Philips pushes DVD+RW into new market

The Dutch electronics giant will demonstrate its new DVD+RW (digital versatile disc rewritable) drive here at the CeBIT trade show, which opens Thursday in Hanover. The device, scheduled for launch in October and expected to be priced at around $US1,000, allows 12-speed recording of data and 2.5-speed DVD writing. Storage capacity per disc is 4.7GB of data.

Philips, one of the world's largest manufacturers for CD drives, is in talks to get its DVD+RW drive and CD-RW drives into corporate PCs.

"We want to bring CD-RW to the business market. There is a great demand for writing and rewriting data, but as of yet a low adaptation of CD writing," said Frank Simonis, commercial director at Philips optical storage, adding that Philips is talking to, amongst others, Compaq IBM and NEC.

The breakthrough in the corporate world will be forced by simple "drag and drop" writing on CD's, Philips said. The enabling technology, made in a collaboration project with over 60 companies dubbed Mt. Rainier, will be on the market in the second half of this year. Philips expects large-scale availability in the course of 2002.

"The floppy disc drive is ancient and should have been ditched a long time ago, its function can be taken over by the CD-RW," said Simonis.

Worldwide CD-RW shipments more than doubled over the past two years with 16 million in 1999 and 39 million in 2000, according to Philips.

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Joris Evers

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