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Daily Computer News and Rumors

October 8-14 2002

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

InfoHQ Daily Computer News and Rumors Article Index
Date
(Click on story to read, use your Browser's back button to return to the Index.)
Oct 14 Harman Multimedia Improves Laptop Audio Performance
Oct 14 Toshiba Drives Wireless Laptop Mobility
Oct 14 Marvell Introduces Gigabit Ethernet Controller Chip for Desktops
Oct 14 Remwave Inc. is Starting Mac2Phone.com for OS X
Oct 13 Sunday Shopping Watch
Oct 11 HP and Microsoft Announce HP Media Center PC
Oct 11 Motherboards with SiS Chipsets May Be Banned from Sale in US
Oct 11 Component Index Remains Flat for 4th Month in Row
Oct 11 Survey Finds E-Mail Displacing Postal Mail as Customer Communication Channel
Oct 10 Berlin Airports Adopt Face Recognition Security System
Oct 10 Kivera Launches Bluetooth-Enabled Vehicle Navigation System
Oct 10 Rambus Reports September Quarter Earnings
Oct 10 High Technology Down by 113,000 Jobs for the First Half of 2002
Oct 09 IBM ThinkPad Turns 10
Oct 09 Toshiba Introduces New Satellite 5205-S503 Notebook PC
Oct 09 NVIDIA Offers Family of AGP 8X GPU and Core Logic Solutions
Oct 09 Sharp Introduces New 18.1'' LCD Monitor
Oct 08 Intel Extends Pentium® 4 Processor Platforms With Four Advanced Chipsets
Oct 08 Dell Introduces Two New Dimension Desktops
Oct 08 ``Rogue'' Online Pharmacies Threaten Consumer Health
Oct 08 SONICblue Introduces New Rio Portable Digital Music Players
Oct 08 T-Mobile and Sierra Wireless Introduce `Global Ready' Wireless PC Card

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Oct 14 -Harman Multimedia Improves Laptop Audio Performance. Harman Multimedia, a worldwide leader in branded multimedia audio solutions, today introduced a breakthrough 2.1 audio system (integrated satellite speakers and subwoofer), available only on Toshiba's newest laptop series, the Satellite 5205-S503.

This series of laptops is the first Toshiba portable to feature an internal 2.1 speaker system under the legendary Harman Kardon brand name.

The Harman Kardon audio system in Toshiba's Satellite 5205-S503 creates an unprecedented level of bass performance. With bass response as low as 100 Hertz, the new Harman Kardon audio solution produces an additional octave of bass compared to competitive laptop computers.

To place in perspective, the frequency of the "middle C" on a piano is 256 Hertz, a frequency not typically produced by other laptop computers. Given the strong bass response of the Harman Kardon system, the new Toshiba laptop is able to reproduce low-frequency sounds including drums, bass guitar, and synthesizers.

"The Harman Kardon system in Toshiba's Satellite 5205-S503 produces high-fidelity, high-performance audio previously unimaginable in portable computing," said James A. Druckrey, president of Harman Multimedia. "Our proprietary Harman Kardon audio system provides an unparalleled sound experience."

"Harman Kardon's audio solution provides Satellite 5205-S503 users a new level of sound quality enhancing multimedia applications such as DVD playback and computer gaming," said Oscar Koenders, vice president of product marketing and worldwide product planning, Toshiba Computer Systems Group, a division of Toshiba America Information Systems, Inc. "The audio solution from Harman Kardon further illustrates Toshiba's leadership in combining rich multimedia features to create a mobile experience that goes beyond simple computing."

Pricing and Availability

The Toshiba Satellite 5205-S503 is available now through www.shoptoshiba.com, and Toshiba's retail distribution channels including computer superstores and consumer electronic stores.

Oct 14 - Toshiba Drives Wireless Laptop Mobility. Extending its leadership in the mobile computing industry, Toshiba's Computer Systems Group (CSG) today announced it will offer PCS Vision service from Sprint (NYSE:FON/PCS) along with the PCS Connection Card(TM) by Novatel Wireless (Merlin C201(TM)) (Nasdaq:NVTL).

Coupling Toshiba's mobile products with the enhanced Sprint Nationwide PCS Network and the PCS Connection Card by Novatel Wireless (Merlin C201) allows the mobile workforce to further enhance their wireless capabilities. Customers may select from a variety of service plans designed to fit any business need.

Leveraging its industry-leading strengths in mobility, Toshiba's offering joined with Novatel Wireless and Sprint allows business customers to access e-mail, the Internet, corporate databases and other corporate communications on their Toshiba notebooks when they are mobile anywhere on the enhanced Sprint Nationwide PCS Network.

"Our relationship with Novatel Wireless and Sprint is a significant part of Toshiba's mobility strategy aimed at keeping our customers connected and productive wherever they are on the enhanced Sprint Nationwide PCS Network," said Oscar Koenders, vice president of product marketing and worldwide product planning, Toshiba CSG.

"Whether accessing corporate applications or sending and receiving e-mail while waiting for a flight, the combination of a Toshiba notebook with the PCS Connection Card by Novatel Wireless and PCS Vision service from Sprint is a powerful productivity package that ultimately impacts the bottom line."

Slightly larger than a credit card, the Merlin C201 PC Card is designed to operate on the enhanced Sprint Nationwide PCS Network, offering mobile users high-speed wireless data access up to 144 Kbps, with average speeds of 50 to 70 Kbps. With 2-way wireless WAN, it redefines the way the mobile workforce stays connected.

"The launch of PCS Vision from Sprint has been a catalyst for increased wireless use and adoption, while Toshiba has a clear leadership position in mobile computing, and is the largest supplier of laptops worldwide," commented Peter Leparulo, senior vice president, CDMA operations of Novatel Wireless.

"We are pleased to be a leading supplier to both of these companies, as we all share a commitment to providing best-in-class mobility solutions to businesses and individuals nationwide."

Pricing and Availability

Toshiba's corporate enterprise customers can purchase the PCS Connection Card by Novatel Wireless (Merlin C201) at a suggested retail price of $249 and also choose from four primary PCS Vision service plans ranging from $39.99 to $119.99 a month. The offer is open to both existing and potential Sprint and Toshiba business customers.

