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Posted: Apr 19, 1998 0 comments

Last week, <A HREF="http://www.intertainer.com/">Intertainer, Inc.</A> announced that both <A HREF="http://www.uswest.com/">USWest Communications</A> and <A HREF="http://www.sony.com">Sony Corp.</A> have invested in the company, which provides a broadband entertainment-on-demand programming service of the same name. The two investors join <A HREF="http://www.intel.com/">Intel</A>, <A HREF="http://www.comcast.com/">Comcast</A>, and Sterling Ventures in committing capital and technological resources to Intertainer. As part of the agreement, <A HREF="http://www.uswest.com/interprise">USWest !nterprise Networking</A>, the data-integration arm of USWest Communications, will supply the Interprise service to its customers via Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) wire centers in 40 cities starting in June 1998.

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Posted: Apr 05, 1998 0 comments

According to Italian researchers, seizures caused by flashing video games and television shows can be minimized by using higher-frequency display rates. Such seizures affect about 10% of epilepsy sufferers between the ages of 7 and 19. In December, <I>Pokomon</I>, a popular Japanese television show with brightly flashing scenes, induced blackouts and epileptic seizures in more than 700 young victims, many of whom required hospitalization.

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Posted: Mar 29, 1998 0 comments

Predicted by an industry announcement last week: Widescreen digital televisions with theater-quality pictures and sound are on track for delivery by the end of the year. They'll be backed with new high-definition broadcasts in the fall, according to Sarnoff Corporation.

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Posted: Mar 29, 1998 0 comments

On March 17, <A HREF="http://www.tvpc.com">Ino Technologies</A> of Austin, Texas announced that, for only $799, its new TVPC with DVD has "cracked the code" of the long-elusive home-convergence device. Otherwise known as the "Living Room PC," the TVPC connects directly to a regular television; unlike other so-called living-room devices, TVPC comes complete with a full-function remote keyboard, a hand-held remote, and a DVD drive.

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Posted: Mar 22, 1998 0 comments

Last week, <A HREF="http://www.cablelabs.com">Cable Television Laboratories, Inc.</A> specified an existing high-speed serial protocol called IEEE 1394 (also known as FireWire) as the link between OpenCable digital set-top boxes and devices such as television sets and DVD players. <A HREF="http://www.opencable.com">OpenCable</A> is a CableLabs-sponsored initiative aimed at developing key interface specifications in order to foster interoperability among digital set-top boxes built by multiple vendors and used in broadband, two-way cable networks.

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Posted: Mar 22, 1998 0 comments

Recently, <A HREF="http://www.hrrc.org">The Home Recording Rights Coalition</A> (HRRC) sounded an alert to consumers and all other users of home VCRs and personal computers. In passing legislation to implement copyright treaties, a subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee rejected an amendment that would have preserved consumers' rights to buy and use digital VCRs and PCs capable of making home recordings.

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Posted: Mar 22, 1998 0 comments

According to the latest <A HREF="http://www.cema.org">Consumer Electronics Manufacturers Association</A> (CEMA) statistics, released March 16, overall video-product sales had their best showing ever for the first eight weeks of a calendar year, with sales up 7%, to 6 million units. Video products also enjoyed their best February performance ever, with overall sales up 7%, to 3.2 million units. Leading an impressive set of video-hardware sales, large-screen and projection TVs were up 8% and 14%, respectively, in the year to date for 1998.

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Posted: Mar 15, 1998 0 comments

On March 9, <A HREF="http://www.pioneerusa.com">Pioneer New Media Technologies</A> announced the availability of its first DVD-Recordable (DVD-R) drive, the DVR-S101, bundled with DVD mastering software from Prassi Software USA and five blank DVD-R discs. Aimed at the professional desktop DVD market, Pioneer's SCSI-2 DVD-R drive lists for $16,995 and provides a data-transfer rate of 1.428 megabits per second, a data-buffer capacity of 4 MB, and a tray-loading system. Together with the mastering software, this products constitutes the first fully functional DVD-R drive to be offered for sale that allows users to create a disc image file and record on the desktop. "The Pioneer/Prassi bundle provides the DVD-mastering market with the only DVD-R solution available," says Paul Dempsey, senior vice president of marketing and sales at Pioneer New Media Technologies. "This is a powerful product offering that is incredibly easy to use."

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Posted: Mar 15, 1998 0 comments

This year began with a strong performance in the video market, confirming previous forecasts of a vibrant holiday season. According to data released by the <A HREF="http://www.cema.org">Consumer Electronics Manufacturers Association</A> (CEMA), total January video shipments to US hardware dealers rose 8% to nearly 2.8 million units. Color televisions represented more than half that volume, sporting a 20% rise. In fact, color TVs enjoyed their best January sales since 1993.

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Posted: Mar 08, 1998 0 comments

Home theaters are becoming ever more affordable according to new data just released by the <A HREF="http://www.cema.org">Consumer Electronics Manufacturers Association</A> (CEMA). In 1997, dollar sales of home-theater products reached $8.2 billion---a slight drop from the $8.3 billion generated in the previous year---but many of the essential components of home-theater systems sold more units than ever before. Overall unit sales of home-theater products rose 5%.

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