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IBM’s Network Computer Division has begun the rollout of a thin client system for Volkswagen. As a first phase 80 Network Stations are being deployed in the Brussels offices of VW’s IT department, but future expansion will take the system into other company departments and services. According to IBM one of the major advantages of the Network Station is that it provides an architecturally neutral platform VW can use to evolve its existing IT architecture. The company is using its existing mainframe applications while integrating them with SAP R/3, and Microsoft Office for personal productivity. "Principally, Volkswagen chose the Network Station because it offers increased productivity whilst at the same time reducing the 'total cost of ownership' against a comparable PC LAN environment," said Daniel Sluysmans, IT Services Manager at Volkswagen in Brussels. "IBM's thin client is easy to install and flexible. Whilst it's able to execute our existing terminal applications, it's also ready for Java applications, Windows NT, Internet, browsers and all possible graphical user interfaces, such as SAP R/3." ®

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