May 15 - WinBook Unveils DVD and CD-RW in a Thin-Light
Aluminum Notebook. WinBook Corporation continues its aluminum
revolution with the announcement today of the world's first notebook
computers featuring combined 8X DVD-ROM/CD-RW drives in a one-inch
thick aluminum alloy case.
The new WinBook X1 Combo models incorporate utility and flexibility
in a design that is uncompromisingly progressive. Behind it lies WinBook's
vision for mobility -- a vision combining technology with a passion
for great industrial design.
"The WinBook X1 Combo models are our signature design and among
the most appealing portable computing products ever offered. They
combine WinBook's industry-leading aluminum alloy technology with
the flexibility of being able to burn CDs and enjoy DVD movies on
a superb 13.3-inch 1,024 x 768 active-matrix screen with up to 64
MB of video SDRAM. Compared with the PowerBook G4, the WinBook X1
Combo weighs less, offers more video SDRAM and includes CD-RW, which
the G4 lacks," said Richard Mershad, WinBook president.
"WinBook designed the X1 Combo models with outstanding styling
features and a captivating, exquisite appearance," said Mershad.
"The opalescent pewter metallic on aluminum alloy finish is another
first for WinBook, and a part of the WinBook X1's understated allure.
"The WinBook X1 Combo models, the first notebook computers ever
with fighter jet grade aluminum alloy, are truly at the top of their
class when it comes to case rigidity," said Mershad. "In
fact, the aluminum alloy used on the X1 Combo is both lighter and
more rigid than titanium or magnesium, and 3 1/2 times more rigid
than a plastic notebook case. The result is a lightweight notebook
which meets the highest standards of quality and durability,"
"Aluminum alloy not only achieves greater rigidity and weight
savings, it also offers superior recyclability," said Mershad.
"With end-of-life computer adaptation and disposal growing in
importance among our corporate and governmental customers, the WinBook
X1's superior recyclability is certain to be recognized as an additional
unique advantage of this revolutionary product."
As WinBook's signature design, the WinBook X1 Combo's meticulous
-- A microphone placed just to the left of the touchpad to better
avoid electronic noise from the LCD. Most notebooks locate the
mic near the LCD
-- Not one, but two latches hold the lid securely closed.
-- The bottom of the case, even against bare legs (for those
working from home or outdoors), does not get more than warm
even after a full day of use -- an impressive benefit of the
superior heat dissipation characteristics of the WinBook X1's
aluminum alloy case.
-- An exceptional 13.3-inch XGA TFT screen with pure whites,
excellent contrast, crisp shadow detail, and superb off-center
viewing enhances DVD-movie enjoyment.
-- The convenience of USB ports both in the back and on the left
side towards the rear.
-- Unexpected typing comfort in a thin-light notebook. Full-sized
19mm keys, with a pleasant 2.7mm travel and perfect tactile
feedback produce an exceptionally comfortable typing
More information can be found at www.winbook.com.
May 15 - RumbleFX 3D Sound
Amplifier Enhances Music for Gamers. Evergreen Technologies, Inc.,
a leader in PC performance upgrades since 1989, today launched its
new RumbleFX(TM) 3D Sound Amplifier, the second product in its new
RumbleFX line of consumer electronics.
The RumbleFX 3D Sound Amplifier acts as a portable stereo receiver
and enhances sound or music listening enjoyment for gamers, PC or
Mac users, those using portable music players, and those using Evergreen's
RumbleFX force feedback headphones. Any device with audio output and
a jack to plug into can connect to the RumbleFX 3D Sound Amplifier
to experience the 3D holographic surround sound, enhanced sub-woofer
effect and extended frequency signal reproduction. Consumers get the
benefits of a top-of-the-line stereo receiver in a lightweight, portable
and affordable ($79.99 list) unit.
The RumbleFX 3D Sound Amplifier amplifies the signal from any audio
device (video game console, PC/Mac, portable MP3 or CD player, TV,
VCR, DVD player, FM radio, etc.), transmitting it to stereo speakers
or headphones for sound output. This includes Evergreen's new RumbleFX
force feedback headphones, recently introduced to immerse gamers in
positional audio vibrations so they not only hear, but also feel the
action and its location.
For audio systems with line out connections only, and other devices
that do not provide their own signal amplification (such as console
video games), consumers can now use the new RumbleFX 3D Sound Amplifier
to more conveniently experience the full effect of their RumbleFX
headphones. Otherwise, console games require the use of a full sized
stereo receiver for signal amplification and connection to the RumbleFX
"Statistics indicate that over 60% of PC owners listen to music
on their PC, but typically, sound reproduction on these systems is
extremely poor," said Mike Magee, president and CEO of Evergreen
Technologies. "From my experience, connecting the RumbleFX 3D
Sound Amplifier can transform this lifeless sound experience to enhanced
3D surround sound system quality. The same goes for students in a
dorm room, or others who listen to music from portable music players.
For gamers, we believe the 3D surround sound and sub-woofer effect
from the RumbleFX 3D Sound Amplifier will further enhance their game
immersion and virtual reality experience."
The RumbleFX 3D Sound Amplifier features SRS(TM) WOW(TM) technology,
which turns any mono, stereo or surround sound audio device into 3D
holographic surround sound using only two speakers. The 3D Sound Amplifier
also features FOCUS(TM) technology that compensates for less than
optimal speaker location by correcting frequency characteristics of
the input signal. SRS(TM) TruBass(TM) optimizes low frequency signals
for enhanced bass effect from any headphone or speaker.
For a current list of retailers carrying the RumbleFX 3D Sound Amplifier,
customers may visit the www.RumbleFX.com
May 15 - Infineon Demonstrates
Technique To Shrink Wiring of Integrated Circuits. Infineon Technologies
(FSE:IFX)(NYSE:IFX) today announced that its Munich Corporate Research
Labs have demonstrated that present techniques for integrated circuit
wiring can be used for future chip generations, extending to the 2011-2014
Infineon researchers have successfully produced metal lines, at a
width of 40 to 50nm, embedded in the grooves of a dielectric film
used for electrical isolation. Such narrow metal lines are used for
the shortest electrical connections between the transistors in the
In an electrical assessment of these wires, sufficiently low electrical
resistance was verified for all relevant wire lengths. This effectively
demonstrates that neither the fabrication of such ultra-thin lines
nor the electrical resistance will be technical obstacles for the
ongoing process of chip shrinking.
Lithography tools needed for the fabrication of future chip generations
in the 2011-2014 timeframe do not yet exist. Infineon overcame this
issue by using a spacer technique to narrow the mask openings for
pattern transfer into the dielectric film. This allows the production
of structures with lateral dimensions far below the feature sizes
that can be realized with today's most advanced lithography manufacturing
This achievement also demonstrates the extendibility of the damascene
technique, the state-of-the-art approach in the semiconductor industry
to realize advanced chip metallization. In this technique, grooves
and holes are filled by depositing metal over the wafer followed by
a complete removal of all metal covering the filled structures by
chemical mechanical polishing. The technique is named after the way
ornaments were once applied in damascene swords.
The silicon wafers used for the demonstration were processed with
today's standard semiconductor manufacturing equipment and processes
developed for 250nm feature sizes in the cleanroom of International
Sematech, Austin, TX, a consortium of the world's leading semiconductor
The results from Infineon's Corporate Research demonstrate that today's
wiring technology can be used through the end of the International
Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS), which extends to 2014.
The ITRS describes the technological and material demands of future
Information about Infineon is available at www.infineon.com.
May 15 - OmniSky Expands Wireless
Services to HP Jornada Pocket PC Users. OmniSky Corporation (Nasdaq:OMNY),
an innovative provider of award-winning wireless applications and
services, today announced that it is expanding the availability of
the OmniSky service to include the HP Jornada 520 Series Pocket PC.
OmniSky also announced that its service is now available to HP Jornada
520 and 540 Series Pocket PC users through CompUSA and Office Depot
When HP Jornada Pocket PC customers purchase the Novatel Minstrel
540 wireless modem, which is necessary to turn the HP Jornada Pocket
PC into a wireless handheld, they automatically receive the OmniSky
installation CD and step-by-step instructions for subscribing to the
OmniSky wireless service.
Adding support for the affordable HP Jornada 520 Series Pocket PCs,
and offering the service through popular nationwide retail stores
as well as the hpshopping.com website, makes the OmniSky service accessible
to even more mobile professionals. "We're delighted that HP has
added our service to benefit its Pocket PC customers," said Kristine
Stebbins, OmniSky's vice president of marketing. "The OmniSky
wireless service on the HP Jornada Pocket PC provides a superior mobility
solution to even more Pocket PC users."
"Our HP Jornada Pocket PC handhelds have proven very popular
with mobile professionals," said Pendy Pendyala, general manager,
HP Wireless and Internet Services. "Wireless access to e-mail,
the Internet and corporate data are some of the services requested
most by our users, and we are excited that the OmniSky service extends
OmniSky is focused on providing a superior user experience for every
aspect of its wireless e-mail and Internet service. The service is
built on OmniSky's proprietary technology and the integration of industry-leading
technologies from other providers. OmniSky takes advantage of the
Pocket PC platform, enabling mobile professionals to access up to
six e-mail accounts, including corporate e-mail from behind the firewall
(Microsoft Outlook and Lotus Notes).
The combination of the Pocket PC and OmniSky service also provides
mobile users with a rich, color browsing experience for navigating
the Internet and securely conducting e-commerce transactions. OmniSky
also makes it easy for subscribers to find information on the web
and transfer it directly into Microsoft Outlook, Contacts or Notes
applications using Os OneTap.
According to IDC, sales of Pocket PC handhelds are expected to reach
8.4 million per year by 2004. "The Pocket PC platform, with the
full-color Microsoft Internet Explorer browser and integrated Outlook
applications, is gaining tremendous momentum among mobile professionals,"
said David Daniels, market development manager of the Mobile Devices
Division at Microsoft Corp. "The combination of the Pocket PC
and the OmniSky service enables mobile professionals to securely access
corporate data, line-of-business applications, and Internet functions
that improve productivity."
