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  • National Semiconductor to Expand Market Share, Halla Says
  • July 22, 1998 (TOKYO) -- Brian L. Halla, chairman, president and CEO of National Semiconductor Corp., said at a press conference in Tokyo that the U.S. company hopes to obtain more market share for PC chips and to become an "Intel" of the next century.
    National Semiconductor is developing a "PC on a chip" product with a code name of POAC or MediaPC, which integrates most functions of PCs such as the CPU, bus controller and graphics processing on one chip. Halla is supervising the project. This is an enhanced chip in the MediaGX series, an integrated processor for PCs.

    The new chip is for low-priced PCs that perform at high speeds. The company is designing the chip for sub-notebook PCs initially, but it plans to use it for information-oriented home electronics including set-top boxes.

    Samples will be shipped at the beginning of 1999, and 266MHz to 300MHz chips are expected to be shipped from June 1999. They will be priced at less than US$100.

    The battery life of a sub-notebook PC powered by such chips is nine hours, with power consumption of less than 4 watts, but the company hopes to substantially extend the battery life.

    Compaq Computer Corp.'s Presario series, a low-priced PC that uses the MediaGX, had a U.S. market share of 21 percent for notebook PCs aimed at general consumers, at the end of April, Halla said.

    He predicted that the low-priced PC trend will continue, and that the global information-oriented home appliance market, including PCs, would reach 800 million units in 2003. Halla said that in that year about 100 million high-end machines will be powered by Intel Corp.'s microprocessors, about 100 million low-end Windows CE machines will have RISC processors such as the SH series made by Hitachi Ltd., and the remaining 600 million machines will have National Semiconductor's x86-based chips.

    (Nikkei Personal Computing)

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    Updated: Tue Jul 21 16:56:34 1998