Friday, May 30, 2008

Intel Corporation

Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC; SEHK: 4335) is the world's largest semiconductor company and the inventor of the x86 series of microprocessors, the processors found in most personal computers. Founded in 1968 as Integrated Electronics Corporation and based in Santa Clara, California, USA, Intel also makes motherboard chipsets, network cards and ICs, flash memory, graphic chips, embedded processors, and other devices related to communications and computing. Founded by semiconductor pioneers Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore, and widely associated with the executive leadership and vision of Andrew Grove, Intel combines advanced chip design capability with a leading-edge manufacturing capability. Originally known primarily to engineers and technologists, Intel's successful "Intel Inside" advertising campaign of the 1990s made it and its Pentium processor household names.
Intel was an early developer of SRAM and DRAM memory chips, and this represented the majority of its business until the early 1990s.[citation needed] While Intel created the first commercial microprocessor chip in 1971, it was not until the creation of the personal computer (PC) that this became their primary business. During the 1990s, Intel invested heavily in new microprocessor designs and in fostering the rapid growth of the PC industry. During this period Intel became the dominant supplier of microprocessors for PCs, and was known for aggressive and sometimes controversial tactics in defense of its market position, as well as a struggle with Microsoft for control over the direction of the PC industry.[5][6] The 2007 rankings of the world's 100 most powerful brands published by Millward Brown Optimor showed the company's brand value falling 10 places – from number 15 to number 25.
Market history
SRAMS and the microprocessor
The company's first products were shift register memory and random-access memory integrated circuits, and Intel grew to be a leader in the fiercely competitive DRAM, SRAM, and ROM markets throughout the 1970s. Concurrently, Intel engineers Marcian Hoff, Federico Faggin, Stanley Mazor and Masatoshi Shima invented the first microprocessor. Originally developed for the Japanese company Busicom to replace a number of ASICs in a calculator already produced by Busicom, the Intel 4004 was introduced to the mass market on November 15, 1971, though the microprocessor did not become the core of Intel's business until the mid-1980s. (Note: Intel is usually given credit with Texas Instruments for the almost-simultaneous invention of the microprocessor.)
From DRAM to microprocessors
In 1983, at the dawn of the personal computer era, Intel's profits came under increased pressure from Japanese memory-chip manufacturers, and then-President Andy Grove drove the company into a focus on microprocessors. Grove described this transition in the book Only the Paranoid Survive. A key element of his plan was the notion, then considered radical, of becoming the single source for successors to the popular 8086 microprocessor.
Until then, manufacture of complex integrated circuits was not reliable enough for customers to depend on a single supplier, but Grove began producing processors in three geographically distinct factories, and ceased licensing the chip designs to competitors such as Zilog and AMD. When the PC industry exploded in the late 1980s and 1990s, Intel was one of the primary beneficiaries.
Intel, x86 processors, and the IBM PC
Despite the ultimate importance of the microprocessor, the 4004 and its successors the 8008 and the 8080 were never major revenue contributors at Intel. As the next processor, the 8086 (and its variant the 8088) was completed in 1978, Intel embarked on a major marketing and sales campaign for that chip nicknamed "Operation Crush", and intended to win as many customers for the processor as possible. One design win was the newly-created IBM PC division, though the importance of this was not fully realized at the time.
IBM introduced its personal computer in 1981, and it was rapidly successful. In 1982, Intel created the 80286 microprocessor, which, two years later, was used in the IBM PC/AT. Compaq, the first IBM PC "clone" manufacturer, in 1985 produced a desktop system based on the faster 80286 processor and in 1986 quickly followed with the first 80386-based system, beating IBM and establishing a competitive market for PC-compatible systems and setting up Intel as a key component supplier.
In 1975 the company had started a project to develop a highly-advanced 32-bit microprocessor, finally released in 1981 as the Intel iAPX 432. The project was too ambitious and the processor was never able to meet its performance objectives, and it failed in the marketplace. Intel extended the x86 architecture to 32 bits instead.[13][14]
386 microprocessor
During this period Andy Grove dramatically redirected the company, closing much of its DRAM business and directing resources to the microprocessor business. Of perhaps greater importance was his decision to "single-source" the 386 microprocessor. Prior to this, microprocessor manufacturing was in its infancy, and manufacturing problems frequently reduced or stopped production, interrupting supplies to customers. To mitigate this risk, these customers typically insisted that multiple manufacturers produce chips they could use to ensure a consistent supply. The 8080 and 8086-series microprocessors were produced by several companies, notably Zilog and AMD. Grove made the decision not to license the 386 design to other manufacturers, instead producing it in three geographically distinct factories in Santa Clara, CA; Hillsboro, OR; and the Phoenix, Arizona suburb of Chandler; and convincing customers that this would ensure consistent delivery. As the success of Compaq's Deskpro 386 established the 386 as the dominant CPU choice, Intel achieved a position of near-exclusive dominance as its supplier. Profits from this funded rapid development of both higher-performance chip designs and higher-performance manufacturing capabilities, propelling Intel to a position of unquestioned leadership by the early 1990s.
486, Pentium, and Itanium
Intel introduced the 486 microprocessor in 1989, and in 1990 formally established a second design team, designing the processors code-named "P5" and "P6" in parallel and committing to a major new processor every two years, versus the four or more years such designs had previously taken. The P5 was earlier known as "Operation Bicycle" referring to the cycles of the processor. The P5 was introduced in 1993 as the Intel Pentium, substituting a trademarked name for the former part number (numbers, like 486, cannot be trademarked). The P6 followed in 1995 as the Pentium Pro and improved into the Pentium II in 1997. New architectures were developed alternately in Santa Clara, California and Hillsboro, Oregon.
The Santa Clara design team embarked in 1993 on a successor to the x86 architecture, codenamed "P7". The first attempt was dropped a year later, but quickly revived in a cooperative program with Hewlett-Packard engineers, though Intel soon took over primary design responsibility. The resulting implementation of the IA-64 64-bit architecture was the Itanium, finally introduced in June 2001. The Itanium's performance running legacy x86 code did not achieve expectations, and it failed to effectively compete with 64-bit extensions to the original x86 architecture, first from AMD (the AMD64), then from Intel itself (the Intel 64 architecture, formerly known as EM64T). As of November 2007, Intel continues to develop and deploy the Itanium.
The Hillsboro team designed the Willamette processor (code-named P67 and P68) which was marketed as the Pentium 4, and later developed the 64-bit extensions to the x86 architecture, present in some versions of the Pentium 4 and in the Intel Core 2 chips. Many chip variants were developed at an office in Haifa, Israel.
Pentium flaw
In June 1994, Intel engineers discovered a flaw in the floating-point math subsection of the Pentium microprocessor. Under certain data dependent conditions, low order bits of the result of floating-point division operations would be incorrect, an error that can quickly compound in floating-point operations to much larger errors in subsequent calculations. Intel corrected the error in a future chip revision, but nonetheless declined to disclose it.[citation needed]
In October 1994, Dr. Thomas Nicely, Professor of Mathematics at Lynchburg College independently discovered the bug, and upon receiving no response from his inquiry to Intel, on October 30 posted a message on the Internet.[15] Word of the bug spread quickly on the Internet and then to the industry press. Because the bug was easy to replicate by an average user (there was a sequence of numbers one could enter into the OS calculator to show the error), Intel's statements that it was minor and "not even an erratum" were not accepted by many computer users. During Thanksgiving 1994, the New York Times ran a piece by journalist John Markoff spotlighting the error. Intel changed its position and offered to replace every chip, quickly putting in place a large end-user support organization. This resulted in a $500 million charge against Intel's 1994 revenue.
Ironically, the "Pentium flaw" incident, Intel's response to it, and the surrounding media coverage propelled Intel from being a technology supplier generally unknown to most computer users to a household name. Dovetailing with an uptick in the "Intel Inside" campaign, the episode is considered by some to have been a positive event for Intel, changing some of its business practices to be more end-user focused and generating substantial public awareness, while avoiding (for most users) a lasting negative impression.[citation needed]
Intel Inside, Intel Systems Division, and Intel Architecture Labs
During this period, Intel undertook two major supporting programs that helped guarantee their processor's success. The first is widely-known: the 1990 "Intel Inside" marketing and branding campaign. This campaign established Intel, which had been a component supplier little-known outside the PC industry, as a household name. The second program is little-known: Intel's Systems Group began, in the early 1990s, manufacturing PC "motherboards", the main board component of a personal computer, and the one into which the processor (CPU) and memory (RAM) chips are plugged. Shortly after, Intel began manufacturing fully-configured "white box" systems for the dozens of PC clone companies that rapidly sprang up. At its peak in the mid-1990s, Intel manufactured over 15% of all PCs, making it the third-largest supplier at the time. By manufacturing leading-edge PC motherboards systems, Intel enabled smaller manufacturers to compete with larger manufacturers, accelerating the adoption of the newest microprocessors and system architecture, including the PCI bus, USB and other innovations. This led to more rapid adoption of each of its new processors in turn.[citation needed]
During the 1990s, Intel's Architecture Lab (IAL) was responsible for many of the hardware innovations of the personal computer, including the PCI Bus, the PCI Express (PCIe) bus, the Universal Serial Bus (USB), Bluetooth wireless interconnect, and the now-dominant architecture for multiprocessor servers. IAL's software efforts met with a more mixed fate; its video and graphics software was important in the development of software digital video, but later its efforts were largely overshadowed by competition from Microsoft. The competition between Intel and Microsoft was revealed in testimony by IAL Vice-President Steven McGeady at the Microsoft antitrust trial.
