Hardware Sweeps Leaders Choice Awards, IDG’s Computerworld Finds

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. (February 1, 1999)- In the never-ending search for customer loyalty and satisfaction, hardware vendors have apparently identified the right mix. The second annual Leaders Choice Awards, conducted by Computerworld newspaper, polled 1,250 information technology (IT) leaders to determine which hardware and software products provided the most value. When the results were in, portable computers and corporate servers dominated the list of winners. On the software side, Microsoft products scored three wins, and Novell and Netscape picked up two each.

In mail survey, Computerworld asked readers to rate the value of products installed or upgraded in the past year. Respondents were also asked to name the single product that provided the most exceptional value. Of the wide variety of products that were named, only 20 in 14 categories scored high enough to earn a win.

Below is a sample of categories and winners:

Office Suites: Microsoft Office

Corporate Servers: Hewlett-Packard HP 9000, IBM AS/400, Dell PowerEdge, HP NetServer, IBM RS/6000, Compaq ProLiant

Portable/Handhelds: 3Com Palm, Gateway Solo, Dell Latitude, IBM ThinkPad

"Computerworld’s survey findings are particularly useful because they come directly from the users who depend on these products to run their corporations in the real world," said James Connolly, technology evaluations editor, Computerworld. "For the second year in a row, hardware edged out software in our user survey. This shows that the core processor technology is maturing at a time when software can still be risky, particularly in some of the emerging sectors like Worldwide Web development tools."

Half of this year’s top 20 winners are hardware products. In several software categories – application development tools, LAN management software, enterprise systems management software, web server software and web development tools – no products scored well enough to win the Leaders Choice Award.

When asked why the products gave them the most exceptional value, the answers covered a wide spectrum. To the price-sensitive user, value was a low price tag. To another user, value came from a combination of low price, good performance and reliability.

Results were tabulated from the 1,250 respondents who said they were responsible for specifying, recommending, approving or acquiring IT products. Mean scores were based on a five-point scale in which 1 equaled basic value and 5 equaled exceptional value. Products or product lines were declared winners if they were rated by at least 10 percent of the respondents in their category and received mean scores of at least 3.8.

For a complete list of categories and winners, please contact James Connolly at

(508) 820-8144 or james_connolly@cw.com.

Computerworld, the leading weekly newspaper for information technology leaders, provides timely news and analysis on all aspects of the computer industry. Recognized three times by Folio:Magazine (1996, 1997 and 1998) and the Computer Press Association (1988, 1993 and 1994) as the best computer newspaper, the publication has 160,984 paid subscribers (ABC June 1998 Publisher’s Statement) and an average issue audience of 984,400 IT business influencers (IntelliQuest CIMS v. 5.0, September 1998). Computerworld Online is the Web version of the print edition, with unique content and features, and is located at www.computerworld.com. Computerworld is headquartered at 500 Old Connecticut Path, Framingham, Mass. 01701.

Headquartered in Boston, International Data Group (IDG) informs more people worldwide about information technology than any other company in the world. With annual revenues of $2.35 billion, IDG is the leading global provider of IT media, research, conferences and expositions. IDG publishes more than 290 computer newspapers and magazines and 700 book titles in 75 countries, led by the Computerworld/InfoWorld, Macworld, Network World, PC World, Channel World, and "…For Dummies" global product lines. IDG offers online users the largest network of technology-specific sites around the world through IDG.net (www.idg.net), which comprises more than 225 targeted Web sites in 52 countries. IDG is also a leading producer of 168 computer-related expositions in 35 countries, and research arm International Data Corporation (IDC) provides computer industry research and analysis through 49 offices in 42 countries worldwide. Company information is available at www.idg.com.