Not a year after IBM announced the z14 mainframe—a new computing model packing several performance optimizations and unprecedented encryption capabilities—the company is releasing a “mini-me” of its most impressive mainframe to date: the z14 ZR1.

But don’t mistake this z14 “follow-up” as something less momentous or serious. This is once again a step up from IBM’s previous flagship mainframe computer, the z13.

Importantly, z14 ZR1 is an iteration exemplifying how quickly mainframe modernization is occurring at the hardware level—and more importantly, it’s the clearest sign the world has received that the importance of mainframe computing is increasing, not diminishing.

IBM z14 ZR1 Processor Highlights

Designed to keep mainframe systems safe, secure and running workloads faster than before, the strategy behind the z14 ZR1 is all about moving customers into a highly secure transaction world and enabling the investment-retention of their COBOL applications that keep the business world running.

In keeping with previous IBM mainframe processor introductions, the IBM z14 ZR1, announced on April 10, 2018, is a smaller version of the IBM z14 announced in July 2017, making it a good option for small and medium-sized companies. But it likewise inherits most of the same innovative features that make it the ultimate solution to enable business growth, protect current application investments and reduce business costs.

Here’s what’s different between the z14 ZR1 and the z13.

1. Faster Encryption

Protecting corporate assets by use of pervasive encryption, the z14 ZR1 does this significantly faster—up to two-to-six times faster, depending on the workload and technology used—than a similarly equipped z13s. Mainframe customers can be assured their customers’ data is highly secure from unauthorized access wherever the data resides.

2. More Memory

Doubling the amount of real memory to eight terabytes allows more mainframe customers to implement on-premises in-memory analytics right where the data sits. Mainframe customers can be assured, unlike with off-premises analytics, their data is secure because no data leaves their secure mainframe systems.

3. Increased Energy Efficiency

Customer-requested enhancements—such as a rack-mounted scalable system that allows up to 16U of open-system space for non-mainframe hardware to exist in the same industry standard 19-inch rack form factor—helps customers reduce floor space, cooling and energy usage.

4. More Workload Capacity

With up to 50 percent more processing engines, both traditional CP and Linux IFL, the z14 ZR1 can run more workload in a single frame, so that consolation of other workloads can save even more and reduce costs.