[4:45 PM] Apple Scores Another Victory, SOTEC Will Release "New Design"
Hot on the heals of Apple's preliminary court ruling imposing an injunction on SOTEC that prevents the company from selling, shipping, or importing the eOne, SOTEC handed Apple another victory, at least on paper. SOTEC announced that they would be releasing a new version of the eOne that was Designed Different. According to a News.com report:
Sotec Co. said it plans to begin sales next month of a remodeled version of its iMac look-alike personal computer to get around a Tokyo court injunction.
The new machine's features will be distinct, "not to be confused with the iMac," said Masayasu Ozeki, director of SOTEC's planning department.
The eOne went on sale in Japan on July 21 and undercut the price of Apple's iMac by 19 percent. The Tokyo District Court on Monday imposed a preliminary injunction on production and sales of the eOne as it considers the suit.
Shares of companies related to Sotec plunged following the injunction.
Sotec developed the computer the with two Korean manufacturers also named in suits filed by Apple in its drive to protect the rights to the distinctive features of the iMac.
The company has not yet released images of the new design.
The Mac Observer Spin: This development shows that SOTEC more than likely feels they will lose the case, and rightly so. While the preliminary injunction is not a final decision, it does show that the court considers the case to have merit. Interestingly enough, this statement lends credence to the idea that SOTEC may agree with the concept that the eOne resembles the iMac. This could be an aspect of the English translation and perhaps should not be taken literally, but by saying that they would release a new design that does not resemble an iMac seems to indicate that the current design does. It would be interesting to see if this statement ended up playing a part in the case. Please keep in mind that no one on The Mac Observer staff is a practicing attorney in Japan and our thoughts are pure speculation and contemplation.
So while this announcement does not prove that the company will in fact deliver a new computer that does not resemble the iMac, it does award another moral victory for Apple.
[4:00 PM] Apple Stock Watch: Apple Regains Some Lost Ground In Heavy Trading
Apple's stock regained some of the ground lost in yesterday's bloodbath amidst heavy trading. The market saw some of yesterday's massive across the board declines as buying opportunities and this included Apple. Apple closed at 70 5/16, a gain of 1 1/16 or 1.53%. Volume was heavy with 10,027,100 shares trading hands. This was far short of the more than 29 million shares traded yesterday, but still far heavier than Apple's normal 3 to 4 million shares that trade on a typical day.
With Mac related companies, Macromedia and Motorola traded lower while Adobe and Symantec both closed higher. Apple's PC brethren also saw mixed results with Dell, IBM, Hewlett-Packard, and Gateway 2000 closing down, while Intel, Microsoft, and Compaq closed higher.
The Dow and the Nasdaq were mixed as well with the Dow closing at 10524.07, a loss of 74.40, while the Nasdaq closed at 2858.16, a gain of 37.06.
For full quotes for all the companies mentioned in this article, we have assembled this set of quotes at Yahoo! for your reference. We also have these same quotes reported live (20 minute delay) on our home page. For other stories regarding Apple's stock activity, visit our Apple Stock Watch Special Report.
The Mac Observer Spin:Here we are, back up above 70. Not too bad considering that Apple was below 70 just a few short weeks ago. Fundamental belief in Apple's core strengths seems solid.
[1:10 PM] Independent Film Site Made Possible With QuickTime 4
DSPFilms.com has just opened their virtual doors for business. DSPFilms.com consists of two subsites, TheJunkie.com and Inetfilm.com. TheJunkie.com serves as a portal site for information on entertainment, technology, or other specialized areas of interest. Perhaps the more interesting of the two is the Inetfilm.com site. This site is serves as a type of distribution clearinghouse for independent films. DSP Films claims that Inetfilm.com is the first full blown attempt at supplanting television as the sole means of visual broadcast entertainment. How do they intend to do this? With the use of Apple Computer's own QuickTime 4. According to DSPFilms:
DSP Films intends nothing less than directing the future of independent film production and distribution on the Internet through the use of QuickTime video streaming technology. QuickTime produces the best combination of quality and performance of video over the Internet.
Inetfilm.com functions as a web-based film distribution channel. On it you can preview the latest in groundbreaking independent and experimental film as we strive to provide an intelligent forum for yet-known filmmakers. It is in the vanguard of sites that are aiming (remove - also the first full-scale attempt) to supplant traditional broadcast entertainment media such as television. (remove - and move it to the Internet.)
TheJunkie.com is an entertainment portal to some of the most intriguing sites on the Internet. Be it technology, entertainment, or knowledge that you seek, TheJunkie.com will provide an unbiased, comprehensive guide to what is cool, hip and in-demand. And, as computers become integral components of the home entertainment system, TheJunkie.com will offer the latest in what's hot and where to get it in film, music, multimedia, arts and entertainment.
The Mac Observer Spin: The release of QuickTime 4 and its improved streaming technology was sure to lend itself to creative uses. Publicly available, free software, with enough power to even attempt an endeavor such as this was unimaginable just a few short years ago. In a bit of irony, with some thanks to QuickTime 4, independent and experimental filmmakers may actually pave the way for more mainstream uses of QuickTime's streaming capabilities.