Another factor contributing to rapid adoption of Intel's processors during this period were the successive release of Microsoft Windows operating systems, each requiring significantly greater processor resources. The releases of Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows 2000 provided impetus for successive generations of hardware.
Competition, antitrust and espionage
Two factors combined to end this dominance: the slowing of PC demand growth beginning in 2000 and the rise of the low-cost PC. By the end of the 1990s, microprocessor performance had outstripped software demand for that CPU power. Aside from high-end server systems and software, demand for which dropped with the end of the "dot-com bubble", consumer systems ran effectively on increasingly low-cost systems after 2000. Intel's strategy of producing ever-more-powerful processors and obsoleting their predecessors stumbled, leaving an opportunity for rapid gains by competitors, notably AMD. This in turn lowered the profitability of the processor line and ended an era of unprecedented dominance of the PC hardware by Intel.[citation needed]
Intel's dominance in the x86 microprocessor market led to numerous charges of antitrust violations over the years, including FTC investigations in both the late 1980s and in 1999, and civil actions such as the 1997 suit by Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) and a patent suit by Intergraph. Intel's market dominance (at one time it controlled over 85% of the market for 32-bit PC microprocessors) combined with Intel's own hardball legal tactics (such as its infamous 338 patent suit versus PC manufacturers)[16] made it an attractive target for litigation, but few of the lawsuits ever amounted to anything.
A case of industrial espionage arose in 1995 that involved both Intel and AMD. Guillermo Gaede, an Argentine formerly employed both at AMD and at Intel's Arizona plant, was arrested for attempting in 1993 to sell the i486 and Pentium designs to AMD and to certain foreign powers.[17] Gaede videotaped data from his computer screen at Intel and mailed it to AMD, which alerted Intel and authorities, resulting in Gaede's arrest. Gaede was convicted and sentenced to 33 months in prison in June of 1996.[18][19]
Partnership with Apple
On June 6, 2005, Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced that Apple would be transitioning from its long favored PowerPC architecture to the Intel x86 architecture, because the future PowerPC road map was unable to satisfy Apple's needs. The first Macintosh computers containing Intel CPUs were announced on January 10, 2006, and Apple had its entire line of consumer Macs running on Intel processors by early August 2006. The Apple Xserve server was updated to Intel Xeon processors from November 2006, and is offered in a configuration similar to Apple's Mac Pro.[20]
Core Duo advertisement controversy
In 2007, the company released a print advertisement for its Core Duo processor featuring six African American runners appearing to bow down to a Caucasian male inside of an office setting (due to the posture taken by runners on starting blocks). According to Nancy Bhagat, Vice President of Intel Corporate Marketing, the general public found the ad to be "insensitive and insulting".[21] The campaign was quickly pulled and several Intel executives made public apologies on the corporate website.
Advertising and brand management
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Intel has become one of the world's most recognizable computer brands following its long-running "Intel Inside" campaign. The campaign, which started in 1991,[36] was created by Intel marketing manager Dennis Carter.[37] The five-note jingle was introduced the following year and by its tenth anniversary was being heard in 130 countries around the world.
The Intel Inside program was very lucrative for advertisers and further served to broaden the company's awareness as a key ingredient inside PCs. Intel paid half the advertising costs for any ad that used the "Intel Inside" logo. If the ads didn't meet these requirements, Intel did not pay half the cost, and the advertiser was prohibited from using the "Intel Inside" logo. PC companies advertising products containing Intel chips are required to include the jingle in their film and television advertisements in order to receive the reimbursement.
The Centrino advertising campaign has been hugely successful, leading to the ability to access wireless internet from a laptop becoming linked in consumers' minds to Intel chips.[citation needed] In the UK this has caused some controversy, as the ASA upheld complaints that this was a misleading advert.[38]
In December 2005, Intel phased out the "Intel Inside" campaign in favor of a new logo and the slogan, "Leap ahead". The new logo is clearly inspired by the "Intel Inside" logo.
In 2006, Intel expanded its promotion of open specification platforms beyond Centrino, to include the Viiv media centre PC and the business desktop Intel vPro.
In mid January 2006, Intel announced that they were dropping the long running Pentium name from its processors. The Pentium name was first used to refer to the P5 core Intel processors (Pent refers to the 5 in P5,) and was done to circumvent court rulings that prevent the trademarking of a string of numbers, so competitors could not just call their processor the same name, as had been done with the prior 386 and 486 processors. (Both of which had copies manufactured by both IBM and AMD). They phased out the Pentium names from mobile processors first, when the new Yonah chips, branded Core Solo and Core Duo, were released. The desktop processors changed when the Core 2 line of processors were released.
In March 2007, the Intel logo was shown briefly in one of the scenes of the movie, "The Last Mimzy."
As from 2008, Intel plans to shift the emphasis of its "Intel Inside" campaign from traditional media such as television and print to newer media such as the Internet. Intel will require that a minimum of 35% of the money it provides to the companies in its co-op program be used for online marketing.[39]
Intel's "Intel Inside" campaign has generally been considered to be world class marketing. However, over the years there have been several plays on the Intel branding scheme which have appeared on the web. While such jabs at Intel are obviously beyond the company's ability to control, they do tend to show that not everyone believes that Intel's programs and policies are always world class. For example, there is the popular "evil inside" logo,[40] the ubiquitous picture of a tombstone with "R.I.P Intel Inside"[41]
Sonic logo
The famous "D♭ D♭ G♭ D♭ A♭" jingle, sonic logo, tag, audio mnemonic (MP3 file of sonic logo) was written by Walter Werzowa from the Austrian 1980s sampling band Edelweiss.[42]
Open source support
Intel has a significant participation in the open source communities. For example, in 2006 Intel released MIT-licensed drivers for their integrated graphics cards of the i965 family of chipsets. On other occasions, Intel released FreeBSD drivers for some networking cards,[43] available under a BSD-compatible licence, which were also ported to OpenBSD. Intel also released its EFI core named as EDK under a BSD-compatible licence.
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However, after the release of the wireless products called Intel Pro/Wireless 2100, 2200BG/2225BG/2915ABG and 3945ABG in 2005, Intel was criticized for not granting free redistribution rights for the firmwares that are necessary to be included in the operating systems for the wireless devices to operate.[44] As a result of this, Intel became a target of campaigns to allow free operating systems to include binary firmwares on terms acceptable to the open source community. Linspire-Linux creator Michael Robertson outlined the difficult position that Intel was in releasing to Open Source, as Intel did not want to upset their large customer Microsoft.[45] Theo de Raadt of OpenBSD also claimed that Intel is being "an Open Source fraud" after an Intel employee presented a distorted view of the situation on an open-source conference.[46] In spite of the significant negative attention Intel received as a result of the wireless dealings, the binary firmware still has not gained a license compatible with free software principles.
During the 1980s, Intel was among the top ten worldwide semiconductor sales leaders (10th in 1987), dominated by Japanese chip makers. In 1991, Intel achieved the number one ranking and has held it ever since. Other top semiconductor companies include AMD, Samsung, Texas Instruments, Toshiba and STMicroelectronics.
Further information: Semiconductor sales leaders by year
Competitors in PC chipsets include VIA Technologies, SiS, ATI, and Nvidia. Intel's competitors in networking include Freescale, Infineon, Broadcom, Marvell Technology Group and AMCC, and its competitors in flash memory include Spansion, Samsung, Qimonda, Toshiba, STMicroelectronics, and Hynix.
The only major competitor to Intel on the x86 processor market is Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), with which Intel has had full cross-licensing agreements since 1976: each partner can use the other's patented technological innovations without charge after a certain time.[47] However, the cross-licensing agreement is canceled in the event of an AMD bankruptcy or takeover.[48] Some smaller competitors such as VIA and Transmeta produce low-power processors for small factor computers and portable equipment.
