News Bits: HP catching to Dell, New Core Processors, New Targus Women’s Bags, ATI Dev Kit

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HP and Acer Take PC Market Share from Dell in Recent Q1 2006 PC Sales

Worldwide PC shipments increased by 13.1% in the 1st quarter of 2006 relative to sales in the 1st quarter of 2005.  This is according to data from research firm Gartner (PCs include notebooks and desktops).  However, Dell, the No. 1 PC maker in the world and in the U.S., did not grow that fast. The Round Rock, Texas-based PC maker saw shipments rise worldwide by 10.2 percent from the first quarter of 2005, resulting in a decline in market share from 16.9% to 16.5%.

So who gained PC sales marketshare?  HP who moved up to 14.9% of total sales worldwide.  Acer is the fastest growing PC-maker, their sales increased 45% from last year same quarter sales and now Acer has 5% of the world market.  So, the leader list for Q1 2006 for worldwide PC sales is:

  1. Dell (16.5%)
  2. HP (14.9%)
  3. Lenovo (6%)
  4. Acer (5%)
  5. Fujitsu / Fujitsu-Siemens (4%)

The rest of the market of PC sales is divided between many other manufacturers with 3% shares or less (Apple and Sony have about 3% for instance).

Gartner further also revealed that  once again Advanced Micro Devices gained market share from Intel for sales last quarter.

DirectX 10 Software Developement Kit released by ATI

   

Game developers and artists recieved a new SDK (software developement kit) from ATI today, based on Microsoft’s upcoming DirectX 10 engine. According to ATI, the new SDK includes more than a dozen new samples that demonstrate what is possible with DirectX 10. The new SDK will take advantage of ATI’s unified shader technology, along with many other new technologies avaliable with DirectX 10.

Director of ISV relations at ATI, Neal Robison, said: “ATI’s GPUs are incredibly powerful and have the ability to perform powerful tasks such as physics that give developers a greater range of realism and sophistication for their games.”

This shows how ATI plans to circumvent a dedicated graphics processor for physics processing and depend on dynamic load balancing to calculate natural interactions with objects. Nvidia also announced it will provide physics capability in SLI environments through a driver update.

The new SDK is being provided through ATI’s developer program.

Read More at TGDaily

Intel launches new Core Solo processors

Intel launched two new ULV (ultra low voltage) Core Solo processors at the Intel Developer Forum in China. The news didn’t come as a surprise, because Gateway accidentely leaked the information when it announced its ultraportable E-100M on May 30th

The Core Solo U1300 and U1400 run at 1.06GHz and 1.2GHz respectively and have a rated TDP of a mere 5.5W. A LV Core Duo runs at 15W, and a standard Duo 25W for comparison. The new processors are being paired with the Intel 945GMS chipset.
The chips will carry pricetags of $241 and $262 respectively. Intel also has plans to introduce an ULV Core Duo, the U2500. It’s expected launch date is in Q4 with a $289 price attached.

Read More at TGDaily

Asustek to supply Dell notebook orders at Shanghai plant

Asustek has reportedly beat Samsung to become one of Dell’s contract notebook makers, and plans to start notebook shipments to Dell from a plant in Shanghai in Q4 2006, all according to a report in the Chinese language Commercial Times.

Asustek will make a “12-inch slim-profile notebook” for Dell. Monthly shipments are estimated at 30,000-40,000 units according to Commercial Times. Asustek is also trying to grab another contract to produce a 14-inch mainstream model.

Read More at DigiTimes

Quanta handles majority of contract orders for Acer notebooks

Acer’s manufacturing order for 4-5 million notebooks has been secured by Quanta Computer for 2006, according to Chinese language Commercial Times. Acer predicts that it will have 11 million shipments worldwide.

Compal Electronics and Wistron will supply 2-3 million notebooks to Acer as well. They became contract suppliers for Acer in 2006, supplying the 19-inch and larger display models.

Read More at DigiTimes

Intel stomachs slow sales figures for Q1

The Register has posted an article describing Intel’s slow sales for Q1. Intel is reportedly blaming the sales figures on “a weak PC Market.”

“Intel’s profit of $1.3bn, for example, marked a 38 per cent slide from last year’s first quarter. In addition, its earning per share figure of 23 cents was a 34 per cent reduction year-over-year. In total, Intel posted its worst quarter since the dot-com bust era.”

Read more at The Register

Targus Debuts Women’s Radiance Totes

Targus introduced the ladies Radiance Tote. Targus describes the product as “a sleek option for women looking for notebook protection while traveling to work or between meetings. Designed to fit notebook computers with screen sizes up to 15-inches, the Radiance Tote is offered in three vibrant colors – Pink Petal, Sage, and Chocolate Brown – with stylish accents and space for plenty of personal accessories.”

The totes are constructed from durable microfiber, which helps prevent wear and tear. They have a padded notebook section for extra protection.

All three totes come with a limited lifetime warranty, and an MSRP of $39.99.

http://www.targus.com/us/product_details.asp?sku=TLT026US

Zinc Matrix Power says its silver-zinc batteries last twice as long as same-sized Li-ion batteries

Zinc Matrix Power suggested that there could soon be more portable power options for computers and other devices. They closed at $7 million in venture-capital funding on Friday.

CEO Ross Dueber says: “We are rapidly advancing our product technology to deliver extended run time and enhanced safety features, which traditional lithium-ion batteries can’t provide. The continued support by our existing investors, which brings the company’s total investment to $32 million since founding, shows the tremendous interest the market has in Zinc Matrix Power battery technology.”

Interest in the technology is far from surprising, as device manufacturers have been searching for answers to the “power gap” between portable power and the amount that current batteries can provide.

Zinc Matrix Power is currently testing its materials with the U.S. Army. Later this year, it will release batteries to be tested in notebook computers. Notebook computers are its primary focus, then the cell phone market.

The batteries are denser than the traditional Li-Ion batteries, and use a water-based chemistry with no lithium. More energy is delivered in less space. However, the technology has had problems with cycling, or charging and recharging. The cells deliver less power the more the battery is charged and recharged. Some silver-zinc batteries fade to about half their original watt-hour capacity after 100-200 cycles. Matrix Zinc is working on the problem.
Even if Matrix Zinc does succeed, they will face substantial competition from big companies such as Sony, Sanyo, Samsung and BYD.

More from RedHerring.com

Pimp the laptop in Laptop Design USA’s free design contest

Laptop Design USA is hosting a free design contest, where you submit your own original design to the “Pimp the laptop” Sweepstakes. Entries will be accepted through June 15th, which will be followed by 30 days of online voting for the most popular design. The winner will recieve a “one-of-a-kind screamin’ machine built by RAVE Computers,” branded with the winning design.

More here

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