Why The Pentium Flap Is Just `Peanuts'

I would like to comment on your article about the recent Pentium/Intel crisis as one who admires Intel ("The education of Andrew Grove," People, Jan. 16). I both cooperated with and competed against this company while working for Siemens and Motorola Inc. The Intel/Microsoft alliance managed to master a series of crises.

For example, the challenge to 8086 Intel chips in the early 1980s came from Motorola's 68000 chips, which were technically clearly superior. This challenge was defended by IBM's support of 8086 architecture and the choice of Microsoft Corp.'s MS-DOS.

Why could it happen that these two companies (Intel Corp. and Microsoft) reached this dominant position? It is the combination of strategic leadership and high-technology marketing. The recent Pentium problem is peanuts compared with other challenges.

Bernd Huber


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