PC vendors eye Java

PC vendors are considering licensing Java to get it to customers, according to a Sun Microsystems official.

Sun has been embroiled in a legal dispute with Microsoft over Java, urging support of the popular programming language on Windows. But PC vendors themselves are looking to get access to the technology, said Jonathan Schwartz, Sun executive vice president of software.

"PC OEMs, all of them, are looking at licensing Java," Schwartz said at a Sun briefing late last week. "We hope to have progress soon, mainly so they can assure their customers the continuity that they experience on the Web."

Sun has a compatible run-time for Java on the desktop, Schwartz said.

Java also is being deployed on devices, although currently games may be more prevalent an application than something such as a Siebel CRM application, said Schwartz. Over time, Sun believes that will change, he said.

Schwartz also touted momentum for Sun's Java card technology. "I think the news that we have is better than it has ever been," Schwartz said.

Commenting on pricing for Sun's upcoming Project Orion products, which bundle either the Solaris or Linux OS with a multitude of Sun applications such as an application server, Schwartz said customers would have a "predictable mode" of pricing in which they will know precisely what the infrastructure costs without worrying about having to pay more later. He pledged that Orion pricing would be much less than what customers might pay for an application server infrastructure from a major company.

Sun also intends to ship its Mad Hatter low-cost desktop environment by mid-year, said Schwartz.

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