Availability and Pricing
To connect to the OmniSky wireless e-mail and Internet service, HP
Jornada 520 and 540 Series Pocket PC customers must purchase a Novatel
Minstrel 540 wireless modem, which is available on the www.hpshopping.com
website and from retail stores, including CompUSA and Office Depot.
The modem comes with the software and information necessary to sign
up for the OmniSky service. HP Jornada 520 Series and 540 Series Pocket
PC customers who already have a Novatel Minstrel 540 wireless modem
can sign up for the OmniSky service on the OmniSky website at www.omnisky.com.
OmniSky offers subscribers multiple plans for the wireless service.
A month-to-month plan is available for a flat fee of $39.95 per month.
Subscribers may also pre-pay $359.95 for a year of the OmniSky service,
which is equivalent to $29.95 per month. Early-termination fees apply.
Both plans include unlimited usage with no roaming charges.
May 15 - U.S. Navy and JPMorgan Launch Navy
Cash Financial System. For U.S. Navy Sailors and Marines, managing
personal finances will now be smooth sailing thanks to Navy Cash(TM),
a new financial system introduced by the Naval Supply Systems Command
(NAVSUP) and developed by The Chase Manhattan Bank, a subsidiary of
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., (NYSE:JPM) as primary agent for the U.S.
Department of the Treasury. The new system enables Sailors and Marines
to buy virtually anything they need on or off ship without carrying
cash and to access checking and savings accounts at ATMs around the
The Navy Cash card uses a computer chip to store value for purchases
at sea (e-purse) and a magnetic strip for debit purchases and ATM
account access. Sailors and Marines can use the e-purse feature to
buy items at point-of-sale terminals in the on-board store, post office,
morale-welfare and recreation wardrooms and other retail locations,
including vending and game machines - without the need to carry cash.
The debit feature can be used to withdraw cash at more than 529,000
ATMs or to make purchases wherever MasterCard(R) is accepted. The
Navy Cash system is currently being piloted with 170 crewmembers of
the USS RENTZ (FFG-46).
Navy Cash also provides electronic access to personal checking and
savings accounts ashore, regardless of where banks or credit unions
are located. Sailors and Marines can transfer funds to and from their
Navy Cash accounts, e-purse and personal bank accounts as needed and
can have pay deposited directly into these accounts. Navy Cash provides
these financial services to sailors, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
"Navy Cash is an innovative system that demonstrates JPMorgan's
ability to take a unique set of financial needs and challenges and
develop a payment solution that works around the world," said
Frank Lourenso, executive vice president in charge of JPMorgan's middle
market/commercial banking group. "We put together a team of experts
in payment technology and manufacturing to develop a highly-customized
system. It represents a leap in the application of smart card technology."
"JPMorgan's payment processing platform is what makes the Navy
Cash system work in the dual environments of on-ship and real-world,"
said Patricia Preston, JPMorgan Treasury Services. "JP Morgan
is always working toward offering payment solutions that satisfy our
clients' needs for safety, security and convenience."
Powering the technology behind Navy Cash is a team of leading global
technology providers. The card is a MasterCard branded card with design
and development of the ePurse, microprocessor selection, card manufacturing,
and chip embedding by SCI. The card is backed by the Microsoft Windows
Card Operating System with personalization provided by UbiQ. The smart
card is powered by Atmel's Flash memory based secure microcontroller.
The system is supported by Compaq servers, Oracle Corporation's 8i
database, eBusiness applications suite, and Internet developer Suite,
and Titan line installation and wiring is providing shipboard integration,
installation, and training services. JPMorgan's Treasury Services
unit provides the support for payment processing, ongoing maintenance,
customer service support, financial reconciliation and reporting.
May 14 - AMD Introduces New
Mobile Athlon 4 and Duron Processors. AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced
two new mobile processors primed with industry-leading features, the
mobile AMD Athlon(TM) 4 targeted for the performance space, and the
new mobile AMD Duron(TM) processor for value-conscious buyers. Both
processors deliver performance that is the highest in the mobile PC
industry for their respective market segments.
The mobile AMD Athlon 4 processor and the new mobile AMD Duron processor
each feature the innovative AMD PowerNow!(TM) technology, which provides
up to 30 percent more battery life without compromising performance.
"AMD is establishing itself in the mobile market with compelling
offerings for both performance and value mobile computing," said
Dirk Meyer, group vice president, Computation Products Group, AMD.
"Our new mobile AMD Athlon 4 and new mobile AMD Duron processors
have been designed with features specific to the mobile market, and
like all of our processors, are designed to support existing Socket
A platform architecture. Socket A is synonymous with stability and
reliability, and provides a cost-effective migration to the latest
technology for both commercial and consumer users."
"Our AMD PowerNow! technology for notebooks blasts past the
competition's battery power management implementation by using a sophisticated
technology to save power and increase performance," said Pat
Moorhead, vice president of desktop and mobile marketing for AMD's
Computation Products Group. "AMD PowerNow! technology not only
enables notebooks to run cooler and quieter, but also it offers extended
battery life and up to 50 percent more performance than competitive
systems running on batteries. And our newest products, the mobile
AMD Athlon 4 and new mobile AMD Duron processors, offer smoother,
richer and more lifelike images, more precise digital audio and an
enriched Web experience, thanks to our new 3DNow!(TM) Professional
"Higher-performance notebooks can return both a longer useful
life and greater productivity to their users, and can deliver real
value to users who would otherwise require a desktop," said Martin
Reynolds, research fellow at Gartner Dataquest. "Thermal management
and battery life are also critical attributes that, to hit the mainstream
market, must not be compromised."
About the Mobile AMD Athlon(TM) 4 Processor
The mobile AMD Athlon 4 processor, at speeds of 1GHz, 950MHz, 900MHz
and 850MHz, features a new lower power design for notebook computing,
384 KB of on-chip, full-speed cache with hardware data pre-fetch (256KB
of on-chip level (L2) cache and 128 Kbytes of on-chip level (L1) cache),
a superscalar floating-point unit, support for AMD's 3DNow! Professional
instructions for enhanced multimedia capabilities, and AMD PowerNow!
technology for extended battery life.
The mobile AMD Athlon 4 processor is compatible with AMD's Socket
A infrastructure, and supports the advanced 200MHz AMD Athlon front-side
bus, providing the highest bandwidth available for notebook PCs.
Mobile AMD Athlon 4 processors are manufactured using AMD's 0.18-micron
copper process technology in Fab 30 in Dresden, Germany.
About the Mobile AMD Duron(TM) Processor
The new mobile AMD Duron processor, at speeds of 850MHz and 800MHz,
is designed to provide an optimized solution for value-conscious business
and home users. Employing an innovative design, the new mobile AMD
Duron processor features AMD PowerNow! technology, a sophisticated
cache architecture with 192KB of total on-chip cache and data pre-fetch,
a high-speed 200MHz front-side bus, and a superscalar floating point
unit with support for AMD's 3DNow! Professional technology.
The new mobile AMD Duron processor offers value-conscious buyers
access to technology and performance that stands out among other processors
in its class. It reflects AMD's 30 years of design and manufacturing
expertise and sales of more than 150 million PC processors.
The new mobile AMD Duron processors are manufactured on AMD's 0.18
micron copper process technology in Fab 30, Dresden, Germany.
About AMD PowerNow!(TM) Technology
AMD PowerNow! technology can significantly extend the battery life
of notebook PCs by up to 30 percent while providing performance on
demand and enabling a cooler and quieter-running notebook computing
experience. AMD PowerNow! technology is a combination of software
and hardware support that allows the processor to run at different
frequencies and voltages based on user preference or application demand.
A simple Windows(R) control panel interface allows the user to select
between three modes of system operation:
-- AMD PowerNow! technology provides a unique "automatic"
that allows the system to determine the appropriate level of
power and performance based on application demand, delivering
the best of both worlds -- extended battery life with no
compromise in performance.
-- In the high-performance mode the CPU always runs at maximum
-- In battery-saver mode the CPU always runs in its lowest power
state, enabling the longest system battery life.
The 1GHz, 950MHz, 900MHz and 850MHz mobile AMD Athlon 4 processors
are priced at $425, $350, $270 and $240, respectively, and the 850MHz
and 800MHz new mobile AMD Duron processors are priced at $197 and
$170, respectively, each in 1,000-unit quantities.
More information can be found at www.amd.com.
May 14 - Belkin Introduces New Line
Of Gaming Devices. Belkin Components, the leading manufacturer
of computer peripherals and accessories, today introduced Nostromo,
a highly innovative line of precision gaming tools for PC- and Console-oriented
gamers. The Nostromo line features six new devices (five PC and one
for PlayStation 2 consoles) and features the Nostromo Array Programming
Software(NAPS) with all PC-oriented devices. The Nostromo Gaming Line
will be introduced at the upcoming Electronic Entertainment Expo in
Los Angeles, CA (May 17-19, 2001) and will begin shipping in North
America on July 1, 2001.
Two of the hottest devices in the Nostromo line are gamepads. The
N40 (F8GBPC002 - STREET $19.99) and the N45 (F8GBPC001 - STREET $24.99)
GamePads offer users a multitude of functions. The N40 GamePad features
10 programmable action buttons, Universal Serial Bus (USB) connectivity,
Enter and Escape buttons, which make navigating Windows simple and
easy, an extremely sensitive and smooth Directional Pad, and up to
55 programmable functions when using NAPS.
For users needing even more performance in a gamepad, the N45 model
offers all the functions of the N40 GamePad and includes the following
added features: up to 70 programmable functions when using NAPS, 13
action buttons, dual analog sticks, and a mouse mode button, which
allows you to navigate windows as if you were using a mouse.
