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MSI Announces P600 Business Notebook

The P600, MSl’s latest business notebook, comes with a 15.6" high definition, power-saving, LED backlit display, an ultra-slim DVD Super-Multi drive, Intel’s most advanced Core i5 processor, and a distinctive fingerprint reader. Light and slender, the P600 tips the scales at only 2.41 kilograms and boasts MSI’s exclusive ECO Engine Power Saving Technology, giving it eight hours of battery power. The P600 is light, secure, highly mobile, and offers plenty of battery life.

MSI Marketing Director Sam Chern explains that the P600, MSI's newest business laptop, was meticulously crafted by the same design team that won Germany’s iF Product Design Award for 2010. Attractive, light, and long on battery life, it comes with Intel's highly powerful Core i5 processor. What’s more, the P600 has a biometric fingerprint reader to provide the strictest security possible for the on-the-go businessperson.

New Lenovo Brand PCs Deliver Ultimate Performance and Reliability

Lenovo today announced three new PCs for consumers – the Lenovo G455 and G555 notebooks and the Lenovo C315 all-in-one desktop – all based on the AMD platform featuring innovative Lenovo software to improve the overall computing experience. Designed for mainstream consumers, they support up to the latest AMD Turion and Athlon processors and ATI graphics. With Lenovo applications such as OneKey Rescue System and Energy Management on the G455 and G555 and IdeaTouch multitouch applications on the C315, these new PCs deliver affordable, dual-core, worry-free computing.

"Our new G series notebooks and C series all-in-one desktop are designed for users who want a simple but powerful computing experience without any headaches," said Dion Weisler, vice president, Business Operations, Lenovo. "By working closely with AMD engineers and leveraging AMD advanced technologies, we have created products that offer superior performance in the areas of graphics and power efficiency at an affordable price point.”

AMD Announces New VISION Pro Technology

AMD announced VISION Pro Technology, a new commercial PC platform brand that delivers a superior visual computing experience, and can help businesses increase productivity and gain competitive advantage by enabling visually stunning communications, marketing and sales materials.

Graphics matter more than ever in business communication and innovative companies are leveraging balanced PC platform technology to generate and view rich visual presentations, including videos and 3D graphics to communicate winning ideas. Studies show that more than 80 percent of human comprehension is gained visually and that the use of visual aids with oral presentations improves content retention as much as 6.5 times greater than using words alone. Furthermore, the increased viewing area provided by multiple monitors helps improve worker productivity by as much as 40 percent. Commercial PCs based on VISION Pro Technology from AMD offer out-of-the-box support for multiple monitors, seamless viewing of videos, use of video conferencing software, and the performance necessary to create and view rich presentations with embedded video and 3D graphics.

Lenovo Re-Energizes ThinkPad Brand with Edge Series Laptops

Lenovo today announced a new ThinkPad laptop Series, simply called “ThinkPad Edge,” with 13, 14 and 15 inch models designed specifically for the small to medium sized business (SMB). The 13 inch model represents the first ThinkPad laptop to offer AMD dual core processor technology and to be offered on AMD’s VISION Pro Technology. In addition to performance, the new laptops are designed with style and affordability in mind for today’s budget-conscious customers. For example, they include new rich and vibrant color choices and a new contemporary keyboard. Lenovo is also expanding its retail sales channel to offer select ThinkPad Edge models in Best Buy stores.

“Small to medium business customers tell us they want PCs with bold yet professional designs, uncompromising durability and reliability with the latest technologies that meets their budgets,” said Fran O’Sullivan, senior vice president, Think Product Group, Lenovo. “Our answer is the new ThinkPad Edge family of laptops. They deliver stunning technology and powerful performance at an unprecedented value.”

Samsung's New Netbooks Extend The Limits of Style, Mobility and Durability

Samsung Electronics, a market leader in consumer electronics and world leader in IT technology, today launched the latest additions to its award-winning range of netbooks, the Samsung N210, N220, N150 and NB30. Designed to provide maximum personal freedom, the N210 and N220 deliver up to 12 hours* of secure connected mobility, while the N150 and NB30 keep on going for up to 8.5 hours* and 11 hours* respectively. This impressive battery-powered performance is possible because overall power consumption is reduced by their energy efficient LED display, optimized processing performance and Samsung’s proprietary Enhanced Battery Life solution.

