Cyrix, still struggling with a run of poor financials, acknowledged yesterday that it recalled a number of 6x86MX chips exhibiting abnormal failure rates.
Actual numbers remain unclear, with US reports claiming that 10,000-plus processors were recalled in June. But Cyrix vice president of corporate and channel marketing, Steve Tobak, insists that only a few systems were affected.
The problem has been traced back to testing processes rather than the chip manufacturing processes themselves, and Cyrix claims that very few chips reached customers, largely because there is a delay between shipment and customer delivery. Chips are shipped to distributors who assemble systems according to demand.
Cyrix is competing hard with AMD, and both companies want to eat into Intel's huge base.
Despite the blip, Cyrix' stock price stayed steady at around $28 and the short term repercussions appear limited. The Texas company is being acquired by National Semiconductor in a $550 million stock swap, which Nat Semi announced in July. The two are merging to develop system-on-a-chip technology for entry level PCs, NetPCs and the emerging information appliance markets.
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