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October 07, 2003

Table of Contents

Philips Collaborates with Mitsubishi Kagaku Media/Verbatim to Develop Dual-layer DVD+R Technology
Real Digital Media Launches Versatile Media Player
DDD and Sharp Corporation Announce Software Licensing Agreement; DDD 3D software to be installed on Sharp 3D laptop PC
Sharp Introduces New Category in Desktop LCD Monitors with Two New Models
Protocom Delivers Single Chip MPEG-4 Audio Video Codec
Alera Technologies New CD Copy Cruiser with Cruise Control 100
Olixir Technologies Launches Portable 3.5-inch Hard Disk Drive For Backup and External Storage
Sharp Develops New LCD Display Technology for Mobile Applications

Philips Collaborates with Mitsubishi Kagaku Media/Verbatim to Develop Dual-layer DVD+R Technology

Philips will demonstrate its new dual-layer DVD recordable technology at the DVD+RW Alliance booth at the CEATEC* JAPAN 2003 exhibition in Makuhari from October 7 to 11. Developed by Philips Research in cooperation with MKM, the technology doubles data storage capacity on DVD recordable discs from 4.7 gb to 8.5 gb, while remaining compatible with existing DVD Video players and DVD-ROM drives.

Both Philips' and MKM's introduction of dual-layer DVD+R technology is important in the drive to continually improve and expand the optical data storage options available to consumers. Users will benefit from the additional storage capacity of the DVD+R disc. It will enable them to record 4 hours of DVD-quality video, or 16 hours of VHS-quality video, without the need to turn over the disc.

The dual-layer DVD+R system uses two thin embedded organic dye films for data storage separated by a spacer layer. Heating with a focused laser beam irreversibly modifies the physical and chemical structure of each layer such that the modified areas have different optical properties to those of their unmodified surroundings. This causes a variation in reflectivity as the disc rotates to provide a read-out signal as with commercially pressed read-only discs.

Compatibility has been achieved through the use of a thin silver-alloy as reflector material in the upper layer giving a reflectivity from the layer of at least 18% in compliance with the dual-layer DVD-ROM standard. In addition, the transmission of the upper recording layer is greater than 50% to allow for read-out and recording of the lower recording layer. This layer has high power sensitivity since the upper layer absorbs and reflects part of the incoming light. It also has a much higher reflectivity (> 50%) which after double transmission through the upper layer also results in an apparent layer reflectivity (at the disc surface) of at least 18%. These high transmission and reflectivity values have been achieved through careful optimization of the dye material and deposition, groove shapes and silver deposition. In addition to optimizing reflectivity, other parameters such as signal amplitude and tracking signals were also optimized to ensure full compatibility with current DVD standards.

The dual-layer DVD+R format book is expected to be ready within this year. Recorders for both the PC and consumer electronics markets are expected to become available during the course of 2004.

(http://www.philips.com)

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Real Digital Media Launches Versatile Media Player

Real Digital Media announced the introduction of its multimedia player for playback of high-quality video material at Digital Signage installations.  Aimed at multi-location enterprise-wide applications, RDM employs wireless and wired networked solutions in its multimedia appliance.

The small footprint of the RDM multimedia MPX-1 Multimedia Player mated to a flat-panel monitor enables retailers to place eye-catching promotional displays throughout their retail environment.  Providing DVD-quality video and crisp graphics, the images attract the attention of the shopper, offering the retailer additional opportunities to promote showcased merchandise.  The content on each player is independently updateable from a remote location. The first device to enable wireless downloading of high-impact video content, the RDM MPX-1 Multimedia Player fits smoothly into the IP network and enterprise IT infrastructure.  It accomplishes digital signage applications while it enables wireless playback of high-quality video.

The MPX-1 Multimedia Player is a solid-state, commercial-grade, IP- addressable, video and audio player in a rugged enclosure.  The device can be configured to support either wireless or hard-wired networks. The compact MPX-1 Multimedia Player is easy to connect to CRT monitors, flat-panel displays, and projection systems.  It also supports industry-standard, high-quality, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, and MPEG-4 digital audio and video files.  The player offers long play times using compact flash cards or a micro-hard drive. Individual players can receive location specific content through remote downloads.  Network connectivity includes standard wireless protocols as well as an efficient MESH-LAN network, exclusively available in the Digital Signage industry on the RDM family of products.

(http://www.realdigitalmedia.com)

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DDD and Sharp Corporation Announce Software Licensing Agreement; DDD 3D software to be installed on Sharp 3D laptop PC

DDD Group has entered into a three-year, worldwide license agreement with Sharp Corporation.  The agreement signifies that a range of DDD software products will be bundled with Sharp's new 3D laptop PC based on Sharp's 3D "glasses-free" liquid crystal display (LCD).

