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InfoHQ Computer News and Rumors

October 08-15 2001

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 Computer News and Rumors is an archived column, so feel free to review previous week's or month's computer news by clicking on the link below. Previous computer news articles can also be searched, by using our site search feature found in the right-hand column.

InfoHQ Computer News and Rumors Article Index
Date
(Click on story to read, use your Browser's back button to return to the Index.)
Oct 15 SanDisk Introduces Ultra CompactFlash Cards
Oct 15 Elpida Delivers Highest Density DRAM Modules for Notebooks
Oct 15 Sony Brings Advanced Video to its Tiniest Notebook PC
Oct 15 Bluetooth Wireless Technology Addresses Automotive Applications
Oct 14 Sunday Shopping Watch
Oct 12 Nokia Introduces a New Entertainment Mobile Phone; The Nokia 5510
Oct 12 ALi Announces Support for AMD's Newest Athlon XP Processor
Oct 12 Nearly 56 Percent of U.S. Office Workers Access Streaming Media
Oct 12 E-Commerce Resumes as Consumers Spend More Time at Home
Oct 12 Slight Growth seen in Handheld Sales during August
Oct 11 Intel Releases High-Speed Intel PRO/DSL 3220 Modem
Oct 11 Memory Stick Media Hits the Road With Sony's In-Car Audio Player
Oct 11 SONICblue Introduces New Diamond Supra V.92 56K Analog Modems
Oct 11 SOYO Announces UDMA 133 Motherboard Support
Oct 11 Adobe Offers New Acrobat eBook Reader for European Markets
Oct 10 AMD Unveils New AMD Athlon XP Processor
Oct 10 1394 Trade Association Completes Taiwan Plugfest
Oct 10 Enterprises Will Support Three Distinct Mobile Solutions by 2004
Oct 10 IBM Announces New PCs, Notebooks, and Software Products
Oct 10 Businesses Increasingly Vulnerable to Information Security Attacks
Oct 10 Software Breakthrough Will Enable Wireless Global Roaming
Oct 09 AMD to announce Athlon XP Processor 1800+
Oct 09 Intel Researchers Disclose Technology to Enable Billion-Transistor Processors
Oct 09 Sony's New VAIO PCs Make Presentations Portable
Oct 09 Evergreen 1 GHz Upgrade Bundles Deliver Power & Memory
Oct 08 Motorola Moves to Accelerate Adoption of Next-Generation Wireless
Oct 08 'Web Bug' Standards to be Developed
Oct 08 Thirty Percent of Consumers Interested in Voice, Video, and Internet Bundle
Oct 08 Seventy-five Percent of Americans Concerned About Their Job Security

 
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Oct 15 - SanDisk Introduces Ultra CompactFlash Cards. SanDisk Corp. (Nasdaq:SNDK) today introduced SanDisk Ultra(TM) CompactFlash(TM), a new line of high-speed storage cards specifically designed for use in the rapidly growing market segment of high-performance digital cameras. The new SanDisk Ultra CompactFlash (CF) cards are targeted at advanced photographers who require high-performance cards to quickly shoot many high-resolution images.
SanDisk Ultra CF cards have a sustained write speed of up to 2.8 megabytes (MB) per second or more than twice the sustained write speed of SanDisk's standard CF products, and will be sold in the popular Type I CompactFlash form factor.
SanDisk Ultra CompactFlash cards are fully compatible and interchangeable with all CompactFlash digital cameras, CF card readers and adapters, and are available in the following capacities: 128, 192, 256, 384 and 512 megabytes. Approximate street prices for SanDisk Ultra CF cards in that capacity range are $100 to $500, which reflects a modest premium over SanDisk's standard CF cards.
SanDisk expects to commence shipments of SanDisk Ultra CF cards immediately in the U.S. and world wide, with the exception of Japan, which will start shipping next month. The company sells its SanDisk-branded flash memory cards and card readers in more than 35,000 stores worldwide.
For more infoemation visit www.sandisk.com.

Oct 15 - Elpida Memory Delivers Industry's Highest Density DRAM Modules for Notebooks. Elpida Memory, Inc. (Elpida), the industry's only major semiconductor company to focus completely on DRAM, announced today the availability of its 512 MByte Small Outline (S.O.) Dual In-line Memory Modules (DIMMs) for notebook and mobile computing applications.
"Elpida's new 512 MByte S.O. DIMMs are currently the highest density S.O. DIMMs available," according to Yasu Yoshitomi, technical marketing manager for Elpida Memory (USA) Inc. "Notebook and mobile computers are rapidly replacing desktop computers in the home and work environments, and higher memory density for these computers is currently in great demand. Elpida's new modules enable notebook and mobile computers to have as much memory as desktop systems.
To double the density of these modules, Elpida uses its proven, stacked Tape Carrier Packaging (TCP) technology for each of the sixteen 256 Mbit (32 Mbit x 8 bit) Synchronous DRAM (SDRAM) devices that fit on each module. The memory bus clock frequency operates at 133 MHz (PC133) or 100 MHz (PC100) with a CAS latency (CL) of 3 or 2, respectively.

Price and Availability



Elpida Part Number  Description            Availability  Price (1000s)



HB52RF648DC-75B     512 MByte, unbuffered,  Samples now;    $330.00

                     x64 PC133 S.O. DIMM     volume now

HB52RD648DC-A6B/B6B 512 MByte, unbuffered,  Samples now;    $300.00

                     x64 PC100 S.O. DIMM     volume now





Visit Elpida's World Wide Web site at www.elpida.com



Oct 15 - Sony Brings Advanced Video to Its Tiniest Notebook PC. Sony's new VAIO(R) C1MV PictureBook(R) notebook PC proves that even the smallest computers can deliver the highest quality multimedia features. Announced today, the latest PictureBook PC will dazzle business users and hobbyists with quality video-capturing capabilities and the newest energy-saving Transmeta 5800-series Crusoe(TM) processor.
"Sony has taken the new PictureBook model to the next level," said Mark Hanson, vice president and general manager of VAIO PC marketing. "This PC gem not only offers users the best entertainment experience they can find, but also a powerful notebook PC suited for the business environment. In fact, this new model is so stunning and feature-rich, it may redefine the word PC to mean 'powerfully chic.'"
One-inch thin and weighing a mere 2.2 pounds, the C1MV PC has a 20 GB hard drive and the latest 733 MHz Crusoe 5800-series processor, allowing the system to run more efficiently while still maintaining a high level and length of performance. Arriving on store shelves in mid-November, the C1MV PC wrapped in a cool new outer casing will retail for around $1,900.
With MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG4 and JPEG support, the PictureBook PC gives users a DVD-quality viewing experience on a 1280 x 600 screen -- the clearest pictures and best resolution available for its size. Plus, the C1MV PC houses a built-in real-time MPEG2 encoder and decoder so consumers, using an external video source or built-in digital camera, can easily convert files to MPEG2 and enjoy high-quality video playback.
Visit Sony's web site at www.SonyStyle.com.

