Samsung to spend more
Samsung Group, which controls Asia's biggest chipmaker, said it will spend 21 percent more this year on products from the greater China region, including Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau. Samsung China, based in Beijing, will spend US$18.5 billion on purchases in the region, compared with US$15.3 billion a year earlier, the company said in an e-mail statement, without providing details on how or where the money will be spent.
Putin vows to look east
Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday said Russia, the world's second biggest oil exporter, was struggling with "unfair competition" on energy markets, and he said it should focus on supplying Asia. "Despite the great demand for energy resources, any excuses are being used to limit us in the north, in the south, in the west. We must look for markets, fit into the processes of global development," he was quoted by Russian news agencies as saying. "The countries of the Asian-Pacific region are developing at great speed and need to cooperate with us," he added.
Seagate unveils big drive
Seagate Technology LLC is beefing up the capacity of its hard disk drives to a huge 750 gigabytes, offering consumers of digital media more storage for their computers than ever before. The drive Seagate introduced yesterday, the Barracuda 7200.10, is the first computer desktop disk drive to hit the 750-gigabyte mark and represents a 50 percent increase from the previous industry maximum of 500 gigabytes. Analysts say a 750-gigabyte drive could hold roughly 375 hours of standard-definition television programming, about 75 hours of high-definition video, or more than 10,000 music CDs converted to the MP3 digital audio format.
Intel lowers chip prices
Intel Corp, which reported its biggest sales drop in more than four years in the first quarter, lowered prices this month less than analysts had expected. The world's largest semiconductor maker cut prices on five desktop chips by as much as 50 percent but didn't change prices of server chips where it has been losing market share to rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc. Analysts had expected Intel to use cheaper manufacturing costs and stronger finances to cut prices and claw back share losses. Intel slumped to less than 80 percent of the personal computer processor market for the first time in more than four years in the fourth quarter.
Sharp posts record profit
Sharp Corp posted record high group sales and net profit in the year ending last month on strong sales of liquid-crystal-display (LCD) televisions, LCD panels for flat-screen televisions and mobile phones, the company said yesterday. The company marked a 15.4 percent increase in its group net profit of ¥88.67 billion (US$773.47 million) while its sales were also up 10.1 percent at ¥2.8 trillion in the year, compared to the previous year, it said. Sharp projects its group net profit to rise 12.8 percent to ¥100 billion in the current year on a sales increase of 7.3 percent to ¥3 trillion.