In September 2005, Intel filed its response to an AMD lawsuit,[49] disputing AMD's claims, and stating that its business practices are fair and lawful. In its rebuttal, Intel laid out the skeleton of its legal defense, which included a deconstruction of AMD's offensive strategy and levied the charge that AMD's long-struggling market position is largely a result of bad business decisions and management incompetence, including underinvestment in essential manufacturing capacity and over-reliance on contracting out chip foundries.[50]
Legal experts predict the lawsuit will most likely drag out for a number of years, since Intel's response indicates they are not likely to try to settle with AMD.[51][52]
In October 2006, a Transmeta lawsuit was filed against Intel for patent infringement covering computer architecture and power efficiency technologies.[53] In October 2007, the Transmeta-Intel lawsuit was settled, with Intel agreeing to pay an initial US$150 million and US$20 million per year for the next 5 years. Both companies agreed to drop lawsuits against each other while Intel was granted a perpetual non-exclusive license to use current and future patented Transmeta technologies in its chips for 10 years.[54]
Anti-competitive allegations by regulatory bodies
In July 2007, the European Commission formally accused Intel of anti-competitive practices, mostly against its main competitor AMD.[55] The allegations, going back to 2003, include giving preferential prices to computer makers getting most or all CPU chips from Intel, paying computer makers to delay or cancel the launch of products using AMD chips and providing CPU chips at below cost to governments and educational institutions.[56] Intel responded that the allegations were unfounded and instead qualified its market behavior as consumer-friendly.[57] General counsel Bruce Sewell also responded that the Commission had misunderstood some factual assumptions concerning price and manufacturing costs.[58]
In February 2008, a spokesman for the company announced that Intel's office in Munich had been "raided" by European Union competition regulators investigating its business practices. Intel reported that it was cooperating with investigators.[59]
If found guilty of stifling competition, Intel could be fined up to 10% of its annual revenue.[57] Rival AMD also subsequently launched a website focusing on these allegations.[60][61]
In September 2007, South Korean regulators formally accused Intel of breaking antitrust law. The inquiry began in February 2006 when officials raided Intel's South Korean offices. If found guilty, the company risks being fined up to 3% of its annual sales.[62]
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Bad companies are destroyed by crisis, Good companies survive them, Great companies are improved by them
—Andy Grove, after the Pentium Processor flaw in December 1994
Environmental record
During the months of June and July in 2006 Intel's facilities were responsible for the release of more than 1580 lbs of VOC emissions.[63] In 2003 there was 1.4 tons of carbon tetrachloride measured from just one of Intel's acid scrubbers. Intel used a different way to calculate their emissions instead of the proper way and reported for the whole year that there was zero emissions being released in their compounds and the release of carbon tetrachloride.[64] Intel has a facility located in Rio Ranche that overlooks a village. The hills of its location allow for emissions to travel at ground level. The heavy emissions the facility gives off stays trapped in the same air that animals and humans are breathing, instead of evaporating into the air. In the village next to the Intel facility there were reports of dogs dying. The dogs were examined after their deaths and high levels of the dangerous toxic, Silica, were found in their lungs. Silica is one just of many hazardous chemicals released into the air by Intel's factories.[65]
See also
* Advanced Micro Devices (AMD)
* Cyrix
* x86 architecture
* Transmeta
* Intel graphics media accelerator
* Comparison of Nvidia graphics processing units
* Comparison of ATI Graphics Processing Units
* Intel Museum
* Intel Science Talent Search
* ASCI Red
* Justin Rattner
* List of Intel microprocessors
* List of Intel chipsets
* List of Intel Pentium 4 microprocessors
* List of Intel Pentium D microprocessors
* List of Intel Celeron microprocessors
* List of Intel Pentium M microprocessors
* List of Intel Pentium Dual-Core microprocessors
* List of Intel Xeon microprocessors
* List of Intel Core microprocessors
* List of Intel Core 2 microprocessors
* List of Intel codenames
* List of Intel manufacturing sites

Apple Inc

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL, LSE: 0HDZ, FWB:APC), formerly Apple Computer, Inc., is an American multinational corporation with a focus on designing and manufacturing consumer electronics and closely related software products. Established in Cupertino, California on April 1, 1976, Apple develops, sells, and supports a series of personal computers, portable media players, mobile phones, computer software, and computer hardware and hardware accessories. As of September 2007, the company operates about 200 retail stores in five countries[3] and an online store where hardware and software products are sold. The iTunes Store provides music, music videos, television programs, movies, podcasts, iPod games, and audiobooks, which can be downloaded using iTunes on Mac OS X or Windows, and also on the iPod touch and the iPhone. The company's best-known hardware products include the Macintosh line of personal computers, the iPod line of portable media players, and the iPhone. Apple's software products include the Mac OS X operating system, the iLife suite of multimedia and creativity software, and Final Cut Studio, a suite of professional audio- and film-industry software products.
The company, incorporated January 3, 1977,[4] was known as "Apple Computer, Inc." for its first 30 years. On January 9, 2007, the company dropped "Computer" from its corporate name,[5] reflecting the company's ongoing expansion into the consumer electronics market in addition to its traditional focus on personal computers.[6] Apple employs over 20,000 permanent and temporary workers worldwide[2] and had worldwide annual sales in its fiscal year 2007 (ending September 29, 2007) of US$24.01 billion.[1] For a variety of reasons, ranging from its philosophy of comprehensive aesthetic design to its distinctive advertising campaigns, Apple has engendered a unique reputation in the consumer electronics industry. This includes a customer base, particularly in the United States, that is unusually devoted to the company and its brand
Current products
Apple introduced the Apple Macintosh family in 1984 and today makes consumer, professional, and educational computers. The Mac mini is the company's consumer sub-desktop computer, introduced in January 2005 and designed to motivate Windows users to switch to the Mac computer platform. The iMac is a consumer desktop computer that was first introduced by Apple in 1998, and its popularity helped revive the company's fortunes. The iMac is similar in concept to the original Macintosh in that the monitor and computer are housed in a single unit. It is now in its third major design iteration, and has been upgraded many times (including a switch to Intel processors) using the same design. Apple sells three lines of portable computers: the MacBook which includes a 13 inch widescreen, and is available in white and black variants, the MacBook Air, an ultra-thin, ultra-portable notebook with a 13.3 inch LED backlit widescreen and the MacBook Pro, a professional portable computer alternative to the MacBook. The MacBook Pro is marketed as being intended for professional and creative users, and offers configurations with 15-inch and 17-inch displays. The Mac Pro is Apple's workstation-class desktop computer offering, which is housed in an aluminum enclosure that matches the design aesthetic of the Apple Cinema Display. Apple also offers a rack mounted computer called the Xserve, a dual core, dual processor 1U server.
Apple sells a variety of computer accessories for Mac computers including the AirPort wireless networking products, Time Capsule, Apple Cinema Display, Mighty Mouse, the Apple Wireless Keyboard computer keyboard, and the Apple USB Modem.
The current iPods, Apple's most successful product line. Shown here, (left to right) the iPod shuffle, iPod nano, iPod classic and iPod touch.
The current iPods, Apple's most successful product line. Shown here, (left to right) the iPod shuffle, iPod nano, iPod classic and iPod touch.
On October 23, 2001, Apple introduced the iPod digital music player. Initially equipped with a 5 GB hard drive and a monochrome screen, models today can store up to 160 GB and display video, play games, and support a wide range of third-party add-on devices. As of September 2007, Apple sells four variants of the iPod: the iPod shuffle, iPod nano, iPod classic and iPod touch. The iPod is the market leader in portable music players by a significant margin, with more than 100 million units shipped as of April 9, 2007.[49] Apple has partnered with Nike to introduce the Nike+iPod Sports Kit enabling runners to sync and monitor their runs with iTunes and the Nike+ website.
At the Macworld Conference & Expo in January 2007, Steve Jobs revealed the long anticipated iPhone, a convergence of an Internet-enabled smartphone and video iPod. The iPhone combines a 2.5G quad band GSM and EDGE cellular phone with features found in hand held devices, running a scaled-down versions of Apple's Mac OS X, with various applications such as Safari web browser, e-mail, and navigation. The iPhone features a 3.5 inch touch screen display, 8 GB of memory, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi (both "b" and "g"). The iPhone first became available on June 29, 2007.
Additionally at the conference, Jobs demonstrated the Apple TV, (previously known as the iTV), a set-top video device intended to bridge the sale of content from iTunes with high-definition televisions. The device links up to a user's TV and syncs, either via Wi-Fi or a wired network, with one computer's iTunes library and streams from an additional four. The Apple TV incorporates a 40 GB hard drive for storage, includes outputs for HDMI and component video, and plays video at a maximum resolution of 720p. It was later updated to include a 160 GB drive for even more space for media.
Apple develops its own operating system to run on Macs, Mac OS X, the latest version being Mac OS X v10.5 Leopard. Apple also independently develops computer software titles for its Mac OS X operating system. Much of the software Apple develops is bundled with its computers. An example of this is the consumer-oriented iLife software package which bundles iDVD, iMovie, iPhoto, iTunes, GarageBand, and iWeb. For presentation, page layout and word processing, iWork is available, which includes Keynote, Pages, and Numbers. iTunes, QuickTime media player, and Safari web browser are available as free downloads for both Mac OS X and Windows.
