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June 23, 1987


By CBR Staff Writer

Wrapping up the rest of the announcements, with prices, IBM’s entry into the T-1 1.544Mbps high-speed digital world made it a flaming June for Network Equipment Technologies of Redwood City, California, which sees a transformation in its prospects as a result of IBM’s OEM contract, and cash to help it develop new products in what is said by some to be the fastest-growing in telecommunications. The IBM 3737 Remote Channel-to-Channel Unit allows a 370 to use T-1 lines, permitting loosely-coupled systems to live at great distances from each other. Available in November, the machine costs $72,000, and one box must be put at each end of a T-1 line, and the three fault-tolerant IDNX models offered, 20, 40 and 70, can accept voice and data transmissions from both private and public networks. Network Equipment’s share price has soared since the company went public in January: offered at $16 apiece – to raise $48m for the company, they stood at $27 in the middle of last week. And that is despite IBM saying it has no plans to take an equity stake – at any rate for the moment. IBM is boosting memory on its Series/1 minicomputers. Models 4956 J and K can now take up to 14Mb using 2Mb cards at $5,000 or 4Mb cards at $10,000 that will be available in the first quarter of next year. The EDX operating system for the Series/1 is headed for version 6, which helps the machine conform to LU 6.2 requirements; depending on features, the software costs $3,100 to $7,320 and will be released in the first quarter of next year. Also, a new EDX version for support of retail terminals, priced at $17,771, is now released; it adds SNA capability to the prior versions. The 5208 model 1 is a protocol converter that makes up to seven ASCII devices – including terminals from IBM, DEC, TeleVideo, ADDS, Lear Siegler, Wyse and others – look like the 5250-type terminals that are routinely used with System/36 and System/38. The protocol converter is $3,295 and will ship in the US next month.But what of the 9370s that are the cornerstone of the Communicate-with-IBM strategy? Latest word from the company is that by next month, 180 of the things will have been installed at 100 customer sites. General deliveries are due to begin next month, but the number IBM is saying it will ship this year – 3,000 in the US, 2,000 in the rest of the world, falls far short even of the modest 8,000 total Gartner Group forecast shortly after launch.

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