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Daily Computer News and Rumors

December 01-07 2003

About News and Rumors. InfoHQ Computer News and Rumors is a daily column. It features news coverage of new PC and Mac computer hardware and software, Internet news, and other technical news items.
Every Sunday, News and Rumors features "Sunday Shopping Watch", which is a comparison and analysis of Sunday computer store advertisements.
The Daily Computer News and Rumors is an archived column, so feel free to review previous week's or month's computer news. Previous Daily Computer News articles can also be searched, by using our site search feature found in the top and bottom menu bar.

InfoHQ Daily Computer News and Rumors Article Index
Date
(Click on story to read, use your Browser's back button to return to this index.)
Dec 07 Sunday Shopping Watch
Dec 05 Surging Business Activity Is Driving The Recovery
Dec 05 Mitsubishi Digital Debuts Home Cinema Projector
Dec 05 ATI Introduces Workstation Graphics Accelerator Upgrade Program
Dec 05 Apricorn Introduces USB 2.0 Hard Drive Upgrade Kit for Notebook Computers
Dec 05 Other World Computing Introduces Neptune FireWire External Hard Drives
Dec 05 Atari Ships ``Terminator 3: War of the Machines''
Dec 04 Symantec Survey Finds Small Businesses Fed up with Spam
Dec 04 Visioneer Announces the OneTouch 9120 USB Photo Scanner
Dec 04 CyberLink PowerCinema 3 Transforms the PC into CE Appliance
Dec 04 Motion Computing Introduces Value-Priced Tablet PC Model
Dec 04 Nintendo GameCube Out-Selling Competition
Dec 03 Samsung Electronics Announces 57-inch TFT-LCD Panel for HD-TVs
Dec 03 InterVideo Announces All-in-One PC Home Entertainment Center
Dec 03 PCs and CE Players to Drive Multimedia Networks in the Home
Dec 03 Pharos Introduces iGPS-360 Global Positioning System Receiver for Mobile Devices
Dec 03 Avoid Laptop Purchasing Scams
Dec 02 HP No. 1 in Worldwide Server Shipments for Sixth Consecutive Quarter
Dec 02 Futuremark Debuts PCMark04 for PC Performance Benchmarking
Dec 02 Consumers Are Replacing Their Home Phones with Cell Phones
Dec 02 INHD Launches Free High Definition Television Buyers Guide
Dec 02 GameSpot Editors Unveil Top Holiday Game Choices

 

Dec 07 - Sunday Shopping Watch.

Best Sunday Deals - See our Best Sunday Ad Deals Table below for specific system prices.

Weekly Comparison. The pre-Christmas sales continue with some very good laptop and desktop deals.

This Sunday's Special Discounts and Financing. In addition to sales on specific items, the following store-wide sales are advertised this week. (Note that these ads are for the Dayton, Ohio area. Prices or offerings may be different where you live.)

Best Buy is offering 24 month no-interest financing on all desktop and laptop purchases, and $150 mail-in rebates on advertised laptops and up to $200 mail-in rebates on advertised desktop packages.
Circuit City is offering 24 months no interest financing on advertised desktop packages and notebooks, and up to $150 mail-in rebates on advertised laptops and desktop packages.
Office Depot has no store-wide promotions this Sunday.
CompUSA is offering 12 months no payment, no interest, financing on any computer purchase of $999 and higher.
Staples has no store-wide promotions this Sunday.
Compare to Online Prices - Compare the Sunday ad prices to those being offered at DealTime, it searches over 160 online computer stores.

InfoHQ Related Shopping Pages

Shopping Alerts - Our latest shopping advisories on buying digital cameras and camcorders, desktop computers, laptops, and other computer items.

Windows XP Upgrade Guide - All about upgrading to Windows XP.

What You Need to Know About Dial-up Internet Service Rebates - The pros and cons of 'free' Internet service deals. Also see our latest InfoHQ Tech Watch Newsletter; Free PC and Free Internet Deals.     

Definitions. A complete desktop system/package/complete package is defined as a computer with monitor and printer or scanner.
A build-to-order system is customized at the retailer and then ordered from a computer manufacturer. In addition to the computer's stated price, you still pay sales tax and shipping charges (if you order direct from the vendor without going through the chain store, you may not have to pay sales tax and you could get a better warranty).

Caution about advertised prices. When reading advertisements, read the fine print of the ad to make sure you know what is being advertised and what it cost. For example, many advertisers will show a complete system with computer, monitor, and printer but advertise a price for the computer only.

* Prices discussed in this article. We report prices after rebates and discounts are subtracted.
Items highlighted in Black are good deals.
Items highlighted in Red means prices have gone up and the system is not a good buy this week.
Items in normal text means prices are about the same as the previous weeks.

Best Sunday Ad Deals
Category
Product Description
Price* (see above)
Prices up or Down this Week
Store
1. Best Celeron Deal
eMachines 2.5 GHz complete system with 17" monitor
$349
-$40
Best Buy, CompUSA ($399)
2. Best Celeron Deal
Compaq 2.5 GHz complete system with 17" monitor
$399
Circuit City
3. Best Celeron Deal
Compaq 2.6 GHz complete system with 17" monitor
$549
-$80
Best Buy
1. Best Pentium 4 System
HP 2.6 GHz Pentium 4 complete system with 17" monitor, Hyper Threading, and DVD/CD-RW
$899
-$50
Circuit City
2. Best Pentium 4 System
HP 2.8 GHz Pentium 4 complete system with 15" flat panel, Hyper Threading, and DVD-RW
$1299
+$20
Best Buy, Circuit City
3. Best Pentium 4 System
HP 2.8 GHz Pentium 4 Windows XP Media Center complete system with 17" flat panel, Hyper Threading, and DVD-RW
$1749
Best Buy
4. Best Pentium 4 System
HP 3.0 GHz Pentium 4 system with 15" flat panel, Hyper Threading, and DVD-RW
$1499
CompUSA
5. Best Pentium 4 System
Sony 2.8 GHz Pentium 4 complete system with 15" flat panel, HT Technology, DVD-RW, and all-in-one printer
$1199
-$250
Best Buy
Best AMD Athlon XP System
None Advertised
     