Oct 15 - Bluetooth Wireless Technology Addresses Automotive Applications. Bluetooth SIG, Inc. has announced that its Car Working Group has released a definition for how Bluetooth(TM) wireless technology will enable hands-free use of mobile phones in automobiles. These enhancements are part of the new Hands-Free Profile and are expected to be adopted by the Bluetooth SIG membership. Prototype products using this specification are expected by the end of this year.
Using the new Hands-Free profile, products that implement the Bluetooth specification can facilitate automatic establishment of a connection between the car's hands-free system (typically part of its audio system) and a mobile phone the driver brings into the car. Bluetooth wireless products that incorporate these new enhancements will enable a seamless, virtually automatic interface between the car and wireless products.
"Product designers, including those in the automobile market, are looking for high volume, easy to implement wireless standards," said Simon Ellis, chairman of the Bluetooth SIG marketing committee. "The Bluetooth specification is meeting the needs of existing and new applications for wireless products by diligently focusing on worldwide interoperability and ease of use."
The Bluetooth SIG provides a forum for companies to work together using short-range wireless technologies to solve customer problems. In response to interest by the automotive industry, the Bluetooth SIG formed the Car Working Group in December of 1999. The Hands-Free profile is the first of several application level specifications expected from the working group.
Bluetooth SIG, Inc. announced it has been qualifying, on average, a new Bluetooth(TM) wireless product each day during the quarter ending September 30 and a number of these products are now commercially available in Europe, Asia and in the United States. Nearly half of the 108 new products qualified last quarter include mobile phone, computing and other consumer electronics products. The remainder of the products qualified during the quarter were the critical chips, software and development tools from which equipment manufacturers can build their own Bluetooth wireless products.
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), can be found on the Web at www.bluetooth.com.

Oct 14 - Sunday Shopping Watch. This is the third Sunday that Microsoft's newest operating system, Windows XP, is bundled with new computers. For some reason, local merchants continue to advertise high-end systems and not the less powerful Celeron and Duron systems. This trend applies to both desktops and notebooks.
Windows XP will not be available for separate purchase until October 25th. For more information on Windows XP visit Microsoft's Windows XP home page.
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 mail-in rebates on all desktop complete systems. Additionally, they are offering 12 month no interest financing on all computer purchases over $598 and all notebook purchases.
Circuit City has no store-wide sales this Sunday (individual items may be on sale).
Office Depot has no store-wide sales this Sunday (individual items may be on sale).
CompUSA is offering 1 year of free CompuServe Internet service with the purchase of any Compaq Windows XP desktop or laptop computer. They are also offering no payments or interest for 12 months with any Pentium 4 desktop complete system.
Staples has no ad this Sunday.

Internet Rebates. Most stores are no longer advertising 3 year Internet rebates. Check with your local store before you buy. 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
Category
Product Description
Price* (see above)
Store
Best Celeron Deal
HP 1.1 GHz complete system
$699
Best Buy
Best Pentium III System
None Advertised
   
Best Pentium 4 System
Sony 1.5 GHz complete system
$1199
Best Buy
Best Duron System
None Advertised
Best Athlon System
HP 1.3 GHz complete system
$999
CompUSA
Best Athlon XP System
Compaq 1800+ (1.53 GHz) complete system
$1449
Best Buy
1. Best Low Cost Notebook
HP 900 MHz Duron with DVD
$1199
Best Buy
2. Best Low Cost Notebook
Sony 900 MHz Duron with DVD
$1399
Circuit City
Best High-end Notebook
Sony 1 GHz Athlon 4 with CDRW/DVD
$1699
Circuit City
New Products
Windows XP
  Available now in new computers. Can be purchased at stores October 25th.

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.

Oct 12 - Nokia Introduces a New Entertainment Mobile Phone; The Nokia 5510. Nokia today unveiled a new entertainment category in its product portfolio with the Nokia 5510 phone. The Nokia 5510 is a device designed specifically for mobile entertainment, featuring a digital music player, stereo FM radio, games, and enhanced messaging capabilities. Shipments are scheduled to begin in the 4th quarter, 2001.
The Nokia 5510 has an integrated digital music player for AAC (Advanced Audio Coding) & MP3 (MPEG-1 Audio Layer III) music files. Users can record their favorite music with the integrated digital music recorder and store up to 2 hours of music in the phone's 64 MB memory. The Nokia Audio Manager PC software and connectivity cable provided in the sales package enable users to rip music files from their own CDs and download them to the Nokia 5510. Users can listen to music either on the music player or the FM radio and simultaneously play games.
Featuring a full keyboard, the new entertainment phone is also the perfect device for messaging, incorporating multiple chat, multiple SMS sending, and the ability to send longer text messages with SMS concatenation. Faster typing and convenient use of WAP email is also made possible by the full keyboard. Other messaging features include the sending of templates, smileys, and picture messages.
The device conveniently functions as a games platform with game controls for two hands and keys located on either side of the screen. It comes with five embedded games: Bumper, Space Impact, Snake II, Pairs II, and Bantumi.
The games and entertainment dimensions of this device are further enhanced by services available from Club Nokia. Members of Club Nokia can download animated screensavers as well as new and more challenging game levels via WAP. Members can also compete with other players by sending in their high scores to Club Nokia.
Pricing and availability were not announced. Visit www.nokia.com for more information.

Oct 12 - ALi Announces Support for AMD's Newest Athlon XP Processor. Acer Laboratories Inc. (ALi), one of the world's leading integrated circuit solutions providers, today announced new version ALiMAGiK 1's continued support for AMD's Athlon and Duron microprocessors. Following months of successful mass production, ALi today unveiled the newest and most advanced system on the market -- the new version ALiMAGiK 1 supporting AMD Athlon(TM) XP processor 1800+ with QuantiSpeed(TM) architecture.
The ALiMAGiK 1 is one of a series of ALi DDR based chipsets supporting AMD solutions. From a production standpoint, ALiMAGiK 1 offers the most cost-effective and highest performing chipset available for a standalone system -- bringing system builders and OEMs a great deal of cost savings. From a memory standpoint, ALiMAGiK 1 has the ability to support all mainstream DDR/SDR memory configurations up to 3GB. It also supports AGP 1X/2X/4X. This remarkable chipset solution, which has received numerous positive reviews, has gained the support of a handful of major motherboard customers including Acorp, ASUS, ECS, Iwill, PCChips, Soyo, and Transcend.
"The AMD Athlon(TM) XP processor 1800+ delivers unsurpassed performance when coupled with ALi's ALiMAGiK 1," said Dr. Chin Wu, president of ALi. "I am delighted that ALiMAGiK 1 chipset for the AMD Athlon(TM) XP processor 1800+ has once again aggressively claimed the leadership position in bringing end-users a higher system performance."
"ALi and AMD have been collaborating very closely through the years to develop high systems performance desktop and notebooks. Today's announcement underscores the successful heritage of our partnership," said Richard Heye, vice president of AMD's Platform & Infrastructure Engineering & Microprocessor Business Management. "Systems featuring the new AMD Athlon(TM) XP processor 1800+ coupled with the high performing ALiMAGiK 1 provide an unparalleled computing experience. AMD is proud to support the ALiMAGiK 1."
ALi is available on the web at www.ali.com.tw.

