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Elvira ad date: November 11, 1991

The issue's top stories:

IBM delays notebook arrival in U.S.

IBM will fail in its effort to bring a notebook computer to the U.S. market in 1991, the company confirmed last week. It is now targeting the first quarter of 1992, sources close to the company said. IBM currently ships three notebook computers in Japan and two in Europe. IBM had said it planned to base its first U.S. notebook on IBM Japan's Personal System/2 Model 55note, and it expected to ship a product in the fourth quarter.

PC software promo war escalates

Another wave of pricing deals hit the desktop software market last week, including Microsoft Corp.'s added competitive upgrade offerings and a Borland International, Inc. promotional offer of freebies with the purchase of a mainline product. . . .

"These competitive upgrades are an early warning of price pressure," said Raymond Strong, a senior systems analyst at Westinghouse Electric Corp.'s marine division in Sunnyvale, Calif. "It's my feeling that the whole pricing structure for software is under pressure."

Also last week, Lotus Development Corp. removed a restriction on its competitive upgrade offering to 1-2-3 for Windows following complaints about its qualification policy, which should give the plan more widespread appeal.

Banking giant buys into outsourcing

NCNB Corp., the nation's largest superregional bank, last week handed over its mainframe processing operations to Perot System Corp., extending a long-term relationship between the two firms. No financial terms were disclosed for the multiyear agreement, but one analyst estimated the deal could be worth $200 million if it is a 10-year contract, the typical length of such outsourcing pacts. NCNB declined comment at press time. Within the next month, Perot Systems plans to hire 200 NCNB information systems employees and acquire NCNB's mainframe data centers in Richardson, Texas, and Charlotte, N.C., sources said.

For a different kind of stroll down memory lane, see more on Computerworld's 50th anniversary or 2007's The top 10 dead (or dying) computer skills.

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