The software products to be licensed under the agreement include DDD's TriDef Movie Player, that will allow end users to play feature length 3D movies on the Sharp laptop, TriDef Photo Viewer, and the TriDef Visualizer OpenGL software. DDD will also provide Sharp with 3D content including feature length large format 3D movies and 3D still images created using DDD's TriDef Transformer 2D to 3D conversion and presentation software.

(http://www.ddd.com), (http://www.sharp-world.com)

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Sharp Introduces New Category in Desktop LCD Monitors with Two New Models

LCD performance for desktop computing is advanced with a new monitor from Sharp Systems of America.  Sharp Electronics Corporation introduced a new class of desktop LCD monitors, called the LTM. The new 15- and 17-inch LTM monitors come equipped with built-in TV tuners and remote control functionality.

Equipped with a wide aspect, high-performance TFT LCD, the Sharp LL-M17W1 LTM is a high definition, 17-inch WXGA display that comes equipped with a built-in TV tuner, and remote control functionality. The LL-M17W display provides users with a large screen capable of viewing the most detailed computer-aided design images, with a high contrast ratio of 600:1 and high brightness of 450 nits. It also has general purpose applications like spreadsheets in addition to providing a functional TV tuner for video applications.

The wide screen format is capable of displaying 16.19 million colors and has a video refresh rate of 25 ms. Including built-in stereo speakers, the LL-M17W1 LTM monitor is perfect for video intensive application such as video gaming, DVD viewing, and professional video editing. A picture-in-picture function makes it possible for users to watch TV on a small screen and perform PC work simultaneously.

The LL-M17W1 LTM monitor is equipped with an analog PC interface for computer applications, along with an array of video inputs, which include RCA (composite video), S-Video, component video, and a TV Antenna/Cable input. The LTM display also includes audio in/out jacks for stereo signals.

Available immediately, the Sharp LL-M17W1 LTM monitor sells for an estimated price of $749.  

The Sharp LL-M15X1 is a high definition, 15-inch XGA (1024 x 768) display that comes equipped with a built in TV tuner, remote control functionality. With its 300-nit brightness, 350:1 contrast ratio and thin bezel, the LL-T15G3 offers users a desktop display that doubles as a video monitor with an array of applications.

Capable of displaying 16.19 million colors and a video refresh rate of 25 ms, including built-in stereo speakers, the LL-M15X1 LTM is ideal for video intensive application such as video gaming (both console and PC), DVD viewing, and home video editing.

The LL-M15X1 LTM monitor is equipped with an analog PC interface for computer applications, along with video inputs that include RCA (composite video), S-Video, and a TV Antenna/Cable input. The LTM display also includes audio in/out jacks for stereo signals.

Available immediately, the Sharp LL-M15X1 LTM monitor sells for an estimated price of $449.  

(http://www.sharp-usa.com)

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Protocom Delivers Single Chip MPEG-4 Audio Video Codec

Protocom Technology, a  provider of audio video codecs for the mobile electronics, announced the introduction of the PR818 single chip MPEG-4 A/V codec. Supporting both NTSC and PAL video formats, Protocom's PR818 ISO/IEC compliant MPEG-4 codec offers quality image capture and display.  The PR818 has been selected as the MPEG-4 device of choice for a consumer camcorder product in the industry. The MPEG-4 codec will allow hybrid digital camcorder manufacturers to offer products with one hour of solid-state storage and the ability to capture video frames at 30 frames per second at full D-1 size.  The entry level camcorder is estimated to be around $399.  
  
Protocom's PR818 is currently in production and will be suitable for use in many mobile consumer electronics applications. Additional features include:   MPEG-4 capture and display at near DV Video quality, hardwired architecture,  flexible audio options including MP-3, AAC, WMA and ADPCM, support of both CCD and CMOS sensors up to 16 mega-pixels and more.  

(http://www.protocomtech.com)

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Alera Technologies New CD Copy Cruiser with Cruise Control 100

Alera Technologies, developer and manufacturer of DVD and CD Recording Solutions unveils its new 1:1 CD Copy Cruiser with a new duplicator controller, Cruiser Control 100, which provides you with the choice of quick, one touch copies or comprehensive professional control features at your finger tips. CD Copy Cruiser is a 52x stand alone, desktop, one to one CD duplicator with a CD-ROM, a 52x CD-Recorder and our Cruiser Control 100 duplicator controller all in one unit. It can duplicate a typical 650MB data CD in as few as 2 minutes, or it can copy individual tracks from your music CDs creating "Favorite Hits" discs for an uncluttered listening experience. It is the only 1:1 stand alone duplicator equipped with a menu of controls and diagnostics for more advanced work.