Todays games require a lot of game controller and todays
gamers want gaming tools that can equal up to that requirement,
said Tim North, product manager for the Nostromo line at Belkin. That
is why weve incorporated the Nostromo Array Programming Software
into all of the PC-oriented devices. This software program enhances
the functionality of the Nostromo devices by allowing users to create
profiles, re-map buttons, program 3 shift states, and program several
devices in order to use them as one virtual controller. Now thats
For an unparalleled gaming experience, the Nostromo line also features
the N50 SpeedPad (F8GDPC001 - STREET $29.99), which offers users 10
programmable buttons, a programmable 8-way Directional Pad, a throttle
wheel, and up to 57 programmable functions when using NAPS. The N50
SpeedPad (pictured below) is a keyboard enhancement device for games
traditionally using a keyboard.
It offers users a familiar feel to that of a keyboard and can also
be combined with the N30 GameMouse (F8GDPC001 - STREET $39.99) for
the ultimate gaming setup The N30 GameMouse offers 3 programmable
buttons, a scroll wheel, USB connectivity, and is enabled with TouchSense
technology from Immersion. Immersion's TouchSense technology allows
computer users to feel objects and actions that correspond to events,
graphics, or icons on a computer screen.
For users looking to fly the friendly skies of the gaming
world, the Nostromo line offers users the N60 Pilot Stick (F8GMPC001
- STREET $39.99). This well-rounded controller features a precision
twist rudder, a realistic rotary throttle, an 8-way point-of-view
(POV)hat switch, 14 programmable buttons with secondary hat switch,
USB connectivity,and the ability to program up to 57 functions with
The last piece of the puzzle is the Nostromo P45 GamePad (F8GBPS003
- STREET$29.99), which is made specifically for the Sony PlayStation
2. Similar in looks to the N45 GamePad for PCs, this device features
vibration feedback, 14 fully analog action buttons, a macro button,
and a mode button with analog, digital, and steering modes.
For more information, visit the companys website at www.belkin.com.
May 14 - Department of Defense to Use Smart
Card IDs. Schlumberger Test & Transactions, a business segment
of Schlumberger Limited (NYSE:SLB), today announced that the Department
of Defense (DoD) will use its Java(TM)-based Cyberflex Access(TM)
smart cards in the Defense Manpower Data Center's (DMDC) Common Access
Card (CAC) program. The $4.5 million contract was awarded to Electronic
Data Systems (EDS) Corporation and calls for the delivery of 600,000
smart cards, which will be rolled out to 900 sites in 2001.
The DoD will utilize the highly secure, multiple application cards
for physical identification, building access and network access in
a multi-tiered program that will be rolled out throughout the DoD
over the next few years. The cards, which incorporate PKI (public
key infrastructure) and digital signature technology, serve as highly
portable, secure tokens for enhancing the security of network access
and ensuring secure electronic communications. The secure, multi-application,
Java programmable smart cards can be configured to provide additional
complex services beyond the PKI application by loading applets that
meet the specific needs of card usage.
"The DoD has taken a leadership role in leveraging the benefits
of smart cards, which enable secure, standards-based applications
and interoperability across a wide range of functions," said
Mary Dixon, director, Access Card Office, DoD. "Since initial
pilots in 1992, smart cards have proven to be a valuable, cost effective
tool, and enhance our mission and quality of life. Our Real-time Automated
Personnel Identification System has already been tested and is operational
in several locations. Additionally, the DoD will issue smart cards
in 900 DoD locations worldwide by the end of 2002."
EDS (NYSE:EDS), a recognized global leader in providing e-business
and information technology services, has been awarded the lead contract
and selected Schlumberger to provide its smart card expertise. "This
contract is a further step in transforming the government into e-government,"
said Al Edmonds, President of EDS Federal. "This is the first
significant use of smart card technology at the federal level. Smart
cards enhance the security of government facilities and systems on
a worldwide basis and support many important applications, such as
electronic signature, training certification and e-commerce."
In addition to EDS and Schlumberger, ActivCard (Nasdaq:ACTI / Easdaq:
ACTI) is providing the applets and additional application software
used with the EDS-developed card issuing stations in the DoD program.
More information about the companies is available at www.slb.com
May 13 - Sunday Shopping
Watch. Mother's Day.
Special Discounts and Financing. In addition to sales on specific
items, the following store-wide sales are advertised this week.
Best Buy is giving away 1 year of free MSN with any computer purchase.
They are also offering $100 rebates on all Pentium processor desktop
complete packages, $100 rebates on all AMD processor notebooks, and
12 month no interest financing on all notebooks and build-to-order
City is offering 12 month
no interest financing on all build-to-order notebooks and desktop
Office Depot no special store-wide
CompUSA no ad this Sunday.
Staples no ad this Sunday.
HHGregg no special store-wide computer
Internet Rebates. All
stores continue to offer 3 year, $400 Internet Rebates. Please see
our article, What You Need to Know
About Internet Rebates and Free PCs, for an in depth discussion
of Internet Rebates.
Definitions. A complete system/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 Vendor's store. 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).
* Prices discussed in this article. Advertisers
typically deduct the $400 Internet rebate from an items true price.
We report all prices without subtracting the $400 Internet rebate,
however all other rebates and discounts are usually subtracted.
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.
Best Deals this Sunday
Price* (see above)
Best Celeron Deal
HP 800 MHz complete system
Best Pentium III System
HP 866 MHz complete system
Best Buy, Circuit City
Best Pentium 4 System
Compaq 1.4 GHz build-to-order complete system
Best Duron System
Sony VAIO 800 MHz complete system
Best High End Athlon System
HP 1.2 GHz complete system
1. Best Low Cost Notebook
Compaq 766 MHz Celeron
2. Best Low Cost Notebook
Sony VAIO 800 MHz Duron with DVD
Best High End Notebook
Compaq 1 GHz Athlon with DVD
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 the highlights of local
(Dayton, Ohio) computer chain store advertisements. While we can not
guarantee your local chain store has the same items, this article
should help you to make informed buying decisions.
May 12 - Cray Inc. Receives
$25 Million NEC Investment. Global supercomputer leader Cray Inc.
(Nasdaq:CRAY) today reported that its previously announced distribution
agreement with NEC Corporation (Nasdaq:NIPNY) (FTSE:6701q.l) has been
In conjunction with the closing, Cray received a $25 million cash
investment, in exchange for 3.125 million non-voting, preferred shares
of Cray stock, convertible into Cray common stock at a fixed conversion
price of $8.00 per share.
Under the agreement, Cray will become the exclusive distributor of
NEC for its current and future vector supercomputers in North America
and a non-exclusive distributor in the rest of the world, subject
to applicable law. Cray will market NEC's vector supercomputers alongside
the company's current Cray SV1(TM) series and future Cray SV2(TM)
series vector systems. Cray will absorb the operations of NEC's North
American marketing arm, HNSX Supercomputers Inc., Littleton, Mass.
The closing was subject to the revocation of a U.S. antidumping order
affecting the importation of certain vector supercomputers from Japan.
The U.S. Department of Commerce revoked the order effective May 3,
2001, the date when notice of the revocation was published in the
"This agreement is aimed at maximizing global sales of the Cray
and NEC vector products, and at addressing the needs of the underserved
U.S. vector market," said Cray Inc. chairman and CEO Jim Rottsolk.
"Together with our previously announced plans for leading non-vector
products -- the Cray SuperCluster(R) series and the Cray MTA-2(TM)
multithreaded system -- this agreement leverages our existing sales
and support infrastructure to position the company for significant
For more information about the two companies, visit www.cray.com
May 12 - Email is No.1 Bottleneck
for IT Support. Support.com, Inc. (Nasdaq:SPRT), the leader of
support infrastructure software, today announced its findings from
a recent study in which 34% of IT professionals surveyed in the US
blamed email software as the biggest cause of IT support problems,
more than any other issue. This is mirrored both in Europe (34%) and
in Asia-Pacific (36%), where email topped the list of software that
causes the most IT support problems.
Although heralded as one of the most valuable business
tools, the research suggests that email may be the largest cause of
stress in the workplace. Even basic, easy-to-fix malfunctions can
be serious obstacles to a company's productivity, often halting communications
for hours at a time.
In addition to this, an average of 23% of respondents, across all
three regions, voted for password resets as causing the most IT support
issues, 20% cited problems with enterprise and office applications
while 10% are affected most by networking software errors.
These IT queries usually result in a lengthy telephone call to an
IT helpdesk or a visit to the PC by the IT support team before a solution
"This study reflects a technological paradox, as business becomes
increasingly reliant on advanced software and technology, it's often
the simplest tools, notably email, that cause the most significant
support issues," said Bruce Mowery, vice president of marketing
at Support.com. "This is further compounded by the fact that
many companies still have highly paid, senior level IT consultants
responding to the most basic and time-consuming queries."
The Support.com survey polled 166 IT managers across the US, Europe
and the Asia Pacific region in February 2001. Visit the Company's
Web site at www.support.com.
May 12 - EBIZ Enterprises Announces
New Pentium 4 Linux Workstation. EBIZ Enterprises Incorporated
(OTCBB:EBIZ), a manufacturer of specialized servers and the leading
vendor-neutral provider of Open Source products and solutions, today
announced the availability of the Terian TS454 Pentium 4 Server/Workstation
The Terian TS454 combines the newest Intel Pentium 4 processor with
up to 2 Gigabytes of Rambus memory to provide unprecedented system
efficiency, performance and responsiveness in a Linux workstation.
"Linux power users are going to love this system," said
Don Young, EBIZ director of Engineering. "The Terian TS454 combines
a choice of the latest Intel Pentium 4 processors with the newest
Rambus technology and EIDE or SCSI disk storage to deliver everything
Linux users are looking for in a high-performance workstation."
