The Atari Report - Spring 1990

From: Atari SIG (xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 02/27/94-03:04:28 PM Z

From: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG)
Subject: The Atari Report - Spring 1990
Date: Sun Feb 27 15:04:28 1994

Article 412 of
From: aa399@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Len Stys)
Subject: The Atari Report - Spring 1990
Date: Mon, 23 Apr 90 20:29:41 GMT

   ___    __          
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           ___        __  ___  
       /\   |   /\   |  )  |   
      /__\  |  /__\  |--   |   
     /    \ | /    \ |  \ _|_  
            __   __  __   _   __  ___ 
     |||   |  ) |   |  ) | | |  )  |  
     |||   |--  |-  |--  | | |--   | 
    / | \  |  \ |__ |    |_| |  \  | 
      (C) ATARI CORPORATION, 1989 

 Vol.3.No.1                 Spring 1990


 _______   by Sam Tramiel
|       |  By now you've probably heard
|  ^^^  |  and read as many "new
| /. .\ |  decade" prognostications
| | ^ | |  as I have. But it's hard to
| \_-_/ |  deny that we're facing one
|/\ | /\|  of the most exciting eras in
|  \|/  |  our history! The world
|_______|  certainly has grown to be
           a lot smaller as we witness
the dramatic events taking place as democracy and free speech make their
way around the globe.  Imagine our delight when we heard that Atari
computers would be evaluating the first free election to be held in East
Germany since its formation in 1949. We are looking forward to great success
for the 1990s, and expanded opportunities as the Eastern bloc
countries open up their markets.

Atari continues to nurture existing markets in the West.  New third-party
products give Atari computers the
ability to perform optical character recognition (OCR), relay faxes by modem
directly from your desktop, create sophisticated video images, and
automatically transcribe musical scores. Products for computer-aided
design, education, desktop publishing, and entertainment, continue to evolve.

We're excited about the rapidly growing MIDI business and the enthusiasm being
generated for the Stacy laptop computer among professionals in the music
industry.  Just recently we've learned that Atari computers were used to
produce the sound track in the hit film, "Born on the Fourth of July"
which received an Academy Award nomination for "Best Sound."

In mid-89 we introduced two new produts; the Portfolio palmtop PC
compatible and the Lynx full color portable video game system.  The end
user response has encouraged us to broaden our handheld product line and
support internal and third party development efforts.

Over the last ten years the size, form, power, function and accessibility of
the personal computer has changed dramatically for the better-so that
today one can navigate from palmtop to laptop to desktop quickly with ease and
assurance.  The next ten years should bring even more satisfaction as we
continue to refine and develop new systems, peripherals, and software to
meet the challenges of the '90s!

  | /\\\/                       |
  |/\\\/       ____________     |
  |\\\/       | ________ |o|    |
  |\\/        ||        ||"|    |
  |\/ ____    ||        ||"|    |
  |/ |-|-_|   ||________||=|    |
  |  |".""|   |____________|    |
  |  |!-=-|   |____________|    |
  |  |_"""|   |-------- LLL|    |
  |  |"!#!|   |LLLLLLLL LLL|    |
  |  |____|   |LLLLLLLL  O |    |
  |           |____________|    |
  |            \__________/     |
 (The ST-compatible Stacy laptop
  is especially useful to the
  music industry.)


Atari Corporation reported income from continuing operations of $5.8 million
on sales of $170.6 million for the quarter ended December 31, 1989.  This
compares with income of $9.3 million on sales of $152.6 million for the fourth
quarter ended December 31, 1988.  Net income was $5.7 million in the fourth
quarter 1989 as compared to a loss of $97.0 million last year.

For the year ended December 31, 1989, income from continuing operations was
$4.0 million on sales of $423.6 million.  This compares with income
from continuing operations of $39.4 million on sales of $452.2 million for
the year ended December 31, 1988.  Net income was $4.0 million for the year as
compared to a los of $84.8 million for the year ended December 31, 1988.

The results for the quarter reflect continued revenue growth from the Atari
ST and Atari PC4 MS-DOS compatible product lines, and from initial
shipments of the new handheld Portfolio computer and handheld Lynx color video
game machine.  During the quarter, sales of certain products were
faciliated by lowering prices in order to make room for new product lines.

The decline in total sales for 1989 as compared to 1988 can be attributed to
the decline in the U.S. of our traditional video game line.  European
markets continue to out-perform all other markets in both computers and
video games.