1. Best Low-cost Laptop
Toshiba 2.4 GHz Celeron with DVD/CD-RW
$749
-$50
Best Buy
2. Best Low-cost Laptop
Compaq 2.4 GHz Celeron with DVD/CD-RW
$799
-
Circuit City, CompUSA
3. Best Low-cost Laptop
Compaq Athlon XP-M 2200+ with DVD/CD-RW
$899
Best Buy
1. Best High-end Notebook
Compaq Pentium 4 2.3 GHz with DVD/CD-RW
$1049
-
Circuit City, CompUSA
2. Best High-end Notebook
HP Pentium 4 2.6 GHz widescreen with DVD/CD-RW
$1349
-
Best Buy
3. Best High-end Notebook
HP Pentium 4 2.6 GHz widescreen with DVD-RW
$1599
-
CompUSA
4. Best High-end Notebook
Toshiba Pentium 4 Windows Media Center 2.8 GHz widescreen with DVD-RW
$1899
-
Circuit City
5. Best High-end Notebook
HP Pentium 4 2.8 GHz widescreen with DVD-RW
$1899
+$50
Circuit City
6. Best High-end Notebook
Toshiba Centrino widescreen 1.4 GHz with DVD/CD-RW
$1349
CompUSA
Peripherals and Software
Best Sunday Deal
Maxtor 40 GB 7200 RPM Hard Drive with 8 MB buffer
$39
(after rebates)
-
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
Western Digital 120 GB 7200 RPM Hard Drive with 8 MB buffer
$59
(after rebates)
-
Circuit City
Best Sunday Deal
Seagate 120 GB 7200 RPM Hard Drive with 8 MB buffer
$69
(after rebates)
-
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
Maxtor 160 GB 7200 RPM Hard Drive with 8 MB buffer
$99
(after rebates)
-
CompUSA
Best Sunday Deal
ATI Radeon 9800 Pro 128 MB
$299
(after rebates)
-
CompUSA
Best Sunday Deal
Assylum GeForce FX 5200 256 MB
$99
(after rebates)
-
CompUSA
Best Sunday Deal
Radeon 9600SE 128 MB
$99
(after rebates)
-$30
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
TDK External 4X DVD-RW/CD-RW
$259
(after rebates)
-
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
Sony 52X CD-RW
$49
(after rebates)
-
CompUSA

 

InfoHQ Quick Jumps to Upgrades from DealTime - Click to check on latest prices
Video Cards ATI Radeon
  GeForce4 FX
Hard Drives Maxtor
  Western Digital
  Seagate
CD-RW Drives 40x/48x Write Speed
DVD-RW Drives DVD+RW/CD-RW
CPUs All AMD Athlon XP CPUs
  All Intel Pentium 4 CPUs
Antivirus Software All Manufacturers
Firewall Software All Manufacturers
All Other Products DealTime

 

Additional Information. For additional technical information, advice on how to buy a laptop or desktop, and vendor and manufacturer links, please see our Computer Buying Advice page.

About Sunday Shopping Watch. Sunday Shopping Watch appears every Sunday (except some holidays like Easter and Christmas) in our News and Rumors column. It is a review of local (Dayton, Ohio) computer chain store advertisements. While we can not guarantee your local chain store has the same items, this article can help you make informed buying decisions.

Dec 05 - Surging Business Activity Is Driving The Recovery. The recovery of the U.S. economy is being driven by accelerating output from American firms according to the latest data from Decision Analyst, Inc.'s November U.S. Economic Index.
The overall Index pushed up to 111 in November, the highest level reached in the last 12 months. Measured business activity was up strongly, reaching a monthly level matched only once in the last two years (in March 2002).

"The economy has clearly now moved into a period of solid expansion," said Jerry W. Thomas, President and CEO of Decision Analyst, a marketing research and marketing consulting firm. "Confidence is on the rise, and now we see the fruits of that increased confidence in terms of real growth."

The November Economic Index witnessed a big jump in business activity, with the related Index component rising four percent over last month's level. Concurrently, both job security and corporate hiring trends reached their highest Index levels in more than a year. Confidence in the stock and bond markets remained virtually unchanged from last month, remaining firmly above the depressed levels seen since the middle of 2000.

"It was always likely that the rising confidence in the stock markets we've seen since the summer would be matched by an overall economic expansion in the fourth quarter, and that's just what we are seeing now," Thomas says. "With rising business activity comes greater job security, and with that should come greater consumer confidence, spending and demand. The omens for a strong fourth quarter and even stronger 2004 look particularly good."

Decision Analyst, Inc. (www.decisionanalyst.com) is a leading marketing research and marketing consulting firm.

Dec 05 - Mitsubishi Digital Debuts Home Cinema Projector. Mitsubishi Digital Electronics America's Presentation Products Division, maker of award-winning, high-quality presentation and display products, today introduced the HC3 Home Cinema ColorView(TM) Projector, its first true 16:9 projector designed exclusively for home theater and other applications requiring widescreen display format.
The Home Cinema (HC) series of projectors is also the first Mitsubishi Digital projector line available in popular retail outlets such as Fry's Electronics, Buy.com and other outlets, as well as home theater retailers.

Mitsubishi Digital capitalizes on its excellence in display and imaging technology by providing a widescreen theater experience from a small, portable projector. The HC3 ColorView is capable of projecting a larger-than-life image from a projector that weighs under six pounds, is smaller than a bread box, and can be tucked away when not in use.

"Now there is no need for a huge piece of electronics taking up wall space to get a fabulous home theater experience," said James Chan, director, projector product marketing for Mitsubishi Digital. "With the HC3 Home Cinema projector, our videophile customers can easily get a big-screen experience from a portable little box."

The HC3 ColorView offers 960 x 540 resolution in a 16:9 format and 1200 ANSI lumens of brightness all in a small package that is easy to set up in the living room, family room, den, or just about anywhere in the home. It offers a significant 500:1 contrast ratio with vivid and even color saturation typically seen in 3-panel LCD technology. Whites are brilliant, and blacks are extremely dark -- perfect for movies from DVDs, video, cable or satellite.

The learning remote control included with the HC3 ColorView projector is easily programmed to operate two video sources such as a DVD player and VCR, allowing users to switch easily between displays.

"Home theater enthusiasts have been waiting for Mitsubishi Digital to bring a dedicated home cinema projector to market," said Aki Ninomiya, vice president, Mitsubishi Digital. "We're happy to incorporate the HC3 into the Mitsubishi Digital family of high-quality television and big-screen projector offerings."

Pricing and Availability

The HC3 ColorView is available at a suggested retail price of $1,799, with a two-year warranty on parts and labor plus a 90-day warranty on its long-life lamp. For more information, visit www.mitsubishi-presentations.com.

Dec 05 - ATI Introduces Workstation Graphics Accelerator Upgrade Program. ATI Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: ATYT) (TSX: ATY) today introduced a graphics accelerator upgrade program for workstation customers in North America and Europe.