Oct 12 - Nearly 56 Percent of U.S. Office Workers Access Streaming Media. The Internet ratings report for the month of September 2001 from Nielsen//NetRatings (Nasdaq:NTRT), the world's fastest growing Internet measurement services, reveals that nearly 56 percent of office workers consumed streaming media in September, reaching an all-time high during the past year.
More than 21 million office workers streamed Web media in September as compared to more than 17 million the year before, jumping 21 percent. The percentage of surfers streaming media at-work climbed five percentage points from September 2000 to nearly 56 percent.
"The Internet is clearly playing a larger role in the daily activities of office professionals, as high-speed connections have allowed workers to take advantage of streaming media," said Jarvis Mak, senior Internet analyst, NetRatings. "With streaming media reaching critical mass at-work, media content players such as Real Networks, Windows Media and Quick Time are well-positioned to offer their services to a growing market."
"From Internet broadcasts of breaking news to music concerts and sporting events, streaming media delivers up-to-the-minute information and action directly to desktops. More surfers are turning to the Internet to stream live video broadcasts and view instant coverage of the news, particularly now as office workers keep track of developing national news," Mak continued.

Oct 12 - E-Commerce Resumes as Consumers Spend More Time at Home. Online sales at Internet retail sites have returned to healthy sales volume one month following the Sept. 11 terrorist attack on America, according to BizRate.com, the No. 1 comparison shopping site and a leading provider of real-time e-commerce research.
BizRate.com reports that for the week ended Oct. 8 compared with the week ended Sept. 10, e-commerce sales are 17 percent above normal, proving that Americans are indeed returning to their daily routines, including shopping online.
"Americans are spending more time at home and are ordering more goods online than before the attacks," said Chuck Davis, president and chief executive officer of BizRate.com. "We've seen a migration of buying behavior to online due to the multitude of special offers and great deals during these bumpier economic times."

Further evidence that online sales have rallied:

-- Week of Sept. 11-Sept. 17: (-23 percent) decrease in sales
-- Week of Sept. 18-Sept. 24: (-9 percent)
-- Week of Sept. 25-Oct. 1: (+2 percent)
-- Week of Oct. 2-Oct. 8: (+17 percent)
-- Stronger categories following the attack include: Sporting Goods and Computer Software.
BizRate.com (www.bizrate.com) is a leading comparison shopping site on the Web.

Oct 12 - Slight Growth seen in Handheld Sales during August. According to leading market information provider NPD INTELECT(R) Market Tracking, retail personal digital assistant (PDA) unit sales in the U.S. grew by 11.9 percent in August 2001.
This figure compares to a 207.5 percent increase in unit sales for August 2000. The 11.9 percent total was the worst growth performance of the year even though average selling prices (ASP) have fallen to $248 from $283 the year prior.
During the month of August, the unit market share for Palm OS-based devices remained stable with 82.5 percent of the retail market. Dollar share for Palm devices fell slightly, to 78.5 percent in August as average prices dropped to $236 from $254 in July. At the same time, on the strength of aggressive price cutting, Pocket PC-based products grew from 10.2 percent of sales in July to 13 percent in August, a two year high.
Pocket PC manufacturers, in preparation for the introduction of their new OS in early October, began cutting prices sharply, with selling prices falling to $380 in August from $470 the month prior.
"Despite the modest unit increase, August was not a blockbuster month for handhelds," says Stephen Baker, senior hardware analyst for NPD INTELECT. "Unit growth appears to be driven by substantial price reductions taken by both Compaq and Handspring, and not by seasonal factors."
Palm led the market with a 51.2 percent market share, its lowest of the year. Handspring and Compaq gained ground with aggressive pricing tactics and Sony's increasingly diverse product line performed very strongly. The Palm M100 was the best-selling handheld for the fourth month in a row and the top four models were all from Palm.
According to the survey results from NPD's Online Panel, which consists of more than 600,000 panelists, over 70 percent of PDA purchasers were men between the ages of 25-54. Survey results also revealed that brand was the number one factor in deciding which handheld to purchase.
For more information, visit www.intelectmt.com.

Oct 11 - Intel Releases High-Speed Intel PRO/DSL 3220 Modem. Intel Corporation announced the availability of the Intel(R) PRO/DSL 3220 modem.
The modem includes revised hardware and software that increases digital subscriber line (DSL) performance, makes the modem easier to install, and provides additional remote diagnostics capabilities for telephone company support personnel.
In tests conducted by Intel, the Intel PRO/DSL 3220 exceeded the rigorous requirements of the DSL Forum WT062 suite of tests that are performed with all major DSL access multiplexers (DSLAMs). The model 3220 supports full asynchronous DSL speeds and is the first DSL modem to offer driver support for the Windows XP operating system.
Installation of the new modem is simplified by the addition of new auto-configuration software that allows for a hands-off, zero reboot installation for most PCs. New USB rate adaptation software optimizes the bandwidth usage of the USB bus within the PC. This addresses the concern that high-speed USB devices will dominate the USB bus at the detriment of other USB devices.
Intel's model 3220 software includes Intel(R) Self Install Technology, which reduces the cost of deploying the modems in residential markets by eliminating the need for service providers to make a service call to install the modem. Intel has significantly improved the model 3220 diagnostics capability by including advanced tools that allow Telcos to remotely check the viability of the DSL modem connection.
The model 3220 can automatically discover the VPI/VCI pairs assigned by a telco's DSLAM. It also can discover the right DSL protocol provisioned by the telco for that customer. The model 3220 comes with a native Point-to-Point Protocol over Ethernet (PPPoE) that does not require a separate applet, which greatly simplifies the customer install experience.
Intel, the world's largest chip maker, is also a leading manufacturer of computer, networking and communications products. Additional information about Intel is available at www.intel.com.

