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October 10, 1999

Sony to Challenge SGI Workstations With Playstation Chips

By CBR Staff Writer

Sony Computer Entertainment Inc chief executive, Ken Kutaragi, last week told the Microprocessor Forum that the Japanese console giant plans to take on Silicon Graphics, and leverage its games technology to build high-performance workstations. Kutaragi told the San Jose, California conference that enhanced versions of the SCE Graphics Synthesizer (GS) and Emotion Engine (EE) chips used in the PlayStation 2, will drive workstations able to run development tools 10 times faster than today’s platforms, rising to 100 times and 1,000 times faster by 2001 and 2005.

Sony’s first workstations will appear next year, incorporating faster EE+ and GS+ chips. By 2002, Kutaragi said, SCE expects to have developed the EE2, which will incorporate 40 million transistors. The next-generation EE3 will have more than 100 million transistors. The new workstations will be compete head on with products from Silicon Graphics Inc, and will be used to enhance the work environment for creating entertainment content, said Kutaragi.

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