The N210, N220, N150 and NB30 also have several display features that enhance the visual experience. The new netbooks’ 10.1" LED anti-reflective display fine-tunes movies and images with the sharpest details and boldest colors, with no mirror effect under bright lights or in sunny weather. Using the integrated Easy Resolution Manager tool, screen resolution can easily be changed if a program or game needs to be viewed in 1024x768. For added visual enhancements, the N210, N220, N150 and NB30 offer an integrated Digital LiveCam for video-conferencing or live messaging.

AMD Names Thomas Seifert Chief Financial Officer

AMD today announced the appointment of Thomas Seifert as senior vice president and chief financial officer. Seifert, 46, will report to Dirk Meyer, AMD president and chief executive officer, and will have responsibility for leading the company’s global financial organization. Seifert succeeds Robert Rivet, who was previously promoted to chief operations and administrative officer.

“Thomas is a talented industry veteran with a wealth of knowledge and experience managing the operations and finances of companies in the most difficult and competitive sectors of the semiconductor industry,” said Meyer. “This knowledge and experience will enable him to further strengthen AMD’s financial foundation and help accelerate our transformation into a product design and marketing leader.”

European Commission Publishes Decision Concerning Intel's Abuse of Dominant Position

The European Commission has today published a non-confidential version of its Intel Decision, adopted on 13 May 2009 ( IP/09/745 and MEMO/09/235 ), together with a summary of the key elements of the Decision. That Decision found that Intel broke EC Treaty antitrust rules (Article 82) by engaging in two types of illegal practice to exclude competitors from the market for computer chips called x86 central processing units (CPUs). These practices harmed consumers throughout the EEA. By undermining its competitors’ ability to compete on the merits of their products, Intel’s actions undermined competition, reduced consumer choice and hindered innovation. On the basis of a significant amount of contemporaneous evidence and company statements, the Decision demonstrates how Intel broke the law.

Intel abused its dominant position in the x86 CPU market by implementing a series of conditional rebates to computer manufacturers and to a European retailer and by taking other measures aimed at preventing or delaying the launch of computers based on competing products (so-called 'naked restrictions'). The Commission's Decision outlines specific cases of these conditional rebates and naked restrictions, as well as how Intel sought to conceal its practices and how computer manufacturers and Intel itself recognised the growing threat represented by the products of Intel's main competitor, AMD.

HP and Microsoft Expand Alliance in Unified Communications and Collaboration

At Interop Las Vegas 2009, HP and Microsoft today announced a four-year strategic global initiative to deliver an end-to-end unified communications and collaboration solution.

As part of their Frontline Partnership, the two companies expect to invest up to an additional $180 million in product development, professional services, as well as joint sales and marketing, to help organizations lower costs and improve productivity.

The solution, which is planned to span software, hardware, networking and services, would enable customers to improve business output and reduce travel, telecom and IT operating costs. This would be accomplished by streamlining communications across messaging, video and voice with connected applications and devices. HP and Microsoft also plan to provide the flexibility and control customers need to manage their communications infrastructure efficiently.

Fujitsu and Toshiba Agree on HDD Business Transfer

Fujitsu Limited and Toshiba Corporation today announced that they have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the transfer of Fujitsu's hard disk drive (HDD) business to Toshiba. The companies plan to conclude a transfer contract at an early date, and aim to complete the transaction in the first quarter of fiscal 2009.

Fujitsu will facilitate the transfer by bringing its HDD-related businesses and functions together in a new company. Toshiba will acquire about an 80 percent stake in this company and make it a Toshiba Group subsidiary. In order to promote a smooth transfer, Fujitsu will continue to hold a stake of under 20 percent in the new company for a certain period of time, after which it will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Toshiba.

AMD Hosts Discussion: Business Case for Cloud Computing

At tomorrow’s IDC Cloud Computing Forum in San Francisco, AMD will host a panel discussion on “Building the Business Case for Cloud Computing: Understanding the Opportunities and Benefits.” Representatives from Accenture, Amazon, AMD, Red Hat, The Shumacher Group, and IDC analyst Frank Gens will discuss strategies to successfully plot and initiate a cloud computing course. In addition, panelists will explore how cloud computing helps companies advance capacity and capabilities without significantly increasing investments.

