Apple, Matsushita To Develop Low-Cost Video Editing Suite

Apple Computer and Japanese electronics giant Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. will jointly develop and market a low-cost video-editing system for the television industry, the Japanese company announced Monday. The system is expected to cost less than one-tenth the price of conventional editing systems and is directly targeted at Sony Corp., the worldis leading supplier of professional broadcasting systems.

The low-cost system will be linked with a new, yet-to-be-released Matsushita videotape recorder, which are better known to consumers and broadcasters under the Panasonic brand name. The recorders will then be controlled by a Macintosh installed with Appleis professional video-editing software. It is not known if the suite will use Final Cut Pro HD, or a new, specially enhanced version of the product.

The suite is expected to cost less US$37,000, well below comparable video solutions costing over $400,000, Matsushita said. A company spokesman said the exact launch date for the new editing system has not been determined yet.

The two companies are also working on a new digital TV editing system, due to be released next year, that stores information on flash-memory, or SD cards, instead of video tapes, Matsushita said. The advantage of using SD Cards is the fast data transfer of recorded data to a Macintosh.