Alera Technologies, innovator of Prosumers' Choice products, has designed the CD Copy Cruiser with its Cruise Control 100 professional CD Duplicator Controller to put users in control. Cruise Control 100 has a new back-lighted LCD display that reports percent complete and other status elements during the duplicator process. You can adjust speeds and other copy functions, verify the copies after they are made, simulate the copy process without actually burning media, and much more, with a complete menu of tools necessary for making successful copies and improving yields. Or you can simply push "Copy" for a quick duplicate disc. The new CD Copy Cruiser is available for $299.

(http://www.aleratec.com)

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Olixir Technologies Launches Portable 3.5-inch Hard Disk Drive For Backup and External Storage

The portability and high capacity of tape is combined with the speed and ease-of-use of hard disk drives in Olixir Technologies' Mobile DataVault 3DX.  It also incorporates patented shock-protection technology.

Olixir Technologies, a provider of technologically advanced ruggedized, portable data storage solutions, today introduced the Mobile DataVault 3DX, the industry's first slim, rugged, high-capacity 3.5-inch portable hard disk drive targeted at solving the data backup and recovery needs of the SMB sector.   It also accommodates end users' storage and archival needs for digital photos, videos, music, and critical data. Proven to withstand shocks of up to 1200 G's without damage to stored data, the high-capacity Mobile DataVault 3DX is available in 80gb, 120gb, 180gb, and 250gb capacities.

Slightly larger than a VHS tape, Olixir's compact Mobile DataVault 3DX is a high-speed, high-capacity, data backup, storage, and disaster recovery replacement for tape drives, CDs, floppy disks, zip disks.  While other external 3.5 inch disk-based data storage solutions cannot typically withstand a drop of more than two inches, the patented shock absorbent technology incorporated into the Mobile DataVault 3DX provides the durability required to make it usable for offsite data archiving and media rotation.

With Olixir's Mobile DataVault 3DX, users can transport mission-critical data, restore a missing file in 5 minutes and an entire server crash in as little as 30 minute as well as a laptop or individual computer in minutes. It can also backup live servers, laptops or individual computers with no down time or quickly browse backup data and review files before restoration.

The 7,200 RPM Mobile DataVault 3DX includes 8MB of cache memory, allowing it to transfer a gb of data in less than 50 seconds. The Mobile DataVault 3DX utilizes an innovative, versatile interface that can be used interchangeably with Olixir's USB 2.0, Firewire, and PCMCIA cables interfaces.  In addition, the hot-swappable Mobile DataVault 3DX has the ability to use Olixir's 5.25-inch DataBay for desktop PC's or other chassis making it a tape-replacement solution for media rotation and data security.  The Mobile DataVault 3DX supports plug and-play operation with Macintosh OS 8.6 and higher, Windows 2000/ME/XP and Linux operating systems.

At a height of 1.40 inches, width of 4.45 inches and length of 7.5 inches, Mobile DataVault 3DX is compact enough to fit into the palm of a hand making it transportable. Weighing in at a little over a pound, the Mobile DataVault 3DX can easily be moved and integrates a rugged cooling system to improve reliability.

Available in 80GB, 120GB, 180GB, and 250GB capacities, Olixir's Mobile DataVault 3DX drives are available now through PC Mall and the Olixir Web site at list prices of $249, 309, $379, and $569.

(http://www.olixir.com)

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Sharp Develops New LCD Display Technology for Mobile Applications

Enhanced color reproduction now brings superior image quality to mobile devices for displaying image and video data as Sharp Corporation announced the development of a new TFT liquid crystal display technology.  

The new LCD modules combine technology characteristics of the Sharp AQUOS Liquid Crystal TV, referred to as the ASV LCD, with Sharp's proprietary small format display technology, referred to as the Advanced-TFT. With this, Sharp has attained a new mobile display that is ideally suited for the following mobile devices:  camera phones, PDAs, and personal media players, all of which display streaming video content or color images. The displays achieve excellent visibility in a variety of lighting situations.  It also offers a wide viewing angle, high contrast ratio, and superior color reproduction.

The displays are slated for sampling in December of 2003, with volume production to begin next spring.

Sharp also developed mobile ASV LCD technology which combines its Advanced Super View LCD and Advanced-TFT(2) LCD technologies. Advanced Super View technology is used in its AQUOS LCD TVs, while its Advanced-TFT technology is in the company's transflective LCD displays integrated into devices such as mobile phones and PDAs. The result of this convergence is a new, LCD technology that allows modules to exhibit video and photographic-quality still images.

The new displays are produced using Sharp's Amorphous silicon and CG-Silicon manufacturing processes. They range in size from 1.5-inch to 6.5-inches, and feature color purity within a viewing cone of 160 degrees vertically and horizontally. With a symmetric viewing cone, the displays can be used in portrait mode for graphics and landscape mode for video, enabling viewing even when held in the hand or laid flat on the table. This technology is compatible with a range of products that will be offered in VGA and QVGA resolutions. The displays feature a 25ms response rate, and 300:1 contrast ratio.

(http://www.sharp-usa.com)

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