Sony and Toshiba confirm new Cell CPU to be available 2005

Sony and Toshiba announced this week that products based on the new Cell CPU will be released next year, 2005

First product available will be a graphics workstation. High definition TVs will be released in 2006.

Sony and Toshiba will be presenting further technical info on the new CPU at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference in San Francisco in February 2005.

Sony have also confirmed that the next generation Playstation built around the Cell will be demo’d at E3 in May next year, although no official release date for the PS3 has yet been stated.

Sun to release ealry snapshot builds of future J2SE releases

Sun have started to release early builds of J2SE Mustang (1.6) on their community site.

This will allow developers to get uptospeed with new features before the official GA version is released, and even before the Beta releases.

Currently the site has a “Build 12” release – the release notes look like they cover a lot of bug fixes but no new major features yet.

Although J2SE SDK development is still not Open Source (which some people would like), the site also releases the source code along with the binary builds so you can take a look at the source.

Intel release last in current line of Pentium 4 processors

This week Intel quietly released the last in the current line of Pentium IV processors, a 3.8GHz model.

Intel has previously stated that this will be the last Pentium IV of the current line. Instead they intend to start developing other speed enhancing architecture changes, rather than raw CPU cycle speed. The new CPUs will also follow a new naming standard which will de-emphasise the actual CPU speed, following AMD’s current marketing strategy.

Can Microsoft’s Media Player dethrone Apple’s iPod?

Microsoft are making a late entry into the market of handheld media players, and are hoping to take some market share from Apple’s iPod.

Microsoft are pushing a version of their Windows Media Player software to be used on mobile MP3 players, and are appealing to manufacturers like Dell, Samsung and Rio to start making devies running the software. Microsoft has also started it’s own online music store similar to iTunes, which is also competing directly with Apple.

Has Microsoft entered this market too late, or can the marketing machine of Microsoft drum upenough business to steal customers from the already well established market leader in this area, Apple?