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Sony, Toshiba, Fujitsu Lead New 1394-Equipped DVD, HD and PC Product Introductions

Digital Tech Consulting Report Foresees 21 Percent Growth for 1394-Enabled Products

A set of new 1394-equipped DVD recorders, DVD drives, and HDTVs from leading manufacturers — along with predictions from Digital Tech Consulting for solid and consistent growth of 1394-equipped consumer and PC products — reflects continued strength for the standard across many growing market sectors, the 1394 Trade Association said today.

Sony Electronics, Toshiba Corporation, Fujitsu, Ltd., Plextor LLC and other global CE companies in July introduced innovative 1394-equipped products for home and professional use.

The DTC report predicts that the worldwide total of 1394-equipped devices in several important categories will grow by more than 20 percent in 2008 and into 2010 including digital cable set top boxes, which will total at least 11.9 million units worldwide by 2010; digital televisions, 1.35 million units; and PC peripherals, almost 11.3 million. Other 1394-enabled product categories with 20 percent or more annual growth include DVD-equipped PCs; non-PC optical disc devices; and DVD aftermarket kits. Only camcorders are experiencing a decline.

In addition, DTC indicated growth projections for 1394-equipped digital cable STBs will likely be revised upward later this year. (For more information visit http://www.dtcreports.com).

“These estimates and the impressive new 1394-equipped products we see moving into the market validate our expectations about FireWire’s solid growth going forward,” said James Snider, executive director of the 1394 Trade Association. “These are excellent products from global leaders, and the DTC projections are in line with what our member companies indicate to us.”

Fujitsu, Sony, Toshiba Lead New Product Introductions
Fujitsu has just introduced its first notebook PC with both 1394 and Blu-ray capabilities. Built around the Centrino and Core 2 Duo processors, the new Fujitsu N6460 comes with a 17-inch screen and a variety of expansion and connectivity capabilities, including the Blu-ray optical drive. It will be available worldwide in August.

Sony Electronics in late July debuted its multi-function DVDirect™ DVD recorder for transferring high-definition home videos and digital photos to DVD discs without using a computer. The Sony VRD-MC5 recorder transfers standard-definition home videos to DVD from virtually any camcorder without the need for a computer.

Toshiba Corporation in late June announced two high-end additions to its 1394-equipped VARDIA HD hard disk recorders, adding the capabilities of HD DVD recordable drives to many other advanced functions. The new DVRs introduce the ability to record two digital HD television programs simultaneously, and also integrate Toshiba’s “VARDIA engine”, which adds performance, including faster graphic user interface drawing and improved HD DVD disc operation. The VARDIA engine adds two new capabilities — live chase play of a program as it is recorded; and playback and editing (chaptering, for example) of other recorded programs while recording.

Also this summer, Plextor LLC, a leading developer and manufacturer of high-performance digital media equipment, has introduced the PX-810UF DVD Super Multi Drive, an external drive featuring 1394 that lets users in a small office or professional studio share a single external high-performance DVD/CD burner among multiple Apple Macintosh and Microsoft Windows-based PCs.

The latest product introductions add to an impressive list of announcements during the summer and spring. Sharp Electronics, Samsung Electronics and LaCie have introduced new 1394-equipped Blu-ray disc products, and Matsushita Digital Electronics last spring unveiled new 1394-enabled HDTVs as part of its Diamond Series.

“Momentum continues in major markets,” Snider said. “We are very optimistic about the addition of 1394-equipped PCs, CE systems and peripherals, and continue to make progress on important standards that will lead to a new set of innovative products with FireWire.”

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The 1394 Trade Association is a worldwide organization dedicated to the advancement and enhancement of the IEEE 1394 standard. For more information please visit http://www.1394ta.org

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