When you hear about the music industry these days, there are often figures claiming that digital music downloads--led by new initiatives from the likes of Amazon, Nokia, MySpace, and, of course, Apple--are up year-over-year by more than 25 percent, and now account for about 20 percent of overall music sales. But let's get the numbers straight. Despite some bright spots, the vast majority of digital downloads are unauthorized and cost nothing. In fact, a recent report by IFPI, a body that promotes and "safeguards" digital music, says that in 2008 a whopping 95 percent of all music … Read more
Updated on January 19 at 8:15 a.m. PST with additional information throughout.
On Sunday, Intel instituted broad price cuts on processors, spanning the Core 2 Quad, Core 2 Duo, Pentium dual-core, Celeron, and Xeon product lines.
Some of the cuts are in response to Advanced Micro Devices' recently-introduced Phenom II "Dragon" desktop platform. AMD's Phenom II X4 940 (3.0GHz), for instance, is priced at $275.
Intel cuts were concentrated on quad-core chips like the Q9650 (3.00GHz), reduced 40 percent, to $316 from $530, to counter AMD's Phenom II. But Celeron processors received … Read more
Intel is planning price cuts to its lower-end mainstream quad-core processors on January 18.
Barron's Tech Trader Daily first reported the news, citing Pacific Crest analyst Michael McConnell.
These cuts are happening because of the recent introduction of Advanced Micro Devices' 45-nanometer Phenom II and "Shanghai" Opteron processors.
AMD's quad-core Phenom II "Dragon" processor platform has been garnering solid reviews and its Shanghai server chip has been adopted by top-tier server suppliers including Hewlett-Packard, Sun, Dell, IBM, and Fujitsu.
Cuts are expected mainly on quad-core processors, though other processors may also receive cuts.
This rumor's pretty dubious, but several blogs are reporting that Sony plans to cut the PlayStation 3's price tag by $100 in April. That would put the 80GB PS3 at $300. The source: an analyst at Wedbush Morgan who's also saying that Microsoft will chop $50 off the Xbox 360 Pro around E3 2009 (in June), putting that system at $250.
When it comes to gaming systems, price drops are the equivalent of an economic stimulus plan, and breaking $300 would obviously make the PS3 attractive to a whole new batch of consumers, regardless of poor economic … Read more
Consumers are benefiting from competition between phone companies and cable operators when it comes to broadband pricing, but the same can't be said for pricing on TV services.
A report published by market research firm Pike & Fischer earlier this month notes that cable broadband prices have remained steady even though operators have been increasing speeds. The firm attributes this trend to more competition from Verizon's all-fiber network, Fios, which offers superfast broadband at competitive prices.
Average prices for cable modem service have remained steady at about $40 to $45 a month, the firm said. That's even … Read more
Next year is shaping up to be a nightmare for LCD TV makers.
Revenues for LCD TVs sold worldwide in 2009 are expected to fall 16 percent from 2008, to $64 billion, according to an update to DisplaySearch's Quarterly Global TV Shipment and Forecast Report, released Thursday. Next year will be "the most difficult year yet for the TV industry and supply chain," DisplaySearch writes in the report.
The culprits are rapidly declining prices of LCD TVs and lower shipments to retailers due to slackening demand. DisplaySearch expects 2009 LCD shipments to drop to 205.3 million … Read more
Dennis Howlett at ZDNet reports that SAP is reversing its earlier maintenance price hike, at least in Germany and Austria. While it appears that SAP was prodded into the move due to legal reasons, I imagine that the customer backlash in such a bleak economy might have prodded SAP to reverse course, anyway:
This is a major victory for SAP customers who, despite SAP management's protestations to the contrary have continued to lobby for reconsideration of SAP's maintenance package pricing. According to the FT, some 50-60% of SAP customers in Germany and Austria were deeply unhappy with the … Read more
Not only are there some really good deals on game consoles this holiday season, but also on games. Starting December 7, Best Buy is cutting prices for one week on some popular titles for both the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3, making all the serious gamers holiday dreams come true.
This is only on selected titles, for both consoles:
Xbox 360: Tom Clancy's EndWar for $39.99, Civil War for $29.99, Legendary for 39.99, and Far Cry 2 for $39.99.
PlayStation 3: Konami Corp's Metal Gear Solid 4 for $39.99, Dangerous Hunts for $… Read more
Want to know when there's a price reduction on that PS3 you've been eyeballing? Or the Amazon Kindle? Or just about anything else sold online?
There are two ways to use ShoppingNotes. First, you can copy and paste a product-page URL into the site's Web form, then enter your e-mail address for receiving alerts. Alternately, you can install the ShoppingNotes bookmarklet, which greatly simplifies the price-watch process: when viewing a product page, just click the bookmark.
You can also sign … Read more
Black Friday retail results were a pleasant surprise for retailers this year, with sales inching up slightly from the same day last year. A big part of that was the heavy discounting designed to attract consumers.
TV makers were no exception. But the discounts on LCD TVs were heaviest from the premium names in the business--Sony, Samsung, Sharp, Philips, LG, and Toshiba.
That's according to market research firm iSuppli, which reported Thursday that the top brands cut slashed prices on their LCD TV models on average of 23 percent for the holiday shopping weekend beginning on the day after … Read more