Big Blue has pulled the rug from under Microsoft by announcing that neither it nor its PowerPC partners will continue to support Windows NT on the PowerPC platform.
Ian Roscow, a product specialist at the IBM AIX group, said: ?Basically it?s a joint decision between IBM, Motorola and Bull. Essentially the market demand wasn?t justified. Our users are not disappointed. Originally, it was designed to be an option for PowerPC users.?
Roscow said that the RS/6000 group will now concentrate on selling AIX for its Power PC machines. He would not say how many millions of dollars Microsoft had spent on developing NT for the platform and said the decision had no real significance.
?This isn?t a disaster for IBM, it?s a logical move. We?ve 64-bit technology using Apache on the way.? The move will not affect sales, he insisted. Nor had IBM entirely washed its hands of NT, he said. ?What we?re doing with NT is targeting NT for workstations,? he said.
Steve Walker, OS/2 evangelist at IBM UK, said his company had made a conscious decision at the beginning of this year not to continue development for the PowerPC. ?If, under some bizarre circumstances, people decided that NT turned out to be the most successful operating system I?m sure we?d support that too,? he said.
IBM?s Roscow would not comment on the impact the decision to ditch NT for the PowerPC platform will have on other ventures, including front end NT for AS/400s.
Microsoft denied two weeks ago that support for NT under the PowerPC would disappear. Neither it, Bull nor Motorola would comment on IBM?s decision at press time.
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