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Fujitsu and Siemens split down Intel-AMD seams

Which is the better box? Is it Bill or is it Ben?

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The arrangement between Fujitsu and Siemens to merge their PC operations at the end of last year is already showing creakiness, after it emerged that the two divisions are selling similar machines but split along Intel-AMD lines. At the end of last year, we reported that Siemens was being forced to source AMD parts because of a shortage of Intel Pentium processors. Fujitsu has always been an Intel-only house. The Siemens part of the equation is currently selling 600MHz AMD Athlons machines, which come with 64MB of memory, a 12GB hard drive, and 16MB graphics for £999, at grocery chain Sainsburys, next to the fruit and nuts counters. These Xpert machines come with free home installation, including one hour's tuition and a three year warranty. The Fujitsu part of the equation is currently selling 600MHz Intel Pentium III machines, which come with 64MB of memory, a 20GB hard drive and otherwise a similar configuration, for £999. That price, however, includes £29.99 delivery and only a one year warranty. Those Fujitsu Myrica boxes are being sold through Nice Computers. Both Fujitsu and Siemens are spending a rack of coin on promoting the different, and separate promotions. Sources close to one or the other of the two apparently conjoined but still separate firms said that if a customer rang up 13 months down the line, it might be hard to refuse to give a three year warranty on what, ostensibly, is a Fujitsu Siemens product.... ® * Factoid. The BBC Childrens Service used to run, once a week, a black and white TV programme called The Flowerpot Men. One of the highlights was where a suspicious looking female plant called Little Weed was asked whether it was Bill or Ben, that had been up to some mischief...

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