visor differs from the Palm is that it almost always outdoes its predecessor. The datebook offers three views the Palm doesn't provide (weekly, annual, and appointment list), the calculator adds several advanced functions, and the HotSync cradle's Universal Serial Bus connection moves data approximately four times faster than the Palm's serial hookup.

  • A Full-Size Keyboard That Fits in Your Palm
    Time: 10:11 EDT/15:11 GMT Source: PC World Posted By: Alex H

    The nifty stylus and graffiti writing system of the PalmPilot let even those of us with illegible handwriting input addresses and e-mails. Still, it's not the easiest way to take notes or send faxes. What about a portable keyboard?

    On Tuesday, Think Outside announced the Stowaway portable keyboard for the Palm V; it folds out to become a full-size notebook keyboard.

    Think Outside is not the first company to develop keyboards for the Palm. But other vendors who have introduced minikeyboards, such as Landware's GoType, reduced the size and number of keys, leaving you with yet another adjustment to make in order to use your Palm.

  • Palm Beyond the Pilot
    Time: 10:09 EDT/15:09 GMT Source: PC World Posted By: Alex H

    Trying to stay ahead of Microsoft's Windows CE handheld devices, Palm Computing has begun to license its platform to other device manufacturers. One of the first licensees, Handspring, develops expandable handhelds and was founded by none other than PalmPilot creators Jeff Hawkins and Donna Dubinsky.

    On Tuesday, Handspring will add its new twist to the Palm world with the introduction of the Handspring Visor Solo ($149), Visor ($179), Visor Deluxe ($249), and the Springboard expansion platform.

    Based on and supporting applications for the Palm Computing platform, the low-price Visor devices are designed to introduce consumers to handhelds, and to offer uncommon expandability. The Visor offers all you'd expect from the $229 Palm III, plus connection to Springboard modules such as phones, remote Internet access products, MP3 audio players, digital cameras, and smart card readers.

  • Imeron Ships Intensor fx Gaming Seat
    Time: 10:01 EDT/15:01 GMT Source: Press Release Posted By: Alex H

    Imeron Inc., creators of the Intensor Sensory Gaming Chair, today announced that the Intensor fx, a portable game seat developed to provide immersive audio and tactile feedback for the 8-15 year old console gamer, has shipped to stores nationwide. The Intensor fx carries a suggested retail price of $89.

    The Intensor fx provides stereo sound with tactile feedback for console games, such as Sega Dreamcast, Nintendo 64 and Sony PlayStation, and can also be used with personal computers, Macintosh computers, TVs, VCRs, DVD players, and home audio systems. Whereas the original Intensor's sound and feedback came from the base and back of the chair, the Intensor fx's sound and tactile feedback emanates from the unit's seat. The product is much smaller and lighter than the original Intensor, allowing it to be placed on chairs, sofas, and the floor.

    "This new version of the Intensor makes immersive gaming audio more portable and more accessible than ever before," said Bill Beres, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Imeron, Inc. "Editorial and industry reception thus far has been tremendous, with reviews crediting the Intensor fx with taking video gaming to a new bone-rattling level. We expect an equally enthusiastic response from consumers."

    The Intensor fx's volume and tactile feedback is controlled by two slide bars located on the side of the seat. The unit also has a headphone feature that mutes the on-board speakers while maintaining the tactile feedback. The Intensor fx will have a built in handle for easy transport, making the unit available to be used anywhere an electrical outlet is found.


  • ATI slumps on Compaq loss
    Time: 09:55 EDT/14:55 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Another day, another stock market disaster for ATI, the graphics card market leader. Its share price slumped 8.55 per cent to $C16.55 and more than 5.4 million shares were traded yesterday on the Toronto Stock Exchange on news that it had lost a supply contract with Compaq. Could there be any connection with the supply win for Compaq Presarios announced yesterday by 3dfx?


  • Pentium II dead as dodo as famine strikes Intel chip parts
    Time: 09:53 EDT/14:53 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Intel has told its distributors and dealers that there is limited availability on some of its range of server and desktop microprocessors. The parts affected are the 500MHz Pentium III, but the famine is at its worst on the soon-to-be killed Pentium II family. There are shortages on both the 400MHz SECC2 and the 400MHz SECC chips, as well as the 350MHz Pentium II, which we have reported earlier. Intel told its customers about the shortages at the end of last week.


