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July 22, 1990


By CBR Staff Writer

On Wednesday, Sun Microsystems Inc is due to launch what is expected to be the next stage of its sustained drive into the low-end, volume Unix workstation market. Pundits have been awaiting an intermediate workstation to bridge the gap between the diskless, non-expandable Sparcstation SLC and the Sparcstation 1+. The new colour workstation is likely to come in at around 16 MIPS, and to cost around $7,000 – the 12.5 MIPS Sparcstation SLC is $5,000, the 16 MIPS Sparcstation 1+ is $9,000. It will come in a smaller version of Sun’s slim pizza box design, and like the Sparcstation 1+ will use a 25MHz Sparc part, but it will come with just one S-bus expansion slot – the SLC has none. Sun’s traditional market is being squeezed by the likes of DEC, with its 24 MIPS-rated DECstation 5000 series DEC also offers substantial discounts on its equipment for Sun users that trade-in their workstations – and Sun has been forced to come out with increasingly low-cost and high-performance solutions. What happened to the ECL MIPStations expected to accompany the VAX 4000? Electronic News hears that the company has had to postpone it indefinitely because it can’t get enough of the chips from Bipolar Integrated Technology, which says it is now meeting commitments to MIPS Computer Systems.

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