Features of the Terian TS454 include a single Intel Pentium 4 processor
(1.3 to 1.7 GHz), 3.2GB/second Rambus memory, on-board Ultra ATA/100
Dual channel EIDE disk controller, optional 100Mb/second Ultra160
SCSI disk controller, single 300 watt ATX power supply, 52X CD-ROM
and pre-loaded Linux operating system, all packaged in a mid-tower
Who can use the Terian TS454? Anyone who needs the maximum Intel
Pentium 4 processing power available in a desk-side workstation. The
TS454 is also a cost-effective and powerful Linux-based file and print
server for use in corporate IT departments or small office environments.
"The Terian TS454 has power and performance similar to much
more expensive servers from Sun, SGI, Compaq and HP," said Nick
Futter, EBIZ director of Channel Sales. "Our Terian resellers
already compete very well against other top-tier system vendors. The
TS454 gives our resellers another product with leading-edge technology
and superior price/performance."
The Terian TS454 configured system price is $2,725. More information
caan be found at www.linuxmall.com/shop/03670.
May 11 - Rambus Guilty of Fraud;
Infineon awarded $3.5 million in damages. Infineon Technologies
(FSE:IFX) (NYSE:IFX) today announced that the jury in the Eastern
District of Virginia found Rambus liable for fraud and awarded
Infineon US$3.5 million (Euro 4 million) punitive damages.
Infineon filed counter claims in response to the lawsuit Rambus filed
against the company in August 2000. The counterclaims alleged that
Rambus subverted the open standards process rules governing the Memory
Standards Committee of the Joint Electronic Device Engineering Council
(JEDEC) by not disclosing relevant patents and patent applications.
"We attended the JEDEC sessions with the goal of promoting integration
and global interoperability of technology," stated Dr. Ulrich
Schumacher, President and CEO of Infineon Technologies AG. "The
jury's decision reinforces the importance of industry leaders working
together in high-tech standards consortia such as JEDEC to develop
next generation DRAM technology."
This verdict follows last Friday's decision where Judge Robert E.
Payne dismissed all of Rambus' patent infringement claims against
Infineon. The infringement claims were filed by Rambus over use of
its patents in SDRAMs and DDR SDRAMs manufactured and sold by Infineon
in the United States. The judge ruled that Infineon did not infringe
<See the May
5 related story >
Further information about Infineon
is available at www.infineon.com.
May 11 - Executive Software
Releases Hard Drive Crash Prevention Software. Software Shelf
International today announced the online store release of DiskAlert(TM)
software - the latest product from Executive Software, makers of Diskeeper(R)
- the number one selling defragmenter for the enterprise.
DiskAlert provides early warning of hard drive problems, delivering
alerts by e-mail, phone, pager and screen pop-up messages before hard
drive problems become a crisis. Results from a recent survey of over
900 IT professionals revealed that hard drive crashes are the number
one concern of system administrators. 61.7% of the respondents rated
hard disk failure as their most dangerous hard drive problem.
The study, conducted by Survey.com for Executive Software, also reported
that managers estimated their direct cost of a hard drive failure
at $15,000 per incident. Over 55.1% of companies had down time due
to hard drive failure this year. The average cost for each hour of
such downtime was $29,339.20 (based on data gathered relating to internal
and external groups effected, mean salaries of staff concerned, including
employer related taxes, and direct staff costs to overall revenue).
Also, the mean number of times per year respondents had downtime due
to disk failure was three.
"Eighty-four percent cited a need for better tools to prevent
crashes," noted Nancy Stewart, Senior Analyst at Survey.com.
In fact, 82% of participants specifically cited the need for a product
that warns them when hard drives are in danger of failing, enabling
them to proactively prevent the loss of data.
DiskAlert was designed using Executive Software's "Set It and
Forget It(R)" design philosophy. System administrators specify
when and how they want to be alerted: phone call, pager, e-mail and/or
pop-up message. DiskAlert works on IDE hard drives, SCSI hard drives,
software RAID arrays and most hardware RAID arrays on Windows NT(R)
and 2000 servers and workstations.
Executive Software is featuring DiskAlert alongside its flagship
product, Diskeeper, disk defragmentation software at Networld + Interop
2001 this week in Las Vegas in the Microsoft Partner Pavilion.
Executive Software and Software Shelf today began shipping Disk Alert
via Electronic Software Download (ESD) at www.diskalert.com
and www.softwareshelf.com. DiskAlert
is licensed per hard drive and is priced from $15.00 to $49.00 per
license depending on volume.
May 11 - THQ and Siemens Announce
New Wireless Gaming Engine. THQ Inc. (Nasdaq: THQI) today announced
a new division, THQ Wireless, dedicated to developing content exclusively
for the emerging mobile entertainment arena.
Additionally, THQ announced an expansion to its previously announced
publishing agreement with Siemens AG's Information and Communication
Mobile division. The two companies are currently developing an advanced
mobile gaming engine for use on next-generation Java phones. This
new engine will provide game developers with a universal game Application
Programming Interface (API) for Java-based mobile phone development.
This API will simplify the process of developing and maintaining game
software on evolving wireless devices.
"We anticipate the wireless gaming market growth to mirror that
of the console gaming market over the next few years with wireless
gaming revenues expected to reach 6 billion worldwide by 2005,"
stated Tim Walsh, senior vice president, International Publishing,
THQ. "THQ's proven ability to create compelling game content
on every platform, particularly handheld systems, positions us as
the natural leader in making the move into wireless game publishing."
"Our expanded partnership with THQ furthers our commitment to
leading the mobile entertainment world," stated Peter Zapf, president,
Mobile Phones, Siemens Information and Mobile Group. "The future
of wireless gaming is dependent on a common application platform for
game developers. Siemens' strong experience with Wireless Java-based
mobile phone development will ensure that, together with THQ, mobile
customers will see exciting games on Siemens' handsets."
"I look forward to helping establish THQ as a leader in wireless
entertainment," stated Doug Dyer, general manager, THQ Wireless.
"We plan to extend our leadership position in handheld gaming
to all wireless platforms by creating a broad range of original and
branded mobile games that can be licensed and distributed across the
THQ will be providing live demonstrations of their games on the prototype
of Siemens' Java-based mobile phone and on Motorola's Java phone,
the I50 SX at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) May 17 to 19
at the LA Convention Center. THQ's booth, #4001, is located in Petree
For more information abouy THQ, visit www.thq.com.
For further information about Siemens IC Mobile, visit www.siemens.com/mobile.
May 11 - AMREL Unveils ROCKY
Unlimited Ruggedized Notebook. AMREL once again exercises its
hold on ruggedized mobile computing technology through today's release
of the ROCKY Unlimited.
Said to be "the ultimate combination of raw high-performance
computing power and the latest in mobile computer environmental defense
technology," the Unlimited is fully upgradeable with the ability
to grow as technology and needs change.
The ROCKY Unlimited showcases an array of impressive new features,
including an Intel Pentium III 700Mhz processor, a Mini PCI slot,
as well as enhanced expansion capabilities. The new ROCKY Unlimited
has been engineered to support a coexisting LAN card/Fax Modem, CDPD,
and COM 3/4 card -- which is unique today to the industry.
As the next generation of AMREL's "ROCKY" ruggedized notebook
computer series, the Unlimited will carry on the legacy of unparalleled
durability and performance.
To fulfill its ruggedized and specialized heritage, the ROCKY Unlimited
incorporates many of the features that have played key roles in propelling
its predecessors' success, such as AMREL's "Open Architecture"
design, which allows for system upgrades, device integration, and
Unlike other ruggedized mobile computers that either compromise performance
or shed features to achieve a more commercialized appearance, the
ROCKY Unlimited is a full-featured system offering unlimited operation
The Unlimited lists among its standard features an 89-key backlit
keyboard, two type II or one type III PCMCIA slots, a Mini PCI slot,
a removable HDD, a built-in 16-bit sound card with stereo speakers,
and a component exchange port that operates any of the following interchangeable
components: CD-ROM, DVD, FDD, 120MB Super Disk Drive, or Secondary
Optional features include vehicle and office docking solutions, an
array of wireless communication options, and AMREL's Alpha-Star(TM)
Sunlight Readable Touchscreen. AMREL takes pride in this new addition
to the ROCKY line and is confident that the Unlimited will bolster
AMREL's grip on the ruggedized mobile computing market.
The company can be found on the Web at www.amrel.com
May 11 - Workstation Shipments
Declined Nine Percent in the First Quarter of 2001. Worldwide
workstation shipments totaled 361,298 units in the first quarter of
2001, which is a 9.2 percent decline over the same period last year,
according to preliminary results from Dataquest Inc., a unit of Gartner,
Inc. (NYSE: IT and ITB).
Workstation shipments in the first quarter of 2000 were 398,028. While
the poor overall performance is a continuation of the soft U.S. market,
Gartner Dataquest analysts believe that the slowdown in the U.S. economy
is only part of the reason the workstation market is doing poorly.
"Following unnaturally high growth rates from 1996 to 1999,
Intel architecture (IA) workstations sales may now be reaching saturation,
with some end users choosing high-end PCs over low-end workstations,"
said Pia Rieppo, principal analyst for workstation coverage for Gartner
According to Rieppo, PC versus workstation differentiation is an
ongoing struggle for system vendors. It is made difficult by technology
and price parity between high-end PCs and low-end workstations and
changes in Intel product positioning, especially with respect to dual
processor scalability and Web pricing tools that allow end users to
independently configure and compare systems.
Three of the top-tier vendors experienced negative growth rates in
the first quarter of 2001. The top two vendors made up nearly 50 percent
of the market. Dell remained in the top spot with a 30.4 percent market
share. Sun Microsystems followed with a market share of 19.0 percent.
Shahin Naftchi, senior analyst covering servers and workstations for
Gartner Dataquest's Computing Platform Worldwide group, notes that
this is the first quarter of negative year-over-year growth since
Gartner Dataquest began quarterly data collection in 1996. Naftchi
also speculates the culprit is a lack of differentiation. "The introduction
of Windows 2000 makes it even harder to differentiate high-end PCs
from uni-processor workstations," Naftchi said.