  • AMD ships Athlon 700s in volume
    Time: 09:51 EDT/14:51 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    An OEM close to AMD's plans has told The Register that it has started to receive supplies of the Athlon 700MHz microprocessor in volume.

    That means that AMD has exceeded its target in ramping up the processor frequency of the Athlon K7, and means machines are likely to be available in a matter of weeks.

    The German OEM, who declined to be named, said that he had already received sufficient stock of Athlon 700s to start building machines. Further volume stocks are on their way to him, he confirmed.

News Date: Monday 13th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
 Playstation 2
  • Intel confirms PIII/Celeron price cuts
    Time: 17:05 EDT/22:05 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    As revealed here earlier, Intel has cut prices on members of its Pentium III and Celeron processor family.  The company confirmed the following adjustments, on OEM prices of 1000 processors. The PIII/600 drops to $615 and the 550MHz to $423. New Celeron prices are as follows: The 500MHz part drops to $153, the 466 to $99, the 433MHz to $79 snd the 400MHz part to $64.

  • No Pentium IV re-name on way -- Intel
    Time: 17:03 EDT/22:03 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Rumours circulating on bulletin boards worldwide that Intel will rename its .18 micron Coppermine processor that debut next month to the Pentium IV were discounted by the firm today.

    An Intel representative said that as far as he was aware, there were no plans to change the name when the chips debut next month.

    Be that as it may, there is a marchitecture move afoot. Intel never silkscreened its new and shiny Pentium !!! logo onto Slot 1 packaging. The company, as revealed here earlier, wants to move Coppermine to Socket 370 and confine Slot 1 for desktops to its gulag.

  • Is Palm ready for the handheld challenge?
    Time: 17:01 EDT/22:01 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    As Palm readies itself to operate as an independent company, industry observers wonder if it can handle the heat from a string of new personal digital assistant competitors.

    3Com's announcement today that it plans to spin off its Palm Computing subsidiary into an independent publicly traded company heightens the scrutiny of Palm's relationship with Handspring--its highest-profile licensee and competitor--which coincidentally is set to release its first product tomorrow.

    Handspring, founded by Donna Dubinsky and Jeff Hawkins--both former co-founders of 3Com's Palm line--is set to release its first products based upon the Palm operating system tomorrow. Handspring's Visor combines the popular Palm operating system and third-party software capabilities with a lower price and attention-getting add-ons like an MP3 player, cell phone, and game cartridges.


  • Sony Playstation 2 Officially Announced
    Time: 09:27 EDT/14:27 GMT Source: Press Release Posted By: Byron

    Playstation 2Heralding in a new age of digital entertainment, Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. today announced the launch details of its revolutionary computer entertainment system, PlayStation2. Building on the success of the worldwide best-selling PlayStation game console with hardware shipments exceeding 60 million units, PlayStation2 is designed to bring together movies, music and games to form a new world of computer entertainment.

News Date: Saturday 11th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • IBM readies new high-end server products
    Time: 13:14 EDT/18:14 GMT Source: CNet News Posted By: Alex H

    In a new salvo in the server wars, IBM will extend its Unix server line with two new products on Monday, including a high-end machine that can run up to 24 processors.

    The new products--the high-end S80, code-named "Condor," and the low-end B50, code-named "Pizzazz"--will mark a substantial improvement to the RS/6000 line of Unix-based servers, say sources familiar with the coming announcement. The Condor in particular should put IBM's RS/6000 line close in terms of performance to Sun Microsystems' successful E10000 server.

News Date: Friday 10th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • AMD Cuts Chip Prices
    Time: 22:05 EDT/03:05 GMT Source: ZDNet Posted By: Dennis

    Advanced Micro Devices Inc., keeping the heat on Intel Corp., has reduced prices on certain clock speeds of its desktop K6-2 and K6-III processors by up to 25 percent.

    AMD's K6-2 475MHz desktop chip received the largest cut, falling 25 percent from $152 to $114. The K6-2 450MHz was reduced 17 percent from $112 to $93. The price of AMD's K6-2 400MHz chip was also cut by 11 percent, moving it from $82 to $73, company officials said on Friday.

  • Intel burns desktop prices again
    Time: 18:42 EDT/23:42 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    As revealed here earlier this week, Intel will cut desktop prices of its Pentium IIIs and Celerons in the run up to the introduction of the 533B and the 600B, which support a 133MHz FSB, on 27th of September.

