1970's IBM Plug Compatible Failures

A number of companies entered the 2314 and 3330 plug compatible market with big intentions and spending many R&D dollars. Some never shipped a product. This entry catalogs those that tried to bring a product to market regardless of their success. The list is limited to drive manufacturers, pure financial companies such as Transamerica are not included in this first list.
  • Ampex (Taxon->Clasco->Ampex) (2314, 3330)
  • Burroughs
  • BuCode
  • Century Data Systems / Calcomp (2314, 3330)
  • Control Data Corp (2314 - 3380)
  • Fujitsu
  • ISS, then Itel, then Sperry Univac (2314, 3330)
  • Intercomp
  • Memorex (2311 - 3380)
  • Marshall Data Systems (2314)
  • Nippon Peripherals (3340)
  • Peripherals General
  • Potter Instruments (2314)
  • Singer
  • StorageTek via acquisition of SuperDisk (3330 - 3380)
  • Texas Instruments
  • Tracor
  • Varian
Some pure financial companies were
  • Greyhound
  • Itel prior to its acquisition of ISS
  • Telex
  • Transamerica
IBM's responses to its plug compatible competition was the subject of a number of anti-trust lawsuits, most of which IBM won. The US government's 1969 antitrust lawsuit was amended to include IBM's interface manipulations as an anti-trust violation but the entire lawsuit was dropped in 1982 by the Regan administration. A similar European Union complaint was settled with IBM changing its practices to provide improved disclosure of it's product's interfaces.

Control Data, Fujitsu, Memorex and Storage Technology continued into the 1980s.but all ultimately exited the PCM disk subsystem's business.

Reference:
  • ONLY THE STRONG SURVIVE, Datamation, August 1980, p.81
  • HISTORICAL NARRATIVE STATEMENT OF RICHARD B. MANCKE, FRANKLIN M. FISHER AND JAMES W. McKIE," Exhibit 14971, US vs. IBM, Section 50, p. 750-796, July 1980

Contributors: DecVet, Tom Gardner

More pages