Intel has selected Itanium as the official brand name for the first products in its new range of high end 64bit processors, due to begin rolling off the production line in mid 2000.
The new moniker for the first IA-64 chip, formerly known as Merced, was chosen to relay both a "modern image" and the "strength and performance" of the product, Intel spokesman Graham Palmer said.
"We're positioning the Itanium family as the processor for ebusiness," Palmer said.
Intel had looked for a name which was "easily remembered and conveys these key elements to business users when they're looking at an architecture for the future," he said.
Launching a new brand is big business for any multi-billion dollar corporation and bigger than most for Intel, which already enjoys 'brand equity' on a par with the likes of Coca Cola and Marlborough.
This is primarily the result of two activities, one planned and the other decidedly not: the vendor's long running Intel Inside campaign and the publicity storm which the detection of a flaw in its Pentium processor attracted five years ago.
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