    We now have those price details, detailed below. Intel cut prices on several of these parts only one month ago, indicating an aggressive ramp up in the face of AMD competition.


  • AMD may trash Intel's Merced on price/performance
    Time: 18:40 EDT/23:40 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Intel's AL460GX chipset may not match the power of AMD's Irongate D4 chipset, which will appear in motherboards in late Q1, next year.

    Last week, Intel unveiled the Merced chipset at its Developer Forum in Palm Springs, but no details were given on whether its claim of 4.2Gb/s throughput on dual memory buses was for the total throughput, or referred to each bus, giving a total of 8.4GB/s.

    Sources close to AMD's plans say that if the first case is true, then Intel's expensive chipset is "no better" than the Irongate D4 chipset announced at the Hot Chips conference last month.

News Date: Thursday 9th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • Pixela's new DVD-RAM drive with USB interface
    Time: 17:17 EDT/22:17 GMT Source: USB Workshop Posted By: Alex H

    Pixela Corporation is going to be the world's first company releasing PX-DVRM/UI USB compatible DVD-RAM drive by the end of this November. The easy-to-use USB interface works with both Macintosh & Windows and eliminates the hassle of SCSI interface. Again, this product supports Hot Plug or Plug & Play, and it is another feature to superior to SCSI interface. This new unit has high-speed data transfer offering DVD-VIDEO replay. The DVD-RAM drive adopted to the internal device is a product of Matsushita Electronics, a leading Japanese company that also works with PD format (Record Play) or CD format (Play) as well as DVD-RAM(5.2GB for double sided 2.6GB for single sided).

  • World's first USB KVM switch from Black Box Corp.
    Time: 17:15 EDT/22:15 GMT Source: USB Workshop Posted By: Alex H

    Black Box Corporation today introduced the world's first Universal Serial Bus (USB) enabled keyboard, video, and mouse switch, the ServSwitch USB. The Company will demonstrate this ground-breaking new product at Booth 567 at the Networld + Interop Trade Show in Atlanta on September 14 through 16, 1999.

    Black Box released its world's first USB-enabled ServSwitch for keyboard, video, and mouse (KVM). The ServSwitch product line provides access to and control of multiple computers through a single monitor, keyboard, and mouse, eliminating the need of monitor, keyboard, and mouse for each computer. The new USB ServSwitch that is fully compatible with any USB-compliant computer or peripheral is available in both 2 and 4 port versions. The USB ServSwitch also provides a built-in peripheral sharing and switching function. With built-in peripheral sharing, multiple computers -- even of different platforms -- can share a single USB printer, scanner, camera, storage device, or other USB peripheral.

  • Intel talks performance desktop talk
    Time: 17:12 EDT/22:12 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    The Intel Developers Forum ran a series of tracks on designing the next generation performance desktop system.

    Richard Malinowski, engineering director of the personal computer group at Intel, talked the talk about the i820 chipset and the sort of bottlenecks Intel hoped to address. He was also keen to promote AGP 4X.

    Malinowski claimed the next generation of AGP 4X graphics will deliver up to 1GB/sec transfer rate, twice the rate of AGP 2X, and has broad industry support from ATI, Matrox, Nvidia, S3 and 3DFX.

    IO bottlenecks, he said, included a PCI arbitration overhead. That protocol is asynchronous based, with no guaranteed quality of service.

  • DRAM price hike dead handy for Intel (and Rambus)
    Time: 17:10 EDT/22:10 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Life is full of little coincidences and sometimes companies, just like individuals, are subject to lucky strokes of fate.

    Take Chipzilla, for instance. Not so long ago, it looked like it had a big struggle on its hands to seed Rambus-designed RDRAM quickly into the market. One problem to overcome with cost-neurotic OEMs was the 30 per cent price premium command by Rambus over conventional DRAM.

    Now with rising SDRAM prices, that price premium might not look so hefty -- especially if Intel can persuade the Seven Dramurai™ backing Rambus, to resist the urge to mark up RDRAM accordingly.

  • Acer Labs pumps Nvidia TNT2 into Aladdin chipset
    Time: 17:08 EDT/22:08 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    A new product from chip maker Acer Labs Inc (ALi), is attracting mixed comments from industry watchers in the run up to the company's over-the-counter stock listing.