1989 was a transition year as we introduced a new generation of handheld
machines and disposed of an extraneous business segment.  For 1990 we are
fully committed to regain market share in the video game sector with products
like Lynx, increasing our market share in the personal computer sector with
products like the enhanced Atari STE, the maximizing our opportunity in the
handheld or palmtop computer business with Portfolio.

(Federated Update; Atari is continuing efforts to dispose of Federated.  In
January, 23 southern California leasehold interests were sold to Silo
Holdings Ltd., a Pennsylvania based chain of consumer electronics stores. 
No additional losses are anticipated on final disposition.)



6-9. SWEDAN. Data 90 Fair for the computer, communications, and desktop
market, with participation by Atari Scandinavia.  Held at the
Sollentunamassan in Stockholm.

11-17. EAST GERMANY. Leipziger Frujahresmesse, an important East
German trade fair, with partipation by Atari Germany. Leipzig.

21-26. WEST GERMANY. Musikmesse, the world's largest music convention.  Over
50 of Atari's third-party software developers will demonstrate the latest
music applications. Frankfurt.

21-28 WEST GERMANY. CEBIT. Europe's largest computer show, with
participation by Atari Germany. Hannover.


1. CANADA. Second Canadian Atari Users Convention, Airport Hilton Hotel,
Toronto.  Exhibits, seminars, and demonstrations by retailers, user
groups, software developers, and hardware manufacturers. For more
information, (416)425-5357.

7-8. CALIFORNIA. World of Atari show, Disneyland Hotel, Anaheim, CA. A "Home
Entertainment and Computer Expo," sponsored by the publisher of ST World.
April 6 meeting for trade only. For more information call (503)673-2259.

21-29. ITALY. Grand Fiera D'Aprile, the biggest trade fair in Italy, with
participation by Atari Italy. Milan.

22. ILLINOIS. Mid West Atari Swap Fest '90, sponsored by Lake Country Atari
Computer Enthusiasts, and MilAtari Ltd. Milwaukee-based user group. At "The
Diplomat," Gurnee, IL. For more information, contact Larry Grauzas,

28-29. Pennsylvania. North East Atari Fair, sponsored by Pittsburgh Atari
Computer Enthusiasts. At Chartiers Valley High School, Pittsburgh, PA. For
more information, call Bruce Markey, (412)843-0628 evenings.

28-May 1. ITALY. Salone Marche Musicali, an international music fair
for professionals, with participation by Atari Italy. pesaro.


1-3. ENGLAND. Atari '90 business and entertainment show exclusively for
Atari computers.  Novotel Exhibition Centre, London.  More than 60
third-party vendors will attend. For more information, call Atari U.K.,
Intercity House, Railway Terrace, Slough, Berkshire, England SL2 5BZ,
phone 44-753-33344, FAX 44-753-822914.

2-5. ILLINOIS. Consumer Electronics Show (CES), McCormick Place, Chicago,
IL.  Atari will exhibit. For more information, call (202)457-8700.

16-19. ILLINOIS. National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Music and
Sound Expo, McCormick Place, Chicago, IL. Atari will exhibit. For more
information, call (619)438-8001.


24-26. WEST GERMANY. Annual Atari Messe (Fair) in Dusselorf. Over 200
exhibitors and 45,000 visitors expected.  For more information,
contact Thomas Huber, Atari Germany GmbH, Postfach 1213, D-6096 Raunheim,
West Germany, phone 49-6142-2090, FAX 49-6142-209180.

     Palmtop Computer Sales Soar

The Portfolio palm-size computer is Atari's introductory MS-DOS-command
compatible computer.  Portfolio  sales are already approaching 100,000 units
worldwide.  The secret to this success story lies in the Portfolio's
incorporation of the latest in micro-technology.  Innovative surface
mount circuitry (allowing minimum physical proportions) is masterfully
designed in low-power CMOS circuitry to maximize battery life.  The result is
an extremely compact, versatile productivity tool.

Corporations and businesses, big and small, are placing orders for up to
thousands of units for custom applications.  Real Estate
professionals like the Portfolio  for its ability to profide on-site
qualifying and recall property data.  Doctors like its ability to store
patient information for their rounds as well as prescriptions and appointments.
 Aviators like the concept of having weather and environmental information
available at will.  Marketing people are looking at the Portfolio as an
innovative gift for affluent clients and as a motivation to participate with

Recently, Atari placed a terminal program for the Portfolio in the public
domain.  This small program interacts with the optional serial interface. 
Now, in addition to communicating with PCs by using the parallel interface,
the Portfolio can exchange time critical data with virtually any
computer in the world.  Users may also interact with popular on-line services
from around the world and download the latest stock activity, news and sports.