Oct 14 - Marvell Introduces Gigabit Ethernet Controller Chip for Desktops. Marvell(R) (Nasdaq:MRVL), a technology leader in the development of extreme broadband communications solutions, today introduced its Yukon(TM) Gigabit Ethernet controller, offering OEMs "future-proofed" 10/100/1000 plug-and-play PC network connections.

The Yukon product is the first desktop solution in the industry to incorporate advanced cable diagnostics by incorporating Marvell's Virtual Cable Tester(TM) (VCT) technology. VCT enables IT managers to easily identify cabling issues with pinpoint accuracy, thus significantly reducing network deployment and maintenance costs. In fact with VCT, deploying Gigabit Ethernet is now more cost-effective than deploying Fast Ethernet.

The Yukon product is optimized for 32-bit PCI clients, and is the world's first single-chip Gigabit Ethernet PCI product in a 128-pin LQFP package. With the lowest pin count for such a device, the Yukon product minimizes board space, simplifies signal routing and reduces the number of required PCB layers, resulting in the most cost-effective motherboard and low profile NIC implementation on the market today.

"After completing millions of unit shipments of Gigabit Ethernet devices, Marvell brings high-integration, high-volume economics to 10/100/1000 LOM/NIC implementations, and makes triple speed the logical choice for new desktop network connections. As a result of this cost-effective product offering, Marvell makes choosing Gigabit Ethernet an easy decision for OEMs by allowing them to standardize on a reliable, plug-and-play, triple speed client network connection," stated Ali Khan, Marvell's NIC/LOM Product Marketing Manager for the Communications Business Group.

"The natural evolution of technology suggests that soon every PC will come standard with 10/100/1000, completing the transition of Gigabit to the desktop. With the addition of our single-chip Yukon device to our broad portfolio of Gigabit-based PHY and switch products, Marvell is now the industry leader in providing the most complete and robust Gigabit solution from the client to the switch," Khan further stated. "Our solution will enable OEMs to standardize on Gigabit Ethernet in all PCs."

MSI may be contacted at www.marvell.com.

Oct 14 - Remwave Inc. is Starting Mac2Phone.com for OS X. - San Diego-based Remwave Inc. launched its Mac2Phone.com service.

Now the Mac community can make free phone calls between Apple computers running the Mac OS X operating system or to PCs running the buddyphone software (www.buddyphone.com).

"With mac2phone.com we have launched our support and commitment to the OS X platform. As a perfect system for Java applications we see huge opportunities in developing for OS X," said Nikolai Manek, CEO of Remwave Inc.

More information and the downloadable software are under www.mac2phone.com.

Oct 13 - Sunday Shopping Watch.

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

Weekly Comparison. System prices were difficult to compare as new systems were advertised. Vendors concentrated on advertising higher-priced desktops and laptops.

Laptops - Stores advertised higher-end models in the low-priced laptop category, high-end Pentium 4 laptops were all priced over $2000 so we didn't bother to list them. AMD Athlon XP laptops dominated our low-price laptop category.
Desktops - Intel Celeron prices were about the same, a 2.4 GHz Pentium 4 desktop made it into our low-end category for the first time, and Pentium 4 high-end desktops were about the same as last week. AMD Athlon desktops were only advertised by one of the 5 stores we monitor.

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

BestBuy is offering 6 months of free MSN with any computer purchase. They are also offering $100 mail-in rebates on all AMD laptops.
Circuit City is giving away 3 months of free AOL on any in-store computer purchase. In addition they are offering 12 month no interest financing on all AMD processor laptops and Intel Pentium 4 desktop packages.
Office Depot has 6 month no interest, no payment financing for purchases over $298.
CompUSA is offering 6 months no payments, no interest on computer system purchases $799 and higher.
Staples has $150 instant savings on any desktop package.
Compare to Online Prices - Compare the Sunday ad prices to those being offered at DealTime, it searches over 160 online computer stores.

Shopping Alert on Lower Priced Desktops. Many lower priced Celeron/Duron desktops made by almost all computer manufacturers should be carefully investigated before purchase.
Most of these low priced desktops have no AGP video expansion slot, no onboard dedicated video RAM, no CD-RW drive, and very few empty PCI expansion slots. These computers will be very difficult to upgrade, and they have poorer performance than other desktops that do not have integrated audio and video chips on the motherboard.
Often by spending $200-$400 more for a Pentium 4 or Athlon XP based system, you can get twice the performance, more features, and you will have an upgradeable computer that will serve you well for another 3 years.
If you choose the $700 Celeron/Duron system to save a few bucks, keep in mind that in a year or two you will probably want to replace it.

Note on the "Loaded Celeron" Intel Celerons at speeds of 1.7 GHz or faster are potentially upgradeable to Pentium 4 processors. Slower Celerons are not socket compatible with the Pentium 4.
These faster Celeron systems are more like a low end Pentium 4 system as they often include: 400 MHz bus speed, DDR RAM, CD-RW or DVD drives, and flat screen monitors.

Shopping Alert on Lower Priced Laptops - AMD Duron, AMD Athlon 4, and Intel Pentium III laptops should only be purchased at significant discounts. These processors have been superseded by the newer mobile AMD Athlon XP+ and the Intel Pentium 4-M processors.

About Windows XP. It has been a little over 11 months since Windows XP began to be bundled with new computers. Windows XP became available for separate purchase on October 25, 2001. For more information on Windows XP see our Windows XP Upgrade Guide.

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

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

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

Best Sunday Ad Deals
Category
Product Description
Price* (see above)
Prices up or Down this Week
Store
Best Celeron Deal
Compaq 1.4 GHz complete system
$599
-
CompUSA
1. Best Low-cost Pentium 4
Compaq 2.0 GHz complete system
$899
-
Circuit City
2. Best Low-cost Pentium 4
Compaq 2.4 GHz complete system
$999
-
Circuit City
1. Best High-end Pentium 4 System
Sony 2.4 GHz complete system
$1149
-
Circuit City
2. Best High-end Pentium 4 System
HP 2.53 GHz complete system with DVD+RW Drive
$1399
-
Circuit City
Best Low-cost Athlon XP System
None Advertised
Best High-end Athlon XP System
Compaq 2200+ complete system
$1049
-
Circuit City
1. Best Low-cost Notebook
Compaq Athlon XP 1400+ with DVD
$999
-
CompUSA
2. Best Low-cost Notebook
HP 1.8 GHz Pentium 4-M with DVD
$1099
-
Staples
3. Best Low-cost Notebook
Sony Athlon XP 1600+ with DVD/CD-RW
$1299
-
Best Buy, Circuit City
Best High-end Notebook
Sony Athlon XP 1800+ with DVD/CD-RW
$1399
-
Best Buy
Peripherals
Best Sunday Deal
Roller Coaster Tycoon (available Tuesday)
$19.99
-
Circuit City
Best Sunday Deal
All-in-Wonder Radeon 8500 128 MB DDR