“As datacenter demands continue to evolve toward web-based application and data delivery, IT costs and energy consumption can sky rocket. We believe businesses can see both cost-savings and workload efficiencies with a cloud computing environment, particularly when utilizing scalable, high value, power-efficient AMD platforms,” said Margaret Lewis, director, commercial software solutions and strategy, AMD. “Next quarter, AMD will take energy-efficient computing to the next level by introducing an even lower power processor specifically designed for the unique demands of cloud computing environments.”

VIA Announces Power-Efficient NSR7800, 8-Bay 2U Rackmount Server

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient x86 processor platforms, today announced the VIA NSR7800 2U rackmount server for network storage solution providers. Powered by a 1.5GHz VIA C7 processor, the VIA NSR7800 offers system integrators the opportunity to provide unparalleled power and energy-efficient server solutions to today's energy-conscious small and medium sized business customers.

With eight 3.5" S-ATA II hard drive bays, the VIA NSR7800 is the perfect balance of power-efficiency, performance and capacity, an ideal starting point for a variety of rackmount server applications including email, file and web server products. The VIA NSR7800's drive bays are easily accessible through lockable front levers that allow hard drives to be securely installed in moments. Dual Gigabit LAN ensures fast data transfer speeds.

Intel May See Red in Q1, First Time in 87 Quarter FYs

Microprocessor mogul Intel, has been fairly invincible to the ups and downs of world economy, in its 40+ years of existence, owing to the market position it has been holding since the success of its microprocessor technologies. For the first time in 87 quarter fiscal years, the company is bracing itself for a red-quarter, meaning losses.

Intel's CEO Paul Otellini thinks that with the company seeing profits go down by as much as 19% in Q4 2008, one can expect only the worse of Q1, with an ailing world economy coupled with the expected fall in sales post the winter shopping season. The company is exercising all means to cut operational costs while attempting to meet sales targets, though it is not looking at workforce reductions as an option just as yet.Source: Nashville Business Journal

Acer Introduces New TravelMate Notebook PCs

Acer America, part of the world’s third largest PC company, today introduced two new notebook PC platforms – TravelMate 6593 and TravelMate 6493 – designed for the mobile professional. The new TravelMate notebook series, available now in the U.S. commercial channel, offers robust, secure and powerful PC solutions for corporate and small-to-medium (SMB) business customers. The TravelMate notebook PC platforms are ideal productivity tools for efficient connectivity and smart portability. The 15.4-inch TravelMate 6593 and the 14.1-inch TravelMate 6493 notebook PCs offer the superior performance, fast and reliable internet connectivity, videoconferencing and robust security features that mobile professionals require.

AMD Readies Six Business-Class Desktop 45nm CPUs

AMD is heading towards kicking off its desktop CPU lineup built on the 45nm manufacturing process this 8th of January. The company also started off with selling certain "business-class" CPUs last year, CPUs that are rated for long MTBF, giving it a little incentive for business/office PC manufacturers for using the processors in their models. The company is looking to do the same with its 45nm desktop CPU lineup, with six business-class CPUs on the cards, sources tell DigiTimes.

The models planned are dual-core Athlon X2 B23 (2.9GHz, 2MB cache) and B21 (2.7GHz, 2MB cache), triple-core Phenom II X3 B73 (2.8GHz, 7.5MB cache) and B71 (2.6GHz, 7.5MB cache), and quad-core Phenom II X4 B93 (2.8GHz 8MB cache) and B91 (2.6GHz 8MB cache). These processors are slated for Q3 2009. Following the introduction of these, the company plans to phase-out its current business class CPUs by issuing last-order notices for them in Q4. These will be issued for Phenom II X4 9850B, 9750B, 9600B and Phenom II X3 8850B, 8750B, 8600B as well as Athlon X2 5600B, 5400B, 5200B, 5000B, 4850B, 4450B and Athlon 1640B.Source: DigiTimes

Microsoft Reports Record First-Quarter Revenue

Microsoft Corp. today announced revenue of $15.06 billion for the fiscal quarter ended Sept. 30, 2008, a 9% increase over the same period of the prior year. Operating income, net income and diluted earnings per share for the quarter were $6.00 billion, $4.37 billion and $0.48, respectively.

Microsoft showed particular strength in multiyear annuity sales, which grew more than 20% during the quarter from the combined businesses of Client, Microsoft Business Division and Server and Tools.