Behind the scenes, Atari is preparing more accessories and peripherals to
offer Portfolio users even greater productivity.  With a pulse on the
public's praise, we are learning how to build future generations of Portfolio
to be as user friendly and practical as possible.  Atari plans to keep
Portfolio in the limelight with a quality, well designed product while
our nearest competitor scrambles to justify $1,600 more for their computer.

Now available are three different capacity memory cards (32K, 64K, and
128K RAM memory), the serial interface, the paralles interface and an AC
adapter.  Also available is a PC peripheral, the PC Card Drive, which
allows your desktop PC to read and write Portfolio-compatible RAM cards. 
Third-party support currently includes case suppliers and book publishers as
well as professional and freelance software producers.  Atari's
customer-oriented 800 Portfolio hot-line will offer customers technical
assistance and information about Portfolio dealers across the country.

The Porfolio features five built-in ready-to-use applications, most of
which create files which utilize standard ASCII format and can be
interpreted by MS-DOS machines and other computers.  There is an editor
which offers basic word processing functions, a Lotus file-compatible
spreadsheet, a calculator with multiple memories, a dialer/address database and
a calendar/diary.  Suggested retail for the unit is under $400.

 (With a Smart Parallel Interface,
  users can quickly transfer files
  between their desktop PCs and
  Atari's Portfolio.)
  |                               |
  |      ______                   |
  |_____| ____ |__________________|
  |     ||_...||      ______      |
  |     ||".="||     | ____ |     |
  |   _/||____||\____|[____]|_    |
  |  //_|______|_\   |______| |   |
  |  ||__________|   |LLLLLL|_|   |
  |  ||__________|   |LLLLLL|     |
  |   \ _________    |______|     |
  |    |LLLLLLLLL|                |
  |    |LLLLLLLLL|                |
  |    |_________|                |
  ("Bottom Line: A useful computer
   that's small enough and cheap
   enough to carry everywhere."
     -Portable Computing, Feb. 1990)

  ("...Even if it were several pounds
   heavier, it would be the most
   competitive system available for
   portable computer users in terms
   of price versus performance."
     -Popular Electronics, Feb. 1990)


Atari computer continues to make an impact in the international music
marketplace.  More and more musicians are accepting computers as important
tools to use in omposing, performing, and recording work, and the Atari ST
line continues to be the computer of choice.

Atari has begun shipping two key products to the music industry- the
Stacy portable ST and the Hotz MIDI Translator- ensuring the company's
success in this lucrative portion of the computer market.

Atari has been advertising regularly in music industry publications, placing
full-and double-page ads in Keyboard, Electronic Musician, and Musician
magazines.  Atari exhibited at the recent NAMM (National Association of
Music Merchants) show with the most significant computer product booth at
the show.  Atari cosponsored a concert during the convention, which starred
the Michael Shrieve Band, featuring guitarist Andy Summers from The Police;
and the Jack Bruce band, featuring members of the original hit group

ST OF THE STARS. Popular professional musicians all over the world use Atari
computers.  Bruce Ingram, guitarist for West German Grammy award-winners Milli
Vanilli, uses an Atari computer.  English superstars Fleetwood Mac are
currently on their world tour, with several Stacys in tow.  German
electronic artists Kraftwerk received one of the first Stacys.  And American
superstar Madonna is also using the new Atari Stacy computer.

STACY IN STORES. Atari's Stacy laptop is now shipping to music dealers,
offering musicians the ultimate in flexibility by providing all of the
MIDI capabilities of the Atari ST line in a portable unit.  The Stacy 2 and
Stacy 4 features two and four megabytes of RAM respectively, and a
forty-megabyte hard drive, for only $2499-$2899.

Charcoal gray and sleekly designed, Stacy weighs in at less than 15 pounds,
including LCD display subsystem, keyboard, floppy drive, and hard drive.
 The back-lit screen is easily viewed at any angle, even in dim stage light. 
A trackball replaces the Atari mouse for cursor movement.

