Not too clear what would go – Claris Corp? Newton? Subsidiaries in smaller markets? – but Apple Computer Inc chief executive Michael Spindler hinted that the company could be forced to sell part of its business in order to focus on more competitive areas, in an interview ith the New York Times on Friday. Quantum […]
Not too clear what would go – Claris Corp? Newton? Subsidiaries in smaller markets? – but Apple Computer Inc chief executive Michael Spindler hinted that the company could be forced to sell part of its business in order to focus on more competitive areas, in an interview ith the New York Times on Friday.
Quantum Corp is refusing to comment on industry gossip that its long-standing manufacturing partner, Matsushita-Kotobuki Electronics Ltd , is planning to buy a stake in the Milpitas, California-based disk drive maker; it denied its purchase last year of Digital Equipment Corp ‘s storage business was proving such a drain on resources that it even needed to consider raising new equity capital and that while the high end drives had not taken off as fast as it had expected, things were improving and the tape business had done better than expected; the quarter ending this month should prove much better than the first quarter results which saw profits plunge 350% (CI No 2,717).
The manager of Italy’s newly launched second cellular telephone operator last week accused Telecom Italia Mobile SpA of frustrating his efforts to start up business: Francesco Caio, managing director of Omnitel ProntoItalia SpA called a press conference to complain that Telecom Italia had failed to honour an agreement to give Omnitel customers access to the Telecom network.
As expected, President Clinton has eased US controls on exports of high-powered supercomputers, the White House announced: currently, manufacturers must seek licences from the Commerce Department to export a computer that can perform more than 1,500 million theoretical operations per second, but under the proposal approved by Clinton, the threshold will be raised to between 7,000 and 10,000 MTOPS for most civilian customers, depending on the export market involved.
Fujitsu Ltd and Lexmark International Inc duly announced their alliance: they will put both names on inkjet printers to be sold in Japan and some will be bundled with Fujitsu’s desk-top personal computers; they will also discuss co-development of printer software based on Lexmark’s technologies and they will also explore printer products.
Already some 12% of American households owning a computer have an up-to-date second computer, says Tim Bajarin of Creative Strategies Inc.
Cable & Wireless Plc and Veba AG have completed the agreements related to their European alliance and the new Vebacom GmbH joint venture is now responsible for the development of telecommunication services in Germany; it is 55%-owned by Veba and 45% by Cable & Wireless; the 50-50 Cable & Wireless Europe venture will manage and develop their telecommunications interests in the European Community apart from Germany and the UK, and in Switzerland.
The cable television companies operating in the UK pay for their franchises, so if British Telecommunications Plc were, as proposed by the Labour Party, to be allowed to enter the market in competition with them for free, the move would almost certainly fall foul of European Community competition rules, as have decisions in Spain and Italy to charge new cellular entrants for their licences when the state phone monopoly got a licence free.
Computer network distributer Azlan Group Plc said trading in the six months to September 30 was ahead of budget and it expects half year pre-tax profits to be more than ú4m against last year’s ú1.1m: Azlan said turnover in the half year was in excess of ú72m, up from 37.7m a year ago, with UK sales up 36% at ú34m and sales in continental Europe growing strongly at more than ú38m; the company’s shares surged after the profit forecast, up 55 pence at 405p by midday on Friday.
British Telecommunications Plc has won a ú5m contract to build and operate a pan-European backbone network for the Cambridge-based Dante body, provider of international network services to the European research community: it will be the biggest part of EuropaNET, Dante’s telecommunications service that provides pan-Euro
pean and global links to the Internet; British Telecom said it will provide access services to more than 20 European research and education networks.
Roy, Utah-based Iomega Corp expects a small profit on turnover of over $80m for its third quarter ended October 1: its third quarter 1994 turnover came to only about $36m.
BBC Television has a five-year deal with DreamWorks SKG, the all-star Hollywood studio: the Beeb will get the television rights to all live action and animated feature films produced by DreamWorks and released in cinemas between 1996 and 2000.
You thought those microcassette recorders that fit comfortably into a jacket pocket were pretty small, didn’t you? Well Sony Corp is into the second generation of a digital micro-recorder capable of playing two hours of continuous high-quality recording that is the size of the microcassette: called the NT-2, it uses a cassette 0.8 by 1.18 by 0.2 thick, but it costs $1,280.
Infonie, the French on-line service from Lyon-based Infogrames Entertainment SA, officially went into service on Friday, and marketing efforts, in consumer electronics stores and superstores, will be centered in Paris and Lyon initially, said Bruno Boue, manager of the personal finance section of the service; by the end of the year, Infonie’s marketing will be extended to France’s other large cities – Marseilles, Bordeaux, Lille, Strasbourg; Boue is charged with creating original content for the personal finance domain of Infonie, which already has partnerships with Les Echos, La Tribune-Defosses and Investir; Bruno Bonnell, Infogrames chief executive, reckons that the service has the edge over the Internet by virtue of consistency of high-quality reception – 28.8Kbps, simplicity and fixed cost – I’ve given up with Internet – the complexity of this tool is such that the public will quickly call into question the dream that is being sold them on the Internet; Infonie is accessible interactivity, he said; also, the public turned away from Minitel because of the unpleasant surprise at the end of the month with the phone bill; the strong point for Infonie is that its price has no surprises he said – users will get unlimited Internet access for about $10 per month.
Citizen Watch Co, Tokyo, said it will start marketing the world’s first small wireless printer by the end of the year based on its PN-60 model: it will enable data on a personal computer to be sent to a nearby printer via infra-red light; Citizen launched the PN-60 in the US in November 1994 as the world’s smallest and lightest pocket printer (CI No 2,539); it weighs 17oz, or 27oz with the battery pack and it enables laser quality printing using thermal dot-matrix printing.
People dismayed at the poor turnout at their press conferences might like to try taking a leaf out of the book of Hewlett-Packard Co’s subsidiary in China: there, reports the Wall Street Journal, Hewlett offers Chinese journalists the equivalent of $12 to attend its news conferences, and insists that the money is for taxi fares – which could cost that much – but is also equal to a week’s wages for some journalists… it isn’t a bribe, it insists – it’s local practice.