Oct 11 - Memory Stick Media Hits the Road With Sony's In-Car Audio Player. Expanding the ever-growing list of Memory Stick(R) media-enabled products, Sony Mobile today announced the world's first in-car Memory Stick audio player.
Now, music that has been downloaded to a Memory Stick card through digital audio players, handheld PDAs or PCs can be enjoyed in the car.
About the size of a sleek, small electric shaver, the MGS-X1 Memory Stick player is a compact device that mounts easily to the dashboard or other convenient location and connects to any Sony UniLink(TM) head unit. The new audio player plays back secure music recorded on MagicGate(TM) Memory Stick media. Since there are no moving parts, the device provides skip-free music even on the bumpiest terrain. Track numbers are displayed right on the car head unit itself.
"Because of its ability to connect, link and share content among a wide variety of devices, Memory Stick is the fastest growing flash media," said Steve Haber, Sony's vice president of marketing for mobile electronics. "This new Memory Stick audio player will advance the connectivity between home, portable and in-car entertainment."

About Memory Stick

Memory Stick media is non-proprietary removable digital storage media designed to transfer information between a wide variety of audio, video, still image and computer products. After just over two years, Memory Stick media has grown from concept to market acceptance used by 10 million users worldwide.
In addition, there are now more than 100 compatible Memory Stick products from various manufacturers worldwide in 30 categories that have been developed or commercialized.
Currently, Memory Stick media is available in 8MB, 16MB, 32MB, 64MB and 128MB capacities.
The new Memory Stick in-car audio player is available now for about $380. For more information on Memory Stick media, please visit www.memorystick.org.

Oct 11 - SONICblue Introduces New Diamond Supra V.92 56K Analog Modems. SONICblue(TM) Incorporated (Nasdaq:SBLU), unleashed superior dial-up modem performance today with the launch of its new Diamond SupraMax(TM) V.92 PCI and Diamond SupraSST V.92 PCI modems. Incorporating the new ITU V.92 and V.44 technologies, SONICblue, an industry leader, is the first manufacturer to completely transition its entire Diamond Supra modem product line to the new industry standards and provide a vastly improved Internet dial-up modem experience for consumers.
"The Diamond Supra V.92 modems offer an industry leading value proposition, providing compelling new features and performance at the same price," said Duane Dickhut, vice president, Access product line, SONICblue. "We believe the new V.92 modems are an excellent upgrade to existing PC's, enabling consumers to greatly improve the performance, reliability, and quality of their Internet connections."

New V.92 Features

In addition to faster Internet speeds through use of V.92-based dial-up connections, the new SupraMax and SupraSST V.92 modems add four important new features: Quick Connect, Modem-on-hold, PCM Upstream and V.44 data compression.

-- Quick Connect reduces the amount of time it takes for the modem and server to link, cutting connect time by up to 66% and putting users online almost instantly.
-- Modem-on-hold enables a standby mode that allows users to take an incoming voice call, or even place a call, without losing their Internet connection.
-- PCM Upstream increases maximum upload speeds to 48Kbps and allows users to more quickly transfer large e-mail messages, documents, spreadsheets, presentations or photos.
-- V.44 Compression delivers compression technology that increases the throughput of HTML, text and other common Internet data types by 30 to 40%. The SupraMax modems are supported by all major operating environments including Windows 95, 98, 98SE, Me, 2000, XP and NT 4.0.

Pricing and Availability

The Diamond SupraMax V.92 PCI modem will be available shortly in North American retail outlets including Best Buy, Circuit City, and Fry's Electronics at $39.95 MSRP. The Diamond SupraMax V.92 PCI and Diamond
SupraSST V.92 PCI modems will also be available shortly in North American distribution channels and system integrators. In addition, the Diamond SupraMax V.92 USB modem is currently available in North American retail outlets at $49.95 MSRP. For more information on Diamond Supra V.92 modems, visit SONICblue's home page (www.SONICblue.com).

Oct 11 - SOYO Announces UDMA 133 Motherboard Support. SOYO Inc. today announced its SY-K7ADA motherboard became the first board to support the new UDMA 133 standard for high-speed data transfers at 133 MBs per second.
SOYO's SY-K7ADA is designed for AMD's Socket A Duron/Thunderbird CPUs. It features Acer Laboratories Inc.'s (Ali) ALiMAGiK chipset. It supports 200MHz or 266MHz system bus and is compatible with faster performance and more economical double data rate (DDR) memory.
The integration of UDMA 133 elevates the SY-K7ADA to a higher level for systems and applications, which require transferring large amounts of data such as digital video or gaming. Since DV content is performance-drive and very dense, SOYO allows users to build systems with UDMA133-supported hard drive in order to store huge amounts of digital content, and transfer content more smoothly and with interrupted streams, according to Ming Chok SOYO VP of Engineering.
UDMA 133 surpasses the current UDMA 100MB/s standard without adding cost. SOYO maintains value and compatibility by utilizing the current technologies, interfaces and connectors. UDMA 133 is backward compatible with 33/66/100-based drives. List price of the SY-K7ADA with UDMA 133 support is $99 (U.S.) with discounts to volume buyers.
Other standard features on the SY-K7ADA include: three DDR SDRAM memory sockets; expansion slots include five 32-bit PCI slots, one AGP 4x/2x/1x-supported slot, a pair of 2 serial ports, 1 parallel port, Floppy Disk Drive (FDD) port, and IrDA (infra-red). The board also features USB version 1.1 with 6 ports, 2 rear and 4 front.
For more information visit www.soyousa.com.

Oct 11 - Adobe Offers New Acrobat eBook Reader for European Markets. Adobe Systems, Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE), the leader in Network Publishing, today announced the availability of the Adobe(R) Acrobat(R) eBook Reader(TM) for international markets.
International eBook Readers are now available in French, German and Spanish and can be downloaded at no charge from the respective international Adobe Web sites (visit www.adobe.com for download locations). Localized eBook content in each of these regions can also be accessed through the "Bookstore" button within the Acrobat eBook Reader.
"With the release of French, German and Spanish versions of the Acrobat eBook Reader, users in numerous countries will now have access to graphically-rich, interactive and dynamic reading experiences through Adobe PDF-based eBooks," said James Alexander, director of eBooks at Adobe. "Adobe recognizes the benefits of eBooks for professional and international markets and we are determined to extend the availability of our eBook Reader to anyone who would benefit from this technology."