For more information, visit www.gartner.com.
May 10 - Samsung Debuts Mini
Yepp, 32MB Digital Audio Player. Already creating a buzz, Samsung's
tiny, wearable Yepp, is the world's smallest USB-based 32MB digital
player ever introduced. In an industry first, Samsung's new player
will come bundled with full-length audio tracks from top recording
artists allowing users to enjoy music instantly out of the box. Featured
artists include: Samantha Mumba, Monster Magnet, Blues Traveler, Cold,
and Black Eyed Peas. Best of all, Samsung's Mini Yepp will be priced
Samsung's Mini-Yepp is the smallest USB-based digital audio player
ever, weighing in at a mere 1.13 ounces without battery, featuring
32 MB of embedded memory and measuring a trim 1 1/8 x 2 1/4 x 7/8
inches. Despite it's diminutive dimensions, the power-packed Mini
Yepp features an LCD display that indicates both musical parameters
and the current date and time. Because superb sound is no small matter,
Samsung has installed a four-preset graphic equalizer and a powerful
bass boost system to enhance any musical style. The Mini-Yepp also
features an advanced USB port for high-speed transfer of your favorite
music. USB connections are three to five times faster than those using
the parallel port, and allow compatibility with both the Apple Macintosh
and PCs running Windows 95, 98, 2000 and ME.
Russ Bleeker, Samsung Electronic America's Digital Convergence Marketing
Manager, stated, "Early adopters jumped on the first Yepps. Younger
music fans adored the Hip Hop - winner of PC Magazine's Editor's Choice
Award in the May 8 issue - and Techno Yepps. Now the sleek egg shaped
design of the Mini Yepp will be the summer rage for high school and
middle school students as well as busy moms on the run."
The Mini Yepp joins Samsung's growing family of innovative digital
audio products. It follows the popular, lightweight and translucent
Hip-Hop Yepp and the Techno Yepp, which features an FM tuner, to market.
Samsung will continue its parade of hot digital audio products with
an array of exciting new models that will be introduced throughout
The player comes bundled with the popular Rio-Port Digital Music
software, offering users a powerful, yet easy to use, system to organize
their entire music collection and quickly transfer custom track combinations.
The software is also CDDB enabled, automatically retrieving artist
and track information for millions of CDs.
The Mini Yepp is available now at CompUSA at an MSRP of $99.99, and
will be offered nationwide through leading retailers including Sears
and Amazon.com in May.
Visit www.samsungusa.com for more
May 10 - Trend Micro Warns of
New Internet Worm, VBS_HOMEPAGE.A. Trend Micro (Nasdaq:TMIC)(TSE:4704)
has received reports from customers worldwide affected by a new computer
virus, called VBS_HOMEPAGE.A (also known as VBS.VBSWG2.D@mm). This
worm has been classified as high risk.
VBS_HOMEPAGE.A is an Internet worm that propagates only via Microsoft
Outlook. It sends itself as an email attachment to all addresses listed
in the infected user's address book. After this, the worm tries to
open certain pornographic Web sites using Internet Explorer. A sample
of the email this worm sends out is:
Message Body: Hi! You've got to see this page! It's really cool ;O)
This worm was generated using a virus-making tool known as Worm Generator.
This virus is currently spreading "in-the-wild." VBS_HOMEPAGE.A,
is detected by Trend Micro pattern file No. 887 or above. Protection
was made available to Trend Micro customers within 45 minutes of receiving
the first virus sample yesterday, May 8th. For more information regarding
VBS_HOMEPAGE.A, please go to www.antivirus.com.
Raimund Genes, VP of Sales and Marketing for Europe commented, "I
am very surprised that users are still getting infected by Visual
Basic Script; this indicates that virus protection is still not being
taken seriously enough by the population at large."
Trend Micro advises its customers to update their protection to pattern
file No. 887 or above. InterScan eManager and eManager for Exchange
customers can create an emergency rule to block the file name HOMEPAGE.HTML.vbs.
Additionally, concerned computer users can use Trend Micro's free
online virus scanner HouseCall(TM) to detect this threat.
May 10 - Belkin To Launch a Complete
Line of Bluetooth Products. Belkin Components, the leading manufacturer
of computer connectivity solutions, today announced that it is going
to be a leader in the development of Bluetooth wireless technology
with the introduction of a spectrum of Bluetooth products over the
Bluetooth, the revolutionary wireless technology for Personal Area
Networks (PAN), eliminates the need for cables and physical connections
between electronic devices. Bluetooth will enable simple wireless
communications between desktop computers and printers, PDAs, mobile
phones, input devices, and will provide anytime/anywhere access to
Belkin will first introduce a Bluetooth PC Card (F8T002), a USB Adapter
(F8T001), a Bluetooth keyboard that is compatible for both PC and
Palm (F8T040), and a Bluetooth mouse (F8T041) in the latter part of
the 3rd Quarter 2001. Subsequent products include a Bluetooth Access
Point (F8T030), which provides a wireless link to wired networks or
the Internet for mobile devices equipped with Bluetooth, a Parallel
Printer Adapter (F8T011), and a Bluetooth Palm Adapter (F8T020), which
adds Bluetooth to select Palm PDAs. These last devices will be available
in the latter portion of the 4th Quarter 2001.
Some of the applications that Belkin is developing for their Bluetooth
products include the following:
-- Automatic Synchronization - This feature offers automatic
wireless synchronization of desktop, portable PC, and mobile
-- Ad-Hoc Networking - Create temporary on-the-spot networks
anytime, anywhere. Share files and information with ease.
-- Dial-Up Networking - Connect your computing device to the
Internet on the go through your Bluetooth mobile phone. Check
your email or browse the Internet.
-- Instant Postcard - Wirelessly connect a digital camera to your
mobile phone and send pictures and text messages instantly to
a recipient anywhere in the world.
-- Cordless Desktop - Create a new sense of freedom in everyday
tasks with a cordless connection to peripherals, keyboards,
-- Internet Bridge - Connect a PDA, laptop, or desktop computer
to the Internet through a mobile phone, modem (PSTN, DSL,
DSL), or through the Company LAN via an Access Point.
-- Interactive Corporate Meeting - Share contact information, a
presentation, or meeting notes instantly with all or some
participants, without any wired connections.
"Bluetooth has attracted massive industry support," said
Carlos Del Toro, Bluetooth product manager at Belkin. "It is
positioned to be a very influential communications technology and
Belkin has ensured that it will be providing a complete range of Bluetooth
solutions that meet consumers' daily computing and mobile needs,"
For more information, visit the company's Web site at www.belkin.com.
May 10 - Asta Networks reveals DoS attacks
against Internet2 Backbone. Asta Networks, a network reliability
company, announced today that it has extended its product to provide
the first comprehensive protection from Denial-of-Service (DoS) attacks
across an entire national network.
Asta Networks' distributed technology is now deployed throughout
the Internet2 Abilene backbone, which uses high-speed optics to connect
180 universities across the United States. Asta Networks' deployment
at Internet2 protects over 50 Gigabits per second of aggregate capacity,
consisting primarily of OC-48 links, which are one thousand times
faster than a standard DSL connection.
The company also related some of the intriguing attack trends that
it has observed during its six-month deployment at Internet2 and other
sites. Asta Networks' initial product, which will be broadly released
in June, addresses these and other new attack trends.
"DoS attacks are the natural disasters of the Internet, virtual
floods which overwhelm network providers and enterprises. It is no
surprise that both businesses and governments are concerned about
the impact DoS attacks have on the bottom line and the national economy,"
said Joe Devich, Asta Networks president and CEO. "The good news
in all of this is that our Internet2 deployment, extensive research
and ongoing customer feedback are helping us to build the smartest
and most effective way to detect and respond to DoS attacks. We will
deliver on this promise in June with our first commercial product."
Asta Networks has noticed several new trends regarding zombies, the
innocent machines that hackers compromise to launch attacks. The latest
generation of zombies includes "Pulsing Zombies," which
send pulses of attack traffic at the intended target. The discontinuous
nature of these attacks makes detection and location of these zombies
far more difficult. In addition, Asta Networks has seen that zombies
are now being tuned before attacks. In a recent attack attempt, the
hackers conducted a dress rehearsal for their assault, during which
attack traffic was directed at the target for a short period of time
before the full-scale attack was launched.
Another key trend includes what Asta Networks calls "the new
DoS," in which service is not denied but degraded. Under a "Degradation
of Service" attack links are not completely overwhelmed but they
are unnecessarily burdened with significant amounts of bad traffic.
In one case, the target received six times its average amount of traffic.
Today most businesses pay for bandwidth on a per-usage basis, meaning
that this type of DoS attack not only slows performance, but costs
money. And because the effects aren't immediately noticed, these "Degradation
of Service" attacks can go undetected for long periods of time
and continuously increase the cost of the attack. Finally, Asta Networks
has noticed more attacks being targeted against vulnerable parts of
the infrastructure, including routers and Domain Name Servers (DNS).
For more information, visit www.astanetworks.com.
May 10 - Talk Visual Launches Worldwide
IP Videophone. TALK VISUAL CORPORATION President and Chief Executive
Officer Eugene A. Rosov announced today that the Company is introducing
and marketing a new IP Videophone.
The sleek, stand-alone desktop appliance needs no computer, works
on an ordinary network or DSL Internet connection, and retails for
$1,600. According to the Company, the product, which uses the H. 323
protocol, is the first in the world to address home and business markets,
and allows anyone to telephone call and video-call worldwide at no
The first of its kind, the IP Videophone belongs to a new breed of
Internet appliances which herald a profound change in the burgeoning
communications marketplace. "This is a product which can dramatically
change the way people communicate. By reducing the per-minute cost
of communications to zero, the IP Videophone lets people all over
the world see and hear one another over a simple network or DSL connection,"
said Mr. Rosov, from the Company's Miami headquarters. "It's
all part of the way the world is moving - from public switched networks
to Voice- and Video-over-IP. Internet Protocol products are the way
of the future, and Talk Visual is amongst the leaders in this technology."