    "ALi definitely have the right product at the right moment," said Andrew Lin, an analyst at Jardine Fleming Taiwan. ALi's Aladdin TNT2 chipset combines the Taiwanese company's chipset technology with graphics expertise from Nvidia. The US company's TNT graphics chip is recognised as one of the most powerful low-cost 3D graphics chips. "This is definitely the direction to go," Lin concluded, "Their local competitors, SiS and VIA, are doing similar things.

    Arthur Hsieh, downstream electronics analyst at Taiwan Securities was less certain about the product. "Although they're announcing it now, it will still take some time to mass produce," he said, "but their competitors have products available now. Although Nvidia is pretty good in this field, how to integrate their technology into the core logic chipset is another barrier they have to overcome."

  • Palm creators prep faster, cheaper Visor
    Time: 03:35 EDT/08:35 GMT Source: ZDNet Posted By: Alex H

    Handspring Inc. will turn the Palm world on its ear next Tuesday when it releases Visor -- a cheaper, faster and more expandable Palm operating system-based handheld device.

    The San Mateo, Calif., company -- founded by the ex-Palm Computing duo Donna Dubinsky and Jeff Hawkins -- has developed the device based around the Palm OS, version 3.1.

    According to sources, there will be three Visor models:

    - The Visor Solo for $149.

    - The Visor for $179.

    - And the Visor Deluxe for $249.

    By way of comparison, 3Com's lowest-price Palm, the IIIe, is priced at $199.

  • Sega's Dreamcast takes a cue from PCs
    Time: 03:35 EDT/08:35 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    Sega has a dream for its new high-end gaming machine.

    Equipped with a high-powered 128-bit chip, modem, and computer-like features such as email and Internet capabilities, Sega's Dreamcast--like other gaming machines coming to market--can ostensibly duplicate, and even improve upon, many of the core functions of home PCs. The question, therefore, is whether these consoles will begin to displace the PC, or merely live on as game machines.

    Aside from goblins and ghouls in the gaming world, Sega will have to fight the good fight in the market for gaming products. The company has faltered in past product launches, and now faces stronger competitors such as Sony and Nintendo, which will begin to ship their own high-end gaming units to the United States next year.

    By releasing Dreamcast now, Sega will grab the lead in the market, but it is uncertain whether gaming fans will flock to this new platform that could take the PC to task.

  • Merced: How do you boot Linux fast on a Merced?
    Time: 03:33 EDT/08:33 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Maybe some of our readers were wondering exactly how you boot Linux fast on a big Merced beastie without an x.86 style BIOS. Here is Mindy Murdock's answer. Mindy is Intel's ISV programme manager and at the track last week it seemed to have a lot of suggestions.

    Never forget that Intel is OS agnostic, despite the fact it has undoubted software skill, for example building many answers into Microsoft Windows 98, as reported here earlier this year.


  • Two i820 mobos up Intel sleeves...
    Time: 03:31 EDT/08:31 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Sources at Intel Israel told The Register early this morning that the chip giant will ship at least two versions of i820 Caminos when info is released on the 27 September next.

    Intel is readying both the Vancouver VC820 and another mobo believed to be called the Fairbanks, the CC820, and also based on the Camino chip set.

    The chip giant is hedging its memory bets, said Intel Israel. One allows people to move quickly from the BX set to the 820, while the other is intended to satisfy wide demand for the PC-133 SDRAM standard.

    Last week, at the Intel Developer Forum, the chip giant hedged its bets on future DRAM technology, as reported here.

News Date: Wednesday 8th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • Bell Microproducts signs distribution agreement with AMD
    Time: 07:48 EDT/12:48 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    Bell Microproducts (Nasdaq: BELM) announced today the signing of an agreement with Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NYSE: AMD) to supply their complete range of the AMD-K6-2(R), AMD-K6-III and AMD Athlon(TM) microprocessors.

    "We are pleased to add Bell Microproducts as an AMD Authorized Distributor for our PC Processor Products," said Jeff Erhart, director of worldwide distributor operations at AMD. "Bell Microproducts has done an outstanding job penetrating the commercial marketplace. Their position in the market, combined with their size and flexibility, give AMD a strong business partner who can adapt to the ever-changing PC market."

