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  1. Technology
March 29, 1988


By CBR Staff Writer

IBM expects to ship its forthcoming Silverlake series of machines in the second half of this year, Tom Furey, director of the Rochester Laboratory told analysts in Dallas on Monday. The machine will provide an upgrade path for System 36 users into the System 38 world, and has been designed to combine the best features of each. The company was talking about its mid-range strategy and Ed Kfoury, president of the System Products Division, told Reuters afterwards that IBM was investing more money in mid-range systems – but declined to be more specific. On the 9370, which sparked most interest, Kfoury told the conference that while the machine failed to meet the company’s announced forecast in May last year that it would ship 5,000 in 1987, its earlier internal expectations had been lower, and those had been met. The higher figure was based on early orders for the machine, and he said that the reason for the low number shipped was that the company built a limited number of configurations. Kfoury told the analysts that the 9370 was selling well and that it was seen as the beginning of a new product line that IBM is working to keep viable and healthy, and according to the New York Times looks for sales of 10,000 this year, 15,000 next, after 4,000 last. Even so, early performance is in marked contrast to the 4300, for which the first 18 months’ production was sold out in the first day orders for the machine. How, in detail, is the 9370 doing? Kfoury said that in a survey covering 40% of 9370 users, 43% said that the 9370 was their first computer system, and 10% said that it had been installed alongside a competitor’s machine, while in 12% of the cases surveyed, the 9370 had replaced a competitor’s box.

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