Oct 10 - AMD Unveils New AMD Athlon XP Processor. AMD introduced its brand-new processor for high-performance desktop computers, the AMD Athlon XP processor, formerly codenamed "Palomino." The AMD Athlon XP processor features the new, patented QuantiSpeed(TM) architecture, which delivers up to a 25-percent performance advantage versus competitive processors on a broad array of real-world applications, in such categories as digital media, office productivity, and 3D gaming. The new AMD Athlon XP processor offers a significant performance advantage compared to the standard AMD Athlon processor.
The new processor also includes 3DNow!(TM) Professional technology, which adds 52 new instructions, accelerating 3D performance for digital media applications such as photo, video and audio editing. The AMD Athlon "XP" modifier is designed to convey the extreme performance AMD Athlon XP processors deliver for the upcoming Microsoft Windows XP operating system.
AMD will identify the AMD Athlon XP processor using model numbers, as opposed to clock speed in megahertz, and is introducing 1800+, 1700+, 1600+ and 1500+ versions. Model numbers are intended to designate the relative application performance among the various AMD Athlon XP processors, as well as communicate the architectural superiority over existing AMD Athlon processors.
The AMD Athlon XP processor features 384KB of on-chip, full-speed cache. It is compatible with AMD's Socket A infrastructure, and supports an advanced 266MHz front-side bus.
AMD Athlon XP processors are manufactured using AMD's 0.18-micron copper process technology in Fab 30 in Dresden, Germany.
Systems featuring the AMD Athlon XP processor, including models 1800+, 1700+, 1600+ and 1500+, are expected to be available immediately from Compaq, Fujitsu-Siemens and NEC-CI. Other top tier manufacturers, including Fujitsu, Hewlett-Packard Company and MicronPC, also are planning to offer AMD Athlon XP processor-based systems.

Pricing

The AMD Athlon XP processor 1800+, 1700+, 1600+ and 1500+ are priced at $252, $190, $160 and $130 in 1,000-unit quantities, respectively.
For more information visit: www.amd.com.

Oct 10 - 1394 Trade Association Completes Taiwan Plugfest. The 1394 Trade Association completed its fourth successful plugfest for 2001 last week, with almost 20 companies, led by Microsoft, Agere Systems, Apple Computer and Sony, linking a total of 86 different devices and products equipped with the IEEE 1394 specification.
A total of 509 testing results came from the three-day event, held at the Ritz-Landis Hotel in Taipei. During the general group session, a total of 46 different devices were linked on the 1394 bus, one short of the record 47 different devices that were linked at the Tokyo plugfest earlier this year.
"We continue to make significant progress on interoperability and compliance during these very successful plugfest events," said Max Bassler, chairman of the 1394 Trade Association. These are pivotal events for the future of the 1394 standard, and we welcome the participation of all of the companies that joined."
Participants in the Taiwan Plugfest included the following companies: Agere Systems, Bencent Tzeng Industry Co. Ltd., Billionton Systems Inc., DataFab Systems, Inc., DoTop Technology, Inc., Genesys Logic, Glory Mark Electronic Ltd., Joinsoon Electric Mft. Co. Ltd., Kouwell Electronics Corporation, LSI Logic, MacPower, Microsoft Corporation, NEC, NSTL/Allion Computer Inc., Procomp, Silicon Integrated Systems Group, Sony Japan, Texas Instruments, Unixtar Technology, VIA Technologies, Inc. and Visual Frontier Co. Ltd.
A Taiwan Plugfest is now a regular event on the Trade Association's 1394 Plugfest schedule. The next Plugfest is scheduled for February 11-13, 2002, in Los Angeles.
The 1394 Trade Association includes more than 160 members worldwide dedicated to the proliferation and advancement of the IEEE1394 multimedia standard. For more information, visit the TA's web sites at www.1394ta.com or www.askfor1394.com

Oct 10 - Enterprises Will Support Three Distinct Mobile Solutions by 2004. By 2004, a flood of new mobile devices in the enterprise will force at least 50 percent of Fortune 2000 companies to support three distinct solutions, according to Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT and ITB).
Gartner analysts said these IS departments will need to support low-speed wireless data only, voice plus Web access and high-speed wireless LAN access.
Gartner analysts provided their analysis on the future of wireless and mobile computing today during Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2001, which is taking place October 8 - 12 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Gartner analysts said enterprises must be selectively aggressive in the early adoption of only those mobile technologies that support key business initiatives and market imperatives.
"Enterprises should buy standardized devices for business users who can prove that they have a need, or provide an incentive program for employees to purchase all PDAs and smart phones throughout the company," said Ken Dulaney, vice president and research director for Gartner. "Unmanaged, untracked PDAs and phones must not synchronize with enterprise systems, unless the user agrees to install and maintain enterprise-supplied security, backup and auditing tools."
Gartner analysts said that by adopting multiple mobile-computing appliances, users are creating the "age of the personal area network (PAN)." By 2002, 80 percent of mobile devices in the enterprise will contain at least 20 percent personally managed programs and data. By 2003, mobile workers will spend at least 20 minutes per day in a personal data synchronization process.
"Key IS strategies for coping with this mobile device invasion will include constraining supported devices, adopting standardized synchronization tools and moving to higher-level application platforms that rely less on a specific operating system," Dulaney said.
Gartner forecasts that, by 2004, 60 percent of mobile workers will be compelled to carry technologies that offer instant response by voice and hourly response by e-mail. Currently, there is not a determined timetable when mobile workers with cell phones and PDAs will respond to an inquiry. With emerging technologies, the response time will improve dramatically.
"In many enterprises, the turnaround time of voice mail and e-mail are different," Dulaney said. "However, eventually they will converge to the point where users will have to respond in seconds, if they can. At that time, technology will force users to have integrated systems that will treat voice mail and e-mail as interchangeable media, tied together by personal switching systems that locate users and deliver the message in the most convenient media."
Gartner Symposium/ITxpo is the IT industry's largest and most strategic conference, providing business leaders with a look today at the future of IT. For more than 10,000 IT professionals from the world's leading enterprises, Gartner's annual Symposium/ITxpo events are key components of their annual planning efforts, and a place to gain insights into how their organizations can use technology to address business challenges and improve operational efficiency. For more information online, go to www.gartner.com/symposium.

Oct 10 - IBM Announces New PCs, Notebooks, and Software Products. IBM today introduced new notebook and desktop computers with exclusive technologies that make it easier for businesses to link PCs with the rest of their e-business infrastructure.
New IBM ThinkPads and NetVistas now boast innovative wireless and security features, and IBM-patented technology that dramatically reduces the costs associated with managing large numbers of personal computers. New products and technology announced today include:

- Four new ThinkPad notebook models and three new NetVista desktop models;
- The industry's first embedded security subsystem that automatically encrypts user keys, files and e-mails;
- Integrated wireless capabilities for local area networking and Bluetooth technologies;
- A set of PC services that will make it easier -- and a lot less costly -- for businesses to deploy, manage and support personal computers. Using these new services, like ImageUltra, companies can save an estimated $100 per PC, per year, in support cost over the life of the system.

"Today we're delivering technology in wireless, security and manageability that are normally associated with the IT infrastructure to our PC lineup," said Jon Judge, general manager of IBM's Personal Computing Division. "Mobility, security and manageability are critical challenges for our customers, not just in the back office, but with the client devices their employees use everyday. These PC products and services will help address those challenges for our customers, while delivering significant productivity and cost benefits."