$149
(after rebates)

-
CompUSA
Best Sunday Deal
PNY GeForce4 Ti 4400

$229

-
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
Sony 40X CD-RW
$39
(after rebates)
-
Best Buy
Best Sunday Deal
Memorex DVD+RW/CD-RW
$299
-
Best Buy

 

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

 

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

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

Oct 11 - HP and Microsoft Announce HP Media Center PC. HP (NYSE:HPQ) and Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq:MSFT) today announced the HP Media Center PC with Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Media Center Edition.

The HP Media Center PC is powered by Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition, which turns a PC into a media center that integrates digital entertainment experiences -- including live television, personal video recording with free electronic program guide, digital music, digital video, DVDs and digital photos -- with the freedom of remote control access.

"With its combination of PC power and entertainment features, the HP Media Center PC is an ideal choice for consumers looking to purchase a PC as a holiday gift," said Sam Szteinbaum, North America vice president of consumer products, HP Personal Systems Group. "It's like giving a PC and all your home entertainment center components in one."

The HP Media Center PC is ideal for digital media enthusiasts and consumers, such as teenagers, college students, young adults and families, who want to use their PC for entertainment and digital media in small, space-constrained environments. Featuring a sleek black and chrome design, the new HP Media Center PC will have a six-in-one media card reader on its front panel for quick and easy transfer of digital data, outstanding sound quality, and photo and home movie creation and editing software.

Powered by Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 processors, the HP Media Center PC allows users to enjoy the digital entertainment capabilities of the newest member of the Windows XP family. Building on the stability of Windows XP and its easy-to-use digital media tools, Windows XP Media Center Edition introduces the new Media Center user experience. Media Center will serve as a unified destination for entertainment on the HP Media Center PC and is designed to be viewed from anywhere in the room.

"Windows XP Media Center Edition represents the arrival of a new type of home computing experience, and Microsoft is excited to be working with such broad-reaching retailers to bring consumers media center PCs that will offer them more freedom, more fun and deliver even more value in their everyday lives," said Mike Toutonghi, vice president of the Windows eHome Division, Microsoft.

Expected to be available by the end of October, the HP Media Center PC will have an estimated U.S. street price starting at $1,399. Additional information on the HP Media Center PC is available at http://www.hp.com/go/mediacenterpc.

Windows XP Media Center Edition is an edition of Windows XP that is available only on a new Media Center PC. Because of the special hardware features of a Media Center PC, Windows XP Media Center Edition is available only on Media Center PCs manufactured by Microsoft's PC manufacturer partners. For more information about Media Center PCs, see the Windows XP Media Center Edition system requirements.

Oct 11 - Motherboards with SiS Chipsets May Be Banned from Sale in US. From VIA Technology Forum in Taiwan and Beijing today, industry analyst, Dr. Jon Peddie of Jon Peddie Research files the following report that the potential impact from the SiS-USB-ITC injunction could have a devastating effect on any possible year-end recovery in the tech market and the effects may be felt well into Q1, 2003.

Taiwan is shaking, this time not from an earthquake--but from motherboard pile-up. During VIA Technology Forum, word spread like wildfire in this gossip-ridden town about the SiS-USB-ITC injunction.

When SiS (Silicon Integrated Systems Corp.) announced construction of an 8-inch fab in April 1999, it let it be known it would stop using the services of UMC (United Microelectronics Corp.). Although that in itself might have been cause for a disagreement with regard to fulfilling contracts, UMC, which has a reputation for playing hardball, filed suit in the U.S. District Court of San Jose in December, 2000 alleging SiS recruited some of UMC's engineers and infringed its intellectual properties. SiS was also alleged to have violated strict nondisclosure agreements as well as agreements not to compete with UMC.

By February 2001, The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) voted to investigate whether Silicon Integrated Systems Corp. was violating two patents owned by United Microelectronics Corp., the world's No.2 silicon foundry.

And so it ground on through the courts and ITC, until this week. On October 9, 2002, UMC announced it had won a ruling against SiS by the ITC. In a Notice of Final Determination and Issuance of Limited Exclusion Order issued in Washington DC on October 7, 2002, the ITC ruled that SiS is manufacturing products using a patented UMC process in violation of United States law. The Limited Exclusion Order directs the U.S. Customs Service to bar the entry of all SiS products made with the infringing process into the United States.

Infringing SiS chipsets and graphics chips, and all motherboards containing infringing SiS products, are to be barred from importation into the United States immediately following the law-mandated 60-day period for Presidential review of the decision. During this review period, infringing SiS products may be imported into the United States only if a bond is posted with the U.S. Customs Service in the amount of 100% of product value for each chipset and graphics chip, and 39% of product value for each motherboard containing those products. If the ITC's decision stands after the 60 days have elapsed, infringing SiS products will be barred from importation or sale in the United States until the year 2017.

SiS said it partially disagreed with the determination, and has adopted a new manufacturing process to manufacture redesigned products for import to the U.S. Therefore; asserted SIS, the production and product shipments will be unaffected, and there will be no impact on customer supplies and imports to the U.S. For its part, SiS claims the ITC upheld only one of the 29 complaints brought before the ITC by UMC.

Just the same, posturing aside, SiS parts and SiS-based motherboards are not coming to the U.S for at least 60 days, plus there are already shipments backed up due to the West Coast port shut down. And, even though West Coast dockworkers headed back to work under court order Wednesday, they face a huge backlog of cargo that built up over 10 days but could take more than two months to clear. All that means no SiS-based motherboards or chips will touch U.S. distributors' warehouses until maybe next March!

Jon Peddie Research can be found online at www.jonpeddie.com.

Oct 11 - Component Index Remains Flat for 4th Month in Row. Electronic component orders remained flat in September for the fourth month in a row, according to the monthly index provided by the Electronic Components, Assemblies & Materials Association (ECA).

