Gateway chooses Crusoe processor for AOL Web appliances

By : |May 31, 2000 0

In a major endorsement of the new Crusoe processor architecture, Gateway
Computer announced it is developing a line of Web appliances around the
innovative Linux-based processor from start-up Transmeta. Gateway is buying an
initial quantity of 100,000 Crusoe chips at $70 per chip.

Gateway, which is the latest high-tech company to buy a stake in Transmeta,
is developing the Web machines in cooperation with America Online. The first
Gateway Web appliance will be designed for use in the kitchen. It will come with
a flat-panel monitor that can be put on a counter or attached to a wall. Gateway
spokesman John Spelich said the device would provide
"room-appropriate" functions like a calendar, family message board,
and a recipe collection along with AOL Internet access. It is expected to sell
for less than $500.

A second device will be a thin laptop with wireless Internet access for the
home. It is scheduled for release early next year. Spelich said the Transmeta
chip offered superior battery life, smaller size and lower operating
temperatures, critical factors in designing portable computing devices.
Gateway’s new appliances will automatically run a customized version of AOL’s
Internet service, and display Web pages, e-mail and personalized information.
The Transmeta processor was developed by former Sun Microsystems Sparc chip
designer David Ditzel with financial backing from Microsoft co-founder Paul
Allen and key OS software development support from Linus Torvalds, father of the
Linux operating system. To date, Transmeta has raised some $90 million start-up
capital. "At our launch in January, we promised Crusoe would usher in a new
world of mobility. With their innovative approach to Internet appliances for the
home, Gateway and AOL are playing a significant role in moving that vision
forward," Ditzel said.

Rather than the desktop computing market, Transmeta is targeting the Internet
appliance market, which is still in embryonic stage. These devices have the
potential of becoming a next-generation mainstream market as mobile devices and
computing appliances will eventually show up just about everywhere. With some 22
million online subscribers, Gateway and AOL believe they already have a large
captive market for the new Web appliances. "The technology Transmeta has is
very important, and it’s the first one we’ve seen in a long time that seriously
challenges the Wintel duopoly,” said Tim Bajarin, president of consulting firm
Creative Strategies Research International.

No Comments so fars

Jump into a conversation

No Comments Yet!

You can be the one to start a conversation.