Recognizing that engineers, designers and animators need the best equipment, including high performance graphics accelerators, to meet their demanding deadlines, ATI is offering an instant rebate to customers trading-in older workstation graphics products from ATI or its competitors. The rebate, which ranges from $40 to $85 per board, may be applied to the purchase of one of ATI's current lineup of best-in-class FireGL workstation graphics accelerators.

"For existing FireGL customers, this is a rebate to recognize their loyalty to the brand," said Drew Singh, Director of Workstation Sales, ATI Technologies Inc. "For customers that are new to the FireGL products, this is an added incentive to trade-in their older graphics product from another company and experience the power and increased productivity of a FireGL graphics accelerator from ATI."

Customers participating in the upgrade program can choose to apply their instant rebate to the FireGL T2-128, the FireGL Z1-128 or the FireGL X1-128. Each of these products has been certified for use with the leading DCC and CAD applications and ship with a unified driver that supports the entire range of FireGL accelerators. Customers can also access ATI's dedicated FireGL support team to identify features and benefits of the FireGL products that can increase productivity and to resolve technical issues quickly.

Details on the rebate amounts and eligible products are available at www.ati.com/FireGL.

Dec 05 - Apricorn Introduces USB 2.0 Hard Drive Upgrade Kit for Notebook Computers. Apricorn, a leader in innovative easy-to-use portable data storage and transfer products, today released Xtreme Upgrade, a complete hard drive upgrade solution with the hardware and software for notebook users to upgrade their hard drives with ease.

"Xtreme Upgrade includes all the utilities needed to upgrade a notebook hard drive in 3 simple steps," said Mike McCandless, Apricorn Vice President of Sales & Marketing. "The increase of performance and capacity of the hard drive is ideal for mobile executives, gamers and video enthusiasts. In addition, the hardware and software included with Xtreme Upgrade converts the old drive into a perfect backup solution."

Xtreme Upgrade comes with Apricorn's 7200 RPM Xtreme Drive -- the fastest available hard drive for notebook computers. Features of the Xtreme Drive include 70% faster spindle speed, 8 MB cache, up to 400% larger than standard drives. Compared to a 4200 RPM drive, the Apricorn Xtreme Drive can improve overall system performance up to 30%.

Additional features include a High-Speed USB enclosure, USB cable, AC adapter and auxiliary power cable, and EZ Gig II Data Transfer Software.

EZ Gig II Data Transfer Software, for Windows, is one of the most powerful and user-friendly backup packages available providing two utilities on one disk: Clone EZ and Image EZ. Clone EZ is ideal for users who require an exact bootable clone of their drive.
A cloned copy is great for upgrading a hard drive or real-time disaster recovery. Image EZ is perfect for users who want a compressed image of either their entire hard drive or a partition. Image EZ compresses its backup image files, leaving users enough space to backup multiple computers, or maintain multiple backups made at different times.

System Requirements

Notebook PC with USB 2.0 or 1.1 port.

Availability and Pricing

The new Xtreme Upgrade is available now in the U.S., Canada and online at www.apricorn.com. MSRP $449.

Dec 05 - Other World Computing Introduces Neptune FireWire External Hard Drives. Other World Computing (OWC) today debuted its new OWC Neptune line of external 7200RPM FireWire storage solutions. The drives are available in 60 Gigabyte (GB) to 250GB capacities and are available immediately.

"We refer to the OWC Neptune drives as 'value done right' because that's just what they are," said Larry O'Connor, president and founder of OWC. "They use the same high-performance Oxford911 bridge solution and heavy-duty power supply as found in our top-rated high-end Mercury Elite FireWire product. Also, we've included only the very best components, including the top-quality hard drive mechanisms from Hitachi, Maxtor and Western Digital that make the OWC Neptune anything but ordinary."

OWC Neptune FireWire drives feature a custom Oxford911 bridge solution, two six-pin FireWire 400 (1394a) ports for convenient plug-and-play usability, a 7200RPM drive mechanism, 2 or 8 Megabyte (MB) data buffer and data transfer rates of up to 400 Megabits per second (Mbps). All drives come pre-initialized with free Mac shareware/freeware/public domain software and include a FireWire cable, Intech Hard Disk SpeedTools and Dantz Retrospect Express (for PC or Mac) backup and restore software, as well as a one-year limited warranty.

The 1.5-inch x 9-inch x 5.5-inch drives are highly portable, weighing only 2.7 pounds, and boast an extremely compact and shock resistant design for maximum portability. Prices for OWC Neptune storage solutions start at $109.99 for the 60GB version, $129.99 for 80GB, $159.99 for 120GB, $189.99 for 160GB, $239.99 for 200GB and $299.99 for 250GB versions, respectively.

"Brought to the market as a top-notch product at an unbeatable value, OWC Neptune storage solutions are the absolute best bet for any Mac- or PC-user looking for high performance on a budget without sacrificing quality when purchasing an external FireWire drive this holiday season," O'Connor said.

OWC FireWire Solutions are available online at www.macsales.com/firewire.

Dec 05 - Atari Ships ``Terminator 3: War of the Machines''. Atari shipped "Terminator(R)3: War of the Machines(TM)" today to retail stores for the personal computer, a single-player and online multiplayer first-person shooter set in the ravaged battlefields of the Tech Com-versus-SkyNet conflict.

Developed by Hungary-based Clever's Games, "Terminator 3: War of the Machines" allows up to 32 players to face off online as either technologically-advanced SkyNet Terminators or battle-hardened Tech Com Special Forces in an epic multi-player struggle for supremacy.

"PC gaming fans can now suit up as The Terminator and defend the fate of humanity against an onslaught of online foes, or, power on as SkyNet and try to exterminate the human race," said Steve Allison, vice president of marketing for Atari's Los Angeles studio. "'Terminator 3: War of the Machines' recreates the dark futuristic vision of the 'Terminator' film series like no other PC game before, putting gamers on the front lines in the Epic battle between man and machine. Dominance over planet Earth now rests in the balance -- online!"

In "Terminator 3: War of the Machines'" vast multi-player mode, players compete online as either a member of Tech Com or as a SkyNet Terminator model. Eight playable character classes are available for SkyNet and Tech Com forces and up to 32 players can wage war in each server.
Humans have the advantage of cunning and stealth while SkyNet brings to bear the awesome power of overwhelming force, brutality and durability. Each class offers unique advantages and disadvantages in numerous battle situations. For example, SkyNet T-900 Endoskeletons can utilize their unique vision to quickly and easily identify even the most camouflaged opponents, but will be unable to heal or repair themselves in combat like their human counterparts.

