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IBM has confirmed that it is offering qualifying US customers two years’ free maintenance on 3090s ordered before the end of this year. Clearly in part an effort to ensure that it has a storming fourth quarter, the special offer had been rumoured (CI No 1,068), and an IBM spokesman in New York conceded this week that an incentive offer running until December 31 for certain, eligible customers waived maintenance fees for 24 months, but emphasised that the arrangement applied only in the US. Eligibility covers customers buying a 3090 E or S for the first time, or upgrading from a base model. In addition, they must be basic licence holders, must operate stand-alone sites, and must agree to buy enough code from IBM to maintain the site. The reason few people were aware of the offer is that it was not the subject of any formal announcement, the terms and conditions being set out in a letter circulated to a number of site managers; as a result the major UK leasing companies had no knowledge of it.

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