Philips targets the enterprise with DVD+RW

After a general mass adaptation of CD writers by home-users, Koninklijke Philips Electronics is pushing its CD writers onto the corporate PC 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. The device, scheduled for launch in October and expected to be priced at around US$1,000, allows 12-speed recording of data and 2.5-speed DVD writing. Storage capacity per disc is 4.7G byte 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 Computer Corp., IBM Corp., and NEC Corp.

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.

"We expect the market to grow to between 50 million and 60 million units this year," said Roel Kramer, chief technology officer at Philips Consumer Electronics.

Koninklijke Philips Electronics, in Amsterdam, is at +31-20-597-7777 or at http://www.philips.com/.

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