New Netvista Desktops include:

A new M series, focusing on maximum performance and stability, and some models have enhanced security features. (Prices range from $999 to $1999)
An upgraded A series that provides the latest technology at affordable prices. (Prices range from $699 to $1999)
An improved X series, emphasizing extraordinary space-saving designs with high performance. (Prices range from $1499 to $2549)

New Thinkpad Notebooks include:

A new line, the R Series (R30), with improved mobility, essential features and performance at an affordable price point. (Prices range from $1249 to $2099.)
A new A Series (A30), redesigned to feature two modular bays, integrated wireless capabilities, including 802.11b and Bluetooth, Web navigation keys, the IBM Embedded Security Subsystem and an enhanced, high-resolution FlexView display. (Prices range from $1599 to $3649.)
An improved X Series (X22), offering integrated wireless capability and security features for the first time on an IBM ultra-portable notebook. (Prices range from $1949 to $2399.)
The ThinkPad T Series (T23), refreshed to include integrated wireless capabilities in additional models. (Prices range from $2849 to $3749.)
ThinkPad A, T and X Series models are available now; the ThinkPad R30 will be available on October 30.
More information on the individual products is available on www.ibm.com.

Oct 10 - Businesses Increasingly Vulnerable to Information Security Attacks. Businesses have become increasingly vulnerable to information security attacks despite an industry-wide boost in security budgets over the last year, according to a new survey by Information Security magazine, sponsored by Predictive Systems (Nasdaq:PRDS) and TruSecure Corporation.
Viruses, worms, Trojans, and other malware infected 90% of the organizations surveyed, even though 88% had anti-virus protection in place. This represents an 11% jump from 2000 to 2001, and demonstrates the growing difficulty to maintain what experts call "controlled access."
"Attacks of this nature are increasing in frequency as well as ferocity," said Ed Skoudis, VP of Ethical Hacking for Predictive Systems. "A single-pronged approach is no longer effective. It is essential that companies adequately assess their vulnerabilities and take a holistic approach toward addressing them."

According to the survey:

- Organizations reporting Web server attacks doubled from 2000 to 2001, from 24% to 48%
- The number of companies reporting security budgets over $1 million has increased 238% from 1998 to 2001, from 8% of responding companies to 27%
- Buffer-overflow attacks, which allow an attacker to take control of systems such as Web servers and other critical machines, hit 33% more companies in 2001 than in 2000.

The survey, which polled 2,545 information security practitioners, was conducted online in late July and early August 2001 by Information Security magazine, Predictive Systems, and TruSecure Corporation. Complete survey results can be found at www.predictive.com or www.infosecuritymag.com.

Oct 10 - Software Breakthrough Will Enable Wireless Global Roaming. Researchers at Bell Labs, the research and development arm of Lucent Technologies (NYSE:LU), have announced a software breakthrough that will enable global roaming across all wireless network types, including third-generation (3G) technologies such as CDMA2000, Universal Mobile Telecommunications Services (UMTS) and other high-speed data access technologies such as 802.11.
The software architecture, called Common Operations (COPS), will allow mobile subscribers to access voice and data services, information, and messages when they are roaming outside of their home network, even in regions where different types of wireless networks predominate. It will also help mobile operators to upgrade and manage their networks more efficiently, improve operational performance, and reduce errors and expenses.
COPS features a unique "protocol gateway" capability that translates data from networks employing a variety of protocols into a single, common language. This makes it possible to maintain a single subscriber profile -- including authentication, authorization and location data -- that can be accessed from a variety of network types.
"As next-generation high-speed mobile data networks emerge and new mobile Internet services are introduced, IP and cellular systems must be able to route calls and deliver services to one another efficiently," said Paul Mankiewich, chief technology officer of Lucent's Mobility Solutions Group. "This breakthrough from Bell Labs will, in the near future, help mobile operators to meet the demand for high-bandwidth services from increasingly mobile subscribers."
Global wireless roaming is not possible today because various wireless network types cannot work together to identify, electronically, the location of mobile subscribers. For example, a subscriber whose mobile operator uses Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) technology is not currently able to access services when roaming on a Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) network.
For a subscriber to initiate a mobile call or activate services such as voicemail, the wireless network must be able to identify the subscriber's location, obtain the subscriber's profile (listing the allowed services), validate the caller's right to the services and then authenticate the caller. Home location registers (HLRs), which are databases of subscriber information, currently perform these functions only when wireless subscribers travel in their home networks, or -- in some cases -- when roaming on networks employing similar technology.
For more information about Bell Labs, visit its Web site at www.bell-labs.com.

Oct 09 - AMD to announce Athlon XP Processor 1800+. AMD will announce later today their new processor, the Athlon XP Processor 1800+.
The AMD Athlon XP processor 1800+, featuring Quantispeed(TM) architecture, is designed to provide the extra performance needed for the ultimate computing experience. It combines this outstanding performance with ease of use and support for the world's most popular software.

About the AMD Athlon XP Processor
The AMD Athlon(TM) XP processor features Quantispeed(TM) architecture, 348 KB (kilobytes) of on-chip, full-speed cache, and support for AMD's 3Dnow!(TM) Professional instructions for enhanced multimedia capabilities. The AMD Athlon XP processor is compatible with AMD's Socket A infrastructure, and supports the advanced 266MHz AMD Athlon front-side bus. AMD Athlon XP processors are manufactured using AMD's 0.18-micron copper process technology in Fab 30 in Dresden, Germany.

More information about AMD's Athlon XP Processor will be posted after AMD's official press conference which will be held later today.

Oct 09 - Intel Researchers Disclose Technology to Enable Billion-Transistor Processors. Intel Corporation today announced its researchers have developed a new semiconductor packaging technology that will help the company build processors with more than 1 billion transistors that will be 10 times faster than the fastest processors today.
The technology, called "Bumpless Build-Up Layer" or BBUL packaging, takes a completely different approach to packaging from the current practice of manufacturing the processor die separately and later bonding it to the package. Instead, BBUL "grows" the package around the silicon, resulting in thinner, higher-performance processors that consume less power.
Intel believes it can begin making BBUL packaging available for commercial products in the next five to six years.
"In order to deliver the applications that could once only be considered science fiction, we will need to create processors that are much more powerful than those we have today," said Dr. Gerald Marcyk, director of Intel's Components Research Lab. "The development of BBUL technology will allow us to deliver the performance of billion-transistor processors to computers users. It is something that current packaging technology just can't handle."
BBUL packaging is thinner and lighter than today's chip packaging options. It can also support multiple chips in the same package. The role of packaging is to "house" the processor die, supply it with electricity and act as the interface between the silicon and the rest of the computer system while protecting it from dirt and physical dangers. Intel uses various forms of packaging to help tailor its processors for specific applications, including using smaller, thinner packages for mobile PCs, or packages with built-in reliability and manageability features for servers. Packaging also plays a key role in delivering processor performance, since it takes data into and out of the silicon core at ever-faster speeds.
"If packaging technology does not keep up with the pace of silicon development, it will become a limiter to processor performance," Marcyk said. "Putting fast silicon into slow packages would be analogous to putting a Formula One engine on a bicycle and expecting it to run like a race car."

