IBM claimed today it has sold 14,000 of its Net Station NCs since its introduction on the 28 March.
Derek Ashmore, director of marketing and operations at IBM Emea, said: ?The NC is an alternative platform driven by our customers. All analysts have concluded that PCs cost a lot of money to run. In this networking world it?s the network that lays down the rule, not the appliance.?
He said it made sense for many large corporations to adopt an NC rather than other computing devices. ?All of the action takes place on the server,? he said. ?Applications are run on the server abd yiu can run all different kinds of servers simultaneously. The Gartner Group estimates that 70 per cent of the world?s business data is stull run on mainframes and most of those are IBM machines.?
He said the Net Station could be used to run Domino clients, was an ?ideal? SAP terminal and could also run PC Windows applications.
?If you want to do PC things, why should you want to buy anything other than a PC,? he continued. ?It if looks like a duck and walks like a duck, buy a duck. If you want a Net Station and it looks like a swan and walks like a swan, buy a swan.?
Ashmore refused to be drawn on whether IBM would use its own Microelectronic division?s reference design in the future. (See earlier story). That has a bill of materials of $200. He said he was not willing to give away details of IBM?s future product plans.
But, he said, IBM will continue to develop the slim client which sits on a desktop and weighs around three pounds. His company?s alliance with Sun, Netscape, Oracle and Apple had yielded the first reference design for a mobile NC, he said.
He revealed that UK supermarket chain Tesco and many other "household name" companies had Net Stations in pilot and also hinted that BT was in active discussions with Big Blue over using the machines.
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