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Siemens Nixdorf first with NetPC

Following the Microsoft roadmap, Siemens Nixdorf announced today that it will show at the March CeBIT trade fair the first Microsoft-certified NetPC.

Called the SCENIC Pro Net 2, the diskless base unit will be powered by a Pentium processor, contain 16Mb of RAM and offer a high-speed LAN connection. The unit will be able to load the Windows 95 operating system off the network and will be priced around £550 with monitor.

The system will be upgradable with a hard disk and there will be a snap-on module to add a CD-ROM or floppy disk to provide full PC functionality. There will also be optional telephone and video camera interfaces to turn the machine into a telephony/video conferencing workstation. Users can also add a separate smart card reader to turn the Pro Net 2 into a secure workstation.

Siemens Nixdorf also showed a slide of a "TV computer" -- a system which combines digital TV, set-top box for network access, DVD player and a video telephone option. While no formal plans were announced for delivery or pricing, it was suggested that the German giant could license the product to TV manufacturers.