    AMD-K6 family processors remain a top choice in the U.S. retail desktop PC market, where AMD consistently garners strong market share. The next-generation 650 Mhz AMD Athlon processor delivers the ultimate computing experience and outperforms any existing Windows compatible x86 processor. With the introduction of the AMD Athlon processor, AMD processors with 3DNow!(TM) technology can now enable system products that span the complete range of desktop and mobile computing, from sub-$1,000 and mainstream consumer PCs to high-performance laptops and high-end desktop systems for small-business and enterprise users and PC enthusiasts.

    "We are excited about adding the AMD-K6-2, AMD-K6-III and AMD Athlon microprocessors to our line card because they clearly represent important leading edge technology," said Ron Mabry, senior vice president semiconductor marketing of Bell Microproducts. "The ability of AMD to develop and deliver high-end microprocessors, combined with Bell Microproducts' customer service and market reach, will benefit customers looking for state-of-the-art microprocessor products."


  • Intel says only small number of notebook chips duff
    Time: 07:45 EDT/12:45 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Chip giant Intel has now confirmed there was a problem with some mobile parts but said the problem was in the substrate and not the silicon. A UK representative said: "It wasn't a silicon issue, it was a substrate packaging issue with one of our suppliers. It is, by no means, a recall." The problem is restricted to a relatively small batch of parts, he said, although he did not say how many were affected.


  • Intel 533B and 600B parts reason for 12 September price cuts
    Time: 05:50 EDT/10:50 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Intel will once more slash prices on the 12th September next to make way for the introduction of 533(B)MHz and 600(B)MHz parts, it has emerged. These B parts will support 133MHz front side buses (FSBs), we are given to understand. Over the weekend we reported that a fresh tranche of price cuts on Pentium IIIs and Celerons was in the offing. The 27th of September is the release date for Intel's i820 Camino chipset.

  • Intel cutting notebook chip prices
    Time: 05:48 EDT/10:48 GMT Source: ZDNet Posted By: Alex H

    More megahertz to the people. Intel Corp. this week will reduce prices by up to 43 percent on mobile Celeron and Pentium II processors. The Santa Clara, Calif., chip maker is preparing several new mobile offerings, including a 433MHz Celeron chip and its first Mobile Pentium III chips, which will ship this fall. The price cuts, which are usually planned well in advance, are designed in part to help move OEMs and customers to those new chips.

    "If manufacturing is strong, in combination with new technology on the horizon, it allows us to be aggressive with prices," said Seth Walker, an Intel spokesman.

    Intel (Nasdaq:INTC) reduced prices on its mobile Pentium II chips with ball grid array packaging by up to 41 percent. The 400MHz Pentium II chip was reduced from $530 to $358 or about 32 percent. The largest Pentium II price cut came on the 366MHz chip, which was lowered 41 percent from $316 to $187.


  • Sun looks toward a new dawn in thin clients
    Time: 05:46 EDT/10:46 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    Sun Microsystems hopes to usher in a new dawn in computer systems that some say could save customers money and improve efficiency. Tomorrow, Sun will unveil the Sun Ray, a desktop computer unit designed to encourage companies to abandon traditional PCs in favor of cheap, simple "thin clients" that shove most of the heavy lifting to centralized server computers.

    Thin clients save money and improve efficiency, say advocates, although customers have remained lukewarm about the new product. Sun's first thin client computer, the JavaStation, flopped quite publicly two years ago, hampered by dropping PC prices, numerous product delays, and slow Java performance, the programming language used by the computer.

News Date: Monday 6th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • 1.6GHz Alpha to be fastest Quake chip on planet
    Time: 16:37 EDT/21:37 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Compaq and API are readying a 1.6GHz Alpha 21364 which will include a version of SIMD 3D instructions and support for Rambus without the latency penalties that seem to dog the x.86 platform.

    A 1.6 GHz 21364 using the EV7 platform, is likely to belt out 6.4 single precision Gflops, according to sources.

    This would beat Merced hands down in ultraparallel single precision floating point.

    The processor will have a 128-bit 800MHz Rambus channels, and will load an entire 128-bit cache depth at the first transfer. Eight 16-bit Rambus channels make up the 128 bits.

    That compares with Intel's i820 chipset which, with one 16-bit Rambus channel, needs four transfers to fill the first 64-bit cache word.


  • AMD to intro K8 at Microprocessor Forum
    Time: 16:35 EDT/21:35 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Fresh from the successful hype of its K7 (Athlon) family, AMD is now gearing up for the K8, its 64-bit follow-up.