The IP Videophone is produced for Talk Visual by Innomedia, Inc.,
of San Jose, California, one of the leading U.S. Voice-over-Internet
Protocol (VoIP) product manufacturers. Talk Visual was appointed to
be the first VoIP product reseller in the U.S., and also the first
company appointed to resell and distribute Innomedia's newly released
product "IP Video Phone" and "InfoGate 3010" for
Michael J. Zwebner, Talk Visual's Chairman, stated today "These
are the IP products we have been waiting for. Businesses everywhere
in the world will eventually use VoIP for cost-control and flexibility,
and Innomedia's superior products can help them deploy VoIP technology
efficiently and cost-effectively. As the first reseller appointed
for the new Innomedia IP Video Phone, we also believe that the introduction
of this remarkable appliance will herald a new phase in Talk Visual's
core business development. It enables consumers and businesses to
telephone call - or to videocall - each other FREE if they have a
network or DSL Internet connection with a static IP address. We believe
that this phone will forever change the way people communicate - both
from a cost viewpoint and because of its visual capability. It by-passes
the telecom networks - the PSTN, or public switched telephone network
- and utilizes the power of the Internet to provide our customers
with a new and virtually free mode of verbal and visual communications."
According to Mr. Rosov, the Company provides a service which connects
any IP Videophone to "thousands of public videoconference rooms
worldwide which are ISDN-enabled. Our RADVision bridge allows for
`transcoding' between IP and ISDN, and our prices for videocalls worldwide
are highly competitive. We invite businesses and individuals to save
money traveling by using our worldwide IP/ISDN videocall bridging
The IP videophone will be offered for sale through dealers and also
direct from the Company. More information can be found at www.talkvisual.com.
May 9 - Intel Enables 802.11b
Connectivity for Handspring Visor Handhelds. Intel Corporation
today introduced the Xircom(R) SpringPort(TM) Wireless Ethernet module,
the first wireless local area network (WLAN) device for the Handspring(TM)
Visor(TM) handheld computer.
The new module complements Intel's existing line of WLAN products
and is the first product announced after the company's acquisition
Slightly smaller than a deck of cards, the module plugs into the
Springboard(TM) expansion slot on the back of the Handspring Visor,
providing secure, high-speed, wireless access to applications and
data located on a network, including Internet browsers, email and
The SpringPort Wireless Ethernet module enables mobile professionals
to increase productivity with access to real-time information and
communications. The module is compliant with the IEEE 802.11b high-rate
standard and interoperates with Wi-Fi(TM) certified products including
the Xircom Wireless Ethernet Access Point and the Intel(R)PRO/Wireless
2011 LAN products.
"The Handspring Visor is a powerful device to help on-the-go
individuals organize their lives. Now, with the addition of real-time
access to information, they are further empowered to make critical
decisions without sacrificing mobility within the office or corporate
campus," said John Merrill, product marketing manager for Xircom,
an Intel company. "We are in the business of connecting mobile
professionals to their data. The new SpringPort Wireless Ethernet
module complements our existing line of wireless and wired network
"Intel is delivering a new level of mobile productivity to Handspring
Visor customers," said Michael Rosenthal, developer relations
manager for wireless at Handspring. "Xircom's SpringPort Wireless
Ethernet module enables individuals, including those at universities,
healthcare institutions, and corporations, to access real-time, critical
information on the web, email and their Intranets."
The SpringPort Wireless Ethernet module offers up to 11 Mbps transfer
rates within 300 feet (90m) of any installed access point, or hub,
on a WLAN. This makes it an excellent solution for organizations of
all sizes. The SpringPort Wireless Ethernet module will be demonstrated
in the Intel booth (No.5343) and WECA pavilion (No.1014) at the Networld
+ Interop (N+I) conference in Las Vegas, May 8-10, 2001. For additional
information on the SpringPort Wireless Ethernet, visit www.xircom.com/wireless.
Availability and Pricing
Xircom's SpringPort Wireless Ethernet module for the Visor handheld
has a suggested retail price of $299 (US) and will be available in
May. The module will be available through valued-added resellers (VARs),
direct marketers, e-tailers and system integrators and online at the
Visit www.xircom.com for more
May 9 - Acer announces new Multimedia Products.
Acer Communications & Multimedia America Inc. today announced
the latest in its top-performing multimedia line, underscoring the
company's new focus on leading-edge technology for the well-equipped
multimedia home and office.
The line includes the latest in optical storage, featuring the street's
fastest USB portable CD-RW (compact disc - read/write) -clocked at
24-speed (6 x 4 x 24). The new line continues with sleek flat-panel
LCD (liquid crystal display) monitors that add a high-tech look to
any home or office as well as compact digital projectors that weigh
in at under three pounds - some of the lightest in the industry. The
multimedia offering is rounded out by several imaging and input devices
including a 2700 dpi (dots-per-square inch) infrared film scanner
that can simultaneously hold six film strips and two types of portable
keyboards designed for the Palm Pilot (a micro-sized clip-on and an
ultra-slim foldable). These products signify Acer CMA's commitment
to the Northern American market, providing technology peripherals
with a strong value.
Now available from Acer CMA is the portable CD-RW 6424MU, selling
for an estimated street price of $219. In addition, the external CD-RW
6406EU will be offered for approximately $179 and is the first external
CD-RW to offer 6x writing speed for USB interface. Coming in late-September
is the 1212EF, an external combination CD-RW/DVD player that will
be competitively priced in the market.
All three products offer state-of-the-art Seamless Link technology.
Working to prevent buffer underrun, this technology helps to compensate
for slow CPUs, allows for multi-tasking, helps eliminate problems
associated with network or interface difficulties and, finally, compensates
for physical errors such as scratches or fingerprints.
As the second largest manufacturer in the world of LCD panels, Acer
CMA applies this expertise to its latest flat-panel offerings -the
impressively-sized FP751 with a total viewable area of 17" (equivalent
to 19" in standard CRT monitor terms) and the sleek, brushed-metal
FP581 with a 15" screen (equivalent to 17" standard) and
a convenient foldable based that allows for easy toting. Acer CMA
continues its sleek factor by introducing a sub-three pound digital
projector to its line of high-performance multimedia display products.
Designed for corporate sales executives, the Acer SL700X can easily
be carried to meetings in a computer carry case along with the laptop.
In addition, the mobility of the SL700X makes it ideal for educational
institutions that must share one projector among many classrooms or
departments. The SL700X model will be available in June 2001 with
an MSRP of $4,499.
Made specifically for the Palm Pilot V/Vx, the Acer G500 foldable
keyboard is one of the premier personal device applications (PDA)
to enter the competitive mobile market. Folded, the keyboard is small
enough to fit unobtrusively in a shirt pocket, yet sits as a regular
size board for easy data entry into the Palm. The Acer G500 is available
for $89.99 in August. The Acer G300, competitive in size and price,
is the lightest and smallest keyboard offered for the Palm V/Vx. Weighing
in at 1.4 ounces, the Acer G300 will be available in June and priced
to sell at $49.95.
Rounding out the Acer CMA product line is the ScanWit 2740S-film
scanner, the lowest priced infrared scanner on the market. Priced
at $649.99, the ScanWit is compatible with a wide range of film formats:
35mm filmstrip and 35mm-mounted slide.
Acer Communications & Multimedia America Inc. can be found on
the Web at www.acercm.com.
May 9 - SmartDisk supplies PowerBook G4
Users with New Line of Accessories. SmartDisk Corporation (Nasdaq:SMDK),
a company whose products enable consumers and businesses to create,
manage and use all types of digital content in easy and enjoyable
ways, today announced a new line of travel accessories for mobile
professionals and others who use Apple's new thin and lightweight
"supercomputer," the Titanium PowerBook G4.
Featured in the new line is the SmartDisk VST PowerBook Battery Charger,
the first charger available for PowerBook G4 users. It safely charges
PowerBook G4 Li-Ion batteries in less than three hours, making it
easy for users to have a freshly charged back-up battery readily at
hand. Compact in design and built to accommodate two batteries, the
SmartDisk VST PowerBook G4 Battery Charger features LED displays to
indicate charge mode, charge completion and battery error detection.
It is packaged with an AC adapter and user's guide.
SmartDisk also announced two new adapters for the Titanium PowerBook
G4. The SmartDisk VST PowerBook G4 Auto Adapter is compatible with
any standard automobile cigarette lighter socket. The SmartDisk VST
PowerBook G4 Airline Adapter works with the EmPower(TM) socket available
on many major commercial airlines. In addition, SmartDisk offers a
PowerBook G4 AC adapter for those users who would like to have a spare
For users who require the ease of transferring information to and
from floppy disk drives, SmartDisk also offers the SmartDisk VST Titanium
Floppy Drive. The drive is powered by the PowerBook G4's speedy USB
connection and is just 4 inches by 5.5 inches in size and less than
an inch in depth -- perfect for the mobile user contending with limited
work space. Its color and styling complement those of the Titanium
"The Titanium PowerBook G4 provides customers with supercomputing
power in a very mobile, one-inch thin, 5.3-pound design," said
Greg Joswiak, Apple's Senior Director of Portables Product Marketing.
"SmartDisk's new Titanium accessories allow our customers flexible
ways to power their PowerBook while they're traveling, enhancing the
extreme portability of the PowerBook G4."
"Our corporate mission is to simplify the digital lifestyle,"
said Rod H. King, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing for SmartDisk.
"These new products for the Titanium PowerBook G4 continue our
commitment to providing Apple users with the quality products they
need to simplify their lives on the road, in the air, at home and
at the office."