Toward the Billion-Transistor Processor

The first step in building high-density, super-fast processors is the design of very fast, very small transistors. In June, Intel scientists unveiled the world's fastest transistors, running at a blistering 1.5 Terahertz (1,500 Gigahertz), and featuring structures as thin as three atomic layers. The second step is the development of advanced lithography technology in order to print those transistors on a sliver of silicon. Intel has been leading the industry's effort to develop Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, which will allow Intel to pack a billion transistors into a single processor. The third step is to develop a processor package that can handle the transistor density and speed of these future processors without slowing them down. This is the driving force behind BBUL technology research.

BBUL packaging

Today, silicon chips, such as the Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 processor, are connected to their packaging via tiny balls of solder called "bumps." These bumps make the electrical and mechanical connections between the package and the chip. As the frequency in future processors increases exponentially, the performance of the bumps, the thickness of the packaging and the number of connection points become concerns.
BBUL packaging eliminates use of these solder bumps completely. Instead of attaching the silicon die to the package, the BBUL technique grows the package around the silicon. High-speed copper connections are used to connect the die to the different layers of the package. This approach reduces the thickness of the processor package and enables the processor to run at a lower voltage -- both key features for small, battery-operated devices such as mobile PCs or handheld devices.
Using BBUL packaging, Intel could also create multi-chip processors, such as server processors with two silicon cores and other supporting silicon chips embedded into one small, high-performance package. BBUL packaging technology could also offer a simple method to develop a "system-on-a-package" through the use of high-speed copper lines directly located above the different pieces of silicon. This would allow designers to more easily embed powerful computers into such everyday objects as a car's dashboard.
Intel Labs researchers will disclose the technical details of this new packaging technology Oct. 9 at the Advanced Metalization Conference in Montreal.
For more information on Intel packaging technology and other silicon research, visit Intel's Silicon Showcase at www.intel.com/research/silicon.

Oct 09 - Sony's New VAIO PCs Make Presentations Portable. Sony increased its traction in the corporate environment with the introduction of the GR series of VAIO(R) notebook computers. Now the new fall lineup of GR models, featuring 15-inch displays, will give business users even more to yearn for. "Our new GR models are specifically designed to accommodate business professionals," said Mark Hanson, vice president and general manager for VAIO PC marketing. "Now, they can have cool computers without sacrificing screen size and the power to fuel both creativity and productivity."
Ideal as a desktop replacement, the new notebooks are easy on the eyes. With large and distinctive 15-inch SXGA or XGA + TFT displays, the GR290 and GR270 models boast brilliant viewing quality for the playback of business presentations and DVDs. The top-of-the-line GR290 is expected to sell for about $3,500 and the GR270 for about $2,700. The GR250 with a 14.1-inch screen offers a lighter alternative and has an expected selling price of $2,200.
The GR290 features the fastest mobile Intel(R) Pentium(R) III processor -- M running at 1.2 GHz. Designed specifically for notebook PCs, the mobile Intel processor provides maximum performance by allowing machines to run cooler, have longer battery life and function more efficiently. Each unit is also equipped with a swappable multi-bay for the internal removable CD-RW/DVD combo drive or dual capacity battery.
The multi-bay functionality permits users to lighten the load of their PCs with the convenient weight saver or run multiple batteries at the same time, allowing professionals to work longer remotely. Additionally, all three new models offer VAIO Support Agent technology. Designed with intuitive specific VAIO software, the Support Agent feature provides business users with fast and easy help to computer questions by allowing them to search for solutions online or guiding them to various "how to" help pages.
For additional information about Sony computer products, visit Sony's web site at: www.SonyStyle.com/vaio.

Oct 09 - Evergreen 1 GHz Upgrade Bundles Deliver Power & Memory. Evergreen Technologies, Inc., a leader in PC performance upgrades since 1989, today announced new Hardware Upgrade Bundles for Windows XP which boost performance of early Pentium III, Pentium II and Celeron systems, in preparation for the increased demands of the new Microsoft Windows XP operating system.
In these discounted bundles, Evergreen's new Performa III 1GHz, Performa 1GHz, and Spectra III 1GHz are paired with 128Mb of SDRAM memory to provide users comprehensive system performance equal to that available in brand new PCs shipping with Windows XP.
Evergreen's new Performa III 1GHz provides the processing power of Intel's full Coppermine PIII core--including the latest MMX and SIMD video enhancement instructions (SSE) and 256K of L2 cache memory--for upgrading early Slot 1 Pentium III and Pentium II systems running at 100MHz front side bus speeds (350MHz and higher).
Evergreen's new Performa 1GHz upgrade provides the processing power of the Intel Celeron(TM) II flip-chip processor--the value-based (128K vs. 256K L2 cache) derivative of the full Coppermine PIII core--for upgrading the same 350 MHz and higher Slot 1 Pentium III and Pentium II machines.
Customers may use Evergreen's exclusive Web-based pre-qualification tool at www.evergreennow.com to help determine if their system is a candidate for any of these products.

Oct 08 - Motorola Moves to Accelerate Adoption of Next-Generation Wireless. The wireless phone: It used to seem like something of a miracle, didn't it? But today it's an indispensable tool for hundreds of millions of users.
Having grown accustomed to mobile voice communications, cellular phone devotees now want more from their handsets: access to e-mail, text messaging, data, weather and stock quotes and even interactive services.
Some of these services are already available, on a limited basis, on today's digital cellular networks -- the second generation (2G) of wireless technology. The widely anticipated, but not yet fully developed, third generation (3G) of wireless technology will fling the door wide open, delivering high-speed access for such demanding applications as streaming media, interactive gaming and videoconferencing.
In the meantime, there is 2.5G: newly developed technology that can bring consumers more services and improved capabilities by building on existing 2G networks. It bridges the divide between 2G and 3G, giving handset makers and service providers a way to keep consumers engaged while they wait for the next generation. But the complexity of 2.5G technology, primarily embodied in General Packet Radio Service (GPRS), presents a significant barrier to handset makers eager to tap into the market.
Enter Motorola. In a move that has come as a surprise to many observers, Motorola -- a major player in semiconductors and a leading manufacturer of mobile communications devices -- has announced that it will use its expertise to open up the 2.5G market for everyone. In July 2001, Motorola said it plans to offer the semiconductor and software technology at the heart of 2.5G and 3G devices to other mobile phone makers.
In other words, Motorola is inviting everyone into the fold.
"Motorola is the leader in wireless and the leader in GPRS," says Pete Shinyeda, corporate vice president and general manager of the Wireless & Broadband Systems Group, part of the company's Semiconductor Products Sector (SPS). "No other company is better positioned to get companies to 2.5G -- and to 3G, down the road -- than Motorola."