Antec Inc. has announced the PhotoChute 3 for iMac and G3 professional users. The PhotoChute 3 is a PC card reader/writer for users of digital cameras with smart cards, as well as other media forms. Many digital cameras use "cards" as film, rather than a floppy or other type of media. According to Antec:
PhotoChute 3 is an external USB-based PC card reader/writer that provides high-speed, bi-directional image and data transfer capabilities for users of Apple's iMac and Power Mac G3 computers. With the PhotoChute 3 for iMac, now iMac/G3 users can transfer captured images at speeds up to 60 times faster than the standard serial port connection offered by most digital cameras, and up to 5 times faster than cameras with a USB interface. PhotoChute 3 for iMac fully supports SmartMedia, Type I/Type II ATA Flash cards, and CompactFlash cards, and also provides the freedom to use any of these types of cards simultaneously. Users can easily write or read files and images to or from the storage cards, and transfer files and images from one to the other as well. This makes the PhotoChute 3 iMac an ideal device for downloading images from digital cameras, and also for sharing data between computers.
PhotoChute 3 for iMac is available for US$139. You can find more information on PhotoChute 3 at the company's web site.
[12: 15 PM] XLR8 Rolls Out Trade-in/Upgrade Special Promotion
XLR8 is offering a special deal for those Observer interested in upgrading their system. XLR8 is offering new buyers of their G3 upgrade a special price on future G4 upgrades. According to XLR8:
Today, XLR8 announced its new Fall Into G4 promotion. This promotion allows users to purchase their MACh Carrier G3 upgradeable upgrade immediately (Fall '99), then upgrade to G4 for as little as $500 in January when new software and better revisions of the G4 CPU are expected. The initial upgrade purchase plus the cost of a G4 upgrade in January is less than the current price of a G4 upgrade alone.
For more information on the promotion and the XLR8 product catalog, please visit their web site. The site utilizes frames so we can not link directly to the Fall Into G4 page.
The Mac Observer Spin: This is an interesting new development in the competitive G3/G4 upgrade market. Confusion and saturation among consumers may also be taking its toll on sales. We hope this isn't the case as the upgrade market offers many Mac owners choices they can't get from Apple. In any event, it will be interesting to see how some of the other companies respond to this, if they do.
[8:45 AM] Two New Fast Ethernet Products Rolled Out By Farallon
Farallon Communications Inc. has released their new Fast Starlet Dual Speed Hub 16 port ethernet hub. In conjunction with the new hub, Farallon has also introduced the Fast EtherTX-10/100 CardBus Adapter. The CardBus adapter can be used with the new hub, or any existing dual speed ethernet hub, to give users maximum throughput when using PowerBooks on and ethernet network. According to Farallon:
Farallon Communications, Inc., today shipped their new 16-port Fast Starlet Dual Speed Hub 10/100, and released an optimized Fast EtherTX-10/100 CardBus Adapter driver for Macintosh PowerBook G3 computers equipped with high-performance CardBus slots.
Farallon's Fast Starlet Dual Speed Hub/16 Features:
16 10/100Base-TX Ethernet ports plus one crossover uplink port for maximum flexibility
N-Way auto-negotiation for automatic 10Base-T or 100Base-TX selection
Support for all standard Ethernet protocols including TCP/IP, AppleTalk & IPX
At-a-glance LEDs & auto-partitioning of faulty network segments
Lifetime warranty, free technical support & universal power supply
Farallon's Fast EtherTX-10/100 CardBus Adapter Features:
Up to 69% performance improvement with optimized 2.0 Macintosh driver
Windows 95/98 and NT drivers also included for cross-platform support
32-bit PCI-bus performance for maximum throughput
NWay 10/100 auto-negotiation for easy installation and setup
Full-duplex support for network connections up to 200Mbps
High-performance DEC Fast Ethernet controller chip for ultimate reliability
100% compatibility with Ethernet software network analyzers such as EtherPeek
Diagnostic LEDs, free technical support & lifetime warranty
EZQuest has introduced the Boa USB CDRW 4x2x8. This is another victory for USB, and gives Macintosh users another option in the mass storage market. According to EZQuest:
EZQuest releases the Boa USB CDRW External CD-Recorder in the heat of a growing demand for data storage in the Mac environment. The 4x write, 2x-rewrite drive offers the best of CDR technology in USB drives.
This CD-Recorder is a natural for the imac, G3 and G4 owner, according to Ebrahim Zmehrir, president of EZQuest. "The imac, G3 and G4 user will love this USB CDRW because of its ease of use and it's aggressive price" Zmehrir says.
The Boa USB CDRW carries a suggested retail price of US$289, and will ship with Adaptec's Toast CD mastering software. The company has not yet updated their web site with information on the new Boa product though they do have an information page for their other Boa products.
[Update 10:00 AM] The company sent us a note with a link to the product's web page. You can find more information on the Boa USB CDRW drive at the company's web site.