    The company goes public on the K8 at, next month's Microprocessor Forum -- we understand. But the clone chip firm refuses to confirm or deny such a chip is on the cards.

    AMD reckons it's piling the pressure on Intel with the K7. And a quick introduction of the K8 would certainly give something for Chipzilla to think about.

    AMD aims turn up the heat by launching its next generation of (64-bit) processors within months -- and it has enlisted top chip engineer Dirk Meyer (a former Alpha male)to make it happen.

    The step up from 32-bit Athlon K7 to a 64-bit K8 (Octathlon?) chip is relatively trivial to achieve, we are led to understand, from sources close to the company's plans.

    So the 64-bit chip scene could look fairly crowded next year, with competing flavours from Compaq, Intel -- and now AMD.

News Date: Saturday 4th September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • CD-RW and DVD-RAM Drives Hit Higher Speeds
    Time: 14:34 EDT/19:34 GMT Source: PC World Posted By: Alex H

    Those CD-Rewritable and DVD-RAM drives you've always wanted might be coming your way faster than you thought.

    Have you been waiting for CD-RW drives to become faster and cheaper, and for those long-awaited DVD-RAM (rewritable DVD) drives to become more available? If so, you'll want to hear about Creative Labs' latest generation of drives, announced this week.

    The company says both the Blaster CD-RW 6424 drive and Blaster PC-DVD RAM will be available by the end of September. Prices remain high: an estimated street price of $249.95 for the CD-RW and $599.99 for the DVD-RAM.


  • Intel to cut Celeron, PIII prices 12th September
    Time: 14:34 EDT/19:34 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Only three weeks after it slashed prices on its desktop Pentium III and Celeron processors, Intel is to cut prices yet again. Distributors have received notice from Intel that the price cuts will come the week of the 12th of September, on selected members of the Pentium III and Celeron desktop family.

    At the same time, Intel quietly lowered the price of its 366MHz in the PPGA packaging on the 29th of August.

    The move must be seen as attacking AMD's products, and at the same time paving the way for the introduction of CuMine technology in October and Camino i820 introductions in late September.

News Date: Thursday 2nd September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • DRAM price hikes to propel Samsung profit past $2bn
    Time: 15:11 EDT/20:11 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Samsung today said that it expects rising DRAM prices to push its profits for the current fiscal year up to $2.5 billion.

    "The 64Mb DRAM price rose across $10 yesterday on the spot market and [that] would give a considerable boost to our profit for the coming period," a Samsung spokesman, James Chung, told the Reuters newsagency.

    Chung said the company expects its 1999 after-tax profit to be aorunf $2.3 billion, a near ninefold increase on last year's $266 million.

    "A $1 rise in the price usually raises our profit by about $300 million, said Chung.


  • New notebook Celerons, price cuts coming
    Time: 15:11 EDT/20:11 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    Intel is prepping Celeron chips for notebook computers running at 433 MHz and will cut prices on its existing line of Celeron and Pentium II notebook chips. The price cuts will lead to more and cheaper notebooks for the back-to-school season, as well as pave the way for the release of Pentium III-based notebooks due later this fall, sources said.

News Date: Thursday 2nd September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • New Business PCs Are Smaller, Simpler, Easier to Service
    Time: 15:11 EDT/20:11 GMT Source: PC World Posted By: Alex H

    Call it the latest space race: PC makers are competing to build a new breed of corporate desktops small enough to fit into the coziest of cubicles and yet so easy to service that you won't need a rocket scientist on your staff. We're not just talking about cases that are compact or that open without tools. Designers have been rethinking and reworking the interiors of these computers from top to bottom, eliminating cables, increasing drive accessibility, and relocating PCI slots in a pop-out tray.

    Slim, serviceable cases are appearing across this fall's corporate desktop lines. To illustrate, here's a peek inside a Celeron-500 system from Gateway and Pentium III-500 PCs from Compaq and Dell.

    Who's to thank for the current interest in system design? Apple. The success of its iMac and G3 desktops convinced PC vendors that looks matter, even to business customers. Unlike standard desktops, the G3 is housed in a colorful, eye-catching case that opens easily, making the motherboard and other key components very accessible. Corporate PC designers have been thinking critically about the relationship between function and end-user costs, too; as a result, the new desktops save you money in two different ways.