Although weekly orders experienced small gains during the month, it did not significantly change the overall index, which is mirroring activity from the second half of last year.

"Most manufacturers saw minimal growth in overall sales, but not enough to signal an upward trend," says Bob Willis, ECA president. "Companies with diverse product offerings and those that sell to niche markets reported more substantial improvement. There is cautious optimism in some commodity markets as unit sales improve, but the continued pricing pressures in the passive components marketplace has kept revenues flat."

The Electronic Components, Assemblies & Materials Association (ECA) represents manufacturers and producers of passive and active electronic components, component arrays and assemblies, and materials and support services. For more information, visit www.ec-central.org.

Oct 11 - Survey Finds E-Mail Displacing Postal Mail as Customer Communication Channel. Tumbleweed(R) Communications Corp. (Nasdaq:TMWD), a leading provider of secure messaging applications for businesses using the Internet, today released the results of the company's recently conducted survey on enterprise information security.

The survey, conducted between July and September of 2002 by NFO Prognostics, a global leader in IT customer research and consulting, garnered responses from over 750 IT and business professionals representing 9 vertical industries, including financial services, insurance, healthcare and government.
The survey found that 68% of respondents feel e-mail is an important customer communications channel, where only 60% valued postal mail as an important way to communicate with customers. The telephone was listed as the most important customer communications vehicle, with 86% listing it as important.

"The convenience, cost savings and immediacy of e-mail has made it a more popular customer communication method than postal mail," said Jeff Smith, co-founder, chairman and chief executive officer of Tumbleweed Communications. "But before organizations can take full advantage of the cost savings and enhanced responsiveness offered by e-mail, they must provide an e-mail channel that is as private as a phone conversation. Similar to phone-based communication, the secure e-mail solution deployed needs to be universal in order to maximize the adoption rate."

In related findings, respondents listed customers as the number one group they need to protect e-mail communications with (84% feel it's important; 56% say "very important"), and 89% regard protection of customer privacy during e-mail discussions as important.

Tumbleweed can be found online at www.tumbleweed.com.

Oct 10 - Berlin Airports Adopt Face Recognition Security System. ZN Vision Technologies AG recently secured an order for another major project: Berlin airports are to be fitted with biometric equipment.

The access control system ZN-Face, developed by the Bochum specialists for face recognition, will be used for protecting security areas at Berlin airports, starting at Tegel airport.

Berliner Flughafengesellschaft mbH pushes for actions to install biometrics in airports: ZN-Face offers the solution to significantly improve airport security concepts around the world. Just recently, the pilots' organization Cockpit criticized that still not everybody is checked when seeking access to security areas at German airports.

By installing ZN-Face at Berlin airports this critical gap will be closed in the security concepts.

ZN-Face ensures that sensitive airport areas can be restricted to authorized and registered personnel only. Every person seeking access to an area protected by ZN-Face has to verify himself or herself via an automated face recognition terminal.

Potential threats posed by criminals who often succeed in entering high security areas by means of a suitable disguise (pilot and general work uniforms, cleaning utensils) are ruled out effectively: Unlike the sole use of identification card-based control systems so far operated at Berlin airports, ZN-Face provides a reliable biometric check in addition to current systems.

The individual's face characteristics are stored on a smart card while ZN-Face will compare and verify the card information with the face readings at each access station. Compared to systems with identification cards only, faces can neither be "exchanged" nor "stolen." Deception is almost impossible, not even by changing the person's appearance with a beard, wig or glasses.

While security was the most important factor for Berlin airports, other criteria contributed to the decision for ZN-Face, in particular the requirements for efficiency, possible integration into other systems, user acceptance and a proven technology. The system enables a multi-layer administration of access rights for every airport employee while the system is working completely independent and faultless.

ZN Vision Technologies AG can be found on the Internet at www.zn-ag.com.

Oct 10 - Kivera Launches Bluetooth-Enabled Vehicle Navigation System. Kivera today announced its automotive navigation system based on Bluetooth(TM) technology, which allows automotive manufacturers to provide customized navigation and point-of-interest content, as well as compelling services such as dynamic trip rerouting via the driver's existing Bluetooth-equipped wireless device.
Eliminating the need for bulky in-vehicle navigation units and costly dedicated wireless subscriptions, the Kivera system utilizes the end-user's existing wireless account, freeing automotive manufacturers from the drawbacks typically associated with in-vehicle navigation systems and giving mobile operators a new service offering from which to draw revenues.

"As mobile networks evolve, and consumer demand for connected telematics applications grows, automobile manufacturers are presented with a dilemma: how best to meet the needs of multimedia delivery, while avoiding the end-user costs associated with traditional telematics applications," said Clay Collier, CEO of Kivera. "By eliminating the need for a dedicated in-vehicle wireless connection, Kivera's Bluetooth-enabled vehicle navigation system presents automakers with a ground-breaking and affordable telematics solution."

Until recently, the only available in-vehicle wireless applications relied on embedded mobile phones connecting the end-user to an operator. Not only do these applications limit the breadth and quality of services available to motorists, their high monthly subscription fees lead many users to abandon service after their initial term of service. With the Kivera Bluetooth-enabled vehicle navigation system, auto manufacturers are able to deploy an advanced telematics solution, unencumbered by separate charges to the end user.

Additionally, by offering functionality such as in-vehicle navigation via a wireless connection, the Kivera Bluetooth platform presents mobile carriers with the opportunity to increase total network deployments and average revenue per user.

In research sponsored by the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), Zelos Group LLC predicts that the use of Bluetooth wireless technology in automobiles will result in cumulative incremental mobile operator revenues of $270 million by 2006.

In releasing the research Seamus McAteer, principal analyst at Zelos Group noted, "Bluetooth provides the capability for an ideal universal car kit." McAteer went on to say, "Many automotive manufacturers are beginning to incorporate Bluetooth wireless systems into their vehicles, which we feel will quickly turn into more cell phone use by the consumer and more revenue for the service provider. We expect that Bluetooth wireless technology will eventually become as ubiquitous as car stereos in automobile systems."

