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September 23, 1998

INTEL POLISHES BLUETOOTH MESSAGE

By CBR Staff Writer

Intel Corp’s the future of business computing hit London yesterday, with more of a whimper than a bang. Craig Barrett, president and CEO, was there to talk about Intel’s view of the internet, e-business and the ‘Bluetooth’ initiative. However, the glitzy seminar was at best a wrap-up of Intel’s current state of play, at worst, an expensive marketing exercise. The Bluetooth wireless networking project extracted most interest, but the company added little more detail to what it’s said already. It’s clear Bluetooth is a way for Intel to establish a firm market sector for its StrongARM CPU, originally designed by DEC. Barrett said that Intel sees Bluetooth as a three-legged stool. Wireless data devices – such as cellphones – form one leg of the stool, with PDAs forming another. This is the market at which Intel is aiming the StrongARM embedded processor, with its low power consumption. Intel is pushing Celeron as the processor for the third, PC ‘leg’ of the stool. Of course, nailing down a market for StrongARM will help to stop the embedded processor encroaching on the low end market for the more expensive Celeron part.

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