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Apple to unveil new laptop computers

by Staff Writers
San Francisco (AFP) Oct 9, 2008
Apple is expected to unveil new notebook computers, perhaps even one priced for those with tight budgets, at a "town hall" gathering at its northern California headquarters next week.

In typical enigmatic style, Apple hinted at the theme of the invitation-only event but provided no details other than that it would be held Tuesday morning at the iconic firm's headquarters in the city of Cupertino.

Invites sent out by email on Thursday bore the lone message "The spotlight turns to notebooks."

While discussing earnings with investors earlier this year, Apple executives tempered profit expectations by saying it is investing in new designs but didn't give specifics.

Apple's Macintosh computers remain a distant second place to world-dominating PCs based on Windows operating systems from Microsoft but have been gaining market share.

Analysts believe the popularity of Apple's trendy iPod MP3 players and iPhones revived the company's cachet and attracted buyers to its computers.

The Internet is buzzing with rumors and unconfirmed reports that Apple will try to shake off its reputation for selling premium machines at premium prices by introducing its first model priced at less than 1,000 dollars.

"There is a possibility they might go there, but in general they have consistently played at the very high end of the market," said Gartner analyst Van Baker.

"While I would love to see Apple compete in the 799-999 dollar price range, based on past history I am skeptical they are going to do that."

Baker says it is more likely Apple is giving its MacBook Pro line of laptops a thinner, more industrial design that proved successful with its MacBook Air model.

Apple is expected to be shifting from plastic laptop casings to more stylish and eco-friendly aluminum.

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Google adds computer games to online advertising kingdom
San Francisco (AFP) Oct 8, 2008
Google said Wednesday that it is expanding its advertising kingdom to include the booming online computer game market.

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