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Sat, Sep 17, 2005 - Page 12 News List

World News Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ Electronics
Toshiba unveils fuel cell

Toshiba said yesterday it has developed two small fuel cell prototypes that can dramatically increase the playing time for mobile music players. A fuel cell unit the size of a pack of chewing gum can power a flash-memory-based player for about 35 hours on a single charge, using concentrated methanol as its fuel, the Japanese technology giant said. For a hard disc drive system, a fuel cell unit the size of a person's palm could let the player run for 60 hours on a single charge, up from around 16 hours now, the company said. Toshiba hopes to introduce the products commercially in 2007.

■ Pharmaceuticals

Bayer bids for Boots

The German chemicals and pharmaceuticals giant Bayer has submitted an offer to buy the non-prescription drugs business of British chemists chain Boots, financial sources said yesterday. Bayer's supervisory board gave the green light for a corresponding offer to be made on Tuesday, the source said. Boots wants around ?1.7 billion (US$3 billion) for the business, but Bayer's offer was for slightly less, the source said. In addition to Bayer, the British firms Reckitt Benckiser and GlaxoSmithKline are also in the running, the Financial Times Deutschland reported.

■ Piracy

Police raid Singapore firm

Singapore police raided a company believed to be using pirated software -- the city-state's first crackdown on usage of unlicensed programs in the office, a newspaper reported yesterday. The interior design firm had 11 computers allegedly installed with pirated software worth an estimated S$50,000 (US$29,780), the Straits Times said.

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