Big Blue says the new IntelliStation models will ship with a 333-MHz Pentium II, 64MB or 128MB of memory, a 6.4GB hard disk drive or an optional high-performance 9.1GB hard disk drive, a 24X CD-ROM drive, and a variety of optional graphics accelerator cards.
The company belatedly entered the market for workstations based on the Microsoft's Windows NT operating system in March of last year. Workstations made by companies such as Sun Microsystems traditionally run the Unix operating system, but systems based on NT have proven increasingly popular because of their lower cost.
Recent reports from market researcher Dataquest show that Unix-based workstations grew 10 percent in the first quarter of 1998 over a year ago, while Windows NT-based workstations soared by 242 percent. Some analysts dispute the relevance of the increase in sales, noting that a large number of personal workstations actually wind up being used much like traditional PCs, where workstations are typically dedicated to functions such as CAD (computer-aided design) or statistical analysis.
Estimated prices for the IBM IntelliStation M Pro models begin at $2,825, varying by model and configuration. Pricing for a system with 300-MHz Pentium II starts at $3,757. No pricing was announced on the new systems.