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Transmeta chairman adds gwana-gwana to latest figures

Recovery slow, painful - soundbytes match

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Chip startup Transmeta reckons it's on the road to recovery, despite losing another $23.2 million in the most recent quarter.

Transmeta's business collapsed last year in spectacular fashion, and although it reported a 273 per cent increase in revenues to $4.1 million, it's a far cry from the $18.6 million it earned in the corresponding quarter last year, and a long, long way from profitability. R&D expenses alone accounted for $18.1 million, and overall expenses in the next quarter are expected to be $28.5m. Executives said the next quarter's earnings will be up 55-65 per cent.

The TM6000 PC on a chip has finally taped out, management confirmed, and the much delayed TM5800 - chief culprit for the financial woes - finally ramped in volume at the end of January.

High volumes continue to elude Crusoe, although the chip powers perhaps the most interesting PC notebook currently on the market, the Fujitsu P Series. But design wins should give battered investors some hope.

The eye catching, PDA-sized OQO "Ultra Personal Computer" was unveiled at WinHEC this week. It's a 3 inch by 5 inch cartridge that weighs 7 ounces, it runs Windows XP, and was designed by the team that brought you the Apple TitBook. More on this soon, although there's a Flash-obese site here. And by obese, we really do mean Homer Simpson at an all-you-can-eat lobster buffet obese.

Transmeta doesn't break out the proportion of processors destined for the blade server market, and executives said that they were "still hopeful" but that the drop in expenditure on edge computing had "put a cramp on that opportunity".

Funnily enough, this is an area in which the company can differentiate itself even more clearly than in notebook PCs. Nothing can quite match the density of RLX's Crusoe-based servers, although RLX now offers systems based on Intel processors too. (Chipzilla's Mike Fister was a guest at RLX's soiree during the Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco recently, although he didn't stay long enough to give The Register one of those bonecrushing handshakes).

CFO Merle McClendon will depart at the end of May, the company announced. No decision on a permanent replacement has been made. And former CEO, and now chairman, Murray Goldman gave analysts a final blast of gwana-gwana by stating: "we want to err on the side of serving our customers well during this transition". As opposed to wanting to serve customers badly, of course. Safe driving. ®

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