"Terminator 3: War of the Machines" also features the voice and likeness of Arnold Schwarzenegger for the first time in a PC video game. In the special multiplayer "Termination" mode, players on the Tech Com side compete for the highest frag count. The human player with the most frags has the option to respawn as The Terminator himself. The Terminator fights alongside the humans, adding a more powerful character to the Tech Com side.

Gamers who purchase "Terminator 3: War of the Machines" are eligible to enter to win the Ultimate Gaming Machine -- an Aurora system from Alienware, featuring an AMD Athlon(TM) 64 FX-51 processor and an NVIDIA(R) GeForce(TM) FX 5900 Ultra. "Terminator 3: War of the Machines" owners should visit www.alienware.com/T3 to enter the contest or for more information.

"Terminator 3: War of the Machines" is now available for personal computer for an estimated retail price of $39.95 and an ESRB rating of "T" for Teen.

For more information, visit www.atari.com.

Dec 04 - Symantec Survey Finds Small Businesses Fed up with Spam. Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq:SYMC), the world leader in Internet security, today announced that the negative impact of spam on productivity and resources is motivating small businesses to consider taking substantial steps if the problem worsens. According to a survey of 500 small businesses conducted for Symantec by InsightExpress, the pioneer in online market research services, spam is a costly and growing business concern that is causing some organizations to consider opting out of email altogether if the problem of spam increases.

"The results from this survey demonstrate that small businesses clearly regard spam as a business problem that threatens to undermine the efficiencies of Internet communication, transaction, and commerce," said Matthew Moynahan, vice president of Product Management, Client and Host Security, at Symantec. "However, through a combination of technology, vigilance, and best practices, small businesses can significantly reduce the negative impact of spam on their operations."

The survey found that small businesses are seeing a noticeable increase in spam in their inboxes. More than half (64 percent) of respondents reported an increase in spam over the past six months, with 33 percent noting dramatic increases. Nearly 40 percent of respondents said that spam made up more than half of the email coming into their businesses.

Small businesses are also willing to take steps to reduce their exposure to spam should the problem continue, according to the survey. For example, 42 percent of small businesses said they would consider abandoning email for business correspondence if the spam situation worsened. Fifty-five percent reportedly would consider changing their company email addresses to stop spam. Moreover, 56 percent would consider locking down their email server to allow only approved messages, which would also force all users who wanted to correspond with the company via email to go through an approval process first. Thirty-two percent of respondents already invest the time and resources to help curb spam by submitting spam email addresses to blacklist companies.

Spam also garnered a flurry of complaints from respondents. Users' top complaint, with 63 percent of respondents, was that spam is offensive in nature. Sixty-one percent complained that spam is distracting in the workplace, while 55 percent lamented the loss of productivity resulting from spam. Small business respondents also demonstrated a growing understanding of the potential malevolent impact of spam as 28 percent complained that it contains malicious code, 23 percent said spam is connected to credit card fraud, and 16 percent reported that it is linked to software piracy.

The survey also found that although small businesses spend little time deleting spam messages, they continue to acknowledge the drain on business resources it causes. Fifty-four percent reported that spam imposed business costs in the form of user productivity, followed by server and disk storage space (37 percent), and connection time (35 percent).

To guard against spam and its hazards, small businesses can learn about best practices by visiting www.symantec.com/spamwatch to access Symantec's Spam Watch Response Center, which includes the top 10 tips for protecting privacy and avoiding spam scams.

Dec 04 - Visioneer Announces the OneTouch 9120 USB Photo Scanner. Visioneer, a leader in intelligent imaging solutions, today announced a new addition to their Slimline scanner series, the Visioneer OneTouch(TM) 9120 USB color flatbed scanner.

A powerful 48-bit, Hi-speed USB 2.0 scanner, the new OneTouch 9120 USB is an extremely fast imaging solution with a suggested retail price of only $99.99. The scanner also features a number of advanced, patented scanning technologies as well as robust image management and editing software to provide a powerful, value-priced scanning solution.

"The OneTouch 9120 USB is ideal for the photo enthusiast who wants to scan photo prints, 35mm slides or negatives," said Murray L. Dennis, Visioneer's president and CEO. "It also works well for establishing a paperless office or creating colorful projects for print or Internet use. With its Hi-Speed USB 2.0 interface, it can scan a 4"x 6" photo at 300 dpi in less than 7 seconds, and a full-color page at 300 dpi in less than 15 seconds."

The OneTouch 9120 USB scanner provides high 2400 x 4800 optical resolution, which eliminates jagged edges and captures fine detail from originals. The scanner provides sufficient resolution to turn a 4"x 6" print into a 32"x 48" enlargement with no loss of detail.

It also features 48-bit internal color and FlashBack(TM) Bi-directional AutoScan Technology, which makes scanning faster and more efficient with two-way scanning. The scanner also comes with a Hi-speed USB 2.0 interface, which means that the OneTouch 9120 USB scanner boasts data transfer rates of up to 40 times faster than devices that are rated "Full-speed USB 2.0." In addition, the scanner is compatible with USB 1.1 ports.

The Visioneer OneTouch 9120 USB is currently available through authorized retailers, computer super stores and online services, mail order catalogs and from Visioneer's website at www.visioneer.com. The suggested retail price is $99.99. For additional information, consumers can visit the Visioneer website.

Dec 04 - CyberLink PowerCinema 3 Transforms the PC into CE Appliance. CyberLink Corp., a leading developer of digital video/audio solutions, announced today the availability of its all-in-one entertainment software, PowerCinema 3.

PowerCinema 3 is an all-in-one solution that integrates digital media and turns today's mainstream computer into an entertainment center. From its movies, pictures, videos, music and web features, PowerCinema 3 allows users to watch DVDs, create dynamic photo slideshows, view and manage video files, listen to and organize music tracks, and access online help guides via the CyberLink website. PowerCinema 3 comes with a pleasant interface optimized for TV display and allows users to operate the software from a universal remote control unit.

"As the PC migrates into home living areas, it is expected to absorb functions of other consumer appliances and also to serve as the family venue for all audiovisual entertainment," said Alice H. Chang, CEO of CyberLink. "With PowerCinema 3's 10-foot user interface design, users can just relax on a sofa, watch it from a TV screen and control everything via a remote control. Your PC can now replace a stand-alone DVD player while offering so much more. In other words, PowerCinema 3 and your PC will truly enhance your enjoyment of a variety of media."

