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BofA raises AAPL target
Banc of America Securities today reiterated his "buy" rating on Apple and raised its target price from $85 to $97. NewRatings.com reports that the firm has raised FY05 sales estimate for iPod shuffle product has been raised from 4.4 million to 5 million units, confirming its optimism regarding Shuffle sales in the global market. "The demand for Apple Computer's Mac Mini continues to be robust and the sales estimate for the product has been raised from 305,000 to 900,000 units, the analyst says. The EPS estimates for FY05 and FY06 have been raised from $1.87 to $2.11 and from $2.16 to $2.50, respectively."
Forums roundup for Feb 25
Topics on the MacNN forums today include: Speculation about the next generation of Power Mac G5s from Apple.... One member's review of their new PowerBook G4 1.67GHz.... Speculation regarding the next iBook revision.... Opinions on the Mac mini from owners of the new low-cost machine.... Comparing Dell's 24" display offering to Apple's 23" and 30" displays.
Elektron, PodWave reviews
MacNN Reviews: We have published a review of Elektron for Mac OS X from Corriente Networks. It provides Radius/802.1X authentication services for wireless networks. Additionally, we have published a review of PodWave from Macally, a small AA-battery powered stereo speaker that plugs into the top of any iPod.
Apple hot, Real not
In brief: Digital media is hot, but RealNetworks apparently is not, at least in comparison with Apple, the Seattle Times says.... Dell is now shipping several models of its new digital music player, designed to compete with the iPod, including a 30GB model for $300.... "There is no doubt that USB 2 is the proper common interface of choice," Apple Vice President Greg Joswiak told CNET News.com, adding that Apple will continue to support FireWire as an option.... Fortune looks at the hip-e node a potential iMac competitor that is "underpowered and overpriced".... "iPod Nights" turn amateurs into digital DJs at D.C. Clubs, reports the Washington Post.
Apple expects a higher market share this year as a result of its entry into the local Philippines market with more affordable consumer products, reports Macworld UK. With the recent unveiling of its latest Flash-based iPod Shuffle portable music player and a slimmer Mac Mini computer, Apple has opened itself to the entry-level consumer market. "The Mac Mini opens up lower price points for people who would like to try the Mac platform, and that's long been one of my chief complaints about Apple - the high price," said International Data Corporation (IDC) analyst Roger Kay. According to Apple Philippines' country manager Gerard Chua, the company's regional office is optimistic that the Mac Mini and the iPod Shuffle will be received warmly by Filipino consumers.
Onkyo iPod interface
Onkyo has developed a remote interactive (RI) dock that interfaces Apple's iPod with Onkyo receivers and audio-video systems. The dock is scheduled for release mid 2005 in the U.S., Europe and Japan, with subsequent release in other regions where Onkyo products are available. The RI dock provides compatibility between specified iPod models and many of the Onkyo products produced over the past 10 years. "Users of both the iPod and Onkyo products will benefit from even greater flexibility with--and enjoyment of--digital media, as well as superior audio performance." Pricing and product specifics will be announced as the release date approaches.
Doom 3 goes gold
Aspyr today announced that Doom 3, the hit game from id Software, has gone gold for Mac and is scheduled to begin shipping Monday, March 14. The game was developed for Macintosh by id Software and Aspyr Studios. "The ruins of an ancient Martian civilization have unlocked the secrets to teleportation and the Union Aerospace Corporation will stop at nothing to harness this world-altering technology. As part of a Marine detachment sent to protect the facility, your duty seemed simple enough - until the invasion." The game is rated "M" for "Mature" by the ESRB and is available for preorder for $50.
Mac mini in a Lexus
In brief: DVForge has reduced the price of the iFlex iSight holder ($13) by $7, the iBreeze acrylic Powerbook cooling stand ($25) by $5, and the following products by $10: the Mouse USB mouse ($30), the SIghtFlex iSight web cam stand ($20), the MicFlex USB microphone ($40), the GuitarPlug and MicPlug USB audio interfaces ($40), the JamPlug miniature guitar amplifier ($40).... An individual claiming to be a Mac Genius from one of Apple's retail stores has created an anonymous blog giving a satirical look at day to day activities at the store.... A Mac and auto enthusiast has successfully installed a Mac mini into his Lexus IS300.
EC probes iTunes pricing
The European Commission (EC) has confirmed it is looking into allegations that Apple's iTunes Music Store discriminates against U.K. consumers by charging them more to download the same song than it charges other European music buyers. In the UK, the iTunes Music Store charges customers 79p (€1.14) to download a single track. The same song costs €0.99 when it's downloaded from Apple's other European music shops. Apple's pricing policy was brought to the EC's attention in December 2004 by the UK's Office of Fair Trading (OFT), which was itself made aware of the situation by a consumer group. The issue the commission must examine is Apple's refusal to allow cross-border shopping, which could be in contravention of European Union laws. The EC last year called on Europe's music licensing agencies to develop a common framework and pricing structure.
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