Pricing and Availability
Product Price When Shipping
SmartDisk VST PowerBook G4 Battery Charger $169.95 Now
SmartDisk VST PowerBook G4 Auto Adapter $ 79.95 Late May
SmartDisk VST PowerBook G4 AC Adapter $ 69.95 Now
SmartDisk VST PowerBook G4 Airline Adapter $ 39.95 Now
SmartDisk VST Titanium Floppy Drive $ 79.95 June
A combination package featuring the SmartDisk VST PowerBook G4 Battery
Charger, an Apple Li-Ion battery and an Apple AC adapter is available
under the name SmartDisk VST PowerBook G4 Mobility Bundle. The price
of the package is $279.95, with availability scheduled for June.
For more information, go to www.smartdisk.com.
May 9 - Trend Micro’s Free Online VirusScanner
Restores Systems Infected by Trojan Viruses. Trend Micro Inc.
(Nasdaq: TMIC, TSE: 4704), a worldwideleader in network antivirus
and Internet content security solutions, today announced thatits free
online virus scanner, HouseCall, just got better.
Entering its fifthyear of scanning and removing viruses for users
around the world, HouseCallwill be the only online virus scanner to
include groundbreaking technologyknown as Trend Micro Trojan System
Cleaner, the firstgeneric cleaning tool for all existing Trojan
programs in the wild. By incorporating Trojan System Cleaner, HouseCall
will not only detect and removeTrojans but will also automatically
rid systems of dropped code, as well as reset andrestore system settings
that have been altered as a result of a Trojan virusinfection.
Use of HouseCall Parallels Dramatic Rise inComputer Virus Threat
Parallelingthe dramatic growth in computer viruses, which now number
more than 50,000 withan average of 15-30 new viruses being discovered
daily, HouseCall hasexperienced more than 100% growth in usage in
the last year alone. More than 170,000 users took advantage ofHouseCall
to scan and rid their computer systems of nearly three millionviruses
in the last 30 days alone and more than 27 million viruses in the
lastyear. With viruses estimated to havecaused $17.1 billion in damages
during the year 2000 alone according toComputer Economics, the need
for fast, free, and easy-to-use virus protectionsolutions, like HouseCall,
Free PC-cillinAntivirus Software for HouseCall Users during Month
To celebrate HouseCall enteringits fifth year on the Internet,
Trend Micro is giving away copies ofPC-cillin®, its award-winning,
desktop antivirus software, to 150 individualswho register to use
HouseCall during the month of May. The drawing is open to US residents
only andwinners will be notified by email in early June. PC-cillin
was recently declared must have antivirus software byPC
World Magazine in its May 2001issue. For more details andinstructions
on how to enter the drawing visit http://housecall.antivirus.com.
About Trend Micros Trojan System Cleaner
Trojanprograms such as TROJ_MTX,TROJ_NAVIDAD, and TROJ_HYBRIS can
spread, not only by infecting or sending infected files, butby infecting
the system itself. Theyoften lurk in memory, modify registry entries
and system files, or drop othermalicious files or folders onto a users
system. Antivirus software scans and cleans infected files, but typicallycannot
act on these other alterations made by Trojans that are left behind
tore-infect or compromise system integrity.
The Trojan SystemCleaner is designed to completely clean computer
systems of Trojans and theunwanted, lingering items they leave behind.
It automatically restores the registry and system files that weremodified
by Trojans, far simpler than the manual instructions or one
offtools commonly offered by antivirus companies. Trojan System
Cleaner is alsocapable of terminating Trojan programs running in memory,
and it offersprecautionary recovery measures that include a log report
that displays themodifications made by the tool and several back-up
options. With Trojan System Cleaner, users have afree, quick, and
simple method for restoring their systems to normal that worksautomatically,
without any user intervention, every time HouseCall scans theirsystems.
HouseCall is the Internets firstand best free online virus scanner.
Trend Micro first introduced HouseCall inMay of 1997, two full years
before any other vendor, further proof of TrendMicros technology
leadership in the field of malicious code protection. HouseCall is
also the only online virusscanner that is certified by the International
Computer Security Association todetect 100% of in-the-wild
viruses. While other antivirus vendors regularly charge for usage
or only detectviruses, Trend Micros HouseCall has always been
free and continues to detect,clean, and remove nasty viruses, Trojans,
and worms from users systems day inand day out.
HouseCall brings the ease, accessibility, andeffectiveness of a server-based
antivirus application to home users over theInternet at no cost. With
HouseCall, users always have access to the latestvirus protection
available, accessible 24 x 7, without time-consumingdownloads, or
For additional information and evaluation copies of all Trend Micro
products, visit www.antivirus.com
May 9 - Symbol Introduces Compact Flash Wireless
LAN Adapter for PDAs. Continuing its product innovation for wireless
mobility, Symbol Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:SBL), today announced an
IEEE802.11b wireless LAN radio in the Compact Flash (CF) form factor.
Symbol's Spectrum24 Compact Flash card employs advanced power management
and throughput performance giving 11mbps wireless connectivity to
power conscious Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs). The new 802.11b
wireless LAN adapter includes Symbol's new wireless LAN firmware that
features advanced security features for uninterrupted roaming and
mobile security. The Spectrum24 CF card was specifically designed
to fit into PDAs or embedded into application specific mobile computing
"This is a great step for mobility in the enterprise because
Symbol's 802.11b Compact Flash card will bring the wireless Internet
to the growing installed base of users of Windows CE and PocketPC,"
said Phil Holden, director of marketing for the Mobile Devices Division
at Microsoft Corp. "We are happy that Symbol has also provided
an advanced wireless LAN security mechanism designed for handheld
"The Compact Flash addition to Symbol's Spectrum24 wireless
LAN family provides our customers with several ways to achieve mobility
and wirelessly connect to the enterprise network," said Tomo
Razmilovic, President and CEO, Symbol Technologies, Inc. "The
market for wireless mobile computing products continues to expand
and we foresee significant opportunities with this new wireless product."
While the market for 802.11b wireless LANs continues to grow, so
does the appetite for PDAs, according to recent IDC reports, "Unwiring
the Network" and "The Battle at Hand". IDC expects
the worldwide wireless LAN market -- radio products which operate
on the ISM 2.4GHtz frequency band -- to increase at a compound annual
growth rate (CAGR) of 41.0%, reaching approximately 21.9 million unit
shipments in 2005. For "Personal Companions" -- Palm, Win
CE, Pocket PCs, RIM, and Symbian-based devices -- IDC expects a CAGR
of 38.1% growth rate through 2004, with 33.6 million unit shipments
worldwide in 2004.
"Using 802.11b wireless LAN technology with Personal Companions
for enterprise and local area connectivity will contribute to device
growth as mobile users find utility in staying connected," said
Kevin Burden, Program Manager, Smart Handheld Devices, IDC. "Connecting
with a Compact Flash radio card is a logical step for the knowledge
worker, especially, as the installed base of WiFi wireless LANs continues
to penetrate corporations, universities, airports and other public
"With WiFi wireless LANs being widely adopted in the enterprise
and WiFi 'hot spots' now springing up in hotels, airports, and soon
even Starbucks, iPAQ Pocket PC users can stay connected in the office,
on the road, and eventually, in the home," said Cindy Box, Director
of Marketing, iPAQ Mobile Solutions. "Adding secure 802.11b wireless
connectivity with a CF radio card is yet another example of how Symbol
is developing products for greater mobility."
"Symbol's new wireless LAN adapter accessory offers HP Jornada
pocket PC users another way to wirelessly check email, surf the Web
and connect to enterprise networks," said Boris Elisman, worldwide
marketing manager, HP Embedded and Personal Systems. "This product
innovation will allow mobile consumers to conveniently access the
Internet from many locations.
"Our complete line of portable computing products for the enterprise
features integrated support for compact flash peripherals devices.
The availability of an 802.11b compact flash radio will allow our
customers the ultimate flexibility in deploying wireless devices throughout
their organizations", said Todd Weissman, vice president of Casio's
Mobile Information Products Division. "We congratulate Symbol
on this technology achievement."
About Spectrum24 High Rate Compact Flash
Symbol's 802.11b CF radio card is designed for use in mobile devices
running today's leading handheld operating systems -- Windows CE,
Pocket PC, and Palm. The product will initially support Windows CE
2.11, and Pocket PC, with subsequent firmware releases supporting
the Palm OS.
The Spectrum24 High Rate CF card comes in two form factors: with an
integrated antenna for Type I CF extend slots in PDAs and an external
antenna connecter for embedded device designs. Both form factors feature
dynamic rate scaling from 11Mbps, to 5.5Mbps, 2Mbps and 1Mbps, for
optimum wireless connectivity during higher traffic sessions. The
product has been designed to meet WiFi(TM) certification requirements
for interoperability. The product will be available to order in the
Symbol will be demonstrating its Spectrum24(R) High Rate Compact Flash
wireless LAN adapter on popular Microsoft Windows Powered Pocket PCs--the
Casio CASSIOPEIA, Compaq iPAQ, HP Jornada--at the Las Vegas NetWorld+Interop
2001 trade show, South Hall booth# 4629.
More information can be found at www.symbol.com.
May 8 - Toshiba Introduces
Transmeta Crusoe-Based ``Libretto'' Notebook PC in Japan. Transmeta
Corporation (Nasdaq:TMTA) and Toshiba Corporation today announced
the introduction in Japan of Toshiba's Crusoe-based Libretto L1/060TNMM
notebook PC with up to 14 hours of battery life.
