News Bits: Sony Recalls VAIO TZ Notebooks, Dell Looks To Sell Factories

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Sony recalls 440,000 VAIO TZ notebooks

Sony today announced it is recalling 440,000 VAIO TZ ultraportable notebooks due to possible overheating. 19 different models of the TZ sold between May 2007 and July 2008 are being recalled. Faulty wiring connecting the display to the laptop could cause overheating, which can melt the case of the notebook.

To find out whether your Sony VAIO TZ is affected, go to the following link:

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New Intel Atom processors coming Q3 ’09

Next-generation Intel Atom processors will come out approximately one year from now, according to Japanese-language site PCWatch. The new chips are codenamed ‘Pineview’, which differ from the current ‘Diamondville’ Atom processors substantially. Pineview chips will have a memory controller and graphics integrated into the CPU chip itself. Pineview will no longer use a Front-Side Bus, rather a Direct Media Interface (DMI) like Intel’s upcoming Nehalem desktop processors.

It is unknown whether the dual-core versions of Pineview will make it to notebooks, as current dual-core Diamondville Atom processors are only for desktops.

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Acer netbook shipments to reach 2 million in Q3’08

Acer is expected to ship two million Aspire One netbooks by the end of Q3 this year according to a DigiTimes report. Acer will add a 3G model to its lineup for the Taiwan market in November.

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Samsung looking to buy Sandisk

Samsung Electronics may be looking to purchase or acquire SanDisk, a large producer of flash memory currently valued at $3.2 billion. If the two become one, competition would intensify between Samsung and Toshiba. SanDisk shares recently plummeted to less than half of what they were a few months ago. Samsung is looking to reduce licensing costs by acquiring or purchasing SanDisk.

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Dell looking to sell off most factories in 18 months

The Wall Street Journal  reports that Dell is looking to sell off most or all of its factories within 18 months. Dell is moving its manufacturing overseas to foreign contract manufacturers, abandoning its traditional "two-touch" approach to building machines. The two-touch approach included sending half-built computers from overseas factories to US factories, where the final assembly took place. The problem is that the two-touch system is desinged for building computers for customers ordering directly from the company. Since Dell has entered retail, this approach is no longer as efficient. Dell has sold more computers this year compared to last, but its profit margins have fallen. Dell’s production chief Mike Cannon is in charge of streamlining the manufacturing process, and is currently working on more production outsourcing.

Dell’s factories are currently valued at $2.6 billion.

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