Seven Dramurai™ say they will make Rambus cheaper

But premium will still be 25 per cent more next year

Intel Developer Forum Intel presided over the foundation of the RDRAM Implementers Forum today, with members vowing to reduce the cost of Rambus memory. At a press conference in Palm Springs, Pat Gelsinger, senior VP of Intel's desktop division introduced representatives of seven memory manufacturers, each of which has taken the Rambus pledge. The inaugural members of the Seven Dramurai™ are Hyundai, Infineon, Micron, NEC, Samsung, Toshiba and Intel itself, represented by Farhad Tabrizi, Jan du Preez, Don Baldwin, Kenji Tokuyama, Yoongae Rha, Shozo Saito, and Pat "Kicking" Gelsinger. Geoff Tate, president of Rambus, was also there to answer questions from the press. He said: "The DRAM companies have worked together to deliver Rambus and we're ready for production. Rambus memories run eight times faster. It's as if we had moved from the 486 to the Pentium III in one leap." But Tate said his company would not reduce the royalties it is collecting from manufacturers to help cut costs. That, he said, would make little difference to the cost of the parts. "There's no change in the royalties," he said. "The royalties are a small percentage of these costs." Manufacturing companies have already paid Rambus to licence memory products. Instead, the Seven Dramurai™ will work together to reduce packaging and testing costs. But a representative from Samsung estimated that the premium of RIMMs over memory such as PC-133 will be 25 per cent by the middle of next year. Dell came onto the stage to say that it was producing a system using RIMMs. But, he stressed, it was a high end system used for mission critical applications. Rambus technology, he said, would appeal to the corporate marketplace. Gelsinger confirmed that Intel will reveal its thoughts after evaluating PC-133 SDRAM tomorrow. But he gave no indication as to which way Chipzilla™ will swing. ® Full IDF Summer 99 coverage

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