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IBM adds video editing to its picture

The company will announce tomorrow that it is teaming with Avid Technology on a new video-editing bundle for the Web, DVD and other media.

IBM is fine-tuning its focus on new markets for its workstation systems by teaming with Avid Technology on a new video-editing bundle for the Web, DVD and other media.

The announcement, expected tomorrow, is part of Big Blue's ongoing expansion strategy, especially into video production--a burgeoning area for PC workstations. The company also is building on a period of solid growth, eclipsing all rivals, according to market share data from International Data Corp.

Prices for the bundle, which includes Avid Xpress video-editing software on a specially configured IBM workstation and three months of free video Web hosting from Yahoo, start at $6,400.

Most workstations support two processors, pack more robust hardware than do PCs, and can run compute- or graphic-intensive applications. These features make PC workstations popular for computer-aided design (CAD) and video editing.

IBM and Dell Computer both gained ground in worldwide PC workstation shipments in the second quarter, while rivals saw negative growth, according to IDC. Big Blue logged 29 percent growth during the second quarter compared with 8 percent for Dell. Hewlett-Packard's growth fell 32 percent, while Compaq Computer's growth slid 12 percent.

IBM's gains came during a tough quarter for workstation makers. Shortages of Rambus memory and the recall of Intel's 820 chipset hurt some manufacturers. Dell and IBM were the only two major workstation companies to weather the difficulties relatively unscathed, according to IDC.

In the most recent quarter, Big Blue placed fourth in the worldwide workstation niche with 14 percent of the market but showed the strongest growth among companies working in CAD and electronic design automation.

IBM will offer two IntelliStation M Pro models with Avid Xpress: A 733-MHz Pentium III system with a 15GB hard drive for applications and 30GB drive for video files, and a 933-MHz Pentium III model with a 9.1GB SCSI hard drive for applications and a 36GB SCSI drive for video files.