Computex rumour: Sony and Samsung team for LCDs

TAIPEI, Taiwan — The Computex trade show was abuzz this week over a possible deal by Sony and Samsung that may see the two computer electronic giants partner in the manufacturing of LCD panels for flat-panel displays.

Details are sketchy and representatives have only confirmed that talks are

continuing and may include other players.

The top three manufacturers of TFT-LCD flat panels in the world are Philips, Samsung and BenQ through its AU Optronics company.

BenQ does have the capabilities to help Sony build flat-panel monitors. The company has invested heavily in fifth and six generation design, development and manufacturing facilities for LCD flat-panels at its plant here. AU Optronics Corp. was formed through the merger of Acer Display Technology Inc. and Unipac Optoelectronics Corp. Officials at AU Optronics did not want to comment about Sony’s possible partnership plans, said Albert Lin, international public relations executive for BenQ Group, based in Taipei.

Meanwhile, AMD, which officially launched its gaming chip the 64-bit Opteron in San Francisco Tuesday, launched a chip cooler at the Computex show. Called the Athlon XP3000+, this cooler is a full copper CPU cooler and comes with both a 70mm high airflow and a low noise ball bearing fan.

AMD’s main rival Intel also had a large presence at the show. Intel released a mobile device CPU for Edge data technology, which is used primarily for handsets. Intel also released its 4865G chipset to support its Pentium 4 chip with hyper-threading. This chipset will add intelligence that manages multiple threads from the chip.

Texas Instruments, similar to BenQ, is trying to made a mark in the digital lifestyle market. Texas Instruments showcased its Wireless LAN called the TNETW1130, a AR7 single chip model, a multi-channel audio digital processor and smart phones based on the company’s own OMAP processor.

Besides the pending Sony/Samsung deal, there was another agreement struck at Computex. CyberLink Corp., the maker of PowerDVD, forged a partnership with Acer to create an all-in-one digital multimedia solution called Aspire Arcade. Aspire Arcade will be powered by CyberLink PowerCinema and will enable users to watch DVD movies, create digital photo slideshows, edit camcorder video, listen to and organize music tracks, and burn files to CD/DVD.

Finally, National Semiconductor unveiled its next generation of Smart motherboards that features a new bus design and improvements to thermal management. Called SensorPath, the one-wire, analog-based bus connects the super I/O controller with hardware monitoring sensors on the board.

The company said this new bus design will help with component placement and reduce fan noise.

Show officials said that they expect 20,000 international buyers to attend this show, a drop off of 15 per cent because of the postponement in early June.


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