Main Features of PowerCinema 3

-- Movies: Rich DVD playback is delivered via CyberLink's award-winning PowerDVD decoding engine, providing the best movie experience possible. Technologies include: CLEV(TM) to enhance color and contrast of movies displayed on LCDs; CLPV(TM), which easily adjusts wide screen movies into full screen (4:3) display or vice versa with minimal distortion; CL Headphone, which provides virtual surround sound playback; and CLMEI(TM), which converts 2-channel audio and output to multi-channel speakers for a surround sound effect.

-- Pictures: Users can easily browse photo images on their PC, and organize their files. Photos can be rotated and viewed as a slideshow with background music, all via the remote control.

-- Videos: Offers users the convenience to view, organize and play video files, sorting them by name or date. Major video files formats are supported and can be accessed from multiple sources, including hard disks, memory cards, and other storage media.

-- Music: Lets users play CD music tracks and MP3s and easily sort audio files by album, artist, and title. Artist information can be viewed (if available) while playing music tracks too.

-- Web: Offers immediate online support by allowing users to jump to CyberLink's Cinema Center to browse through detailed product information, help guides, etc.

PowerCinema 3 is now available and TV function will be added-in as a new edition in near future as well. CyberLink's worldwide headquarters are in Taipei and the company website is: www.goCyberlink.com.

Dec 04 - Motion Computing Introduces Value-Priced Tablet PC Model. A $1,699 slate tablet PC powered by an ultra low-voltage 800MHz Mobile Intel(R) Celeron(R) processor was introduced today by Motion Computing(TM), an innovator in ultramobile computing and wireless communications.

The new Motion M1300 model is the latest addition to Motion's family of M1300 Tablet PCs and is compatible with the broad range of Motion's mobile accessories. It was developed for on-the-go, ink-enabled applications in a variety of markets - including healthcare, education, field force automation and government - that can benefit from the entry-level value of Celeron technology.

The customizable system offers the same award-winning M1300 features, including a 12.1-inch display, 802.11b or 802.11g wireless capability and USB 2.0 -- but uses Intel's ultra low-voltage Celeron technology with 512KB of Level 2 cache and a 400MHz front side bus. The $1,699 base hardware configuration includes 256MB of RAM and a 20GB hard drive, expandable to 1GB of RAM and a 60GB hard drive.

Motion's newest tablet PC model is about 10 percent faster and delivers more than 9 percent more battery life than the company's previous entry-level system, the award-winning M1200 powered by a 933MHz Intel Pentium(R) M III ultra low-voltage processor.

"Not all applications require the power of our top-of-the-line M1300," said David Altounian, chief product officer of Motion Computing. "With our new M1300 Celeron-based tablet PC, customers will enjoy mainstream performance at a great price."

The company also announced:

-- The Motion Fingerprint Reader - a $149 retractable PC card featuring secure biometric fingerprint recognition technology for easy single or multiple-user logon and improved protection of sensitive information with the convenience of never needing to remember or update passwords;

-- A $100 price reduction, to $1,999, on the base configuration of the most powerful Motion M1300 tablet PC, featuring Intel Centrino(R) mobile technology with a 1GHz processor and 1MB of Level 2 cache.

Motion Computing - a top-tier tablet PC maker with an almost six percent share of the worldwide market - specializes in lightweight, slate-style products featuring electronic stylus "pens" as the primary input device and an optional hardtop keyboard innovation that doubles as a display protector.

The new tablet PC model and fingerprint reader are available now in the U.S., Canada and the UK through Motion's network of more than 190 value-added resellers network, its direct sales force and online at www.motioncomputing.com.

Dec 04 - Nintendo GameCube Out-Selling Competition. After rocketing up the charts the past several weeks, the Nintendo GameCube(TM) has now reached No. 1 -- it's America's top-selling home video game console, according to direct sales data from the nation's leading retailers.

Nintendo GameCube sold more than half a million systems to consumers during Thanksgiving week, easily surpassing its console competitors. Among all game devices, it trailed only Nintendo's portable Game Boy(R) Advance, which sold almost 600,000 units to U.S. buyers during the week.

"All along, our business plan for this year was to maximize consumer interest and sales during the fourth quarter," says George Harrison, Nintendo of America's senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications. "But frankly, we're overwhelmed by how successful we've been. Our price cut of Nintendo GameCube has ignited sales to the degree that it may turn out to be the best-selling console for the entire month of November. We're tracking to sell more systems in the last eight weeks of the year than we did in the previous 10 months combined."

Nintendo GameCube went from No. 3 to No. 1 in just two months, evidence that the Sept. 25 price drop to an MSRP of $99.99 and the hot new games were just what the public wanted. The library of games available for Nintendo GameCube now stands at more than 320, including America's current hottest game, Mario Kart(R): Double Dash(TM) exclusively for Nintendo GameCube, role-playing and sports games, Pokemon titles for younger players and action and racing games for adults.

Numerous new and upcoming releases that will keep the momentum going include 1080(R): Avalanche, a shred-'em-up snowboarding game; Mario Party(R) 5, the ultimate party game; F-Zero(R) GX, the fastest racing game on the market; Mario Golf(TM): Toadstool Tour, a golf game that appeals equally to novices and experts; Pokemon Channel(TM), the first-ever Pokemon game available for Nintendo GameCube; and Final Fantasy(R): Crystal Chronicles(TM), an upcoming role-playing game that continues the hit franchise.

For more information about Nintendo, visit the company's Web sites at either www.nintendo.com.

Dec 03 - Samsung Electronics Announces 57-inch TFT-LCD Panel for HD-TVs. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., the world's largest provider of TFT-LCD display panels, today announced the development of the world's largest 57-inch TFT-LCD panel for HD-TVs.

The new panel was produced on Samsung's second 5th generation line, line 6 (1,100 mmx 1,300mm substrate), which started mass production in September 2003. Samsung continues to break new size records in the LCD industry. In August 2001, the company announced the world's first 40-inch panel, which was followed by a 46- panel in October 2002, and a 54-inch panel last December.

The new product is an outstanding performer with high, quality, full HDTV functionality: It has a 1000:1 contrast ratio, 600cd /m2 brightness, maximum 8ms response time, 75 percent color reproduction, 4.75cm module thickness, and 1920 X 1080 resolution with 6.22 million pixels.

"Not only is the size, but the performance exceptional. Samsung introduced its improved PVA (ITO patterned vertical alignment) technology and advanced polarizer technology to achieve a 1000:1 contrast ratio which is a great enhancement over the common 400:1 and even the 800:1 ratio of Samsung's preceding 54" TFT LCD panel." said Executive Vice President Dr. Sang-Soo Kim, Chief of the LCD development team. "And with the low black luminance of below 0.5 nits the ability to show black detail makes objects more distinctly vivid in the dark background."