Next-Generation Wireless

Although it's a new technology, GPRS is implemented as an upgrade to current GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) systems. GSM serves the majority of 2G wireless subscribers worldwide. It is based on traditional circuit-switched technology, so it's great for voice but not optimal for data services.
Data is best served by packet-switched networks, such as those based on Internet Protocol (IP). GPRS is well suited for data because it is something of a hybrid: While preserving circuit-switching for voice calls, it supports IP and implements packet-switching techniques into the GSM system for data transmission. Motorola, building on its considerable GSM expertise, was the first to achieve an IP call over a GSM network, a major step in the development of 2.5G technology. As a result of this packet-switching capability, GPRS permits convenient, "always-on" data connections, as well as substantially faster data transmission.

Standardization of Technology

Standardization also promises to lower costs for handset suppliers and consumers. "What's going to drive value for Motorola is economy of scale," Shinyeda says. "We can cost-reduce and have a competitive strategy for customers, so we can enable them to have a lower-cost solution on the marketplace."
Motorola's own PCS sector endorses this strategy to supply its own competitors -- a point reiterated by Mike Zafirovski, executive vice president and president of Motorola PCS, during an analysts' meeting after the July announcement of the new strategy.
In fact, says SPS's Shinyeda, "They've been on board for a while. We couldn't have started this a year ago without the blessing across the corporation."
More information about Motorola can be found at www.motorola.com.

Oct 08 - 'Web Bug' Standards to be Developed. The Network Advertising Initiative (NAI) today announced the launch of a program to develop online industry standards for the use of web beacons, also called "web bugs."
The announcement was timed to coincide with the Privacy 2001 Conference being held in Cleveland, Ohio.
"The use of web beacons is critical to the continued growth and success of the online economy. Web beacons allow us to provide, among other things, more relevant offers to consumers and anonymous reporting to advertisers on the effectiveness of online ad campaigns. At the same time, the online industry has recognized the need for transparency in the use of web beacons - there are important consumer privacy issues that need to be addressed," said Trevor Hughes, Executive Director of the NAI.
The NAI's web beacon program will respond to consumer privacy concerns through the development standards for the use of web beacons online. Any organization that uses web beacons will be encouraged to participate in this effort.
Web beacons are a tool that can be used online to deliver a cookie in a third party context. This allows companies to perform many important tasks - including unique visitor counts, web usage patterns, assessments of the efficacy of ad campaigns, delivery of more relevant offers, and tailoring of web site content. The web beacon's cookie is typically delivered or read through a single pixel on the host site.
In developing standards for the use of web beacons, the NAI will be building upon the successful development and implementation of the NAI self regulatory principles for Online Preference Marketing (OPM). The NAI's principles for OPM were developed with direct input from the FTC and Department of Commerce and have been widely lauded as an exemplary self regulatory system.
The NAI (Network Advertising Initiative) is a cooperative group of online companies who have joined together to address privacy issues raised by emerging media formats. The NAI's foremost commitment is to provide transparency to consumers with regard to the use of privacy-sensitive technologies.

Oct 08 - Thirty Percent of All Consumers Interested in Voice, Video, and Internet Bundle. According to the Yankee Group's annual Technologically Advanced Family(R) (TAF(R)) Survey, which measures consumers' experiences and interaction with over 100 products and services, consumers show a strong interest in receiving multiple communications services from a single provider. Thirty percent of all consumers and 44% of early adopters or TAFs(R) are interested in purchasing a voice, video, and data bundle from the "right" provider.
The local providers continue to have an edge over competitors in brand and consumer perception. Fifty percent of consumers point to the local telephone company as one of the providers they would first turn to for this integrated package, compared with 29% who cite a long-distance provider and 25% who say a cable company. Contrary to the belief of most companies, only 44% of consumers are motivated by discounts. Seventy-one percent of consumers cite a single bill as a major incentive to use a single provider, and 60% cite "simplicity." Nineteen percent of consumers imagine they would "receive better service" from a single provider, indicating the desire for a deeper relationship with and greater attention from providers.
"Consumers want choice and competition, and will migrate toward providers that offer more robust products combined with better customer service and perceived sufficient value for monthly charges. There is a great opportunity, but providers must effectively market these value propositions, offering `solutions' to distinct consumer segments. The result will be an edge over competitors that provide only stand-alone services, particularly in those markets that are currently underserved," commented Meredith Rosenberg, vice president of the Consumer Market Convergence research and consulting practice at the Yankee Group.
The Yankee Group can be found on the Web at www.yankeegroup.com.

Oct 08 - Seventy-five Percent of Americans Concerned About Their Job Security. As the unemployment rate made a significant jump in August and September to 4.9% and is predicted to rise following widespread corporate layoffs, the majority of Americans do not feel confident about their job security.
According to the latest Monster Meter, 75 percent of Monster.com users are concerned about their job security. Of that 75 percent, nearly 40 percent have some anxiety about their job security, while 36 percent feel they could lose their job at anytime; this marks a increase from three months ago, when 30 percent felt they could lose their job at anytime. Additionally, only 8 percent of respondents both in September and June believe they are indispensable to their employers and not in any danger of losing their jobs.
The Monster Meter, a product of Monster.com(R) the leading global online careers site and flagship brand of TMP Worldwide Inc. (NASDAQ:TMPW), is an ongoing series of online polls that gauge users' opinions on a variety of topics relating to careers, the economy, and the workplace.

The Monster Meter asked, "On a scale of 1 to 5, how would you rate your job security."
A total of 14,847 votes were cast in September, revealing:

-- 36% (5354 votes) said: "1 - I could be the next to go."
-- 21% (3171 votes) said: "2 - I have a few worries."
-- 18% (2748 votes) said: "3 - I'm somewhat safe."
-- 17% (2529 votes) said: "4 - I'm confident in my importance."
-- 7% (1045 votes) said: "5 - I am indispensable."

A total of 20,334 votes were cast in June, revealing:

-- 30% (6144 votes) said: "1 - I could be the next to go."
-- 20% (4113 votes) said: "2 - I have a few worries."
-- 20% (4030 votes) said: "3 - I'm somewhat safe."
-- 22% (4532 votes) said: "4 - I'm confident in my importance."
-- 7% (1515 votes) said: "5 - I am indispensable."

"As we have seen in the last couple of weeks and which has been confirmed by the latest unemployment figures and job cuts during the month of September, a difficult environment exists in the current labor market," said Marcel Legrand, senior vice president of product, Monster.com. "Given this time of economic uncertainty, it's increasingly important for all job seekers to be prepared for the fluctuations in the job market and to be aware of possible avenues and opportunities that will enhance their general marketability as a job candidate."
Anyone interested in voting in Monster.com's current online poll may do so by logging onto Monster.com at www.monster.com.

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