Daily Marauder

TECHNOLOGY by Marauder
November 11, 2008, 11:25 PM
Filed under: TECHNOLOGY | Tags: , , , , , , ,


Blockbuster, which is facing competition from the likes of Netflix and AppleTV in the online-movie space, has announced that it is developing its own set-top box. The device, which will stream Blockbuster’s Web-based MovieLink service, is expected to be available for the holiday season. Electronista (11/10)


Circuit City‘s bankruptcy filing may be good news for rival Best Buy, which will face diminished competition for consumers’ electronics dollars. But, according to this article, it is not good news for consumer-electronics manufacturers, who now will have less leverage with retailers such as Best Buy. The New York Times (11/10)


MyFC is a fuel cell company that is showing prototypes of fuel cells that could be built into cases a la the Mophie. The cells run on small hydrogen packs and can fold over surfaces. They could even be embedded inside cellphone bodies. (http://www.crunchgear.com/2008/11/11/bendable-ultra-thin-fuel-cells-coming-soon 11/11)


The consumer-spending forecast may be lackluster for this holiday season, but among those who are looking to make CE purchases, more shoppers are leaning toward Dell and Apple products, according to a ChangeWave Research survey. “It’s not easy to increase market share in one of the worst spending environments in years,” said research director Paul Carton, although Apple is drawing attention from consumers, with one-third of respondents saying they plan to buy an Apple laptop in the next 90 days, which is up from 29% in September. CNNMoney.com/Fortune (11/10) , CNET (11/10)

Reports of Dell’s developing a digital music player apparently were greatly exaggerated. In a blog posting, the company put the kibosh on the rumor, adding that “our strategy focuses on content offerings and delivery platforms that mix Zing software, remote access and pre-configured media bundles across all of our devices, including licensing agreements with entertainment distributors.” Reuters (11/11)

BlueKey Wireless Technologies has introduced the BK-UNV01 module, a device that allows Bluetooth-equipped cell phone users to control home electrical systems. The unit, which retails for just under $500, features seven programmable relays that can control nearly any low-voltage device. CEPro.com (11/10)

Blu-ray will be on an upward swing in the U.S. over the next two years, at which time 50% of households will own a Blu-ray player, according to Singulus Chief Executive Officer Stefan Bauster, who does not expect Germany to reach the same penetration level until 2011 or 2012. Blu-ray sales are on pace to reach $409.4 million in 2010. CEPro.com (11/10)

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TECHNOLOGY by Marauder


Visits to Amazon.com rose 6% on Oct. 24, the day Oprah Winfey endorsed the online retailer’s Kindle e-reading device on her television show. A 6% bump can translate into hundreds of thousands of visitors. Also, the word “kindle” saw a 479% bump in search traffic that day. (Iwantmedia 11/3, http://adage.com/digital/article?article_id=132194 11/3)Amazon Kindle

Television news outlets are “going all-out” for their Election Night coverage. CNN will employ a “virtual-reality Capitol” to track control of Congress, as well as a “holograph projection device” for interviews. Execs fear that viewers will turn away “if you do just traditional stuff.” (Iwantmedia 11/3, http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081102/ap_en_tv/ap_on_tv_election_night 11/2)Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. ...

With its Kirikabu speaker, JVC is going green … literally. The new device not only features multidirectional audio with a woofer and left- and right-channel stereo, its design also includes small bowllike planters for potted greenery. Pocket-lint.co.uk (10/31)

Microsoft is expected to report today that it has substantially improved security on its Windows operating system, but that computer threats via viruses and fraud have become more frequent and more pernicious. In its latest “Security Intelligence Report,” the company will report that the amount of harmful software removed from computers using Windows increased 43% in the first half of this year. The New York Times (11/3)

Consumer-electronics retailer Circuit City announced today that it will close 155 underperforming stores, exit select markets completely and trim its work force by 17%. “We are making a number of difficult, but necessary, decisions to address the company’s financial situation as quickly as possible,” said James A. Marcum, vice chairman and acting president and CEO of Circuit City. Richmond Times-Dispatch (Va.) (11/3) , Gizmodo (11/3)

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MISC by Marauder
July 3, 2008, 4:45 PM
Filed under: MISC | Tags:


Blockbuster officially withdrew its offer to buy ailing Circuit City for $1-$1.3 billion. The video chain had talked about using Circuit City stores as a distribution point for both digital content and devices. (Cynopsis 7/3)

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While cautioning that its actions do not necessarily foretell the company’s direction, Circuit City said it would open its books to Blockbuster and its largest investor, Carl Icahn, after receiving written assurances from the billionaire that he would pursue a takeover of the struggling chain even if Blockbuster’s bid collapses. Circuit City also said that it had retained Goldman Sachs to review its options after Blockbuster’s April offer of $6 to $8 a share to buy the retailer. (ClipSyndicate/Bloomberg 5/9, USA TODAY 5/11, The Washington Post 5/10)

MISC by Marauder
April 14, 2008, 6:41 PM
Filed under: MISC | Tags: , , ,


Blockbuster said it made an offer in February to acquire Circuit City stores for more than $1 billion, but is still withholding a definitive proposal until Circuit City provides due diligence. Blockbuster said it planned an all-cash offer of $6 to $8 a share, but Circuit City questions the financing of the deal. (ClipSyndicate/Bloomberg 4/14, The Wall Street Journal 4/14, The Washington Post/Reuters 4/14, Bloomberg 4/14)


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