LATEST IN MUSIC TECHNOLOGY.  The Hotz MIDI Translator is the revolutionary
new musical instrument announced last year.  This special keyboard controller
contains 106 force-sensitive pads- new sensor technology eliminates moving
parts.  Each pad plays a different chord or note and is formatted
according to the user's needs.  The controller can be used for a number of
musical functions.  It works as an intelligent musical partner who
remembers hundreds of scales and chord voicings, and helps order chord
progressions.  The machine is very effective as a learning tool- it won't
let the player hit a wrong note, by shifting the note grid underneath the
sensors as the performer plays.

The Hotz "Box" is bundled with Atari's Stacy laptop computer, and will sell
for $7995 suggested list.

 (Atari Computers were used to produce
  the soundtrack for Academy Award
  winner "Born on the Fourth of July.")

        |                    |
        |                    |
        |                    |
        |  \/          \/    |
        |  ||    __    ||    |
        |  ||   /..\   ||    |
        |  ||  |  \ |  ||    |
        |  \ \  \--/  / /    |
        |   \ \__||__/ /     |
        |    \        /      |
        |     |      |       |
        |     |   +  |       |
        |     |  --- |       |
        |     |  +   |       |
  (This film, staring Tom Cruise as
   Vietnam war hero Ron Kovics, is a
   box office smash, and was nominated
   for several awards, including Best
   Picture, Best Director, and Best


The Lynx, the world's first handheld full color video game system, began
shipping in select locations just in time for the 1989 holiday season. 
Sales in New York City and through specific catalog outlets were a
complete sell-out, as expected by company executives.

Lynx is the only portable unit available that features full-color
graphics and four channel sound.  A number of retailers reported that they
didn't even have a chance to get them out of shipping boxes and onto the
shelves before they were sold out again.

To keep pace with growing consumer demand.  Atari will produce more and
more Lynx game systems in 1990.  According to an agressive roll-out and
advertising plan, the system will be available in stores nationwide by

"There's really no comparison between Lynx and other handheld games," said
Jim Fisher, vice president of marketing. "In fact, the Lynx has
faster animation and quicker game play than most television or computer
systems.  Lynx is really arcade quality color and action that you can take with
you anywhere."

One of the Lynx's most exciting features is its multi-player game
capability.  Players connect their systems using the ComLynx cable.  The
system hardware provides each player with a first-person view of the action,
including the ability to see and affect the movements of the other players.

Five game titles, California Games, Blue Lightning, Gates of Zendocon,
Electrocop, and Chips Challenge, are already available.  More than 25 new
titles are planned for introduction by Atari and third-party developers this
year.  Among these is the arcade hit Gauntlet, with four player capacity.

Lynx has a suggested list price of $179.95.  Games are sold separately and
have a suggested retail price of $34.99 or $39.99.

 (The Atari Lynx's debut in New York
  City included advertising on the
  SpectraColor video board in Times
  Square.  Millions of people standing
  along Broadway during the annual
  Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and
  TV viewers across the nation had
  an opportunity to see Atari's ad.
  The lighted sign flashed the Atari
  Lynx message once-a-minute for two
  |[]_\                /|MINOLTA| ||
  |  _ \              /_|_______| ||
  |[]_-.\            /-_ | || |   ||
  |  _-.| /\    /\  |.-_ ______   _|
  |[]_-.|__ \__/ ___|.-_|------| | |
  |  _-.|--||  ||---|.-_||LYNX|| | |
  |[]_- |--||__||- O \-_|______| |_|
  |  _ /O O /__\O ooOO\_ |____|   ||
  |[] /O Oo/    \OoOOoO\ | || | OO||
  |  / OOOo| () | \|/O O\| O| |O O||
  | /OO|/|\ \__/ OOO-|-|\O\|\O\|/ ||
  |/ -|-|| O||||\|/||^/|\|/|/|\| O||
  | /|^ / \|---- |||-  ^ ^/ \|/ \|||
  (Stores throughout New York City did
   brisk business during the holiday
   season. Atari air-lifted Lynx
   shipments to meet consumer demand.
   FAO Schwartz, one of New York City's
   largest toy stores, consistently
   cleared Lynx from its shelves.)



Atari Stacy has won highest honors for the design of the new Portfolio and
Atari Stacy computers from the organization of CEBIT, Europe's largest
computer show.  Atari has distinguished for "Good Industrial Design" in the
"handheld computers" and "laptops" categories.  Both products will be on
display in the Design Center during CEBIT, held every March in Hanover, and
during the Deutsche Industrie Messe (German Industry Fair).


Atari 1040ST computers were used to evaluate the East German elections held
March 18.  Atari donated 18 1040ST computers to help determine the outcome
of the election, which gave Free Democrats a majority in the East German national Parliament.

