23rd November 1998 Archive
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With just two days work before Thanksgiving, it looks like W-B will be a busy boy in the box
Microsoft has made it clear that it intends to spend several days cross-examining Dr Frederick Warren-Boulton, the consultant economist who testified for a day last week. Microsoft spokesman Larry West admitted that the monopoly issue was a key, substantive one in the case, which until now had dealt with finger-pointing matters …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 06:28
There's that consultant it doesn't mention being on the payroll, for starters
"Microsoft welcomes decision by the Japanese Fair Trade Commission" means, to seasoned observers, that Microsoft has agreed to modify its anticompetitive practices to avoid further action. (Related story) Microsoft's press release on the subject last week was a masterpiece of misinformation. First there is a reference to Masaru …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 06:32
He may be talking himself into it...
Gates' interview with Associated Press (Earlier Story), and his comments at Microsoft's annual meeting of shareholders recently, has increased speculation that Microsoft may yet use its chairman as a rebuttal witness. Each side is allowed two such witnesses that do not have to be named in advance. It is less likely that the DoJ …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 06:38
Does just switching it off, and letting the developers switch it back on, count as compliance?
Microsoft may be heading for more trouble with the courts over the route it proposes to take to 'remove' its Java 'enhancements' from Windows 98. Rather than take them out and ship Sun Java, the company is going to switch them off and allow developers to switch them back on if they want. A US judge last week granted a …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 06:40
A $4 billion merger deal could pull the rug from under Microsoft's Internet strategy
Browser carve-up? Now AOL and Sun are poised to announce a carve-up of Netscape, according to US reports. The $4 billion merger deal divvying-up the company between the two is expected to be announced early today, and could have interesting implications for the current antitrust action against Microsoft. Netscape and AOL were …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 07:26
Outside management techies to scrutinise the lot, corporate culture included
Hewlett-Packard has begun a top-to-bottom review of the company's operations, covering the whole of its business lines and strategies down to corporate culture. CEO Lewis Platt told staff of the review, which is being conducted by external consultants, in a memo last week. The company's sudden attack of navel-gazing comes after …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 10:48
Dixons slams Government as Mandelson pushes for inquiry into retailer's prices
Dixons yesterday lashed back against accusations it has a monopoly of high street PC sales by putting the blame on the Government's shoulders. The move came after Peter Mandelson, trade and industry secretary, became embroiled in the row over the retailer's prices. Dixons claimed that government VAT and duties charged on PCs and …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 12:13
The UK outfit with the LEP is getting closer to the Holy Grail of flat panel displays
Cambridge Display Technologies (CDT) says it has produced a full colour screen using the company's patented Light Emitting Polymer (LEP) technology. LEP technology is intended to provide a lower cost mechanism for producing large, colour flat panel displays than can be achieved via current technology. CDT announced a mono …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 12:13
Chewing gum-sized storage medium definitely mintier than Zip, claim Comdex attendees
As thick as a piece of Wrigley's chewing gum and no longer than the severed little finger of a contrite member of the Yakuza, the Memory Stick could become the 'must have' storage gadget for next year. A portable, re-recordable memory drive, the Memory Stick can save digital photos, data, music -- in fact anything that can be …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 12:18
Whatever's good enough for the late Frank Sinatra is good enough for Cirrus...
Cirrus Logic says it has licensed Central Research Labs' Sensaura 3D positional audio technology for use with its Crystal Audio products. Sensaura produces 3D positional audio from two standard speakers, and has been licensed by 70 per cent of vendors in the audio chip market. CRL claims that 130 games supporting the system are …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 12:39
The gear will shrink, but the cost won't for five to ten years
The first generation of Iridium phones may be bulky and expensive, but Kyocera aims to halve the size within 18 months, said a senior company executive here today. Prices however will stay high for the next few years. Takashi Kuki, manager of the international sales department at the Kyocera Corporation said he expected the cost …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 15:18
Our man on the spot (missed his flight) sends in some late show-stoppers
Putting different devices together to produce new product categories is what convergence is all about - but isn't embedding digital recording into your mouse mat and commercial radio in your mouse going too far? Not according to two Comdex exhibitors. The MemoMouse pad from Questech International is a 'super-charged' mouse mat …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 15:19
The Register's mobile phone expert spends a week offline in Crazy Horse. No change there then...
While GSM globally has passed the 100th million subscriber mark (actually it's now over 120 million), this fact hasn't quite sunk in with everyday Americans. While it should be entirely possible to 'roam' with your GSM phone in most US cities, the obstacles to doing so are often insurmountable. In a classic display of the 'not- …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 15:22
Or is it just a statistical anomaly?
The number of iMac converts is booming, a survey by MacHome magazine has claimed. Of the 2400 new iMac owners quizzed, 26 per cent said the iMac was their first Macintosh. A staggering 29 per cent of this group had moved across from Windows or other non-Macintosh operating systems. This compares with Apple figures one month ago …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 15:28
Yes, says Sony boffin
A researcher at the Sony's Computer Science Laboratories in Tokyo has devised an ingenious way of transferring files from one PC to another without touching a mouse or keyboard. Using a pen-like device, users simply touch the file on screen that needs to be copied or moved, and then tap the monitor where the file is destined. …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 15:31
Infamous (if you're in the music biz) MP3 player goes on sale in US
Diamond Multimedia began shipping its Rio MP3 digital music player in the US, today, after the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) last month failed to get the device banned unless Diamond modified it to prevent it being used to pirate copyright music. The Walkman-sized device can store up to 60 minutes of music …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 16:05
Sierra Online, Blizzard etc. sold to French media giant Havas
French media company Havas is set for a $1 billion take-over of Cendant's consumer software business, helping Cendant recover from massive accounting fraud. Havas will buy entertainment and educational software sold under names including Knowledge Adventure, Blizzard Entertainment, Davidson & Associates and Sierra On-Line. Paris …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 16:52
We think he means the DoJ should just stand back and let everybody compete unfairly with everybody else...
Microsoft general counsel William Neukom won the race to get out of bed and state the predictable about the Netscape-AOL deal, but as according to our calculations he couldn't have started stating much before 7am Seattle time, we don't think Bill should give him a rapid rebuttal or instant punditry bonus (Register prediction at …
Business 23 Nov 1998, 19:08