Using the end-user's existing wireless service account to download content, the Kivera Bluetooth solution requires neither a hard-wired in-vehicle wireless device, nor a monthly subscription fee. Using a graphical user interface (GUI), the end-user simply selects a map, driving directions, or point-of-interest information (e.g., movie listings, nearby restaurants, etc.) to be displayed.
The Kivera-powered vehicle navigation system then establishes a connection with the end-user's Bluetooth-enabled wireless device, contacting a Kivera Traffic Server and downloading the information requested, along with a map of the vehicle's general area, and traffic conditions specific to the vehicle's location. Once this information is received, the navigation system automatically terminates the wireless connection. Adding to the solution's convenience, users can save frequently traveled routes (e.g., commutes).

Working with the Kivera Traffic Server, the Kivera Bluetooth navigation system can deliver dynamic rerouting instructions, based on live traffic delays and other conditions which may impact travel time. Additionally, making use of a global positioning system (GPS) antenna, the system is capable of tracking a vehicle's progress, enabling the system to alert the driver if the vehicle strays from a suggested route. The system requires no in-vehicle storage (e.g., DVD- or CD-based systems), and uses a thin client application compatible with an automobile's embedded systems (including Microsoft(R) Windows(R) CE and Wind River(TM)).

For more information, visit www.kivera.com.

Oct 10 - Rambus Reports September Quarter Earnings. Rambus Inc. (Nasdaq:RMBS) today reported financial results for its fourth fiscal quarter ended September 30, 2002. Earnings per share for the September quarter were 6 cents, compared to 6 cents in the same period last year and 6 cents in the previous quarter.
Net income for the September quarter was $5.9 million (24% of revenues), compared to $6.5 million in the same period last year and $5.9 million in the previous quarter. Revenue for the quarter was $24.5 million, down 12% over the same period last year and up 3% from the previous quarter.

"In this economy, we think modest sequential revenue growth while maintaining profitability is a very good outcome," said Geoff Tate, CEO of Rambus Inc.

September quarter results include $23.2 million in royalties, down 7% over the same period last year and up 5% from the previous quarter. Royalties were up sequentially for SDRAM and DDR memories and memory controllers and royalties were up sequentially for RDRAM memory and memory controllers.

Operating expenses in the September quarter increased $0.9 million from last quarter as a result of an increase in litigation, sales and marketing costs. Costs associated with litigation were $2.8 million in the September quarter versus $2.4 million in the prior quarter. Litigation costs were down $4 million when compared to the same quarter last year. Overall, operating expenses were $17 million versus $16 million last quarter and $19.6 million in the comparable period last year.

Earlier today, the Rambus Board of Directors authorized the repurchase of up to an additional 5 million shares of the Company's stock in open market transactions effective immediately and over an indefinite period. This authorization is in addition to the 1.1 million shares of the Company's stock that remain authorized for repurchase from the last authorization. The Company repurchased 3.9 million shares in fiscal 2002.

Rambus is the leading developer and marketer of breakthrough chip-to-chip interface technology, products and solutions to the electronics industry. The company licenses its technology in the form of ASIC cells that are incorporated into high-performance memory and logic chips by 25 of the world's top semiconductor makers. The company's ASIC cells and system-level solutions are incorporated into hundreds of OEM products such as personal computers, workstations, video game consoles, network routers, HDTVs and set-top boxes.

More information on Rambus can be found at www.rambus.com.

Oct 10 - High Technology Down by 113,000 Jobs for the First Half of 2002. A study released today by AeA shows the nation's high-tech industry fell by 113,000 jobs, or by two percent, for the first six months of 2002. The study is based on recently released U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

"This new report captures the downturn of the tech industry," said AeA's president and CEO William T. Archey. "We are, however, cautiously optimistic as the latest monthly drop between May and June 2002 shows a decline of just 700 jobs -- by far the smallest drop over the last year and a half. This was also the second consecutive month of decline in the loss of high-tech jobs."

"Furthermore," Archey noted, "software services rebounded by gaining 3,000 jobs during the first half 2002."

High-technology manufacturing employment had the largest decline, falling by 58,000 jobs during the first six months of 2002. Electromedical equipment was the only manufacturing sector to gain employment, jumping by 1,600 jobs during this time.

High-technology services employment also fell over the first six months of this year. Not surprisingly, communications services shed 36,000 jobs, while software and computer-related services declined by 18,700 jobs. Software services, by itself, as noted above, was the only services sector to gain jobs during the first half of this year.

Contact AeA at www.aeanet.org.

Oct 09 - IBM ThinkPad Turns 10. The ThinkPad -- a sleek, black box of a notebook introduced in 1992 -- started a revolution in notebook computers. In just ten years, it has become the most well-recognized and longest-lasting brand of notebook computers.

Over the past ten years, the ThinkPad has gone from weighing almost seven lbs to less than four lbs...from 120MB to 1GB memory capacity...from not having wireless access to offering three separate wireless access capabilities... yet one thing has remained the same. The ThinkPad has always stood out for its innovative design and functionality. So innovative was the design, the ThinkPad has since been selected for the permanent collection of New York's Museum of Modern Art. And along the way has sold more than 15 million units while taking home more than 950 industry awards.

The first-ever ThinkPad -- In 1992 IBM launched the ThinkPad line with the introduction of the ThinkPad 700.
The name "ThinkPad" came from the small, paper notebooks embossed with IBM founder Thomas Watson Sr's one-word slogan, "Think," and carried by employees for decades.
The first ThinkPad sold for $4350, weighed 6.5 lbs and had a 120 MB hard disk drive. The ThinkPad 700's bright red pointing stick - the trackpoint - embedded in the keyboard, enabled the notebook to be used on an airline tray table without a mouse.

The most recent ThinkPad -- In August 2002, IBM launched its latest ThinkPad, the x30.
IBM redefined what innovation was for PCs when it introduced a combination of IBM-patented power management technology and a unique design to stretch battery life to eight hours. Weighing just 3.6 lbs, it offers hard disk drives that come in 20 and 40 GB capacities, while standard memory size is 128MB or 256 MB, with 1 GB capability. Prices start at $1999.

Visit IBM on the Web at www.ibm.com.

Oct 09 -Toshiba Introduces New Satellite 5205-S503 Notebook PC. Toshiba's Computer Systems Group (CSG) today announced the Satellite(R) 5205-S503 notebook PC, featuring enhanced performance and the new customizable Toshiba Style Bay(TM) for users who demand additional flexibility and multimedia capabilities.