Apple also offers a range of professional software titles. Their range of server software includes the operating system Mac OS X Server; Apple Remote Desktop, a remote systems management application; WebObjects, Java Web application server; and Xsan, a Storage Area Network file system. For the professional creative market, there is Aperture for professional RAW-format photo processing; Final Cut Studio, a video production suite; Logic, a comprehensive music toolkit and Shake, an advanced effects composition program.
Apple also offers online services with .Mac which bundles .Mac HomePage, .Mac Mail, .Mac Groups, .Mac iDisk, .Mac Backup, .Mac Sync, and Learning Center online tutorials.
Corporate affairs
Critics of Apple commonly point to their vertically integrated business model, where all the hardware and operating system software comes from one company. Although the Apple II was very open, the Macintosh was originally closed and proprietary, and during the Mac's early history Apple generally refused to adopt prevailing industry standards for hardware, instead creating and implementing their own (for example, The Lisa's FileWare drive, and the ADB).[citation needed]
This trend was largely reversed in the late 1990s beginning with Apple's adoption of the PCI bus in the 7500/8500/9500 Power Macs. Apple has since adopted USB, AGP, HyperTransport, Wi-Fi, and other industry standards in its computers and was in some cases a leader in the adoption of such standards. FireWire is an Apple-originated standard which has seen widespread industry adoption after it was standardized as IEEE 1394.[50]
However, the iPod remains a mostly closed and vertically integrated platform. Although Apple provides documented interfaces for hardware accessories, developers have no supported way to add features to the software (such as decoding of additional formats).[citation needed] Although the iPod supports the mainstream MP3 and AAC formats, there is not support for other proprietary formats, like Windows Media (this can be converted to AAC with iTunes on Windows), RealAudio and the open Ogg Vorbis format. Apple has refused to license its FairPlay DRM system to other online music vendors.[47] The company added Windows PC support with their second generation iPod series.[51]
Ever since the first Apple store opened, Apple has wanted third parties to sell their products and software inside their stores. This allows, for instance, Nikon and Canon to sell their Mac-compatible digital cameras and camcorders inside the store. Adobe, the largest Apple software partner, also sells its Mac-compatible software, as does Microsoft, who sells Microsoft Office for the Mac. A notable exception are books published by John Wiley & Sons, who publishes the For Dummies series of instructional books. The publisher's line of books were banned from Apple Stores in 2005 because Steve Jobs disagreed with their editorial policy.[52]
Apple Inc.'s world corporate headquarters are located in the middle of Silicon Valley, at 1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, California. This Apple campus has six buildings which total 850,000 sq ft (79,000 m²). and was built in 1993 by Sobrato Development Cos.[53]
In 2006, Apple announced its intention to build a second campus on 50 acres assembled from various contiguous plots. The new campus, also in Cupertino, will be about one mile east of the current campus.
Apple's first slogan, "Byte into an Apple", was coined in the late 1970s.[60] Once Apple started selling more than just computers, slogans were created for each individual product, rather than for the company itself. For example, the slogan "iThink, therefore iMac", was used in 1998 to promote the iMac. Several company-directed slogans are marketed today; however Apple tends to focus mainly on marketing its products individually.
Apple's earliest court action dates to 1978 when Apple Records, The Beatles-founded record label, filed suit against Apple Computer for trademark infringement. The suit settled in 1981 with an amount of US$80,000 being paid to Apple Corps. As a condition of the settlement, Apple Computer agreed to stay out of the music business. The case arose in 1989 again when Apple Corps sued over the Apple IIGS, which included a professional synthesizer chip, claiming violation of the 1981 settlement agreement. In 1991 another settlement of around US$26.5 million was reached.[61] In September 2003 Apple Computer was sued by Apple Corps again, this time for introducing the iTunes Music Store and the iPod, which Apple Corps believed was a violation of the previous agreement by Apple Computer not to distribute music.[62] The trial in the UK ended on May 8, 2006 with victory for Apple Computer. The judge ruled the company's iTunes Music Store did not infringe on the trademark of Apple Corps and ordered Apple Corps to pay the legal costs.[63] A new settlement was announced on February 5, 2007 giving Apple, Inc. control over the Apple mark with Apple Corps licensed to use it. Portions of the settlement are confidential, but each side will pay its own legal costs. As the Beatles' songs are not available for download from any legal music download sites, including the iTunes Music Store, Jobs' highly public nod to the Beatles (playing "Lovely Rita" on the iPhone) during his January 9, 2007 Macworld keynote fueled widespread speculation about a deal to sell Beatles songs on iTunes. A spokewoman for Apple Corps said the settlement had no bearing on any such matter.[64]
Of the matter, Steve Jobs said "We love the Beatles, and it has been painful being at odds with them over these trademarks. It feels great to resolve this in a positive manner, and in a way that should remove the potential of further disagreements in the future."[65]
In July 1998, Abdul Traya registered the domain name, shortly after Apple announced the iMac, in an attempt to draw attention to the web-hosting business he was running out of his parents' basement.[66] After a legal dispute that lasted until April 1999, Traya and Apple settled out of court with Apple paying legal fees and giving Traya a "token payment" in exchange for the domain name.[67]
In a more recent previously unrelated lawsuit, Apple entered into a class action settlement,[68] upheld on December 20, 2005 following an appeal, regarding the battery life of iPod music players sold prior to May 2004. Eligible members of the class are entitled to extended warranties, store credit, cash compensation, or battery replacement.
Creative also recently filed a patent dispute alleging that Apple infringed on one of Creative's patents for their Zen player with the iPod and iPod nano.[69] On August 23, 2006, Apple and Creative settled their patent disputes by paying Creative US$100 million.
On January 10, 2007, Cisco sued Apple for the iPhone, since Cisco has held the trademark on the name "iPhone" since 2000. Cisco had refused rights to use the name "iPhone" on multiple occasions. Apple and Cisco had been in talks for a while about use of the name, though Apple had been denied the use of the name on several occasions leading up through January 9. Cisco alleged that Apple created a front company to attempt to acquire the name through other means, but failed also. During the 2007 Macworld Expo, Apple used Cisco's "iPhone" name anyway.[70] On February 22, 2007 Cisco and Apple announced an agreement under which both companies would be allowed to use the iPhone name worldwide.[71]
In July 2007, Colorado-based photographer Louis Psihoyos filed suit against Apple for allegedly ripping his "wall of videos" imagery to advertise for Apple TV. According to Psihoyos, Apple had been negotiating with Psihoyos for rights to the imagery, but backed out and promptly used the imagery anyway.[72]
Stock option backdating investigation
On June 29, 2006, Apple announced that an internal investigation "discovered irregularities related to the issuance of certain stock option grants made between 1997 and 2001."[73] A Special Committee reported the findings of the stock backdating investigation three months later on October 4, 2006, stating "the investigation found no misconduct by any member of Apple's current management team", ... "the most recent evidence of irregularities relates to a January 2002 grant", and "stock option grants made on 15 dates between 1997 and 2002 appear to have grant dates that precede the approval of those grants". The Special Committee also reported that "in a few instances, Apple CEO Steve Jobs was aware that favorable grant dates had been selected, but he did not receive or otherwise benefit from these grants and was unaware of the accounting implications."[74] Documents were subsequently faked to indicate a special board meeting had occurred and that the options had been granted on that day.[75] The backdating gave Jobs a potential net gain of more than US$20 million had he exercised his options.[76]
On April 24, 2007, the SEC announced it had filed charges against former Apple chief financial officer Fred D. Anderson and former Apple general counsel Nancy R. Heinen for their alleged roles in backdating Apple options.[77] Anderson immediately settled the charges for a payment of a civil penalty of US$150,000 and disgorgement of "ill-gotten gains" of approximately US$3.49 million.[77] Heinen was charged with, among other things, violating the anti-fraud provisions of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, lying to Apple's auditors, and violating prohibitions on circumventing internal controls, based on the options awarded to Steve Jobs (dated October 19, 2001 but allegedly granted in December 2001) and also option grants awarded to top company executives, including Heinen (dated January 17, 2001, but allegedly granted in February 2001.[77]) The SEC is seeking injunctive relief, disgorgement, and money penalties against Heinen, in addition to an order barring her from serving as an officer or director of a public company.[77] The charges against Heinen remain pending.[77]
In late April 2007, the SEC announced that it would not bring action against Apple due to its "swift, extensive, and extraordinary cooperation in the Commission's investigation." Most analysts took this statement to mean that Apple was in the clear, and Steve Jobs personally read the statement to concerned shareholders at a meeting.[citation needed]
Apple was one of several highly successful companies founded in the 1970s that bucked the traditional notions of what a corporate culture should look like in terms of organizational hierarchy (flat versus tall, casual versus formal attire, etc). Other highly successful firms with similar cultural aspects from the same time period include Southwest Airlines and Microsoft. Originally, the company stood in opposition to staid competitors like IBM more or less by default, thanks to the influence of its founders; Steve Jobs often walked around the office barefoot even after Apple was a Fortune 500 company. By the time of the "1984" TV ad, this trait had become a key way the company attempts differentiated itself from its competitors.[78]
Apple Fellows
As the company has grown and been led by a series of chief executives, each with his own idea of what Apple should be, some of its original character has arguably been lost, but Apple still has a reputation for fostering individuality and excellence that reliably draws talented people into its employ, especially after Jobs' return. To recognize the best of its employees, Apple created the Apple Fellows program. Apple Fellows are those who have made extraordinary technical or leadership contributions to personal computing while at the company. The Apple Fellowship has so far been awarded to a few individuals including Bill Atkinson,[79] Steve Capps,[80] Rod Holt,[79] Alan Kay,[81][82] Guy Kawasaki,[81][83] Don Norman,[81] Rich Page,[79] and Steve Wozniak.
