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INTERVIEW WITH GILES BOURDIN
C 1995 by Markus Bieler and Claude Müller
Members of AUGS (Amiga User Group Switzerland)
The Amiga User Group Switzerland had the possibility to interview Gilles
Bourdin (Public Relations) of Amiga Technologies. Gilles was at the boot
of Promigos, one of the two Swiss Amiga- distributors (the other is B&S
Digitronic), at the ORBIT computer fair in Basle, Switzerland. "Orbit" is
the largest computer-fair in Switzerland.
We, (Markus Bieler and Claude Müller) asked Gilles Bourdin questions on
several topics. The questions were based on the IRC-Conference that he had
attended a few days before. Here are some hot infos you might find
interesting. AmigaReport-readers get it first !
- On September 11th, the first Amiga 1200 were produced and tested
in Bordeaux (France). As a result, about 8000 A1200 per week
will be manufactured. The first A1200 will have arrived in
Germany by the end of this week.
- The Amiga4000T with MC68060 should be available from Nov./Dec. They
are still discussing whether they will produce an own card or
if they will license it from a third-party manufacturer. They
are talking with several companies about that.
- A future model, an improved A1200 will be also available with a
CDROM. Also, MPEG will be possible. It's important for them that
existing, correctly programmed CD32-software, will run on this
CDROM, too. The A1200 CDROM will be based on the CD1200 which
has never been delivered.
- Amiga Technologies supports development of Software for Amiga
on CDROM and in general.
- He didn't give us many informations about the company ISE because
this is still "secret". Amiga Technologies will give ISE a time-limit
for development of a product. ISE then has to decide themselves how
many people they will use for that job. Developments will be made
by Amiga Technologies itself and by ISE.
- Development of a RISC-Amiga is surely a priority. Until the first
RISC-Amiga, MC68060 based Amigas are a good compensation.
- Amiga Technologies has good contacts with the industry which will
help and give advice in moving to RISC. This switch will be
made in any case, be it "with or without ISE".
- They are still discussing where development will be made. Germany
is preferred, they are looking for the best solution. Some developers
from the USA are willing to move to Germany. It's no problem to find
capable people Germany/Europe that are able of doing Amiga-development.
There are many excellent developers, as an example we should look
at all the shareware-programmers. Amiga Technologies considers the
large shareware-and PD market on the Amiga an important strength
of the Amiga.
- Development depends on the success of the sale of Amigas now. But
we shouldn't worry about that, says G.Bourdin, since the "new"
Amigas "gehen weg wie frische Brötchen" (oops, no intelligent
translation available here, in other words: The demand is VERY high).
100'000 A1200 and 20'000 A4000T are practically sold. They expect to
reach the break-even point in February. Because Amiga Technologies is
a 100% daughter-company of ESCOM it is important to work in the
direction of profit and have a good organization of the company.
- To the question if AT thinks that it can compete with the fast
development of the computer-world Gilles Bourdin responds with
a clear "yes". There already is a demand now. The Amiga has many
strengths in Video, Multimedia and most important the OS. One
important strength of the Amiga OS is the low HW-performance it
needs, but that doesn't mean that AT doesn't wants to develop better
hardware. There are solutions that are not possible with a pc-clone,
for example a cheap settop-box. Amiga Technologies has "good chances".
- The fact that ESCOM doesn't have any experience in development
doesn't lead to a negative influence on Amiga Technologies. "Mr.
Schmitt knows what's up.", says Gilles Bourdin. For example,
Schmitt has done the talks with SCALA that have lead to a good
cooperation with SCALA on a software-basis.
- The company SMG is a non-exclusive Amiga-distributor for America (others
will follow). They are responsible for marketing and distribution.
The contract is valid until the end of this year.
- The Amiga 4000T is that expensive because it is a "new product" which
has high costs to get into production. Also it needs expensive parts
which can't be manufactured in very large numbers and are therefore
more expensive than mass-production-parts.
- Gilles Bourdin wants to underline that the construction of a company,
including the start of the complete production within three months
is a very good performance that can't be done that well by many !
In general, Amiga Technologies is a company that can make decisions
- Marketing for this year is concentrated on PR (public relations):
Press-conferences, attending shows/fairs, supporting distributors
(e.g. attending "Orbit"), making contacts with the press. There
will be press-conferences at the following places (this year):
Milan (Italy), Madrid (Spain), Lisbon (Portugal), Bordeaux (France,
with local French press and the intl. Amiga-press), Bradford (UK,
together with Microvitec and the local UK press), Prague (11.+12.
Oct., perhaps attending the INVEX-fair), Paris (5th of October),
Cologne (Germany, World of Amiga).
Advertising will be made in Amiga-magazines first, later also in
some pc-magazines. Marketing depends on the country. In some, the
Amiga-distributors will be part-responsible for marketing.
- An Amiga internet bundle for A1200 and A4000T is planned. This must
run from one disk, on an A1200, connected to a TV.
- AT doesn't work together with the AOS replacement team, but they
have "a good view of the market" and know "who's sitting at which
place". Ideas of other people are discussed at AT.
- One important goal in development of the OS is RTG. It is not planned
to use pd-extensions like MUI for the OS because this isn't everyone's
- On the question which programming language / compiler will be used
for OS-development he names SAS C. AT is in talks with SAS. Also there
is another project from another company which is still secret.
- Communication between Amiga Technologies and the ESCOM country-
subsidiaries is excellent.
- They are having Meetings with NewTek.
- Talks about "Amiga in China" are still in progress. The market is
a "gigantic chance". It is very likely that the Amigas that would
be sold in China would be the same models used in the other markets.
- The company Innelec is Amiga-distributor for France. They and AT will
hold a press-conference together on Oct. 5th in Paris.
- Macrosystem has licensed the Amiga-technology. Many companies are
negotiating with Amiga Technologies concerning licensing parts of
the Amiga-technology to realize their own projects.
- Concerning the software-bundle, Gilles Bourdin said that it is the
same in all countries. SCALA MM300 comes only in combination with
- Support (ADSP = Amiga Developer Support Program) is planned with
WWW and FTP-servers. At the moment, ADSP can be reached at:
Support on BIX is in discussion.
- Important: All Amiga (incl. A1000 !!!) replacement parts will be
available from Amiga Technologies Braunschweig.
C 1995 by Markus Bieler and Claude Müller / Members of AUGS
(Amiga User Group Switzerland)
*** This text may not be used commercially without our permission.***
Markus Bieler Claude Müller
Parkstr. 11 Auf den Hallen 32
CH-4102 Binningen CH-4104 Oberwil
+41 / (0) 61 / 422 1543 +41 / (0) 61 / 401 21 17