Consumers can take advantage of the new Toshiba Style Bay, which will accept a second hard disk drive, second battery pack bridge, media adapter or optical media drive, for added performance and customized flexibility. The bridge media adapter provides the capability to easily receive, retain and move data from all types of digital information and software by a variety of digital systems, including Memory Stick(R), CompactFlash(R) and Smart Media(TM).

Uniting powerful performance with high-end digital capabilities, the Toshiba Satellite 5205-S503 notebook PC offers gamers, multimedia enthusiasts and small- to medium-sized business users a premium portable package. Viewing digital content, whether it's DVD movies, digital photos or gaming programs, is enhanced with the all-new NVIDIA(R) GeForce4(TM) 460 Go graphics processing unit (GPU) with 32MB VRAM, Harman/Kardon(R) stereo speakers with a built-in subwoofer, Dolby AC3 digital port and a crisp 15-inch diagonal SXGA+ display.

"Toshiba enables users to enjoy the best computing experience by offering products that feature high performance, enhanced graphics and multimedia capabilities, large displays and mass storage -all in a mobile form factor," said Oscar Koenders, vice president of product marketing and worldwide product planning, Toshiba CSG. "The Satellite 5205-S503 is designed for serious work and serious play, satisfying both entertainment and business needs."

Toshiba Satellite 5205-S503 Notebook PC: For Serious Work and Serious Play

The new Satellite 5205-S503 notebook PC delivers on Toshiba's commitment to the mobile computing community to integrate the latest technology at attractive prices. Continuing to provide users with the most powerful mobile computing products, the Toshiba Satellite 5205-S503 offers the Mobile Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 Processor-M, 2.0GHz, Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Home Edition, 40GB(a) hard disk drive, 512MB RAM (expandable to 1024MB), three USB 2.0 ports and optional Wi-Fi (IEEE 802.11b) connectivity.

In addition, the Satellite 5205-S503 notebook PC series features a remote control, for power on/off, volume up/down, suspend/resume, CD/DVD and other keyboard functions. The remote control conveniently fits into the weight saver that comes with the Toshiba Style Bay for easy storage and quick access.

The Toshiba Satellite 5205-S503 notebook PC is available for $2,199 direct via www.shoptoshiba.com and Toshiba's retail distribution channels including computer superstores and consumer electronic stores.

Oct 09 - NVIDIA Offers Family of AGP 8X GPU and Core Logic Solutions. NVIDIA Corporation (Nasdaq: NVDA), the worldwide leader in visual processing solutions, introduced the industry’s first and only comprehensive family of AGP 8X-based products. Based on Intel’s AGP 3.0 specification, NVIDIA now offers an extensive range of top-to-bottom graphics processing units (GPUs) and platform processors for next-generation digital media, gaming, and business PC platforms.
NVIDIA’s AGP 8X product line-up, which includes the NVIDIA® GeForce™4 Ti 4200 with AGP 8X and the GeForce4 MX 440 with AGP 8X desktop GPUs, as well as the new nForce20 platform processors, forms the technology foundation for the world’s most advanced PCs.

“AGP 8X is the foundation of the new world of PC computing,” said Dan Vivoli, vice president of marketing at NVIDIA. “By offering the industry’s only top-to-bottom AGP 8X product family, we are able to provide robust AGP 8X solutions delivering increased graphics performance. Our GPUs are the most complete implementation of the AGP 8X specification and are used as the reference hardware for AGP 8X.”

AGP 8X doubles the graphics bandwidth of the AGP interface to 2.1 gigabytes per second (GB/sec.). This keeps data hungry GPUs fed with the information necessary to render high frame rate, high fidelity, and real-time graphics.

“NVIDIA has been a defining force in graphics technology for many years, and the input we incorporated from NVIDIA ensures that this new industry standard specification meets the needs of their future graphics architectures, “said Jason Ziller, Technology Initiatives Manager at Intel Corporation. “As graphics technology continues to progress at a rapid pace, we will soon see an influx of workstation-class applications and 3D games with stunning visuals. AGP 8X is the next big step to make sure Workstations and PCs can handle the massive amount of data that those applications will transmit.”

Today’s fast-paced “fly-through” applications and games will see significant improvements in overall performance due to the doubled AGP 8X speed. By combining the performance and scalability of AGP8X GPU and a high performance 128MB DDR frame buffer; the GeForce4 Ti 4200 with AGP 8X GPU delivers more than two times the graphics performance of competitive products.

Support for AGP 8X extends beyond the GeForce4 family of desktop GPUs and into all the motherboard designs based on NVIDIA’s highly anticipated nForce2 core logic products. By featuring AGP 8X, NVIDIA’s nForce2 platform processors help reduce system bottlenecks, allowing for increased system performance and stability.

A variety of new platforms featuring NVIDIA’s AGP 8X products will be introduced from the following PC OEMs:

4MBO International Electronics AG
Fujitsu Siemens Computers (FSC)
HP
MicronPC.com
Shuttle Computer

Add-in cards and motherboards based on NVIDIA’s AGP 8X product line-up will be introduced from the following NVIDIA partners:

ABIT
ASUStek
Chaintech
Epox
eVGA.com
Gainward
Jaton
Leadtek Research
MSI
PNY Technologies, Inc.

For more information, visit the company’s Web site at www.nvidia.com.

Oct 09 - Sharp Introduces New 18.1'' LCD Monitor. Sharp Systems of America, a division of Sharp Electronics Corporation has announced a new LCD desktop monitor based on the award winning design of the flagship LL-T1820.

"The LL-T1820 has been a phenomenal success for Sharp, with its innovative 10-bit gamma capability setting new standards in true color reproduction. The new LL-T1815 flat panel monitor builds upon this design excellence, with a focus on features and capabilities for demanding business applications," explained Greg Nakagawa, senior vice president and general manager of Sharp Systems of America. "With the new LL-T1815, we would like to demonstrate not only that Sharp can innovate for the high-end, but that we are also conscious of our customers who require the best performance value for their dollar."