Environmental Record
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Apple has a track record of being an environmentally conscious company. Four areas of particular attention are product and packaging design, responsible manufacturing, energy efficiency, and recycling. Design dictates the quantity of raw materials, type and recylability of materials, energy consumption required for manufacturing and use, and the ease of recycling. Like other flat panel displays, Apple's displays eliminate more than two pounds of lead, consume up to 80% less energy in sleep mode, and weigh half as much as their CRT counterparts. Apple plans to completely eliminate the use of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and brominated flame retardants (BFRs) in its products, and arsenic in the glass of flat-panel displays by the end of 2008.[84]
The EPA rates Apple Computer highest amongst producers of notebook computers, and fairly well compared to producers of desktop computers and LCD displays.[85]
In 2007, Apple released its first MacBook Pro with mercury free LED backlit display and in 2008 released its first MacBook Pro with arsenic free LCD.[86]
Since 2004, Greenpeace has attacked Apple for not setting a timeline to remove PVC and BFRs, which still exist in recent products such as the iPod nano and MacBook; and for not promoting a global end-of-life take back plan for Apple hardware (although it does within Europe and Japan where this is required by law); as well as for not having reusable components.[87] As of December 2006, Greenpeace ranked Apple last out of ten electronics companies in dealing with toxic substances in their products, mostly due to a lack of relevant documentation and timelines.[88] On May 2, 2007, Steve Jobs released an open letter named A Greener Apple,[89] responding to some of the allegations. In his letter, Jobs stated:
In one environmental group’s recent scorecard, Dell, HP and Lenovo all scored higher than Apple because of their plans (or “plans for releasing plans” in the case of HP). Apple claims to be ahead of all of these companies in eliminating toxic chemicals from its products.[89]
A study in January 2006 by the United States Environmental Protection Agency found that Apple's hardware compares favorably with that of its major competitors on environmental friendliness.[90]
On June 5, 2007, Apple updated their MacBook Pro product line. This hardware update is environmentally notable because LEDs fully replaced cold cathode lamps in the 15 inch MacBook Pro's display backlighting,[91] a first for Apple laptops (the iPod has had LED backlighting since its creation in 2001). This ameliorates Apple's environmental stance, as cold cathode lamps contain mercury, whereas LEDs do not.
At the 2007 Macworld Expo, environmentalists such as Greenpeace presented a critique of Apple. Rick Hind, the legislative director of Greenpeace's toxics campaign, said, "(The company) is getting greener, but not green enough." Hind commented further, "The Macbook Air has less toxic PVC plastic and less toxic BFRs, but it could have zero and that would make Apple an eco-leader."[92] Climate Counts, a nonprofit organization dedicated to directing consumers toward the greenest companies, gave Macintosh an 11 points out of a possible 100 which places the company last among electronic corporations. Climate counts also labelled Macintosh with a "stuck icon," and the environmental group added that Macintosh was, "a choice to avoid for the climate conscious consumer."[93] On the other hand, Macintosh CEO Steve Jobs, stated to the environmentalists, "get out of the computer business (and) go save some whales."


Sony Corporation (ソニー株式会社, Sonī Kabushiki-gaisha?) is a multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Tokyo, Japan and one of the world's largest media conglomerates with revenue of $70.303 billion (as of 2007) based in Minato, Tokyo.[1] Sony is one of the leading manufacturers of electronics, video, communications, video game consoles and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets, which developed the company into one of the world's richest companies.
Sony Corporation is the electronics business unit and the parent company of the Sony Group, which is engaged in business through its five operating segments — electronics, games, entertainment (motion pictures and music), financial services and other. These make Sony one of the most comprehensive entertainment companies in the world. Sony's principal business operations include Sony Corporation (Sony Electronics in the U.S.), Sony Pictures Entertainment, Sony Computer Entertainment, Sony BMG Music Entertainment, Sony Ericsson and Sony Financial Holdings. As a semiconductor maker, Sony is among the Worldwide Top 20 Semiconductor Sales Leaders. The company's slogan is Sony. Like no other.
Mergers, acquisitions, and joint ventures
* 1988 — Acquired CBS Records Group from CBS. It was renamed "Sony Music Entertainment".
* 1989 — Acquired Columbia Pictures Entertainment from Coca Cola for US$3.4 billion. It was subsequently renamed "Sony Pictures Entertainment" in 1991.
* 1993 — Acquired Psygnosis Limited a computer games company based in Liverpool, UK. Psygnosis director Ian Hetherington was made Managing Director of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.[21]
* 1995 — Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, a 50:50 joint venture of Sony Corporation of America and Michael Jackson.
* 1997 — ST Liquid Crystal Display Corporation (STLCD), a 50:50 joint venture of Sony Corporation and Toyota Industries Corporation.
* 2001 — Sony Ericsson, a 50:50 joint venture of Sony Corporation and Ericsson AB, was established in October.
* 2002 — Aiwa Corporation in October.
* 2004 — S-LCD Corporation, a joint venture of Sony Corporation and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd (Samsung Electronics: 50% plus 1 share, Sony: 50% minus 1 share) was established in April.
* 2004 — On July 20, 2004, the EU approved a 50-50 merger between Sony Music Entertainment and BMG. The new company was named Sony BMG Music Entertainment and, as of 2005, holds a 21.5% share in the global music market, behind worldwide leader Universal Music Group, which has a 25.5% share.
* 2005 — On April 8, 2005, The MGM Company (Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and United Artists) was acquired by a Sony-led consortium (Providence Equity Partners 29%, Texas Pacific Group 21%, Sony 20%, Comcast 20%, DLJ Merchant Banking Partners 7% and Quadrangle Group 3%) finalised the deal to purchase the film studio for about $4.8 billion, including $2bn in debts from Armenian-American Kirk Kerkorian.
* 2006 — Sony NEC Optiarc Inc, a 55:45 (Sony 55%, NEC 45%) joint venture of Sony Corporation and NEC Corporation, was established in April.
* 2006 — Acquired digital Single Lens Reflex (Digital SLR) cameras section from Konica Minolta including digital camera support and servicing.
* 2006 — Acquired Grouper Networks (now Crackle, Inc.), a Sausalito-based startup company that created a user generated video sharing platform and P2P technology for $65M.
* 2007 — Qreatic Design Inc, a 50:50 joint venture of Sony Corporation and Qimonda AG.
* 2007 — Moversa GmbH, a 50:50 joint venture of Sony Corporation and NXP Semiconductors.
* 2008 — On April 22, 2008, Sony announced that it will acquire Gracenote, Inc. for $260M.[22]
Manufacturing base
Slightly more than 50% of the electronics' segment's total annual production during the fiscal year 2005 took place in Japan, including the production of digital cameras, video cameras, flat panel televisions, personal computers, semiconductors and components such as batteries and Memory Stick.
Approximately 65% of the annual production in Japan was destined for other regions. China accounted for slightly more than 10% of total annual production, approximately 70% of which was destined for other regions.
Asia, excluding Japan and China, accounted for slightly more than 10% of total annual production with approximately 60% destined for Japan, the US and the EU.
The Americas and Europe together accounted for the remaining slightly less than 25% of total annual production, most of which was destined for local distribution and sale. [1]
Fictitious movie reviewer
In July 2000, a marketing executive working for Sony Corporation created a fictitious film critic, David Manning, who gave consistently good reviews for releases from Sony subsidiary Columbia Pictures, which generally received poor reviews amongst real critics.[23]
Digital rights management
In October 2005, it was revealed by Mark Russinovich of Sysinternals that Sony BMG Music Entertainment's music CDs had installed a rootkit on the user's computer as a DRM measure (called Extended Copy Protection by its creator, British company First 4 Internet), which was difficult to detect or remove.[24] This constitutes a crime in many countries, and poses a major security risk to affected users. The uninstaller Sony initially provided removed the rootkit, but in turn installed a dial-home program that posed an even greater security risk. Sony eventually provided an actual uninstaller that removed all of Sony's DRM program from the user's computer. Sony BMG faced several class action lawsuits regarding this matter.[25] On January 31, 2007, the U. S. Federal Trade Commission issued a news release announcing that Sony BMG had agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that Sony BMG committed several offenses against United States federal law. This settlement required that Sony BMG allow consumers to exchange the CDs through June 30, 2007, and to reimburse consumers for up to $150 for the repair of damage to their computers that they may have incurred while removing the software.
