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Friday, August 19, 2005
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Sony adds Web browser to PSP

Sony Corp is adding Internet access to its PlayStation Portable in a bid to increase the mobile gaming device’s appeal as a handheld entertainment centre.

Sony Computer Entertainment America is offering PSP users a software upgrade that will allow wireless Internet access on the device, including a new Web browser to connect to news, entertainment content, online searches and e-mail.

The software is also built to increase data security on the device and enhance digital photo-sharing and video playback capabilities.

The Internet browser and other added functionality will further enhance the user experience beyond the unprecedented portable entertainment already provided by PSP.

Intel targets power-efficiency and raw speed

Intel Corp is combining its desktop and notebook microprocessor architectures, as the world’s largest chipmaker shift its focus to power efficiency from raw speed.

Such performance is the key for small, mobile devices and computers in date centres eager to cram more chips into smaller spaces. Intel also disclosed plans to deliver, by the end of the decade, chips that consume half a watt of electricity, compared with five watts in current notebook PCs.

The shift in Intel’s strategy comes as it faces the stiffest-ever competition from its smaller rival, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. Intel in the past has focused on making chips that run at ever higher clock speeds, which are now measured in gigahertz, but its top goal now is making chips with higher performance per watt.

Intel also plans to start selling three new versions of lower power-consuming chips in the second half on 2006.

The chips, codenamed Woodcrest, will be aimed at the computer server market, those codenamed Conroe will be aimed at the desktop PC market, and Merom is designed for the notebook PC market. All will be made using Intel’s 65 nanometre chipmaking technology, its latest.

The chips are so called x86 chips, which are industry standard microprocessors and are the brains of PCs. They are also dual-core chips, which essentially mean two chips in one.

Otellini declined to name the new architecture, which is a combination of its NetBurst architecture used in its desktop and server processor and its Banias mobile microarchitectures.
The chips will able to handle 64 bits of data at once, twice the standard of current x86 chips, which is 32 bits.

But no immediate mention of Itanium, a line of high-end processor for which Intel had high hopes when it was first announced. Intel has invested billions of dollars in its development, but so far the sales of Itanium have been less than what Intel had initially hoped for – Reuters

Software to make Podcast mobile

A California company is hoping to tap into the growing podcasting craze with software that enables mobile phone users to stream audio directly from their home computer.
Podcasts are recorded audio files downloaded over the Internet. They can be stored on computers or trandferred to digital music players like Apple Computer Inc’s iPod.

The software from Los Angeles-based Pod2Mob promises to enable mobile phone users to hear podcasts on their handsets, too.
Currently available for free as a “beta” test download, the software runs on Windows and Mac computers. The software relays the audio to mobile phone. An applet, or small computer program, that must be loaded on the handset allows users to control which podcasts they want to hear. - AP

Comics in cell phone

Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc will almost triple the number of comic books it formats for viewing on cell phones in a move that will make it the No. 1 provider of popular Japanese manga comics for cell phones.

The Sony Corp unit will increase the number of titles it offers to 300 over the next year.

The marriage between cell phone technology and manga comic books, which are wildly popular across all ages in Japan, is a natural progression in nation where people already download music, games and even novels onto their mobiles.

Hitachi unveils 1TB DVD recorder

Japan Hitachi Ltd unveiled the world’s first hard disk drive/digital versatile disc (DVD) recorder that can store one terabyte (TB) of data or enough to record about 128 hours of high-definition digital broadcasting.

1TB is equal to one trillion bytes of data. 1GB equals one billion bytes.

Japan accounts for more than half of the global DVD recorder market.

DVD recorders have been slow to take off in other markets such as the United States, where TV set-top boxes with hard drives, such as those made by Tivo Inc are popular.

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