Fujitsu to Sell its Unprofitable Hard Drive Business to Western Digital

A new rumour is spreading around the net, claiming that Fujitsu is in talks with WesternDigital to sell its hard disk drive business. Currently WD is the second-largest hard disk drive maker in the world behind Seagate Technology. Fujitsu's HDD business is ranked sixth. If there's a deal between WD and Fujitsu, it would raise WesternDigital's market share to almost the same level as the market leader Seagate Technology. A possible acquisition would include Fujitsu's plants in Japan, the Philippines and Thailand with a total of 15,000 workers.
It's necessary for Fujitsu to review its disk-drive operations because it's facing severe competition in an industry that requires large commitments to capital spending for companies to be competitive,
said Yukihiko Shimada, an analyst at Mitsubishi UFJ Securities Co. The deal would be finalized by the end of the year, according to experts. WD and Fujitsu representatives declined to make any official statements and confirm the story.Source: CNET News

Slow Economy Promises Bad Year for Apple, NAND, and DRAM

When the going gets rough, people simply don't see a need to spend so much on luxuries. A prevalent example is Apple. Now that the economy as a whole is slowing down, Apple is realizing that people simply aren't going to buy a gazillion iPhones and iPods this year. Considering the majority of the aforementioned devices used memory from NAND, Apple suddenly decided that they don't need to buy so much memory from NAND after all. Estimates of growth for NAND suddenly took a turn for the worse, going from upwards of 30% to a rather low single-digit number. Unfortunately for NAND, this announcement comes after NAND decided to increase capital investment by 20%. DRAM, on the other hand, has it worse. They've already predicted abysmal growth, but with a continuing demand for low RAM prices, abysmal growth translates into extreme losses.Source: DailyTech

Toshiba to Buy Cell Manufacturing Plant for $835 Million USD; Will Run it With Sony

Toshiba is going to buy all Cell manufacturing duties from Sony for ¥90 billion (roughly $835 million USD). Actually, they've been going to do this since October 2007. At the time, though, it seemed like Sony wouldn't have any say in the operation of the facility. Now, in the middle of February, the deal has changed. The running of all Cell manufacturing facilities will be done as a joint venture, and some more details of the sale/incorporation have surfaced. On April 1st, Toshiba and Sony will begin their joint venture. Now that Toshiba has exited the HD-DVD market, they will put a lot of focus towards SSD drives, and making the Cell processor. Toshiba will actually incorporate the Cell into some nifty new HDTV's. We'll keep you posted.Source: Reg Hardware

Gates Looses $3 Billion from Personal Fortune in Yahoo Bid; Tech Stocks Plummet

It seems that Yahoo isn't the only one suffering from the failed buy-out of Yahoo by the hand of Microsoft. Sir William Gates III is reported as having lost over $3 billion USD from his personal fortune in Microsoft stock just from trying to buy Yahoo. However, Gates' fortune is just the tip of the iceberg. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Google bosses Sergey Brin, Larry Page and Eric Schmidt, and Dell founder Michael Dell all are watching their fortunes and stock values plummet "like a team of free falling elephants." Even Steve Jobs, who should be swimming in the pool of wealth his entertainment gadgets have given him, is instead watching in horror as his share price looses a whopping 40% value in the stock market. Jobs, personally, has lost over $400 million in the past six weeks.Source: The Inquirer

Yahoo Buys Video Service Maven Networks for $160 Million USD

Whilst Microsoft is in the middle of what The Inquirer calls a "hostile takeover" of Yahoo, Yahoo decided to buy a company of their own. Maven Networks recently accepted a $160 million offer to be bought out by Yahoo. It is very likely that this move was to increase the value of Yahoo. It should be noted that Yahoo was in talks with Maven long before the whole Microsoft-buying-Yahoo debacle. As part of the acquisition, Yahoo gets some fine deals with CBS Sports, Gannett, News Corp, Hearst and Sony Pictures. Yahoo will not lay off any of Maven's 70 employees, despite laying off nearly 1,000 of their own. Another large benefit to Yahoo acquiring Maven will be the sudden boost of places where Yahoo can shove their advertisements, further increasing revenue. Whether or not this is enough to fend off the "hostile takeover", we'll have to wait and see.Source: The Inquirer

Half of UK Children Have Seen Pornography

While the rest of the world is focused on being dainty, Victorian, and politically correct, the children have a much better idea in mind. The London School of Economics concluded something that many paranoid parents do not want to hear. Over 50% of respondents to the EU Kids Online survey from the United Kingdom confessed to watching internet pornography. When this survey was brought to Poland, a whopping 71% confessed to the same thing. However, this is where the good things end. Children from the United Kingdom claimed that they received a lot of "unwanted sexual solicitations"...over twice the average for the rest of Europe.

