Awa is one of the LK-selectable Brand Names contained in the CPC BIOS.
Initial Australian CPCs were distributed by Mitsubishi Electric AWA Pty Ltd.
Externally, these CPCs look identical to the English CPCs (with the normal Amstrad logo above the ESC key).
Internally, LK1 and LK2 are shorted, so the BIOS displays Awa instead of Amstrad in the boot message.
- Awa 64K Microcomputer (for the 464) (Around 1988 this changed to Amstrad)
- Awa 64K Microcomputer (for the 664)
- Awa 128K Microcomputer (for the 6128) (Around 1988 this changed to Amstrad)
AWA were the Australian Amstrad distributor from initial CPC launch till around 1988 when Amstrad set up office in Australia.
So early 464 & 6128's had "Awa" on startup/reset & later just the usual "Amstrad". All Australian delivered 664's had "Awa" on startup.
The Australian variant is much less known than the German variant (which displays Schneider in the boot message, and which also has a Schneider logo on the keyboard).
The Awa's were mentioned at amstrad.cpc.free.fr, and, confirmed in cpcwiki.eu/forum (where, two australian users replied, one saying ,
- "I just checked both my CPC464s and they show Awa 64K Microcomputer - I've never noticed that before",
and the other saying,
- "the 464 says Awa, but the 6128 I got a couple of years later says Amstrad").
Amalgamated Wireless Australasia Ltd. (AWA)
An Australian company created in 1913 by the merger of Marconi's Wireless Telegraph Co. Ltd (Australia) and the Australian Wireless Company (the local Telefunken lisencee), this merger was partly dictated or at the least encouraged by the Australian government which had a financial interest in the company. The company was active in making radios, hi-fi equipment, broadcast equipment and PA systems at the least into the early 80's and was one of the pioneers of the microgroove disks in the 1940's and the first company to make low noise 78'rpm pressings. Also made products sold using the Fisk and Radiola brands. Had by the 80's become a holding company with interests in Casino and IT services and changed it's name to AWA Limited in 1988.
Extra info for interest regarding Earl White, the person who set up Amstrad Australia and managed the technical support division. He previously worked with AWA
Does not give the years unfortunately, but mentions Amstrad & Mitsubishi AWA...
Earl WHITE - Access International Biographies
Earl WHITE, Managing Director - Pacific Rim, Sydney Office. Mr. White set up Quarterdeck Australia in July 1992 and took over as General Manager in July 1995.Under his direction, Quarterdeck's products lead the Utilities Software Australian market as top sellers, increasing sales 60 % over a two year period. Prior to Quarterdeck , Mr. White helped establish Amstrad Australia where he managed the technical support division. During this time, Amstrad became the first PC company in Australia to outsell IBM in the PC arena. Mr. White also held product management positions at Amstrad and Mitsubishi-AWA.
For information about the history of Amstrad in Australia and New Zealand, e-mail Earl White at earl-at-earl.id.au