Samsung now has the broadest range of TFT LCDs for LCD-TVs from 15" to 57". The company is already seeing robust increase in LCD-TV sales. LCD-TV panels account for 10 percent of the TFT LCD business in the third quarter sales result and are expected to grow further. The introduction of the 57" TFT LCD further differentiates Samsung's TFT LCD product line up as it enforces the full HD feature panel availability that enables next- generation high-resolution wall hanging TVs.

More information can be found at www.usa.samsungsemi.com.

Dec 03 - InterVideo Announces All-in-One PC Home Entertainment Center. InterVideo, Inc. (Nasdaq:IVII) announced today InterVideo Home Theater, a complete digital entertainment solution for watching and recording TV programs, viewing DVDs/VCDs, personal music libraries and photo slideshows.

Equipped with an easy-to-use interface, users can enjoy these capabilities on their living room PC or TV using a PC or notebook. With the remote control that is also included, consumers can easily control Home Theater features from the comfort of their couch. Completely hardware independent, InterVideo Home Theater can be used with Windows(R) 2000, and XP systems.

Scheduling TV Shows for Viewing/Recording: InterVideo Home Theater makes it easy to find and schedule TV shows for viewing and recording because it carries out an automatic channel scan for antenna and cable-based TV receiver devices. When deciding which program to select, users can either channel surf or schedule upcoming broadcasts. Once recorded to the owner's PC hard drive, the videos can be sorted by date or name for easy navigation, and thumbnail images can be viewed to speed searches.

Video Playback: To ensure high-quality playback of recorded TV programs, as well as videos downloaded from the Internet, DVDs/VCDs and camcorder clips, Home Theater comes with InterVideo's powerful WinDVD(R) engine, one of the world's most popular software solutions for DVD playback on a PC. Consumers can also use Home Theater to capture screen snapshots of favorite video scenes and save them as digital pictures on their hard drives. The screen shots can then be viewed or printed using Home Theater's Picture application.

Personal Music Libraries: With InterVideo Home Theater's Music function, users can put all of their music files into a single library. The easy-to-use interface makes it simple to sort songs by title, artist, album or genre and create multiple personalized playlists of music compilations to suit every mood.

Photo Slideshows: InterVideo Home Theater's Picture application enables users to view thumbnail images of photos and sort them by date or name for easy navigation. Photos can even be sent from the remote control device directly to the printer. Home Theater can also be used to automatically create professional-looking slide shows with amazing transition effects. Slide shows can be further enhanced with background music by assigning a playlist music folder to run during the show.

Multi-channel Audio Support - InterVideo Home Theater can be used with PC multi-channel sound cards for a complete Dolby Digital 5.1 audio experience or it can output a digital signal to multi-channel receivers in home theater systems.

To simplify installation, InterVideo Home Theater includes an easy-to-use Setup Wizard that can be accessed through the main control panel. Settings can be changed at any time by clicking on the Settings button on the main menu.

By combining all of the most popular digital video and audio features into a single application, InterVideo Home Theater is an ideal replacement for DVD players and VCRs. Users can schedule TV recordings and send emails while watching TV, listening to music or surfing the Web -- all with the video and audio quality they have come to expect from InterVideo solutions.

Pricing, Availability

InterVideo Home Theater is available at InterVideo's web site, www.intervideo.com with a limited time introductory price of $99. The price includes a 36-key remote control and the USB dongle for the user's PC.

Dec 03 - PCs and CE Players to Drive Multimedia Networks in the Home. The convergence of industry developments and strong consumer demand for connected entertainment at home will drive multimedia networks to exceptional growth over the next five-year period, a new report from Parks Associates concludes.
According to 'Multimedia Networks in the Home: Analysis and Forecasts,' the market opportunity for multimedia connectivity -- including PCs, mobile platforms, and consumer electronics devices -- will reach annual node shipments of 120 million units by the end of 2008.

"Home networking and other technologies have reached an appropriate level of maturity so that both PC and CE vendors can now fully address connectivity for a myriad of devices in the home," said Kurt Scherf, vice president of research.

"The early gains in this market will belong to vendors of media PCs and digital media receiver/adapter (DMR/DMA) solutions, who deploy solutions that leverage the storage and processing power of the home computer for multimedia applications across platforms. The consumer electronics industry will simultaneously be deploying both mobile and fixed platforms. These digital imaging products, hard-disk storage servers, DVD players with integrated functionality, and game consoles will be among the many devices that will drive multimedia connectivity to the mainstream market."

For more information about the home networking market, download the white paper 'The Home Network Market: Data and Multimedia Connectivity' at www.parksassociates.com.

Dec 03 - Pharos Introduces iGPS-360 Global Positioning System Receiver for Mobile Devices. With the introduction of its new iGPS-360 Global Positioning System receiver, Pharos Science & Applications Inc., a leading provider of portable navigation and location-based services for mobile devices, has brought the power of GPS location-finding and navigation to all types of portable and handheld computing devices.

The unique modular design of the iGPS-360(TM) receiver allows users to add GPS positioning and navigation capability via the serial, USB, CompactFlash, PCMCIA port or Bluetooth(TM) wireless connection to their notebook computer, Windows Mobile-based Pocket PC, Tablet PC or other mobile computing or telematics device.

"No other GPS receiver offers these convertibility options," states Andy Wang, Pharos' vice president. "And, as consumers and enterprise users upgrade and change their mobile equipment, it's important that their peripheral equipment be compatible with these new systems. With its universal connectivity, Pharos iGPS-360 receiver is assured of working with today's and tomorrow's mobile devices."

The innovative iGPS-360 uses Pharos' integrated Global Positioning System receiver and antenna design, and SiRF/Star-II LP chipset and architecture, which tracks 12 GPS satellites simultaneously. The SiRF/Star-II LP's 12-channel tracking capability gives the Pharos GPS receiver superior performance, enabling fast GPS signal acquisition and reacquisition, and optimum response in dynamic applications such as quickly moving vehicles, as well as in harsh signal environments such as foliage and urban canyons. Combined with its ultra-compact design, WAAS capability, and its universal connectivity, the iGPS-360 presents users with a cost-effective, high-performance portable navigation capability for any type of mobile computing device.

"The iGPS-360, while offering advanced features and superior performance, is available at the same affordable price as our previous GPS receiver hardware," Wang adds. "Thanks to the quality of our product design and the close relationships we have with our manufacturing partners, Pharos is able to offer cutting-edge technology and premium quality, while passing along cost savings to our customers."

