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Google is facing a fresh lawsuit from American Airlines, Reuters reports. American, the largest airline corporation in the world, has taken issue with Google's practice of selling search terms to other companies for advertising purposes -- specifically, in this case, phrases such as "American Airlines" or "AA.com." American claims that this constitutes an illegal use of its trademarks, as it was not consulted before sales began. Companies that pay Google for these advertising services have their ads appear whenever a user enters relevant terms into a search engine.
Sprint at a late-night event on Thursday has confirmed both the Palm Centro and a pair of new higher-end phones. The CDMA-based HTC Touch is real and will be more than just a switch to Sprint's network, according to the presentation. The touchscreen phone will double in processor speed to 400MHz and sport 128MB of RAM; although it may run only on Sprint's standard EVDO network when it launches, the new Touch will receive an upgrade to faster EVDO Revision A service and gain TeleNav GPS support in the process.
Hong Kong exporter Thanko has begun selling the MP4 Watch II, a a wristbound device that attempts to tackle the abilities of its handheld brethren. Aside from playing MP4 video files, it loads JPEG images and MP3/WAV/WMA audio, and can also tune in FM radio. Should that not be enough, it can display lyrics, record voice, and view books through a text reader. The "II" designation comes from the addition of an internal speaker. The watch's main limitations are connected to size: its screen measures 1.8 inches, and its battery life is limited to eight hours of audio and less for video. A 2GB player costs $92, while 4GB runs $118.
A source close to Verizon on Friday confirmed the final feature set and release date Motorola's media-focused Q9m smartphone. Coming in a red trim that separates the phone from other Q models, the handset will also have a custom media front-end that allows quicker access to music and video both stored locally and available through Verizon's V CAST services. A flip-back button will let traditionalists bring up a conventional front-end with easier access to e-mail, texting, and the web. Compared to the original Q, the Q9m will also support an expanded 4GB of memory on miniSD cards, an upgrade to Bluetooth 2.0, and expanded support for AMR audio.
The RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) may soon bear the brunt of a class action counter-suit, according to reports. The elevation request was filed in Oregon this week on behalf of Tanya Andersen, a woman previously sued by the RIAA for illegal file sharing, but who had the accusations against her successfully dismissed with prejudice -- preventing the RIAA from seeking further action. Should the new status be granted, it will cover anyone who has been sued or threatened by the RIAA, so long as they "have not actually engaged in actual copyright infringement," the petition reads.
Apple and Vodafone are in the final stages of negotiating a deal to provide the iPhone in Europe, says an anonymous but reportedly well-informed source. The two companies are claimed to be ready to introduce their deal within the next two weeks but still have software bugs and other technical details to address before the cellphone can be introduced to the public. The formal introduction may take place significantly in advance of actual shipments, according to the report, though the purported insider would not say when the phone would be in stores or whether pricing had been established.
Sony on Friday resisted the movement towards complex controls with news of its new PZ1 series remotes. Each boasts just the essentials for controlling either analog or digital channels and includes extra-large buttons that can be used by the pool or at the dinner table when a traditional remote would be harder to wield. The PZ1FD model (pictured) is the simplest to use with a wide design and waterproofing good enough to resist most splashes, according to Sony's claims. It ships in red, silver, and white to Japan near the end of August for an estimated $22.
ASUS's vaunted Eee PC ultraportable will cost considerably more than expected when it arrives in North America, according to an interview with the company's chief executive Jerry Shen. Although the PC maker originally intended to release a $199 system to most of its markets, that version has had its price raised to between $229 and $239 and was scrapped for the US due to a two-cell battery that only nets two hours of total battery life. All American versions will ship with a more expensive but considerably longer-lifed four-cell battery pack capable of four hours of runtime. Despite their sizes and costs, every system will have enough CPU performance and memory to stream web-based Flash video from YouTube and other sites, ASUS says.
The Nintendo Wii, which remains one of the best-selling of the next-generation console systems, has now had a production increase delayed, say sources within the company's Taiwanese component makers. Nintendo had been intending to boost the number of consoles built as early as June, but due to reduced supplies of ICs and PCBs, Nintendo will likely have to delay increased production until 2008.
The Korean company HIDVAN is preparing a new media center with a host of high-end features, the DABODA HMC-1. While the company is not saying how much content the center can hold, it has the option of 3.5-inch IDE or SATA hard disks, and it is fully HD-capable, thanks to DVI, component and HDMI outputs, as well as a decoder good up to 1080p. Composite and S-Video ports are available as SD-only alternatives. Optical and co-axial 5.1 sound (including DTS) is supported, and two USB 2.0 ports allow media from portable players and hard drives. Most media is sourced through wired or wireless LAN connections.
Joining existing companies such as Dell and HP, Gateway today announced the launch of Gateway China, the company's first dedicated effort to sell PCs in the southeast Asian country. The American company intends to sell both desktops and notebooks in the region and has customized its line for the Chinese audience. Some systems are low-cost but also have higher-end features such as current-generation Core 2 Duo processors and Vista Home Premium. Sales should be strong given a very successful test run in June, Gateway said.
Dell today revealed that it had finished an inside investigation into the company's accounting practices for the past four years and will have to drop its reported revenue over the period. The self-examination, which began roughly a year ago at the Texas-based PC maker, discovered evidence that some executives at the company had "reviewed" results with the goal of adjusting the final results to line up with company targets. In most cases this involved declaring income in advance; but in one case sales figures had been distorted to reach the figure, Dell said. The revised numbers could cost the company anywhere between $50m to $150m depending on the final correction.
Confirming one of the mystery phones of the carrier's product leaks, Verizon today released the CDM 8905. The device is consciously vintage in its looks and is tailored to subscribers looking for a basic phone in clamshell form. A monochrome LCD on the outside provides basic call info while the color LCD on the inside; Internet access is limited to 1XRTT and other features center around SMS text messaging and updates plus speakerphone support.
Nokia today demanded that the US International Trade Commission ban imports of certain 3G cellular chipsets made by Qualcomm, arguing that the semiconductor firm is violating five Nokia patents. The cellphone maker claimed that certain Qualcomm cellular chipsets capable of EVDO and HSDPA were hurting its business by effectively copying techniques that helped Nokia increase the power efficiency of its own chipsets, taking away a key competitive advantage of the company in the US. The response is justified since Qualcomm itself has sought out similar bans against Nokia products in other countries, the announcement said.
Palm's frequently leaked "Gandolf" may actually be targeted at youth rather than a direct sequel to the Treo, according to leaked details of a presentation to Sprint financial backers and the media. The silver and white handset will reportedly be known as the Centro and is consciously designed for a younger audience that might be buying its first smartphone and does not need the cost or the size of the Treo. The design will be Palm's smallest to date while still offering the full QWERTY keyboard and touchscreen of its larger phones. Its appearance is very close if not exact to early photos, according to the report.
Samsung's plant power outage will only give it enough NAND flash memory to provide 85 percent of the chips its primary customers will need for the second half of August, according to the head of memory device maker PQI. General manager Jance Lu noted that while her company is already secure, a shortfall is likely to occur for other companies and that the total amount of flash available would dip by about 3 percent. The sudden fluctuation in prices for the memory could force Samsung to change its prices in September to make up the difference, Lu said.
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