Motorola has linked up with network computer supplier, HDS Network Systems, to devise a PowerPC reference platform for NCs. The specification is based on an adapted version of the PowerPC Risc processor, and will be offered to OEMs wanting to build network computers.
HDS has ported its NetOS operating system to Motorola?s new MPC800 PowerPC processor and NCs based on the chip will be able to run virtually any type of application including those written for Java, Windows, Unix, industry standard browsers, minicomputer and mainframe systems and the Internet.
HDS was the first company to bring out an NC, last June, and has since sold 6,000 of the boxes into pilot sites around the world, although only 500 in Europe. So far the company has been using the Intel 960 processor but "the PowerPC is a lower price platform which allows us to look at more consumer type designs?, according to Pat Dunne, general manager for Northern Europe at HDS.
Paul Clark, European marketing manager for PowerPC microprocessors at Motorola Semiconductor, said: ?The 800 chip is specifically designed for embedded use where lots of other features, like communications, can be built into the chip itself. We are certainly aiming PowerPC at the NC arena. The Risc chip is good at dealing with graphics so it is ideal for people who want to pull things off the Net.?
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