And now, time for a reality check. The above numbers were attained from a teaser to unpublished results of a survey. The results will be published sometime in June. The London School of Economics failed to define what exactly pornography was, or how old a child was according to them, in the teaser to the survey results.Source: The Inquirer

European Union Raids Intel in Search of Evidence for Anti-Trust Case

At this point, it seems as though Intel has just about everything in the world going right for them. They're getting a lot of money, their CPUs are in just about every computer, and they have had the best products on the market for the past several months. However, AMD and the European Union don't feel like Intel got this success in a legitimate manner. And so, the European Union sent law enforcement agents to do surprise raids. The raids being sent out are searching for one thing in particular: hard evidence that Intel pressured retail stores to avoid AMD-based products. These charges are added on to similar monopoly charges already put upon Intel by the European Union.Source: Neowin.net

Anti-Trust Lawsuit Claims Microsoft Knowingly Deceived Vista Customers

The whole "Vista Capable" sticker scandal was a mess, pure and simple. However, new evidence has prompted a new anti-trust lawsuit against Microsoft. It would seem as though it's entirely plausible that Microsoft was indeed trying to pull a fast one past Vista customers. Everyone who was shopping for a PC, or used a relatively-new PC a couple months before the Vista release probably saw that it came with a "Vista Capable" sticker. The new evidence shows that Microsoft may have planted Vista Capable stickers on computers not ready to run Vista at all, be it the premium version or the normal version. Men from inside Microsoft did everything from reprimand members of marketing to scoff at retailers who sent letters of concern to Microsoft. We'll keep you posted on what exactly comes out of this lawsuit. If you bought a "Vista Capable" computer with a "Vista Capable" sticker on it, you may just qualify for a settlement if this case comes through for the prosecution.

In short, it has been a very bad week for Microsoft.Source: DailyTech

Yahoo Shareholders Infuriated Over Yahoo Rejecting Microsoft Offer; Stock to Plummet

It's becoming very apparent now that Yahoo has issued a press release refusing Microsoft's rather high bid for the company that there's more to the idea of a Yahoo acquisition than just a shift in management. The shareholders for Yahoo are simply livid over the fact that Yahoo is planning on going forward without Microsoft. Shareholders are already pretty angry over the fact that Yahoo has lost 40% stock value since last year. Microsoft, at this point, can do two things. They can up the bid, and risk making their own shareholders unsure. Or, they can leave Yahoo to suffer, and "spear-head an attack to oust Yahoo's board". Yahoo, however, is not without it's own options. Yahoo is expected to release a statement regarding exactly why they rejected Microsoft's offer. While some would claim the refusal was due to a personal spat between a few board members, Yahoo's investment banker confirms that Microsoft really didn't offer enough money. If Yahoo had accepted a $31-per-share buyout, Yahoo could very well have infuriated shareholders even more, and been accused of malfeasance.Source: The Inquirer

Indian IT Departments Riddled With Crippling Arthritis and Other Diseases

It's fairly obvious that most IT work is outsourced to places like India, where minimum wage and benefits are either not required or are much lower than they would be in America. However, there are huge problems with outsourcing to India, that was either overlooked or not considered at the time of outsourcing. Be it the fault of an utter lack of medical benefits, or a sheer volume of required tasks, IT departments in India are beginning to contract diseases relating to typing too much and/or too fast. Over 75% of the workers in Indian city Bangalore have been diagnosed with "musculoskeletal symptoms related to work". The most crippling, RSI, is known for putting victims through searing pain when doing even the most mundane tasks. Fortunately, only 20% of the workers with diseases suffer chronically, and with a little time off, the remaining 55% can probably function like normal. Whether or not big Western companies are willing to be humane and give said workers the mentioned time off is a different story.Source: The Inquirer
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