"The success of Windows Mobile software is evident in the wide range of Pocket PCs being offered by manufacturers such as Dell, Casio, Hewlett-Packard and Toshiba," said Julie Wymetalek, Mobility Partner Advisory Council manager at Microsoft Corp. "Having a GPS receiver such as the Pharos iGPS-360 that works with all of them further enhances the mobility options these devices provide, helping our Windows Mobile device customers better manage their work and personal lives no matter where they are."

The Pharos iGPS-360 is available now at www.pharosgps.com and from Pharos' network of retail partners.

Dec 03 - Avoid Laptop Purchasing Scams. LIGATT Corporation wants consumers to be aware of laptop purchasing scams that have flooded the Christmas season every year since the prices on laptops have gone down and the demand for laptops have gone up. According to Rocky Jones, the sales manager for CompUSA, Culver City, California, "We will sell twice as many laptops as desktop computers this Christmas season."

Consumers should always be cautious of purchasing a laptop from a stranger. According to the 1st book written on laptop security called "Laptop Security Short & Simple," a lot of hi-tech scam artists, also known as Scavengers or High Tech Hustlers, will place ads in newspapers or on the Internet advertising laptops for half the retail price.
One consumer purchased a Dell Latitude D800 laptop, priced at $2,335 on Dell's website, for only $900 from the classified ads in a local newspaper. When the consumer had problems with a bootleg copy of Windows XP Pro that was installed on it, they took it to a local computer store and found that the laptop they purchased was stolen from that store two weeks prior.

Another place that consumers should be conscious about purchasing a laptop is on the Internet auction sites. Laptop Security Protection Team has found numerous bids on laptops that would normally sell for over $2,000 that are going for as little as $600.
"Consumers should use the same commonsense when purchasing a laptop that they use when buying a car," says Gregory D. Evans, President of LIGATT Corporation. "If you read in the newspaper someone selling a brand new Mercedes Benz for the same price as a Ford Focus, bells and whistles would go off in your head. Those same bells and whistles should go off when looking to purchase a laptop." One consumer, who purchased a $999 laptop at a popular online auction site this past summer, received a box of Playboy magazines instead.

Things consumers should consider when purchasing a laptop:

-- 1. Try to purchase a laptop from a well-established computer store. Smaller computer stores may have good deals, but may not be around long enough to provide support.

-- 2. When purchasing a new or used laptop from an individual you may not know very well, ask for some identification such as a drivers license. If the person refuses to show some type of identification, you should become alarmed.

-- 3. If you decide to purchase a used laptop, make sure that the serial number has not been scraped off or changed. Also check the operating system to see whom it is registered to. If the registered name is different from the same person selling the laptop, be very cautious.

-- 4. Always try to pay by credit card. Most credit card companies will protect its customers from fraudulent purchases.

For more information on this subject and other laptop security precautions, go to www.laptopsecurity.us.

Dec 02 - HP No. 1 in Worldwide Server Shipments for Sixth Consecutive Quarter. For the sixth consecutive quarter, HP (NYSE:HPQ) leads in worldwide server unit shipments, with 30.6 percent of the market, according to figures released today by IDC.(1) Almost one of every three servers shipped is from HP.
HP held the No. 1 revenue share position in Linux, UNIX(R) and Windows(R) servers, demonstrating its across-the-board server market strength.

In addition to continuing its longstanding lead in the worldwide x86 server market with the HP ProLiant line, HP retook the No. 1 position in x86 server revenue in the United States, with 32 percent market share. HP also retook the No. 1 position in worldwide UNIX server revenue, driven by its HP9000 and Integrity server lines.

HP holds the following market leading positions:

-- HP is No. 1 in both revenue and unit shipments in the worldwide x86 server market with 31.9 percent market revenue share and 32.3 percent share of shipments.

-- In the fastest growing server segment, HP increased its ProLiant blade server shipments 168.3 percent year-over-year and recently announced it has shipped more than 50,000 blade servers to date.

-- HP's commanding lead in UNIX servers, with 33.8 percent share of market revenue, is driven by its No. 1 position in high-end and midrange UNIX server revenue worldwide. The company is the high-end leader for the fifth consecutive quarter. At the same time, outpacing all major competitors, HP's volume UNIX server revenue grew almost 20 percent over last year.

-- HP maintained its No. 1 position in EPIC servers, fueled by strong demand for HP Integrity servers running Linux, Windows and UNIX.

-- HP is No. 1 in worldwide revenue and shipments for Linux servers, leading its nearest competitor by almost 9 percentage points in Linux revenue market share.

From the industry-standard ProLiant and Integrity servers, to the high-end Superdome and NonStop systems, HP offers enterprise customers the broadest server portfolio in the industry, along with the industry's leading storage and management solutions.

More information about HP is available at www.hp.com.

Dec 02 - Futuremark Debuts PCMark04 for PC Performance Benchmarking. Futuremark(R) Corporation, the leading provider of computer performance analysis software and services, today unveiled PCMark(TM)04, the latest version in the popular PCMark benchmark series. PCMark04 is a state-of-the-art benchmarking tool designed to be easy to use and widely accessible.

PCMark04 builds on Futuremark's strong benchmark development experience and provides a sophisticated tool for measuring PC performance for home usage. PCMark04 supports the complete benchmark cycle -- allowing you to benchmark your PC, view the resulting benchmark details, compare your results to those of others, and finally analyze how to improve your PC performance. It produces highly reliable and detailed benchmarking results with a simple, intuitive user interface. An integrated Online ResultBrowser allows instant results comparison against more than 10 million benchmark results in Futuremark's ever increasing performance database.

"PCs continue to improve at a dizzying pace. As each PC component -- CPU, system memory, graphics card, hard disk, etc. -- increases in speed or capacity, it becomes increasingly difficult for the home user to evaluate benefits of these changes. Software applications that may or may not take advantage of the latest hardware add further to the confusion," said Tero Sarkkinen, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing for Futuremark. "The goal of PCMark04 is to solve this problem by providing an easy-to-use tool that outputs easy-to-understand and reliable performance figures."

Key User Benefits of PCMark04:

-- Easy to Use: Easy to use for both novice users, benchmarking professionals, industry vendors and press labs;

-- Complete Benchmarking Cycle: Benchmark a PC, view the resulting benchmark details, compare the results to those of others, and finally analyze how to improve that PC's performance;

-- System and Component Performance: Expose both overall system performance as well as isolate performance of individual PC components;

-- Integrated Online Result Browser: Instantly compare results to the world's largest database of performance data with global validation.

