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IBM is not just introducing new mainframes, but a new way of paying for on premises big iron that makes mainframes cheaper than they've even before.

At LinuxCon, IBM launched LinuxONE, a new pair of IBM mainframes along with Linux and open-source software and services. These new systems are the LinuxONE Emperor, which built on the IBM z13 mainframe and its z13 CPU, and its little brother, Rockhopper, which uses the older z12 processor.

The z13 mainframe series can hold up to 10 TBs of memory. Its 8-core z13 CPU can run up to 5GHz. On IBM benchmarks, a loaded LinuxONE could perform 30-billion Representational State Transfer (RESTful) transactions a day using Node.js and MongoDB in Docker containers. In brief, these are spectacularly speedy systems.