Apple Inc, maker of the iPod music players and Macintosh personal computers, may introduce a new laptop this year that will save data on flash memory chips instead of a hard drive, American Technology Research said.
"Our sources indicate that Apple would like to introduce the product in the second half to further capitalize on its strong MacBook growth,'' Shaw Wu, an analyst at American Technology Research, wrote in a report dated Wednesday.
The release date of Apple's lighter and smaller notebook personal computer may depend on how much prices of NAND flash memory chips decline as they are still seven to eight times more expensive than hard-disk drives, Wu wrote.
Samsung Electronics Co and other chipmakers in the US$12 billion NAND flash market are counting on laptops to help fuel future growth of the chips, which have already replaced hard drives as the most common type of storage device in portable music players.
Sales of chip-based storage in PCs may surge eightfold in the latter half of the decade, Samsung said.
In 2005, Apple used NAND flash chips to make the iPod Nano, reducing the size of the company's flagship music player by 80 percent.
Samsung said in March last year it built the world's first laptop that saves files on flash.
WHEELING AND DEALING? Hou You-yi, Ko Wen-je, Eric Chu and Ma Ying-jeou are under investigation for allegedly offering bribes for the other side to drop out of the race Taipei prosecutors have started an investigation into allegations that four top politicians involved in attempts to form a “blue-white” presidential ticket have contravened election regulations. Listed as defendants are Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) presidential candidate and New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi (侯友宜), KMT Chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫), former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) of the KMT and Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) Chairman and presidential candidate Ko Wen-je (柯文哲). The case stemmed from judicial complaints filed last month with the Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office alleging that the KMT (blue) and the TPP (white) had engaged in bribery by offering money or other enticements
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