News Archive for 08/04/09

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MS, News Corp to team up on Yahoo bid?

04/09, 10:50pm

MS News Corp vs Yahoo Leak

MySpace parent company News Corp. is looking to join Microsoft as a partner in the latter's attempt to take over Yahoo, say apparent sources in touch with the Wall Street Journal. Without going into details, the paper suggests that News Corp. is in "serious" discussion to contribute to the deal. The combination would potentially help overcome Yahoo's frequent rejections of Microsoft's overtures, which argue that the original $31 per share bid for Yahoo undervalues the search firm.

SlingCatcher delayed until late 2008?

04/09, 10:20pm

SlingCatcher delayed

Sling's long-awaited Sling Catcher is suffering from a delay that will most likely push its release to late 2008. The delay was discovered by Engadget reader "Christopher", who was a prospective customer of Sling's, noting that the vice president of sales Gregg Wilkes sent him an email informing him that the device was not up to the company's high standards. Wilkes also cited that the company's recent acquisition by EchoStar has caused for some complications.

ASUS unveils Essentio CS5110 mini PC

04/09, 9:40pm

ASUS Essentio CS5110

Asus on Tuesday announced its newest compact PC, the CS5110, touting its exceptional video processing performance. The CS5110 is capable of 1080p HD movie playback via its optional Blu-ray disc drive and single HDMI output, while complementing it with 7.1-channel surround sound support. The focus on providing a transparent media experience is also evident in the use of a claimed industry first 2-in-1 thermal module responsible for the CS5110's quiet 24dB idle. The built-in IR transmitter and included Vista MCE remote provide the flexibility of a home-theater system.

Microsoft labels Yahoo/Google deal monopoly

04/09, 5:25pm

MS Response to Yahoo Goog

Microsoft tonight quickly responded to Yahoo's Google ad trial, attacking the deal as a potential move towards a monopoly. The Windows developer argues that any more permanent agreement would place "over 90%" of all search ads under Google's control and would shut out attempts by other firms to offer alternatives. Microsoft says that its own proposed takeover would be more beneficial by establishing a second major search ad provider.

Yahoo 'poisons' well, to test Google AdSense

04/09, 4:55pm

Yahoo Using Google AdSense

Yahoo this afternoon made the unusual announcement that it would start a trial of Google's AdSense for Search service. The experiment will see Google's keyword-sensitive ads appear along some search results for visitors to the Yahoo website coming from the US. Starting the trial doesn't commit the company to the practice and will account for just three percent of all searches run on Yahoo's site, leaving the search engine firm's premium partners unaffected.

Adobe releases Media Player 1.0

04/09, 4:45pm

Adobe Media Player 1.0

Adobe has released v1.0 of its free, self-titled Media Player, in both Mac and Windows versions. The application is built on AIR technology, and plays various resolutions of Flash video, from 480i through to 1080p. While users can play clips downloaded via web, Adobe is focusing heavily on streaming or downloading content directly from within the browser; the company has signed deals with CBS, Comedy Central, PBS and other companies, in order to have their broadcasts included in a default catalog.

Analysts: Windows' monolith design collapsing

04/09, 4:30pm

Gartner on Win Monolith

Microsoft may have no choice but to break up Windows into many different versions if it wants to avoid serious long-term problems with its code, according to analysis by Gartner analysts. Neil MacDonald and Michael Silver of the research group note that the operating system is being asked to cover too many aspects of computing, creating a "monolithic" code base that is both too demanding on some classes of hardware and consumes too much space. The company's decision to extend Windows XP for budget systems is a sign that Vista has stretched too far, Gartner's experts note.

WD Passport Essentials drives get colorful

04/09, 4:10pm

WD Essentials get colorful

WD's compact Passport Essential portable drives are now available in 11 colors, the company announced on Wednesday. Each color is available with a choice of 120GB, 160GB, 250GB or 320GB internal 2.5-inch HDDs. The Passport Essential drives are cleanly styled and simple to use, featuring just one USB connection for power and file transfer, and are compatible with both PCs and Macs. Windows users have the benefit of 128-bit data encryption.

Sirius-XM merger nearing approval?

04/09, 4:05pm

Sirius-XM merger near?

The proposed merger of the United States' two major satellite radio networks may finally be nearing completion, FCC filings show. Following an initial meeting with FCC chairman Kevin Martin in late March, records indicate that Sirius and XM Radio representatives have continued to speak regularly with Martin and other Commission officials, seeking some way of accelerating the last step in the merger's approval. The corporations already have authorization from the Department of Justice.

Crucial first major with DDR3 notebook RAM

04/09, 3:35pm

Crucial DDR3 Notebook RAM

Crucial has announced itself as the first major memory producer to offer DDR3 RAM for notebook computers, opening the door to systems based on Intel's upcoming Centrino 2 platform. The 204-pin memory holds its advantage over DDR2 by running both at a higher clock speed and offering more overall bandwidth. Its 1,066MHz rate matches the system bus of faster upcoming Core 2 Duo and Extreme processors while also offering 10.6GB per second of headroom through improvements made to DDR3 itself. The combination doubles the practical data rate of 800MHz DDR2 memory, Crucial estimates.

Amazon follows suit in HD DVD credits

04/09, 3:20pm

Amazon HD DVD credit

Online retailer Amazon is the latest company to offer compensation for having bought an HD DVD player, reports and anecdotes indicate. Customers say they are now receiving e-mail bulletins from Amazon, informing them that as "someone who purchased an HD DVD player from us before February 23, 2008," they are being given a $50 credit for any future purchases from the website. To claim it users must enter an individual promotion code during checkout, and do so by the end of April 9th, 2009.