In 2006 Sony started using ARccOS Protection on some of their film DVDs, which caused compatibility problems with some DVD players—including models manufactured by Sony. After complaints, Sony was forced to issue a recall.[26]
In August 2007, security firm F-Secure reported that the MicroVault USB thumb drive installs a rootkit in a hidden directory without consent on user computers. The directory is intended to protect fingerprint data, however it can be used for malicious means as most virus scanners will not search for the directory or its contents.[27] Sony advised it was conducting an investigation on the third-party product, and would offer a fix by mid-September.[28]
To commemorate the tenth anniversary of the PlayStation (PS) gaming console in Italy, Sony released an ad depicting a man smiling towards the camera and wearing on his head a crown of thorns with button symbols (Δ, O, X, □). At the bottom, the copy read as "Ten Years of Passion". This supposedly took advantage of the publicity from the Mel Gibson film The Passion of the Christ.[citation needed] The ad outraged the Vatican as well as many local Catholics, prompting comments such as "Sony went too far" and "Vatican ex-communicates Sony". After the incident, the campaign was quickly discontinued.[citation needed]
Sony also admitted in late 2005 to hiring graffiti artists to spray paint advertisements for their PlayStation Portable game system in seven major U.S. cities including New York City, Philadelphia, and San Francisco.[29] The mayor of Philadelphia filed a cease and desist order. According to Sony, they paid businesses and building owners for the right to graffiti their walls.[30] As of early January 2006, Sony had no plans to keep or withdraw them.
In July 2006, Sony released a Dutch advertising campaign featuring a white model dressed entirely in white and a black model garbed in black. The first ad featured the white model clutching the face of the black model. The words "White is coming" headlined one of the ads. The ad has been viewed as racist by critics.[31] A Sony spokesperson responded that the ad does not have a racist message, saying that it was only trying to depict the contrast between the black PSP model and the new ceramic white PSP. Other pictures of the ad campaign include the black model overpowering the white model.[32]
In November 2006, a marketing company employed by Sony created a website entitled "All I want for Xmas is a PSP", designed to promote the PSP through viral marketing. The site contained a blog, which was purportedly written by "Charlie", a teenager attempting to get his friend "Jeremy"'s parents to buy him a PSP, providing links to t-shirt iron-ons, Christmas cards, and a "music video" of either Charlie or Jeremy "rapping". However, visitors to the website soon discovered that the website was registered to a marketing company, exposing the site on sites such as YouTube and digg, and Sony was forced to admit the site's true origin in a post on the blog, stating that they would from then on "stick to making cool products" and that they would use the website for "the facts on the PSP". The site has since been taken down. In an interview with, Sony admitted that the idea was "poorly executed".[33]
In 2002, Sony Computer Entertainment America, marketer of the popular PlayStation game consoles, was sued by Immersion Corp. of San Jose, California which claimed that Sony's PlayStation "Dual Shock" controllers infringed on Immersion's patents. In 2004, a federal jury agreed with Immersion, awarding the company US$82 million in damages. A U.S. district court judge ruled on the matter in March, 2005 and not only agreed with the federal jury's ruling but also added another US$8.7 million in damages. This is likely the reason that the sixaxis controller for the PlayStation 3 had no rumble feature. The DualShock 3 has since been made available for the PlayStation 3, reintroducing rumble capabilities. Microsoft Corp. was also sued for its Xbox controller, however, unlike Sony, they settled out of court so they could continue using the technology for the follow-up Xbox 360. Washington Post: Pay Judgment Or Game Over, Sony Warned
A California judge ordered Sony to pay Immersion a licensing fee of 1.37 percent per quarter based on the sales of PlayStation units, Dual Shock controllers, and a selection of PlayStation 2 games that use Immersion's technology. Microsoft is currently suing Immersion due to an alleged breach of contract, apparently stating that Microsoft would be entitled to a portion of any cash settlement between Sony and Immersion.[citation needed]
On April of 2006, a Sony laptop battery exploded in Japan and caught fire. A Japanese couple in Tokyo are currently (as of July, 2007) suing both Sony and Apple Japan for over ¥2 million ($16,700 USD) regarding the incident. The suit argues that the man suffered burns on his finger when the battery burst into flames while being used, and his wife had to be treated for mental distress due to the incident. [34]
On August 14, 2006, Sony and Dell admitted to major flaws in several Sony batteries that could result in the battery overheating and catching fire. As a result they recalled over 4.1 million laptop batteries in the largest computer-related recall to that point in history. The cost of this recall is being shared between Dell and Sony. Dell also confirmed that one of its laptops caught fire in Illinois.[35][36] This recall also prompted Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry to order the companies to investigate the troubles with the batteries. The ministry said they must report on their findings and draw up a plan to prevent future problems by the end of August, or face a fine under Japan's consumer safety laws.[37]
Ten days later on August 24, 2006, Apple Computer recalled 1.8 million Sony built batteries after receiving nine reports of batteries overheating, including two customers who suffered minor burns, and additional reports of property damage.[38]
On September 19, 2006, Toshiba announced it was recalling 340 000 Sony laptop batteries.[39] This recall, however, is not related to the recalls by Apple and Dell, as the batteries are known to cause the laptops to sometimes run out of power. No injuries or other accidents have been reported, according to Toshiba spokesman Keisuke Omori.[40]
On September 23, 2006, Sony announced its investigation[41] of a Lenovo ThinkPad T43 laptop overheated and caught fire in Los Angeles International Airport on September 16, an incident that was confirmed by Lenovo. On September 28, 2006, Lenovo and IBM made the global recall of 526 000 laptop batteries.[42]
On September 28, 2006, Sony announced a global battery exchange program in response to growing consumer concerns.[43]
On October 2, 2006, Hewlett-Packard (HP) determined that it was not necessary for them to join the global battery replacement program.[44]
On October 3, 2006, the Yomiuri Shimbun (a Japanese Newspaper) reported that Sony was aware of faults in its notebook PC batteries in December 2005 but failed to fully study the problem.[45][46]
On October 16, 2006, Fujitsu announced it was recalling 278,000 Sony laptop batteries.[47] It was also reported that Fujitsu, Toshiba, and Hitachi may seek compensation from Sony over the battery recalls.[48]
On April 25, 2007, Acer announced that 27,000 batteries from TravelMate and Aspire series notebooks sold from May 2004 to November 2006 were recalled due to 16 reports of overheating and explosions. [49]
On August 24, 2007, it emerged that some of Sony's batteries that were not recalled, and in use on Dell laptop computers, may be at risk of catching fire and exploding; as another case of a Dell laptop with a Sony battery in it, came to light.[50]
Initially, in October of 2005, it was reported by Sony that there were problems with the charge-coupled devices (CCD) in 20 models of digital still cameras. The problems can prevent the cameras from taking clear pictures, and in some cases, possibly prevent a picture to be taken at all. In late November of 2006, the recall was broadened to eight additional models of digital cameras sold between 2003 and 2005. The problem appears to manifest itself mostly when the camera is used in areas with hot weather. The eight models effected are the following: DSC-F88, DSC-M1, DSC-T1, DSC-T11, DSC-T3, DSC-T33, DSC-U40 and DSC-U50. Sony did indicate that they will repair or replace the affected camera at no charge. Since Sony is one of the largest producers of CCD chips, this recall may affect other manufacturer's and models of cameras, possibly as many as 100 models or more. Other manufacturers of digital cameras, including Canon, Minolta, Nikon, or Fuji have indicated they will replace faulty CCDs in their respective models of cameras if necessary.[51]
Environmental record
Sony has received numerous awards and much recognition for their environmental efforts throughout the world. Their achievements in the way of energy and environmental conservation have earned them respect for their green campaign [52] despite bad press from a low ranking on Greenpeace's greener electronics report [53].
Improvement efforts
Since 1976, Sony has had an Environmental Conference[54]. Sony's policies address their effects on global warming, the environment, and resources. They are taking steps to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases that they put out as well as regulating the products they get from their suppliers in a process that they call "green procurement" [55]. Sony has said that they have signed on to have about 75 percent of their Sony Building running on geothermal power. The "Sony Take Back Recycling Program" allows consumers to recycle the electronics products that they buy from Sony by taking them to eCycle (Recycling) drop-off points around the U.S. The company has also developed a biobattery that runs on sugars and carbohydrates that works similarly to the way living creatures work. This is the most powerful small biobattery to date

Sun Microsystems

Sun Microsystems, Inc. (NASDAQ: JAVA)[3] is an American vendor of computers, computer components, computer software, and information technology services, founded on 24 February 1982.[4] The company is headquartered in Santa Clara, California (part of Silicon Valley), on the former west campus of the Agnews Developmental Center.
