Upside: Transmeta, AOL, Gateway Deal Big Win for Transmeta

“Once famously secretive start-up Transmeta Corp. stepped into
the limelight Tuesday when it said computer maker Gateway Inc.
would use its chips and operating system to power Internet-access
devices developed by Web service provider America Online Inc.”

“Led by David Ditzel, a former hardware designer at Sun
Microsystems Inc. (SUNW.O), closely held Transmeta in January
unveiled its Crusoe chip and aimed it at the market for mobile,
Web-surfing devices such as portable Web pads and other Internet
gizmos. Analysts praised Crusoe’s low-power consumption and
relative low cost, when compared with the market-leading Pentium
chips from Intel Corp. (INTC.O).”

“The appliances, set to go on sale in the fall and which will be
sold directly by AOL (AOL.N) and through Gateway’s (GTW.N) 260
retail stores and through its Web site, are the latest example of a
growing move away from the so-called Wintel duopoly — Microsoft
Corp.’s (MSFT.O) Windows operating system and Intel
microprocessors. The Gateway-AOL announcement, coupled with $88
million in financing received last month from a group of investors,
also portend a very successful initial public offering, perhaps
sooner rather than later, analysts said.”

“If they pull this off, it raises the specter of a large
portion of the world without Microsoft,” said analyst Rob Enderle
at Giga Information Group. “Transmeta will also likely have a very
successful IPO.”


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