LL-T1815

The Sharp LL-T1815 is a lower cost version of the award-winning LL-T1820. It features an excellent 30 ms response and super-wide display angles of 160 degrees both horizontally and vertically. With a slim bezel width of only 17 mm, the LL-T1815 is ideal for multi-monitor applications while its dual inputs (one DVI-I and one analog) permit the most flexible configuration in new and existing installations. Furthermore, its ability to pivot to the portrait mode reduces or eliminates scrolling for page-oriented applications thus improving productivity. Integrated stereo speakers round out the rich feature set. The LL-T1815 is available in black or white for an estimated street price of $1099.

About Sharp Systems of America

Sharp Systems of America, a division of Sharp Electronics Corporation, markets, sells and supports LCD monitors and notebook computers. Products are available through Sharp's network of authorized dealers and resellers. More information can be found at www.sharpsystems.com.

Oct 08 - Intel Extends Pentium® 4 Processor Platforms With Four Advanced Chipsets. Intel Corporation today delivered four new desktop chipsets that bring advanced levels of performance, reliability and flexibility to PC users who demand a richer digital media, gaming and broadband experience.

The enhanced Intel® 850E chipset and the new Intel 845GE, 845PE and 845GV chipsets are available in PCs starting today. All of these chipsets will support Intel's groundbreaking Hyper-Threading (HT) Technology**, which enables software programs to run as though there are two processors available with only one processor physically in place. HT Technology will be introduced later this year on desktop PCs with the Intel Pentium® 4 processor at 3.06 GHz.

"We're very proud of these new chipsets," said Louis Burns, vice president and general manager of Intel's Desktop Platforms Group. "Not only will they dramatically enrich a PC user's experience today; they also provide the platform foundation for our upcoming HT Technology, which can deliver up to 25 percent more performance for many mainstream consumer and business applications."

The enhanced Intel 850E chipset now supports dual-channel PC 1066 RDRAM* memory, delivering the highest-performing Pentium 4 processor-based platforms, which allow consumers to enjoy a richer PC experience with broadband audio and video content, games, music, photos, and movies.

The Intel 845GE chipset includes an increased 266 MHz graphics clock speed for its Intel® Extreme Graphics engine, a fast 533 MHz or 400 MHz system bus, and - for the first time in volume - DDR333 main memory support. These new features provide new levels of integrated graphics performance, delivering a better graphics experience for everyday PC users.

The Intel 845PE chipset, combined with the Intel Pentium 4 processor, delivers the advantages of DDR333 memory and AGP4x support for a flexible and high-end discrete graphics solution.

"Our customers know that when we add a new memory capability such as DDR333 support, they can, with confidence, take their products to market in volume," said Burns. "With PC1066 and DDR333 memory, we worked closely with memory suppliers to update the specifications and conducted exhaustive compliance testing. In addition, we have 2,500 people dedicated and spend more than $300 million a year to make sure that Intel's new platforms, as well as chipset and CPU functions and features, are fully validated and work as specified."

The new Intel 845GV chipset offers DDR266 main memory capability and 533 MHz or 400 MHz system bus, providing support for a range of Pentium 4 and Celeron® processor frequencies.

The new 845 chipsets utilize high-speed system buses to maximize throughput capabilities of the Pentium 4 processor. The chipsets include six integrated, Hi-Speed Universal Serial Bus (USB) 2.0 ports, enabling high-bandwidth connectivity across a variety of peripherals to allow for fast downloads of digital music, photos and video files with up to 40 times more bandwidth than USB 1.1. PCs equipped with Hi-Speed USB 2.0 capabilities are easier to use and expand, allowing users to quickly and easily add peripherals to PCs. The new 845 chipsets also come with enhanced AC' 97 audio implementation with dual independent DMA audio engines for improved sound quality and new audio usage models.

Intel also provides its chipset customers with the Intel® Application Accelerator software package, designed to deliver additional Integrated Drive Electronics (IDE) performance and provide headroom for future hard disk drives. Improved I/O transfer rates and faster operating system loads enable additional performance and accelerated boot times over native IDE drivers.

For computer makers and system integrators, Intel also announced availability of six desktop boards: ATX form factor Intel desktop boards D845GEBV2, D845PEBT2, D845PESV and D850EMVR, and smaller micro-ATX form factor Intel desktop boards D845GERG2 and D845GVAD2.

Pricing and Availability In 1,000-unit quantities, the Intel 845GE chipset is priced at $37. In 1,000-unit quantities, the Intel 845PE chipset is priced at $34. In 1,000-unit quantities, the Intel 845GV chipset is priced at $28. The Intel 850E chipset with 1066 RDRAM support in 1,000-unit quantities is priced at $40. Systems and motherboards with these chipsets are currently shipping in volume from a variety of computer and motherboard manufacturers worldwide.

Additional technical information on these chipsets is available at http://developer.intel.com/design/chipsets.

Oct 08 - Dell Introduces Two New Dimension Desktops. Dell (Nasdaq:DELL) today introduced two new Dimension(tm) desktop computer systems designed to provide customers faster performance for high-end applications such as video editing and 3-D gaming.

Both the Dimension 4550 and 8250 systems feature integrated Ethernet connectivity and new wireless networking options to accommodate the growing number of consumers migrating to broadband or implementing home networks.

"Our customers are increasingly using their desktop systems as the center of their digital lifestyle. Whether customers use them to manage digital music or photo libraries, create digital videos or play the latest 3D games, these new systems bring a higher level of performance," said Tim Mattox, vice president of marketing for Dell's Client Product Group.

Dell offers a wide range of peripherals for high-end gamers, including the ATI Radeon(tm) 9700 PRO graphics card as an option on both the 4550 and the 8250. One of today's most advanced 3-D graphics cards, the 9700 PRO provides up to twice the performance of the previous generation of consumer graphics cards, especially at high resolutions.

For customers needing wireless desktop access in their home or small business, Dell offers its new TrueMobile(tm) 1184 wireless router and wireless USB adapter. Both of these 802.11b-certified devices work seamlessly with Dell's wireless-enabled notebooks. The USB adapter offers simple external connectivity through a USB port, so customers can use wireless desktop connectivity without opening the chassis. The TrueMobile 1184 router, which also includes four Ethernet ports, sells for $129, while the wireless USB adapters are $69 each.

The Dimension 4550 and 8250 use the same expandable minitower chassis, which provides for up to two 3.5-inch external drives, up to two 5.25-inch external optical drives, and up to two internal hard drives. The Dimension 4550 chassis features two front-accessible USB 2.0 ports for connecting devices like MP3 players or digital cameras and four USB 2.0 ports in the back. The Dimension 8250 features eight USB 2.0 ports.

