Microware software is
already being used by a wide
range of customers, including
Eastman Kodak, General
Electric, the National Aero-
nautics and Space Adminis-
tration (Nasa) and the United
States Navy. This is the kind
of company Dragon Data is
But not too many Dragon 32
users are expected to be in-
terested in the disk drive sys-
tem which costs under £300 at
entry level and about £500
with two drives. Tony com-
mented: “We think about 10
per cent of Dragon 32 owners
will take the double drive op-
tion more on the Conti-
Demand abroad for the Dra-
gon is strong and Tony says:
“It is fast becoming the big-
gest selling home computer
on the Continent.” But he
added: “It is a different mar-
ket, with more home owners
using the machine at work.”
He puts this down to labour
costs being higher, so micros
are used at work to provide
information at little extra cost.

the new
system’s launch
The introduction of 0S9 will
be consolidated with the
launch of the Dragon 64 in
September Tony is sure that
“there is a demand for a small
business computer that is re-
latively cheap” and that the 64
will meet this demand. He
expects packages including
the micro, a monitor and
drives to sell for about £1,100.
The 64 will give 51 columns
by 25 lines on the screen and
will have an R5232 interface.
The machine will involve a
retailing change for Dragon
Data some 64s will be sold
through high street chains like
Boots, but more are expected
to be sold by dealers as off-
the-shelf systems.
An RS232 interface is also a
feature of the American Dra-
gons which will be launched
this summer, costing about
$399, in partnership with Tano
Corporation of New Orleans.
Tony admits: “We’re not ex-
pecting to sell millions in the
US because there are a lot of
machines at that price in the
But interest is already high.
He took the Dragon 32 to an
American computer show last
April and about 4,000 dealers
made enquiries. Only 400-500
dealers will be involved initial-
ly, but this will go up to 1,500
as production rises from a
starting figure of 2,000 a
The marketing strategy in
the US aims to profit from the
pricing wars being fought
there by the main manufactur-
ers. Tony commented: “We
think dealers will be keen be-
cause they are losing their
profit margins.” He added that
he expects to lure Commod-
ore, Atari and Texas In-
struments dealers.
Tano Corporation, which
has 100,000 square feet of
manufacturing space, was
chosen ahead of five other
companies. Its background is
in marine automation sys-
tems, including a lot of experi-
ence using the 6809 chip on
which the Dragon 32 is based.
And Tano already sells
another micro an Apple
look-alike designed in Holland
and manufactured in Korea.
Among all this activity, Dra-
gon 32 users are not being
forgotten. While plans to
launch a printer have been
shelved, a cassette recorder
guaranteed to work with the
Dragon is due out this sum-
Tony explained that “a prin-
ter was not very likely at the
moment” because good ones
were available and the falling
value of sterling was creating
financial problems when
buying from abroad.
Dragon Data’s other
machines will also be sold in
the US. The £400 micro,
so far without a name, will be a
twin-6809 system stepping up
the company’s attack on the
educational and business
markets. In addition to 0S9,
the intention is that it will run
Flex, a longer established
operating system which has
more applications software
available for it.
At £400 the machine is also
aimed at the home user, offer-
ing improved Basic and high
quality graphics. And it will
break away from the Dragon
32 mould, looking different to
previous machines.
While Tony agrees that
there is an overlap between
the machines discussed so
far, he argues that each has
excellent facilities in terms of
value for money.

Aiming to achieve
a high level
of software
The appearance of next
year’s micro will again be
different. Retailing at under
£2,000, this will offer “a uni-
que bus structure” giving a
high level of software portabil-
ity. Tony added that it will run
“68000-based and 8086-
based software either indi-
vidually or both together”.
This avoids the problem suf-
fered by early 16-bit users
who found themselves short of
easily available software. A lot
of the development work is
already finished for this
machine, which Tony expects
to sell more of in the US than
in the UK.
Dragon Data is expanding
its present factory to cope with
these plans and negotiating
with the Welsh Development
Authority for another site.
While Port Talbot’s traditional
employer, the steel mill, is
struggling, the microcomputer
manufacturer down the road is
Port Talbot ' s traditional employer, me steel mill, is struggiing while Dragon Data thrives.
July 1983 Dragon User 23


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