An Intel 586 Clone Is Already Waiting In The Wings

Once Intel Corp. unwraps its 586-generation microprocessor, expected in August, the Santa Clara (Calif.) company may not have the market to itself for very long. At least one cloner could wade in with a competitive design in perhaps only weeks, not the year or more it took to clone Intel's 486 and 386 chips. NexGen Microsystems Inc., a startup in nearby San Jose, claims that it has already designed a 586-compatible chip that churns through as many as 100 million instructions per second. NexGen is now waiting to see Intel's specifications before putting the final touches on its design and shipping it off to contract producers, including Hewlett-Packard Co.

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