...IBM and DELL already prepared to announce the K7 machine:
IBM leans on AMD's K7 for new PCs
By Brooke Crothers and Michael Kanellos Staff Writers, CNET News.com June 23, 1999, 11:25 a.m. PT
NEW YORK--IBM will showcase the power of the new K7/Athlon chip from Advanced Micro Devices when it brings out a fancy, high-end consumer PC packing the chip this summer.
Big Blue's move could present a challenge to Intel's high-end PC dominance and the key to AMD's survival.
IBM will bring out the high-end Aptiva S series computer with AMD's coming K7 processor and a novel industrial design, according to industry sources familiar with the announcement. The K7/Athlon, meanwhile, may officially be announced later this afternoon in a conference call.
Behind closed doors, IBM is demonstrating the computer at PC Expo here, according to sources. IBM would not comment.
The S series is IBM's flashiest, most-feature-packed consumer PC line and is usually reserved for the swiftest chips from Intel, such as the fastest Pentium III processors.
Entry into the S series would be a big boost for AMD, which has seen most of its chips confined to machines costing less than $1,200. The K7, which sources say will likely be marketed as the "Athlon" processor, represents a potential break with the past for AMD.
The chip's innovative design has received rave reviews from analysts, who say it should equal or surpass Pentium III in performance. A 600-MHz Athlon, one source said, will equal a 700-MHz Pentium III. Test drivers of beta models say the chip "smokes." Along with IBM, Compaq Computer is expected to release Athlon systems later this summer.
A recently announced delay in Intel's 600-MHz "Coppermine" chip, a souped-up Pentium III, has given AMD a historic chance to wear the performance processor crown for PCs for potentially the rest of the year. Athlon-based PCs are expected to start hitting store shelves when the chip goes into volume production toward August, said sources, and run at 500 MHz, 550 MHz, and 600 MHz, with faster speeds following.