Computer giant to ready to introduce new products


May 13, 1991|By Jonathan Yenkin | Jonathan Yenkin,AP Business Writer

BOSTON -- Digital Equipment Corp., left behind in the personal computer boom, is trying to do some catching up.

This week Digital plans to unveil a new line of personal computers under an alliance with Intel Corp.

And while analysts don't expect Digital to quickly become a dominant player in the personal computer market, they say the strategy will help the company build on its success designing networks for the small desktop machines.

"Digital is no longer off the radar scope," said Terry Shannon, an analyst with International Data Corp. in Framingham, Mass. "They're finally showing up as being a player in the [personal computer] marketplace."

Digital has released few details about the new products scheduled to be unveiled tomorrow in New York. Michelle Hoey, a company spokeswoman, said Digital would announce a "broad-based family of network PCs."

0$ Ms. Hoey also said Digital Presi

dent Kenneth Olsen would be joined by Intel Chairman Andrew Grove at the announcement.

Analysts said Digital plans to introduce a high-performance personal computer made by Intel according to Digital's specifications.

In addition, the company is expected to announce a line of portable computers while continuing its relationship with Tandy Corp., which has made personal computers for Digital for the last two years.

Digital, one of the world's largest computer companies, has been working hard to find new strategies to revive its product sales, which have been sluggish for more than a year.

The Maynard, Mass.-based company tried to break into the personal computer market in the early 1980s with its Rainbow line, but stopped production in 1985 because of poor sales.

That failure proved costly, analysts say, because desktop machines eventually became powerful enough to eat away at Digital's core business of selling midsized minicomputers.

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