  • Sun poised to ship 64-bit Solaris for Merced
    Time: 15:08 EDT/20:08 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Sun will turn up the heat on Microsoft this autumn by shipping key developers an early access release of Solaris for Intel's IA-64 simulator. Although Intel has now demonstrated Merced silicon in action, for the near future much software development will still be carried out on the simulator.

    Sun is demonstrating 64-bit Intel Solaris at this week's Intel Developer Forum, and the company has already made it clear that it intends to use 64-bitness as a stick to beat Microsoft. The latter's Win64 for Merced was demonstrated earlier this week, but the company isn't planning a first beta until the first half of next year, giving rivals from Sun, SCO and the Linux developers a chance to run with the 64-bit ball earlier.

  • Big Blue leaps into networking fray
    Time: 15:06 EDT/20:06 GMT Source: ZDNet Posted By: Alex H

    IBM Corp. on Thursday will unveil a new family of network processor chips and related strategies as part of a bid to become the world's top supplier of communications microelectronics by 2003, IBM officials said. IBM, the world's largest computer maker, is looking to boost its role as a supplier of technology parts in hot demand by computer, communications and consumer electronic makers, reaching beyond its roots as a supplier of entire computers.

    The Armonk, N.Y.-based company will introduce Thursday a new family of programmable communications chips for data networking products like routers, hubs and switches that can be enhanced using software rather than costly hardware upgrades.

    "We feel we will be in the No. 1 or No. 2 position by 2002 and no. 1 by 2003 in wired communications," Christine King, vice president for wired communications at IBM's Microelectronics division, said in an interview.


  • Compaq has copper Alphas working
    Time: 15:04 EDT/20:04 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Conversations in newsgroup COMP.ARCH have revealed that samples of Alphas using copper and SOI technology are already up and running. The reports come after yesterday's claim by Intel's John Miner that its IA-64 processors will outperform any Risc platform. According to a user on the thread, he is already achieving clock speeds of 833MHz using Tru64 Unix on a UP2000 motherboard.

    He said: "So what would you expect from a sped-up 0.18 um copper SOI part with much faster cache bandwidth than today (a 667 MHz EV-67 used in recent XP1000 SPEC results runs a 1/3 speed 222 MHz cache; what do you get when you increase the clock rat 2.2 times, and cache throughput 4.5 times - and double the cache size (and improve main mem bus speed?"

  • Intel: PC price limbo is over
    Time: 15:02 EDT/20:02 GMT Source: ZDNet Posted By: Alex H

    Can PC prices go much lower? With some full-fledged PCs now selling for as little as $400, Intel doesn't think so. Prices may be able to come down by another $50, said Pat Gelsinger, an Intel (Nasdaq:INTC) vice president and general manager of the company's Desktop Products Group. But a full-fledged, Windows-based $199 PC, without a rebate or discount, is unlikely to appear in the near future, he said.

    Some vendors, including Microworkz and GlobalPC, have broken the $399 barrier, with their low-end computers. They do so by utilizing non-Windows operating systems, such as Be and Linux, or older components along the lines of GlobalPC's 486 processor.

  • Intel move to PC-133 mere lip service
    Time: 15:00 EDT/20:00 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    A press conference at the forum has revealed that Intel's commitment to PC-133 is essentially a lack of commitment. (Earlier story: Intel in full cunning strategic retreat from PC-133)

    The upcoming i820 Camino chipset will not have PC-133 support, and Intel appears to be saying that it will introduce a special chipset sometime next year which will only support PC-100 and PC-133. That is despite the fact that i820 has SDRAM support for PC-100 and Taiwanese mobo makers have successfully made PC-133 run with chipsets, such as Via's, which compete with Intel. Intel is in litigation with Via over alleged violation of its patents.


  • Intel concedes memory issue, as expected
    Time: 14:58 EDT/19:58 GMT Source: Posted By: Alex H

    Bowing to pressure from computer makers and memory manufacturers, Intel formally committed to producing more chipsets that will work with standard computer memory, a move that could further stem the rush toward Rambus.

    Until today, Intel's position has been that all of its future chipsets would support Rambus memory, which limited the horizon for using standard memory, or SDRAM, in Intel-based PCs. The change had been expected.

    Intel will now come out with a chipset that will work with 133-MHz SDRAM, said Pete MacWilliams, an Intel fellow, at the Intel Developer's Forum.