Products include computer servers and workstations based on its own SPARC processors as well as AMD's Opteron and Intel's Xeon processors; storage systems; and, a suite of software products including the Solaris Operating System, developer tools, Web infrastructure software, and identity management applications. Other technologies of note include the Java platform and NFS.
Sun is a proponent of open systems in general and UNIX in particular and a major contributor of open source software.[5]
Sun's manufacturing facilities are located in Hillsboro, Oregon and Linlithgow, Scotland.
The initial design for what became Sun's first Unix workstation, the Sun 1, was conceived by Andy Bechtolsheim when he was a graduate student at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. He originally designed the SUN workstation for the Stanford University Network communications project as a personal CAD workstation. It was designed as a 3M computer: 1 MIPS, 1 Megabyte and 1 Megapixel. It was designed around the Motorola 68000 processor with an advanced Memory management unit (MMU) to support the Unix operating system with virtual memory support[6], He built the first ones from spare parts obtained from Stanford's Department of Computer Science and Silicon Valley supply houses.[7]
On February 12, 1982 Vinod Khosla, Andy Bechtolsheim, and Scott McNealy, all Stanford graduate students, founded Sun Microsystems. Bill Joy (a primary developer of BSD), joined soon after and is counted as one of the original founders[8]. The Sun name is derived from the initials of the Stanford University Network. Sun was profitable from its first quarter in July 1982.
Sun's initial public offering was in 1986 under the stock symbol SUNW, for Sun Workstations (later Sun Worldwide).[9][10] The symbol was changed in 2007 to JAVA; Sun stated that the brand awareness associated with its Java platform better represented the company's current strategy.[11]
Sun's logo, which features four interleaved copies of the word sun, was designed by professor Vaughan Pratt, also of Stanford University. The initial version of the logo had the sides oriented horizontally and vertically, but it was subsequently redesigned so as to appear to stand on one corner.
The first Sun workstations ran a Version 7 Unix System port by UniSoft on 68000 processor-based machines.
For the first decade of Sun's history, the company was predominantly a vendor of technical workstations, competing successfully as a low-cost vendor during the Workstation Wars of the 1980s. It now has shifted its hardware product line to emphasize servers and storage.
Motorola-based systems
Sun originally used the Motorola 68k CPU family for the Sun-1 through Sun-3 computer series. The Sun-1 employed a 68000 CPU, the Sun-2 series, a 68010. The Sun-3 series was based on the 68020, with the later Sun-3x variant using the 68030.
SPARC-based systems
Starting with the Sun-4 line, the company used its own processor architecture, SPARC. A 64-bit extension of the SPARC architecture (SPARC V9) was later introduced.
Sun has implemented multiple high-end generations of the SPARC architecture, including SPARC, SuperSPARC, UltraSPARC I, UltraSPARC II, UltraSPARC III, UltraSPARC IV and currently UltraSPARC IV+ & UltraSPARC T1/UltraSPARC T2. Sun has developed several generations of workstations and servers, including the SPARCstation series, Sun Ultra series, Sun Fire and Sun Enterprise (originally Ultra Enterprise) servers and the Sun Blade workstations. There is also a line of lower cost processors meant for low-end systems which include the microSPARC I, microSPARC II, UltraSPARC IIe, UltraSPARC IIi, and UltraSPARC IIIi.
In the mid 1990s the company started to transform itself into a vendor of large-scale Symmetric multiprocessing servers. Sun manufactured and marketed the 8-processor SPARCserver 1000 and 20-processor SPARCcenter 2000, which were based on work done in conjunction with Xerox PARC. In the late 1990s this transition was accelerated by the acquisition of Cray Business Systems Division from Silicon Graphics.[24] Cray's 32-bit CS6400 "Superserver", related to the SPARCcenter, was superseded by a 64-bit joint design by Cray and Sun which became the very successful Sun Enterprise 10000 large-scale server. Driven by the increased prominence of web-serving database-searching applications, blade servers (high density rack-mounted systems) were also emphasized.
The UltraSPARC T1 and T2 are notable for their multicore design, implementing eight cores, with four and eight threads per core respectively. This can drive more efficient use of CPU resources, which is of particular importance in data centers, where there is an increasing need to reduce power and air conditioning demands, much of which comes from the heat generated by CPUs. In December 2005, Sun announced the OpenSPARC T1, an open source hardware design of UltraSPARC T1.
In April 2007, Sun released the SPARC Enterprise server products, jointly designed by Sun and Fujitsu. The M-class SPARC Enterprise systems include high-end reliability and availability features.
The SPARC processors designed by Sun are manufactured by Texas Instruments.
List of SPARC-based systems or series: Sun-4, SPARCstation, Sun Ultra series, Sun Fire, Sun Netra, Sun Enterprise and SPARC Enterprise
x86-based systems
In the late 1980s, Sun also marketed an Intel 80386-based machine, the Sun386i; this was designed to be a hybrid system, running SunOS but at the same time supporting DOS applications. This only remained on the market for a brief period of time. A follow-up "486i" upgrade was announced but only a few prototype units were ever manufactured.
Sun's brief first foray into x86 systems ended in the early 1990s, as it decided to concentrate on SPARC and retire the last Motorola systems and 386i products, a move dubbed by McNealy as "all the wood behind one arrowhead". Even so, Sun kept its hand in the x86 world, as a release of Solaris for PC compatibles began shipping in 1993.
In 1997 Sun acquired Diba, Inc., followed later by the acquisition of Cobalt Networks in 2000, with the aim of building network appliances (single function computers meant for consumers). Sun also marketed a network computer (a term popularized and eventually trademarked by Oracle); the JavaStation was a diskless system designed to run Java applications.
Although none of these business initiatives were particularly successful, the Cobalt purchase gave Sun a toehold for its return to the x86 hardware market. In 2002, Sun introduced its first general purpose x86 system, the LX50, based in part on previous Cobalt system expertise. This was also Sun's first system announced to support Linux as well as Solaris.
In 2003, Sun announced a strategic alliance with AMD to produce x86/x64 servers based on AMD's Opteron processor; this was followed shortly by Sun's acquisition of Kealia, a startup founded by original Sun founder Andy Bechtolsheim, which had been focusing on high-performance AMD-based servers.
On September 12, 2005, Sun unveiled a new range of Opteron based servers: the Sun Fire X2100, X4100 and X4200 servers.[52] These were designed from scratch by the team led by Bechtolsheim to address heat and power consumption issues commonly faced in data centers. In July 2006, the Sun Fire X4500 and X4600 systems were introduced, extending what is now a line of x64 systems that support not only Solaris, but Linux and Microsoft Windows as well.
On January 22, 2007, Sun announced a broad strategic alliance with Intel.[53] Intel now endorses Solaris as a mainstream operating system and as its mission critical UNIX OS for its Xeon processor-based systems, and also contributes engineering resources to OpenSolaris. [54] Sun began using the Intel Xeon processor in its x64 server line, starting with the Sun Blade X6250 server module introduced in June 2007.
Although Sun was initially known as a hardware company, its software history began with its founding in 1982; co-founder Bill Joy was one of the leading Unix developers of the time, having already contributed the vi editor, the C shell, and significant work on the TCP/IP stack to the BSD Unix OS. Since then, Sun has developed and acquired other software, and become widely known for the Java programming language.
Sun is known for community-based and open-source licensing of its major technologies, and for its support of its products with other open source technologies. Sun offers GNOME-based desktop software called Java Desktop System (originally code-named "Madhatter"), first distributed as a Linux implementation but now offered as part of the Solaris operating system. It supports its Java Enterprise System (a middleware stack) on Linux. It has released the source code for Solaris under the open-source Common Development and Distribution License, via the OpenSolaris community. Sun's positioning includes a commitment to indemnify users of some software from intellectual property disputes concerning that software. It offers support services on a variety of pricing bases, including per-employee and per-socket.
A report prepared for the EU by UNU-MERIT stated that Sun is the largest corporate contributor to open source movements in the world.[55] According to this report, Sun's open source contributions exceed the combined total of the next five largest commercial contributors.
Operating systems
Solaris 10 using the Java Desktop System
Sun is most well known for its Unix systems, which have a reputation for system stability and a consistent design philosophy.
Sun's first workstation shipped with UniSoft V7 Unix. Later in 1982 Sun began providing SunOS, a customized 4.1BSD Unix, as the operating system for its workstations.
In the late 1980s, AT&T tapped Sun to help them develop the next release of their branded UNIX, and in 1988 announced they would purchase up to a 20% stake in Sun.[56] UNIX System V Release 4 (SVR4) was jointly developed by AT&T and Sun; this partnership triggered concern among Sun's competitors, many of whom banded together to form the Open Software Foundation (OSF). By the mid-1990s, the ensuing Unix wars had largely subsided, AT&T had sold off their Unix interests, and the relationship between the two companies was significantly reduced.
Sun used SVR4 as the foundation for Solaris 2, which became the successor to SunOS.