Toshiba announced that the notebook, weighing just 2.4 lbs, will
be available in Japan as of May 18. The Libretto L1/060TNMM, with
a 600MHz Crusoe processor, features a small, lightweight design with
a low power, 10" wide SXGA TFT screen and a 10 gigabyte hard
"It is a major milestone that Toshiba, the world's leading shipper
of notebooks, has chosen Crusoe for this innovative new system,"
said Jim Chapman, executive vice president of sales and marketing,
The new notebook measures 10.5" (wide) x 6.6" (deep) x
.81" (thick). The 10" wide SXGA (1,280 X 600 dot) low power,
poly-silicon TFT screen gives the new notebook the largest screen
in the mini-notebook category and offers detail and clarity, allowing
easy viewing and effective displaying of online images and maps. The
.70 key pitch offers users comfort in typing for extended periods
Crusoe's LongRun power management capability continuously adjusts
the processor's frequency and voltage (MHz) to provide the necessary
performance for a given application while maximizing battery life.
Additionally, Toshiba's power-saving utility provides for maximum
power efficiency throughout the system, enabling up to 4.5 hours of
battery life with a standard battery and up to 14 hours with an optional
The notebook, which runs Microsoft(R) Windows(R) Me, is equipped
with two USB connectors, PC card slot (type II), I-link connector
and a mini-RGB often used for business presentations. The Libretto
L1/060TNMM makes Internet and e-mail communications possible during
extensive travel with an embedded modem compatible in 58 regions of
the world. It also has Bluetooth(TM) capability for wireless connection
Toshiba can be found on the Web at www.toshiba.com.
May 8 - Dell Corporate Notebook
Line Adds Latitudes With Attitude. Dell (Nasdaq:DELL) today enhanced
its portfolio of notebook systems for corporate, government and educational
customers in the United States by providing new, high-performance
features for its mainstream, wireless-ready(a) Latitude(tm) C600,
and introducing the new Latitude C500, which is designed for budget-conscious
In addition, Dell is now making a CD-rewritable/DVD combination drive
available on all Latitude notebooks for users who need to read or
write large amounts of data, listen to audio files or watch video
files while away from the office.
The Latitude C600 offers mobile users high performance in a thin
and light form factor (as light as 4.9 pounds(b)) with the new Intel(R)
Mobile Pentium(R) III processor at 1GHz and a new high-resolution
14.1-inch SXGA+ display. When combined with Dell's TrueMobile(tm)
1150 wireless LAN solution(c) and Dell's new CD-RW/DVD combo drive,
the Latitude C600 delivers the features, functionality and connectivity
mobile business users truly can take advantage of to be more productive.
With the Latitude C500, Dell has added a wireless-ready basic notebook
featuring Intel's Celeron(tm) processor at 700MHz, a choice of 14.1-inch
XGA or 12.1-inch SVGA displays and a choice of integrated communications.
The Latitude C500 meets the needs of budget-conscious mobile users
without sacrificing reliability, flexibility or performance, and can
help lower the total cost of ownership by retaining compatibility
with all Latitude C-family media modules, peripherals and docking
The Dell CD-RW/DVD combination drive brings all the advantages of
DVD-ROM, a CD-RW and a CD-ROM to a single drive, eliminating the need
and added weight of carrying two modules while traveling. The CD-RW/DVD
combination drive is available as an option on all Latitude products
currently being shipped, including the high-performance Latitude C800
and the ultraportable L400.
More information on the Latitude product family can be found at www.dell.com/latitude.
May 8 - Taiwan Manufacturers
are Full Speed Ahead on IEEE 1394 Multimedia Standard. The 1394
Trade Association reported today that Taiwan-based computer product
manufacturers are installing the IEEE 1394 multimedia bus into a rapidly-increasing
number of interface cards and motherboards in preparation for the
next market expansion.
Industry leaders including Texas Instruments Inc. and Agere, Inc.
indicate increased 1394 IC shipments into Taiwan as leaders such as
Procomp, Asustek and Gigabyte Technology continue to expand card and
board production. The 1394 bus, also known commercially as FireWire
and i.LINK, has established itself in more than 40 percent of all
notebook and handheld PCs and continues to grow.
"We're seeing the high rate of adoption of 1394 that we predicted
two years ago," said James Snider, chairman of the 1394 Trade
Association. "Even during this current industry slowdown, we
see expansive activity in Taiwan, as the leaders of the industry there
prepare for increased demand and a stronger second half of 2001."
Taiwanese leaders, also including Iwill, Chaintech and Epox Computer,
all are preparing for the ramp up, and can move from early product
development to volume production in less than two months.
"Taiwan has become a very important market for 1394," said
a spokesperson for Texas Instruments. "We are seeing more decisions
being made by Taiwanese companies to provide 1394 products for large
OEM companies. Notebook motherboards are being specified and designed
with 1394 in anticipation of demand from their customers. this is
proving to be very successful as 1394 is a 'must have' for products
going into Japan and in consumer PCs."
Approximately 66 percent of the computer market with IEEE 1394 installed
consists of desktop systems. Another 27 percent consists of notebooks,
now the fastest-growing product subset for 1394 implementation. Another
6 percent is workstations and 4 percent are retail PCI add-in cards.
The 1394 Trade Association includes more than 160 companies worldwide
dedicated to the advancement and proliferation of the IEEE 1394 multimedia
standard. For more information visit the TA web site at www.1394ta.org.
May 8 - Business Wireless Users Warned Away
from Bluetooth. With the emergence of various mobile devices that
employees will use on a regular basis, enterprises must act now to
have wireless solutions in place to support these technologies, according
to Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT and ITB). Gartner analysts said there will
be almost 800 million worldwide wireless data users by 2004, so enterprises
must get prepared to support these technologies. Gartner analysts
provided their view of mobile and wireless computing today during
Gartner Spring Symposium/ITxpo 2001 in Denver.
With the increase of various mobile devices, enterprises will find
it difficult to support all the wireless devices their employees will
be using. Gartner analysts estimate that by 2004, the flood of new
mobile devices in the enterprise will force at least 50 percent of
Fortune 2000 companies to support three distinct solutions (low-speed
wireless data only, voice plus Web access and high-speed wireless
"Enterprises will be well-advised to remember that no single
wireless access network topology will meet anywhere near 80 percent
of the requirements of enterprise knowledge workers," said Bob
Egan, vice president and research director for Gartner. "To a
large extent, end users' network requirements will be driven by the
devices they carry, their job roles and their mobility."
Gartner analysts said it's important for enterprises to survey end-user
requirements and derive wireless solutions from those demands. Enterprise
managers will find these requirements drilled down into three distinct
areas: wide area networks (WANs), which are best for low speed data
plus voice; local area networks (LANs), which are predominately 802.11
wireless LANs; and personal area networks (PANs) which are dominated
"Enterprises should take care to avoid non-802.11 wireless technology
such as Bluetooth because it lacks the speed, security and manageability
for an enterprise-class solution," Egan said. "For WAM and
WAC solutions, enterprises should develop a solution independent of
any one specific wireless WAN network standard."
While there has been much enthusiasm around Bluetooth, Gartner analysts
said the technology is a long way from being ready for mass adoption.
Bluetooth is inadequate for serious, security-sensitive work, and
it also lacks the robustness required as wireless extension to an
enterprise or public network. The initial applications for the technology
include file and data synchronization between devices, wireless headsets
for mobile phones and computers, and connections to local peripheral
Whereas 802.11 wireless LAN systems are designed with rigorous encryption
choices and formal authentication via manageable access port hubs,
Bluetooth is intended to encourage instant, interdevice communications
in groups up to eight, quickly with as little overhead as possible.
"Fixing Bluetooth security concerns demands investment in device
resources, which reduces vendor margins," Egan said. "These
investments include encryption to protect against unwanted eavesdropping,
updating of management protocols to protect user systems from unexpected
modifications, denial of service measures to deflect hacker attacks,
and formal authentication to determine who will be allowed to exchange
For more information, visit www.gartner.com.
May 8 - America Online and CompUSA Announce
Strategic Marketing Alliance. CompUSA Inc., America's Largest
Computer Superstore(R) retailer, and America Online, the world's leading
interactive services company, today announced a strategic marketing
alliance that will combine the strengths of both companies to bring
the Internet and other interactive technologies and devices into millions
more American homes.
The agreement will offer AOL products and services to CompUSA shoppers
nationwide, while providing CompUSA with a series of innovative promotions
across several America Online brands.
Under the agreement, CompUSA will create prominent AOL displays in
its 218 CompUSA Superstores nationwide, demonstrating a full range
of AOL services to CompUSA shoppers, including AOL software, broadband
solutions, and a variety of "AOL Anywhere" products such
as wireless devices and networking appliances.
AOL will be featured as CompUSA's preferred interactive service,
and the parties plan to develop and offer in-store registration in
the centers; CompUSA will also make special offers to new AOL members.
As part of the agreement, CompUSA will promote AOL and the in-store
offerings in its offline advertising programs and other promotional
and marketing campaigns.
In addition, America Online will provide CompUSA prominent branding
and promotion across several of its interactive brands, including
AOL, AOL.COM, CompuServe and Netscape.com, as well as Shop@ online
shopping destinations across these brands. CompUSA online product
categories that will be promoted include computers, digital cameras,
electronic accessories and upgrades, and a variety of other products
and devices. The AOL and CompuServe services currently total more
than 32 million members and the company's Web-based brands attract
tens of millions of additional users.
"CompUSA and AOL are brands that millions of Americans know
and trust, and we are pleased to work with CompUSA in this new alliance,"
said Barry Schuler, CEO, America Online, Inc. "This relationship
provides us with a great opportunity to introduce CompUSA's millions
of customers to all the benefits of AOL and the Internet, and by combining
the strengths of our two strong consumer brands, we will make it even
easier and more convenient for people to take full advantage of both
CompUSA's and AOL's products and services."
"The coupling of AOL's leadership in interactive services with
CompUSA's strength in retail and customer service provides us both
with opportunities to offer real value and convenience to our customers,"
said Hal Compton, CEO, CompUSA. "Working with AOL, we will be
creating compelling new offerings for our customers, while bringing
CompUSA's great selection of online merchandise to the millions of
users of the America Online brands."
The companies can be found on the Web at www.compusa.com
Weeks Computer News and Rumors ]