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July 28, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Microsoft Corp.'s plans to offer an iPod competitor could take up to five years of investment, but the spending is worth it in part because it will help the software maker's broader entertainment agenda, a company executive said. Robbie Bach, president of Microsoft's entertainment and devices group, told financial analysts that the company's planned Zune product line would require millions of dollars in investment and would not pay off immediately.
July 10, 2006 | Dawn C. Chmielewski, Times Staff Writer
Sony Corp. has patented technology that would prevent its PlayStation consoles from playing used, rented or borrowed video games -- raising questions about whether the electronics and entertainment giant may attempt to redefine what it means to own something in the digital age. Sony has said little about the technology, patented in Japan in 2000, or how it might be deployed.
July 1, 2006 | James S. Granelli, Times Staff Writer
Wireless customers typically swap out new cellphones about every 18 months and, starting today, new state laws require retailers to help keep all those used handsets and accessories out of landfills. Sure, the phones are small, but put a million of them in a dump and you'll have a hazardous waste site. Californians replaced 13 million handsets in 2004, the last year for which numbers are available. Only a small fraction were recycled.
June 23, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Leading French lawmakers voted Thursday to water down a draft copyright law that could force Apple Computer Inc. to make its iPod music player and iTunes online store compatible with rivals' offerings. But the changes did not appear to go far enough to satisfy Apple, which dropped the strongest hint yet that it might withdraw from the French download market rather than comply.
May 9, 2006 | Dawn C. Chmielewski, Times Staff Writer
Sony Computer Entertainment's PlayStation 3 will be the most expensive game system on the market when it debuts Nov. 17 in North America. The much-anticipated video game console will sell for $499 for a system that has a 20-gigabyte hard drive or $599 for a system with three times the storage, the company said at a news conference Monday night. Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox 360 starts at $299.
May 1, 2006 | Chris Gaither, Times Staff Writer
Yahoo Inc. plans to unveil its first new media property in five years today: a personal-technology website to help consumers buy and set up TVs, digital cameras and other electronic gear. Marketers and analysts said Yahoo Tech would pose a formidable challenge to the leading tech information site, CNet Networks Inc., and present an attractive option for advertisers. The computing and telecommunications industries spent $2.4 billion, or about one-fifth, of the $12.
April 20, 2006 | David Colker, Times Staff Writer
As it rolls out the first high-definition DVD player, Toshiba Corp. is boasting: "Image is everything." After testing the so-called HD DVD machine on three TVs of various dimensions, I hit on a more appropriate slogan: Size matters. Last week, a milestone in viewing was reached with the debut of the Toshiba HD-A1, which costs just shy of $500. (A deluxe model, the HD-XA1, goes for $800). Should you care? Probably not.
March 22, 2006 | From Reuters
Microsoft Corp. said that it planned to soon double or triple shipments of its Xbox 360 video game console to address shortages that have crimped game sales across the industry. The announcement came a week after rival Sony Corp. announced that it would delay the launch of its much-anticipated PlayStation 3 until November to finalize standards for the Blue-ray disc drive, a next-generation DVD player that will be included in PS3.
March 17, 2006 | Scott Timberg, Times Staff Writer
Like a lot of iPod owners, Los Angeles Philharmonic Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen has a motley collection of recordings on his little white portable music player. There's Radiohead, Bjork, some meditation music, a symphony he expects to conduct. Before the month is out, though, Salonen and millions of listeners like him will have yet another option to add to that mix: Philharmonic concerts at Walt Disney Concert Hall in programs available nowhere else.
March 16, 2006 | David Colker, Times Staff Writer
Bad news if you dread home movies: Digital still cameras are becoming far more adept at capturing video and sound. Advances in image compression and a sharp drop in memory prices have made mid-priced digital cameras of recent vintage not only decent but also practical little moviemakers. They're still a far cry from camcorders, which offer superior image quality and many more features for shooting video.
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