June 18, 1996 in Social Responsibility News


Samsung to support high volume market for 64-bit Alpha architecture

Digital Equipment Corporation and Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., today announced an agreement forging an alliance to develop and support a high volume market for products based on Digital`s industry-leading 64-bit Alpha RISC architecture. No financial terms were disclosed.

The agreement licenses Samsung as an alternate source manufacturer of current and future implementations of Digital`s high-performance Alpha microprocessors. It is expected that Samsung will produce its first Alpha chips in 1997. In addition, the agreement grants Samsung a license to market, sell, and distribute worldwide Alpha microprocessors. Under the agreement, Digital and Samsung will also engage in joint development projects related to the Alpha microprocessor family.

`We are extremely pleased to create this alliance with Samsung, one of the world`s leading semiconductor manufacturers,` said Digital Chairman Robert B. Palmer. `This alliance represents a significant endorsement of Digital`s Alpha architecture - the foundation of Digital`s global leadership in 64-bit computing. Digital has an important relationship with Samsung as a customer, partner and supplier and we expect this alliance to significantly strengthen the ties between the two companies.`

Yoon Woo Lee, president and CEO of Semiconductor Business, Samsung Electronics, said, `The Alpha microprocessor was chosen for Samsung`s CPU business because of its many strengths including the highest performance and efficient and outstanding architecture for the Windows NT operating system.

`We will work with Digital to build solid teamwork and partnership between the two companies. Specifically, through the joint development program, both companies can develop devices which are cost competitive and high performance. Samsung Electronics will establish the Alpha microprocessor business as one of its highly value-added businesses,` added Lee.

Palmer said Digital is experientcing strong demand for its Alpha products -- first introduced in 1992. Recently, the company announced that its total Alpha system and related revenues have totaled nearly $9 billion, since its introduction.

`This new agreement with Samsung, along with our state-of-the-art fabrication plant in Hudson, Mass. (USA), and our existing second source relationship with Mitsubishi Electric Co. of Japan, assures that we have the manufacturing muscle to support future demand for Alpha microprocessors,` Palmer said. `We are excited to have Samsung on our Alpha team.`

The agreement also provides Samsung with the right to distribute the cutting-edge Digital FX!32 software translation technology. The Digital FX!32 technology, which is scheduled for general release later this year, gives Alpha users transparent access to 32-bit Windows x86 applications on the Windows NT operating system. This will greatly augment the broad portfolio of applications available on Alpha/Windows NT systems with comparable or better performance than on x86 systems.

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