Toshiba announces four high-end LCD TV lines

04/09, 3:10pm

Toshiba network LCD TVs

Toshiba on Wednesday announced the launch of four lines of high-end LCD TVs; the ZH500, ZV500, RH500 and CV500, all under the company's REGZA line. The ZH500 and RH500 series come with a built-in 300GB hard drive for recording videos or TV programs, while all four offer a recording option to a Toshiba Qosmio media-oriented notebook via USB. Furthermore, the ZH500 and ZV500 TVs feature built-in LAN and DLNA network support, as well as Bluetooth connectivity to sync photos with cell phones.

Needham: Palm, RIM feel pinch from iPhone

04/09, 2:25pm

Needham on RIM and Palm

Both Palm and the BlackBerry's creator, Research in Motion, are likely to feel a continued squeeze on their bottom lines as a result of the iPhone, according to separate investment notes from Needham & Co. The financial researchers note that both smartphone producers are most likely to feel added pressure because of the emergence of the consumer smartphone market, which doesn't share the same values as the business market. Services such as near-instant "push" e-mail are only a small factor for most home users, according to analyst Charlie Wolf. While that feature has helped the BlackBerry cement its position in the workplace, most home users are equally concerned with media playback as well as web access.

O2 limiting most 3G users to 128Kbps

04/09, 1:45pm

O2's 128Kbps 3G cap

The British division of O2 is deliberately limiting the speeds its 3G customers can operate at, representatives have admitted. Most customers, it says, are being artificially restricted to 128Kbps, equivalent to an ISDN landline connection. By default only customers paying 35 or more per month are being given access to O2's top speeds, rated at 384Kbps; business customers are also being upgraded automatically, as deemed necessary.

Investor: MS 'blundered' in threats towards Yahoo

04/09, 12:40pm

MS Yahoo threat a blunder?

Microsoft "blundered" this weekend when it threatened to underbid in a hostile takeover of Yahoo, according to one of the latter company's major shareholders. Bill Miller, the portfolio manager for Legg Mason, states that his company is ready to back Yahoo's desire to stay independent, which is aided by its 7 percent control. This makes Legg Mason the second most powerful shareholder for Yahoo, behind only Capital Research & Management.

Memorex launches new digital frames

04/09, 11:55am

Memorex Digital Frames

Memorex announced the release of two new digital photo frames on Wednesday. The Special Occasions frame comes with four distinct surround inserts meant to highlight the key stages in one's life: white for wedding(s), baby blue for the birth of a son, or light pink for the birth of a daughter. The metallic silver surround is for all-around use. The other new product is the Floral frame, and it features a blue silkscreen floral design sitting atop a brown frame.

ViewSonic photo frames bring video, widescreen

04/09, 11:40am

ViewSonic Frames Spr 2008

ViewSonic today preempted Mother's Day by a sweeping launch of ten different digital photo frames, including its inaugural large widescreen model. The DPX1002WD (shown) is the company's first 10-inch unit to switch to widescreen and has one of the highest resolutions at its size, displaying both BMP and JPEG images at up to 1024x600. The wood-frame display also serves as a full-fledged media player with support for the MPEG-1/4 and Motion JPEG video formats commonly found in digital cameras as well as MP3s for audio. Images are relatively vivid with a 400:1 contrast ratio and 400cd/m2 brightness.

Dell to leap into Eee PC territory?

04/09, 10:40am

Dell Plans Eee PC Rival

Dell will be next to join the ranks of companies building micro notebooks, according to a claim made by one of its assemblers. An official from Taiwan-based Compal says that his company will produce between 200,000 and 300,000 "low-cost" notebooks a month for Dell starting sometime in 2008, with as many as one to two million readied by the end of the year. The unnamed executive doesn't provide details of the systems but notes that Compal could boost production if demand proves high.

Nokia Tube spotted, lacks multi-touch?

04/09, 10:10am

Nokia Tube Spotted

Nokia's vaunted Tube cellphone may not be the company's flagship phone and will have a limited touchscreen, according to leaked info at Symbian Freak. The device, now said to fall outside of the expected Nseries line, is claimed to lack support for any controls similar to multi-touch on its roughly 3.2-inch display and is shown with a matching stylus, suggesting the device may need help from a pen rather than operating solely from fingers, as with its target at Apple.

BBC iPlayer launches for Nintendo Wii

04/09, 9:35am

BBC iPlayer for Wii

The BBC today said that its iPlayer is now available through Nintendo's Wii, marking the first time the TV catch-up service can be accessed through a game console. Currently in a test phase, the feature is available from a dedicated channel and lets UK-based gamers watch episodes of recent BBC shows as much as they like while they remain available on the site, which often keeps content for one or more weeks before they are removed for copyright reasons.

In-Stat: digital 40% of all music in 4 years

04/09, 9:15am

Digi Music at 40pc by 2012

Direct music downloads should make up a full 40 percent of all music sales in the space of four years, according to a new study by In-Stat. Research by the company suggests a blossoming of online purchases to the point that two out of every five legal music acquisitions in 2012 will have been made for an Internet-sourced copy instead of a physical copy. The anticipated surge is attributed to much more widespread access to high-speed Internet connections as well as a continued preference for single songs over whole albums and digital libraries that more closely match what's available at retail.

Moto picks former AT&T head as chairman

04/09, 8:35am

Moto Picks Dorman as Chair

Motorola began Wednesday by announcing its choice of David Dorman as the company's Chairman of the Board. The official replaces longstanding company head Ed Zander, who resigned as CEO in November and is set to depart from the chairman role in May. Dorman's role is not considered an executive role and will ultimately defer to that of current CEO Greg Brown. The new board member is touted for his telecoms experience and comes most recently from AT&T, where he served as both chairman and chief executive until November 2005.

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