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Michael Dell was at the American Embassy in London yesterday for the launch of Dell Computer Corp’s new 80286-based AT-alike, the System 220, and the new 80386-based System 310. The company, which was founded by Dell as a teenager in Austin, Texas in 1984, has grown to become the seventh largest US based personal computer manufacturer with a turnover of $159.0m last year, making a net profit of $9.0m. Its British subsidiary, Dell Computer Corporation (UK) was set up last June and has accounted for almost 15% of Dell’s total turnover in its first year of operation. The company says that the System 220 can outperform all other 80286-based boxes, and runs as fast as the 80386-based IBM PS/2 Model 80 and the Compaq Deskpro 386/20. The System 220 is claimed to be the first AT-alike to use a 20MHz 80286, and has an entry price of UKP2,100; the System 310, which uses a 20MHz 80386 processor, has an entry level price of UKP2,800 with a top of the range model priced at UKP5,099. Both models include 1Mb RAM, one 1.44Mb floppy, a 40Mb hard drive, the monitor, a Dell System Analyser, a 102-key keyboard, one parallel port and two serial ports in the base price and are available immediately. The company said that there will be price cuts to the existing 12.5MHz entry-level 80286-based System 200 and 16MHz 80386-based System 300, both of which will remain in production. Dell also used yesterday’s launch to introduce to the UK its adaptation of Microsoft OS/2 Standard Edition 1.0, for use with its entire range of 80286 and 80386 machines, which the company says will allow the user install MS OS/2, MS-DOS and Xenix on the same hard disk drive. Commenting on the release of Dell’s PS/2 clones later this year Michael Dell said that the Dell 400 and 500, shown last week in the US, will equate with the IBM PS/2 Models 50, 60 and 80 and it will announce ship dates for them in August.

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