Compaq unable to deck Alpha platform

The idea's a bad joke for a multitude of reasons

Information from the Gartner Group seen by The Register has suggested that companies investing in the Alpha platform running on Windows NT are betting on a "high risk" strategy over the 36 months. That is because Compaq could deck the Alpha platform, according to current thinking at Gartner. If Gartner's predicitions are true, that will cause dismay at Microsoft, which is pinning its hopes on the Alpha 64 architecture, while uncertain of the future of the Merced platform. Digital/Unix, soon to be renamed, only represents a "moderate risk" over the same period. The uncertainty appears to be due to the Thoughts of Compaq Chairman Eckhard Pfeiffer, thinks the market research company. Last week, we reported that by the end of this year, high end Alpha machines will cost around the same price as current, high end processors from Intel to be released February end. The market research company appears to think that Pfeiffer is mulling over how long his company can keep the Alpha platform alive. But other considerations which could dash these predictions include the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which has placed the Alpha architecture firmly under its wing. We are given to understand by sources close to the FTC that Intel cannot be allowed to have a monopoly on high end processors, now, or in the future. Towards the end of this year, The Register understands that high speeds in the Alpha roadmap will mean a switch to a slot strategy. Compaq, with Alpha, has a number of partners in this strategy as reported here and elsewhere. Seems like the Sundance strategy still has something of a life... ®

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