Pricing and Availability

PCMark04 is available in two versions: PCMark04 Pro for private use and PCMark04 Business for commercial and business use. The software are available from http://www.futuremark.com/products/pcmark04/ for $19.95 for private use and $199.95 for business use.

Dec 02 - Consumers Are Replacing Their Home Phones with Cell Phones. An increasing number of U.S. households are replacing their home telephone lines with cellular phones, according to the recently released 2003 edition of Technology User Profile.

"Consumers are pulling the plug," said Dan Ness, principal analyst with MetaFacts. "Nationwide, nearly one in thirty (3.5%) households with Home PCs have no phone line, up from 2.4% only one year ago and 0.3% the year before that. Although this number may seem small, it's part of a growing trend that we spotted the year before. At the same time, the 2-line household is in decline, decreasing to less than one fourth (23.2%) from 26.5% the year before."

MetaFacts further reported that in PC-using homes with only one person, the percent with no phone line has increased to 5.0%, up markedly from 2.3% in 2002.

Additional related results were released on MetaFacts' Web site, www.metafacts.com.

Dec 02 - INHD Launches Free High Definition Television Buyers Guide. INHD has unveiled an interactive High Definition Television (HDTV) Buyers Guide as a free service to consumers interested in buying a HD television set it was announced today by Sergei Kuharsky, Senior Vice President of Marketing for iN DEMAND Networks.

This site walks users through the important features they will need to consider in buying a HD set and then provides them with a list of sets that meet the specific criteria they select. The guide is accessible from the INHD web site at www.inhd.com, or by visiting www.inhd.com/buyersguide. "This site demystifies all the jargon associated with buying a HDTV set and empowers consumers to make simple, informed choices," said Kuharsky.

After reaching the site, consumers click through seven steps which help them to understand such key attributes as aspect ratio, line resolution, and the relative pros and cons of sets that project images via CRTs, LCD or plasma screen technology. INHD established the criteria based upon the key determinants that differentiate the various types of HD sets currently on the market, including: 1) Screen Ratio, 2) Picture Resolution, 3) HD-Ready TV/Built-in Tuner, 4) Screen Size, 5) HDTV Type (ex. Projection/LCD/Plasma), 6) HD Sound Source; and 7) Price Range.

Each of the specific criteria is explained clearly so that the user understands all of their options. At the end of each step, the user inputs their preference. The tool then selects from a database of 75 currently available HDTV sets to output a list of five sets that best match each user's selections.

"We know consumers are conflicted," said Kuharsky. "They are excited about getting HD sets but get overwhelmed and confused when they try to sort through the jungle of choices that exist at retail. We just wanted to show them that the selection process can be easy and assure them that once they get the set home, hook up the cable and turn on INHD, it will be well worth their effort."

Further information about INHD can be found on the Internet at www.inhd.com.

Dec 02 - GameSpot Editors Unveil Top Holiday Game Choices. GameSpot, the most highly trafficked games content Web site, today announced its top game recommendations for the holiday shopping season. The suggestions include top picks based on age group and gaming personality type, from "kid brother/sister" to "the extreme sports fanatic" or "the braniac," and include plenty of games rated "E" for Everyone by the ESRB (Electronic Software Rating Board).

"This has been an outstanding year for new games introductions, leaving gift buyers with an overwhelming selection," said Greg Kasavin, executive editor at GameSpot.com. "With recommendations from our editors, who have thoroughly tested and reviewed each game, shoppers can be sure to impress their favorite gamers with just the right choice."

This year's top recommendations by age and personality type include:

Games for Your Kid Brother / Kid Sister

1. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, Rated E (Platform: GC)
2. Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, Rated E (Platform: GBA)
3. Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3, Rated E
(Platform: GBA)

Games for Your Folks

1. Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight, Rated E
(Platform:PC)
2. Project Gotham Racing 2, Rated E (Platform: Xbox)
3. Railroad Tycoon 3, Rated E (Platform: PC)

Games for You and a Friend

1. Rise of Nations, Rated T (Platform: PC)
2. Virtua Fighter 4: Evolution, Rated T (Platform: PS2)
3. Top Spin, Rated E (Platform: Xbox)

Games for the Extreme Sports Fanatic

1. SSX 3, Rated E (Platforms: Xbox, GC, PS2)
2. Tony Hawk's Underground, Rated T (Platforms: Xbox, GC, PS2)
3. WWE SmackDown! Here Comes the Pain, Rated T (Platform: PS2)

Games for the Speed Racer

1. Project Gotham Racing 2, Rated E (Platform: Xbox)
2. MotoGP 2, Rated E (Platforms: PC, Xbox)
3. F1 Challenge '99-'02, Rated E ( Platform: PC)

Games for the Sunday Sports Fan

1. ESPN NFL Football, Rated E (Platforms: Xbox, PS2)
2. Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2004, Rated E
(Platforms: PC, Xbox, GC, PS2)
3. Top Spin, Rated E (Platform: Xbox)

Games for the Dungeon Master

1. Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, Rated T (Platform: PC)
2. Fire Emblem, Rated E (Platform: GBA)
3. Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, Rated T
(Platforms: PC, Xbox, GC, PS2)

Games for the Brainiac

1. Rise of Nations, Rated T (Platform: PC)
2. Combat Mission: Barbarossa to Berlin, Rated T (Platform: PC)
3. Advance Wars 2: Black Hole Rising, Rated E (Platform: GBA)

Games for the Chronic Procrastinator

1. Call of Duty, Rated T (Platform: PC)
2. Final Fantasy XI, Rated T (Platform: PC)
3. Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge, Rated T (Platform: Xbox)

Games for the Sci-Fi Fiend

1. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Rated T
(Platforms: PC, Xbox)
2. Homeworld 2, Rated T (Platform: PC)
3. Zone of the Enders: The Second Runner, Rated M (Platform: PS2)

The Goremonger

1. Grand Theft Auto Double Pack, Rated M (Platforms: Xbox, PS2)
2. Manhunt, Rated M (Platform: PS2)
3. Silent Hill 3, Rated M (Platform: PC, PS2)

The Military Buff

1. Call of Duty, Rated T (Platform: PC)
2. SOCOM II: U.S. Navy SEALs, Rated M (Platform: PS2)
3. Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six 3, Rated M (Platform: Xbox)

For more information on any of the games listed above, check out GameSpot's annual Holiday Gift Guide (www.gamespot.com/features/giftguide2003/), which includes a Top 10 list of the day's most popular games, editorial reviews, and a "Gift Finder" to help anyone shop like a pro for video games this holiday season.

 

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