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DEC late last year decided not to invest in development of its own top-end cartridge tape drive to succeed the reel-to-reel drives it now offers, and instead put out requests for bids on 3480-type drives, Electronic News has learned. The paper hears that requests went to IBM – which has been looking for OEM contracts on the 3480, so far with no major success; Storage Technology; Aston Peripherals, Fujitsu and Hitachi. It wants the drives, for top-end models in the VAX line, for first deliveries around the end of the year, and given the keen competitive position between the two, IBM is seen as unlikely to be awarded the business. StorageTek is said to have delivered units of its 4480 drive for DEC’s evaluation already.

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