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Lucent Technologies is distributing an early version of its Inferno network operating system, which can link Websites into the phone network. Developers can download the Inferno programming language (Limbo) and other tools and beta applications for Windows 95, Windows NT 4.0, IRIX 5.3, Solaris 2.5, and the Plan 9 operating system. A commercial release is planned by the end of 1996. . [WEBster, 9/17/96.]

Microsoft has announced its Windows CE operating system, "an open, scalable Windows platform for a broad range of communications, entertainment, and mobile computing devices." Applications will be appearing at the 11/96 Comdex trade show, for devices from HP, NEC, Compaq, Casio, and Philips. . [NewtNews, 9/24/96.] (Apple responds that it's already shipping 2nd-generation Newtons with over 200 applications. Task-specific hardware platforms are being developed, and Newtons based on the StrongArm processor will be announced in a few weeks.)

Apple's Newton MessagePad currently has about 29% of the personal digital assistant (PDA) market, selling through 1,200 retail outlets and catalogs. U.S. Robotics' (Palm division) Pilot PDA has a 60% market share. (The Pilot has only been available for a few months, so this number may be as temporary as it is impressive.) The Pilot lacks Newton's communications capabilities and 3rd-party software, but is smaller, less expensive, and works very well. [PC Data. NewtNews, 10/1/96.]