For $869, the Dimension 4550 features a 2.4GHz Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 processor, 128MB DDR-333 SDRAM memory, a 20GB hard drive, a CD ROM, a 15-inch (14-inch viewable) monitor and Windows(R) XP Home. For $1,379, the Dimension 8250 includes a 2.66GHz Intel Pentium 4 processor, 256MB PC1066 RDRAM(R), a 40GB hard drive, a 16x DVD, a 17-inch (16-inch viewable) monitor and Windows XP Home.

Information on Dell and its products can be obtained at www.dell.com.

Oct 08 - ``Rogue'' Online Pharmacies Threaten Consumer Health. Every day consumers are putting their health at risk by buying prescription drugs such as Viagra and Propecia at "rogue" online pharmacies.

Hundreds of disreputable Web sites have emerged selling prescription drugs without a valid prescription order. In some cases, controlled substances are available via the Web. Some sites blatantly advertise that no prescription is required. In other cases, the consumer is told to respond to a brief questionnaire and then a "doctor" provides a prescription for the requested drug, which is then mailed to the consumer.

The illegal Web pharmacies bypass not only regulatory safeguards, but also the safeguards that are inherent in a legitimate doctor-patient relationship. Consumers obtaining medications from so-called "rogue" pharmacies place their health at risk.

Foreign Web sites pose added problems. They often advertise that they can deliver the same prescription drug the consumer buys in the U.S., but at a lower price. In reality, many of these drugs may be counterfeit, contaminated, and sub potent medications. While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has implemented a personal importation policy allowing consumers to import small quantities of specific medications, unrestricted personal importation is illegal and can be dangerous.

An argument can be made that the reason consumers shop at "rogue" pharmacies is because of the rising cost of prescription drugs. Over 3 billion prescriptions are filled each year, and according to the Wall Street Journal, the cost of prescription drugs increased 16 percent last year. With costs of some drugs in hundreds of dollars, an increasing number of seniors are forced to choose between their daily meals or their prescription drugs.

Ironically, seniors can shop at a reputable online pharmacy such as drugstore.com (Nasdaq:DSCM) and save up to 30 percent, which is often less than what the rogue pharmacies charge.

Oct 08 - SONICblue Introduces New Rio Portable Digital Music Players. SONICblue(TM) Incorporated (Nasdaq:SBLU), makers of the number one best-selling brand of portable MP3 players, today unveiled the latest players in Rio's new line of portable digital music players, the Rio(R) S50 and S35S sport player. Designed to be the ultimate portable digital music players, the S50 and S35S offer users memory, features, and unique designs unmatched in today's market.

The new Rio S50 is the ultimate digital music player. With 128 MB of built in memory, the S50 gives users up to four hours of continuous music listening. Plus, the S50's memory is upgradeable to 256 MB, giving users the ability to store even more of their favorite music. In addition to its sizeable memory, the Rio S50 comes loaded with useful features including a large backlit screen, a clock and stopwatch, an integrated FM tuner, a useful carrying case and an impressive battery life of up to 35-hours.

Designed to meet the needs of today's athlete, the S35S combines a sleek new design and a rugged, durable shell, with the memory and features of a powerful digital music player. Made to withstand the rigors of an extreme workout, the S35S lightweight design allows users to easily strap the player to their arm during workouts and its sturdy construction and rubberized shell makes the player strong and durable.
The S35S features 128MB of built in memory giving users up to four hours of continuous music listening and is easily upgradeable to 256 MB. The S35S also contains a long list of features, including a large back lit screen, clock and stopwatch, integrated FM tuner, and an adjustable armband.

Both players support MP3 and WMA formats and, as with all of SONICblue's Rio flash memory players, the S50 and S35S are compatible with both PC and Mac(R) computers and ship with customized software for each platform.

The new Rio S50 player ($179.99 MSRP) and Rio S35S player ($199.99 MSRP) will be available soon on SONICblue's eStore (www.sonicblue.com) and in retail outlets throughout North America.

Oct 08 - T-Mobile and Sierra Wireless Introduce `Global Ready' Wireless PC Card. T-Mobile USA, Inc., a leading innovator in wireless voice and data solutions for the enterprise, today expands its business product portfolio with the addition of the global ready Sierra Wireless AirCard(R) 750.

With an AirCard 750 and a laptop or PDA, customers can get information anytime with wireless connectivity up to 56 Kbps using T-Mobile's nationwide GSM/GPRS voice and high speed data network covering more than 8,000 cities -- the largest network of its kind. Today's announcement represents the first U.S. release of Sierra Wireless' highly anticipated AirCard 750.

Unique to the AirCard 750 is the built in capability to access voice and high-speed data networks in North America today, as well as European networks in the coming months making it the ideal solution for international business travelers.
T-Mobile is introducing this new wireless PC Card in preparation for its upcoming global GPRS data roaming launch in Europe with T-Mobile International and other carrier partners. T-Mobile is in the final testing phase and plans to offer GPRS data roaming for the AirCard 750 and other T-Mobile data devices in Europe by the end of the year.

Businesses and International business travelers will find the AirCard 750 invaluable for accessing data when they're on-the-go using T-Mobile's global network. Mobile users no longer have to rely on their office or home PC, or frantically struggle to find connection jacks in unfamiliar locations. The AirCard 750 allows users with VPN client software to get full corporate email access, in addition to POP3 and Web email.

About the size of a credit card, the AirCard 750 is easy to set up on a laptop or PDA with an available PCMCIA slot or expansion pack. AirCard 750 users will be delighted by its high-performance and improved battery life, a result of tighter integration with Microsoft(R) Windows(R) operating systems. Its implementation as a true network interface card, will appeal to the mobile professional who can now work wirelessly at speeds comparable to a land line dial-up connection.

The AirCard 750 is priced at $349.99 with a $50.00 rebate on qualified data plans through T-Mobile. Additionally, the company's stand alone data plans offer 20 cents a minute voice calls that include free roaming and long distance in U.S. for professionals who prefer two devices but want to make the occasional phone call while their laptop or PDA is powered on.

Starting today, the AirCard 750 is available at T-Mobile stores nationwide, authorized T-Mobile dealers, and online at www.t-mobile.com.

 

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