Shutting Out The Win95 Noise

FORGET, IF YOU CAN, MICROsoft and Windows 95 mania just for a moment. IBM and Apple Computer have spent billions on their own personal-computer operating systems. How do they cope with Win95, the most-hyped computer product introduction of all time? They lie low. "It's something that you just don't try to counter," says Lee Reiswig, general manager of IBM's Personal Software Products division. Reiswig's group ran a three-page ad on the eve of Microsoft's Aug. 24 launch, listing hundreds of customers already using its rival OS/2 program--then took the next day off. Apple's subtle ads delivered Microsoft mock congratulations (spelled C:ongrtlns.w95). It also sent out T-shirts with the slogan: "Been there, done that."

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