News Date: Wednesday 1st September 1999
Today's Top Hardware Headlines:
  • Intel acquires another firm as IXA mycelium spreads
    Time: 15:09 EDT/20:09 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Intel announced this morning it has brought another networking company, Netboost, as part of its move to become a leader in the networking market.

    At the same time, Intel will roll out its IXA architecture and proudly announce its network chip, the IXP 1200. These details were leaked out by two US publications at the end of last week, and Chipzilla is furious about this. Netboost specialises in infrastructure including VPNs (virtual private networks) and RMON.

  • 3dfx, S3 merger talks still on
    Time: 15:07 EDT/20:07 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    Register sources reckon 3dfx's subtle plan to take control of the 3D graphics industry and more is still a runner. The plan, which emerged back in June, has 3dfx launching a bid to buy rival 3D graphics specialist S3.

    Since details of the scheme emerged, of course, S3 announced its decision to buy Diamond Multimedia through a $175 million share trade. The Diamond acquisition, which still needs shareholder approval, would give S3 access to Diamond's home networking, digital music technology and, more importantly, its board manufacturing operation.

    The S3/Diamond deal is due to go before Diamond shareholders on 20 September. The Diamond board has recommended the deal.

  • Merced could be a great games machine
    Time: 15:02 EDT/20:02 GMT Source: The Register Posted By: Alex H

    When the Merced, with 4Mb of on die cache, and at speeds of 750MHz on a .18 micron process, and a set of slightly different Screaming Cindy extensions, starts to appear in volume next year, it could be the perfect gamer's machine.

    The microprocessor is being positioned as a heavyweight beast for the corporate server marketplace, but with tweaking could run the fastest Quake on the planet, it has emerged.

    Although Intel is still publicly denying that it will eventually replace the IA32 platform, it's likely that clever mobo manufacturers may turn out models to do the business for the lucrative games market.

  • Belkin Components launches revolutionary USB hub configuration system
    Time: 04:46 EDT/09:46 GMT Source: USB Workshop Posted By: Alex H

    In what is being recognized as the most exciting new USB product introduction in the company's extensive lineup, Belkin Components Tuesday launched its highly innovative BusStation(TM).

    Its modular patented industrial design is composed of two major components -- the modules and the station itself. The modules will be available as USB-to-Ethernet (No. F5U111), USB Serial Adapter (No. F5U103, No. F5U103-MAC), USB SCSI Adapter for Macintosh® (No. F5U115-MAC) and as 4-Port USB Hubs (No. F5U101, No. F5U101-MAC).

    Each separate module also works as a stand-alone unit and is highly compact and attractively designed to stack together to take up minimum work space.

  • Hewlett Packard unveils its first USB CD-RW drive
    Time: 04:44 EDT/09:44 GMT Source: USB Workshop Posted By: Alex H

    Hewlett-Packard Company today introduced two new series of CD-RW drives with SCSI and USB interfaces -- the HP CD-Writer Plus 9200i series and the HP CD-Writer Plus 8200e series, respectively. With the addition of these drives, HP offers users a wide range of connection options, including SCSI, USB and IDE interfaces.

    The HP CD-Writer Plus 9200i series is HP's leading-edge CD-RW drive. HP's first SCSI-solution writes at up to 8X transfer speed and reads data at up to 32X transfer speed. Designed for the performance-conscious customer, this drive offers read speeds faster than many CD-ROM drives.

    The new plug-and-play HP CD-Writer Plus 8200e series has a USB connection that writes data at up to 4X transfer speed and reads data at up to 6X transfer speed. This offers users a cost-effective option that is easy to use and allows customers to move the drive between PCs.


  • USB 2.0 speed got a boost!
    Time: 04:40 EDT/09:40 GMT Source: USB Workshop Posted By: Alex H

    A group of PC industry leaders announced today that the speed target of Universal Serial Bus (USB) 2.0 is two to three times faster than what was disclosed at the Intel Developer Forum in February.

    Earlier this year, the USB 2.0 Promoter Group, consisting of Compaq, HP, Intel, Lucent, Microsoft, NEC and Philips, announced an early speed estimate of USB 2.0 being 120 to 240 Megabits per second (Mbs), or 10 to 20 times faster than USB 1.1. This latest increase in the speed target puts the rate now at 360-480 Mbs, or 30 to 40 times faster than USB 1.1.

Read more of the past months news in our News Archive for Previous August News.

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