Atari will also donate a MEGA 4 computer, SLM804 laser printer, and a
large screen monitor to the new governing party.

Forschungsgruppe Wahlen, a West German research group, used proprietary
software to analyze the vote.  After the election, the computers are planned
to be donated to an East German university.


Atari Italy ran an exciting promotion this spring in conjunction with the
Italian Air Force.  As part of "Atari Flight 520STfm: Special Mission Atari
Flying High," every buyer of a new 520STfm received an entry form for a
competition.  First prize was official admission to a basic pilot training
course- training for the Italian Air Force! If the student completes the
final exam, he will receive the rank of Regular Glider Plane Pilot.

Atari Italy's fall promotion showed the same creativity.  Atari placed two
"bonus" cards and a complete dealer list in weekly Walt Disney magazine
called "Topolino" (circulation 600,000).  One of the cards entitled
the youngster to play two free games at the store.  The second card was for the
youngster's parents, awarding a free game cartridge or diskette wit the
purchase of any Atari 7800, XE, or 520STfm video game system.

    | _______  solo su      ____ |
    ||\_\ /  |             |Atar||
    ||    \ T O P O L I N O|    ||
    ||/\( )\ | trovile     |game||
    ||_______| eccezionali |card||
    |                      |____||
    | ATARI * CARDS         ____ |
    |2600     XEGS__520STfm|Atar||
    | ____ ||  ____|   ___ |    ||
    ||____|-- |""""| ||///||bonu||
    |    ___________ _|"""||card||
    |   |/|\ ATARI  | |"""||____||
    |   |video games|  ---       |

(Actualidad Economica, the Spanish
 equivalent of Business Week, has
 nominated the Atari Portfolio as one
 of "the best 100 ideas of 1989.")



Atari plays a major role in many aspects of the professional life of the
Icehouse, one of Australia's leading contemporary music groups.  Much of the
band's activity takes place in three separate phases; writing and recording
music; post production and video clips; and live performances around the world.

In all these areas, the band has come to rely heavily on Atari equipment to
handle the composing, recording, and publishing of its music.  Living in
different parts of Australia, Icehouse members use modems to transmit work in
progress enabling each member to contribute to the composition and
development of the band's music.

An Atari 1040ST with Steinberg Pro24 and C-Lab Notator software is used for
the composition and arrangement of music.  Word processors are used for
the writing and editing of lyrics.  Without assistance of computers,
writing and recording an album could take up to four months.

The band's last major tour lasted for 14 months and included two Australian
tours, one to New Zealand, three to the US, and one to Europe.


A number of leading real estate offices throughout Western Australia are
currently relying on Atari ST computers for the smooth and successful running
of their businesses.

The companies needed a full integrated, flexible system that could be used by
every person in the organization to handle a wide range of different

At one company, representatives use the MEGA 4 for property appraisals.  A
second company manages a database of more than 3,000 property records and
histories on their MEgA 2.  The computer is also used for producing
correspondence, pamphlets, property and home open lists, and for spreadsheet,

A major advantage of the Atari ST for real estate users is its ability to
interconnect with the state government's Department of Lands
Titles' IBM mainframe.  The Atari ST communicates via modem, enabling remote
title searching.  This eliminates the need to have a representative out of
the office collecting titles to blocks of land.  The Atari ST is one of the
first non-IBM compatible systems in Western Australia to be approved by the
Department of Lands Titles for remote title searches.

The Atari ST can also link into the Real Estate Institute of Western
Australia (REIWA) system, using a telecommunications program called Flash
(from Antic Publishing).  This program was custom configured for the ST real
estate users by Phil Reeves, of Paragon Computers, an Atari dealer.  It enables
agents to access the latest lists of property available-all at the touch of
a key.

Using another Atari-based system, called Document Image Analysis, agents
are able to edit photographs of properties.  Agents can easily change
pictures, improving lighting, or inserting trees and people to indicate
movement and color.  The system consists of a MEGA 4, scanner, laser
printer, and image-editing software.  The Document Image Analysis system can,
in minutes, make sophisticated changes which ordinarily would take a graphic
artist hours to complete.

COPYRIGHT (c)1990, Atari Computer, Sunnyvale, CA 94089. All rights reserved.

The Atari Report - Spring 1990 has been converted to text and the pictures have
been converted to text by Len Stys (aa399), Atari SIG.



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