From 1992 Sun also sold INTERACTIVE UNIX, an operating system it acquired when it bought INTERACTIVE Systems Corporation from Eastman Kodak Company. This was a popular UNIX variant for the PC platform and a major competitor to market leader SCO UNIX. Sun's focus on INTERACTIVE UNIX diminished in favor of Solaris on both SPARC and x86 systems; it was dropped as a product in 2001.[citation needed]
In the past, Sun has offered a separate variant of Solaris called Trusted Solaris, which included augmented security features such as multilevel security and a least privilege access model. Solaris 10 included many of the same capabilities as Trusted Solaris when it was released in 2005; the Solaris 10 11/06 update included Solaris Trusted Extensions, which give it the remaining capabilities needed to make it the functional successor to Trusted Solaris.
Following several years of difficult competition and loss of server market share to competitors' Linux-based systems, Sun began to include Linux as part of its strategy in 2002. Sun supports both Red Hat Enterprise Linux and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server on its x64 systems; companies such as Canonical Ltd., Wind River Systems and MontaVista also support their versions of Linux on Sun's SPARC-based systems.
In 2004, Sun surprised the industry when, after having cultivated a reputation as one of Microsoft's most vocal antagonists, it entered into a joint relationship with them, resolving various legal entanglements between the two companies and receiving a US$1 billion settlement payment from them. Sun now supports Microsoft Windows on its x64 systems, and has announced other collaborative agreements with Microsoft, including plans to support each others' virtualization environments.[57]
Java platform
The Java platform was developed at Sun in the early 1990s with the objective of allowing programs to function regardless of the device they were used on, sparking the slogan "Write once, run anywhere" (WORA). While this objective has not been entirely achieved (prompting the riposte "Write once, debug everywhere"), Java is regarded as being largely hardware- and operating system-independent.
Java was initially promoted as a platform for client-side applets running inside web browsers, but has been more successful on the server side of the Internet.
The platform consists of three major parts, the Java programming language, the Java Virtual Machine (JVM), and several Java Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). The design of the Java platform is controlled by the vendor and user community through the Java Community Process (JCP).
Java is an object-oriented programming language. Since its introduction in late 1995, it has become one of the world's most popular programming languages.[58]
In order to allow programs written in the Java language to be run on virtually any device, Java programs are compiled to byte code, which can be executed by any JVM, regardless of the environment.
The Java APIs provide an extensive set of library routines. The Standard Edition (Java SE) of the API provides basic infrastructure and GUI functionality, while the Enterprise Edition (Java EE) is aimed at large software companies implementing enterprise-class application servers. The Micro Edition (Java ME) is used to build software for devices with limited resources, such as mobile devices.
On November 13, 2006, Sun announced that it would be licensing its Java implementation under the GNU General Public License; they released their Java compiler and JVM at that time.[59]
Office suite
In 1999, Sun acquired the German software company StarDivision and with it StarOffice, which it released as the office suite under both GNU LGPL and the SISSL (Sun Industry Standards Source License). supports Microsoft Office file formats (with a few flaws), is available on many platforms (primarily Linux, Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, and Solaris) and is widely used in the open source community.
The current StarOffice product is a closed-source product based on The principal differences between StarOffice and are that StarOffice is supported by Sun, is available as either a single-user retail box kit or as per-user blocks of licensing for the enterprise, and includes a wider range of fonts and document templates and a commercial quality spellchecker[60]. StarOffice also contains commercially licensed functions and add-ons; in these are either replaced by open-source or free variants, or are not present at all. Whilst new releases of are relatively frequent, StarOffice follows a more conservative release schedule. Both packages have native support for the OpenDocument format.
Virtualization and datacenter automation software
In 2007, Sun announced the Sun xVM virtualization and datacenter automation product suite for commodity hardware. Sun also acquired VirtualBox in 2008. Earlier virtualization technologies from Sun like Dynamic System Domains and Dynamic Reconfiguration were specifically designed for high-end SPARC servers, and Logical Domains only supports the UltraSPARC T1/T2 server platforms. Sun also has the N1 provisioning software [61] for datacenter automation.
On the client side, Sun offers virtual desktop solutions. Complete desktop environments and applications can be hosted in the datacenter, with users accessing these environments from a wide range of client devices, including Microsoft Windows PCs, Sun Ray virtual display clients, Apple Macintoshes, PDAs or any combination of supported devices. A variety of networks are supported, from LAN to WAN or the public Internet. A virtual desktop solution can be provided through Sun Ray Software, Sun Secure Global Desktop and Sun Virtual Desktop Infrastructure.
Database management systems
Sun acquired MySQL AB, the developer of the MySQL database in 2008. CEO Jonathan Schwartz mentioned in his blog that optimizing the performance of MySQL is one of the priorities of the acquisition. [62] In February 2008, Sun began to publish results of the MySQL performance optimization work. [63] Sun is also a contributor to the PostgreSQL project. On the Java platform, Sun contributes to, ships, and offers support for JavaDB.
Other software
Sun offers a range of other software products for software development and infrastructure services. Many of these products were developed in house; others have come from a series of acquisitions, including Tarantella, Waveset Technologies,[38], SeeBeyond, and Vaau. Sun also acquired many of the Netscape non-browser software products as part a deal involving Netscape's merger with AOL.[64]. These software products were initially offered under the iPlanet brand; once the Sun-Netscape alliance ended, they were re-branded as Sun ONE (Sun Open Network Environment), and more recently as the Sun Java System.
Today, Sun's middleware stack is branded as the Java Enterprise System (or JES), and fulfills web and application serving, as well as communication, calendaring, directory, identity management and SOA/BI roles. The software is available for download and use free of charge on systems running Solaris, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, HP-UX, and Windows, with support available optionally.
Sun has developed data center management software products, which include the Solaris Cluster high availability software, and a grid management package called Sun Grid Engine.
Sun also produces a suite of compilers and development tools under the Sun Studio brand, for building and developing Solaris and Linux applications.
Sun has long sold its own storage systems to complement its system offerings; it has also made several storage-related acquisitions. On June 2, 2005, Sun announced it would purchase Storage Technology Corporation (StorageTek) for US$4.1 billion in cash, or $37.00 per share, a deal completed the following August.
In 2006, Sun introduced the Sun StorageTek 5800 System, the world's first application-aware programmable storage solution. In 2008, Sun contributed the source code of the StorageTek 5800 System under the BSD license. [65]
Other well-known storage products include Sun Fire X4500 storage server and SAM-QFS filesystem and storage management software.
HPC solutions
With Sun Constellation System, Sun is increasing its focus in High-Performance Computing (HPC). Even before the introduction of the Sun Constellation System in 2007, Sun's products were already in use in many of the TOP500 systems and supercomputing centers:
* Lustre - used by 7 of the top 10 supercomputers in 2008, as well as other industries that need scalable and high-performance storage: 6 major oil companies (BP, Shell, ExxonMobil), chip-design (Synopsys, Sony), and the movie-industry (Harry Potter, Spider-Man).[66]
* Sun Fire X4500 - used by high energy physics supercomputers to run dCache
* Sun Grid Engine - a popular workload scheduler for clusters and compute farms
* Sun Visualization System - allows users of the TeraGrid to remotely access the 3D rendering capabilities of the Maverick system at the University of Texas at Austin
* Sun Modular Datacenter (Project Blackbox) - 2 Sun MD S20 units are used by the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center
The Sun HPC Cluster Tools product is a set of MPI libraries and tools for running parallel jobs on Solaris HPC clusters. Beginning with version 7.0, Sun switched from its own implementation of MPI to OpenMPI, and has started donating engineering resources to the OpenMPI project.
In 2006, Sun built the TSUBAME supercomputer, which as of 2007 is the fastest supercomputer in Asia. Sun is building Ranger at the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC). When completed, Ranger will have a peak performance of over 500 TFLOPS, and is likely to be in the top 10 on the TOP500 list.

Lenovo Group

Lenovo Group Limited (Simplified Chinese:联想集团有限公司;Traditional Chinese:聯想集團有限公司;Pinyin:Liánxiǎng Jítuán Yǒuxiàn Gōngsī. SEHK: 0992,OTCBB: LNVGY) is today the fourth largest personal computer manufacturer in the world, after Hewlett-Packard and Dell of the US, and Acer of Taiwan.[1]
Lenovo produces desktops, laptops, servers, handheld computers, imaging equipment, and mobile phone handsets. Lenovo also provides information technology integration and support services, and its QDI unit offers contract manufacturing. Lenovo also offers Internet access through its portal.
Its executive headquarters are located in Beijing, People's Republic of China and in Morrisville, North Carolina, USA. It is incorporated in Hong Kong.
Lenovo makes a variety of products for world wide sale.[3] These products include:
* Lenovo ThinkCentre desktops
* Lenovo ThinkStation workstations
* Lenovo 3000 J Series desktops
* ThinkPad laptops and tablets
* IdeaPad consumer-oriented laptops
* Lenovo 3000 C, N and V Series laptops
* IdeaCentre desktop
* LCD and CRT monitors
* ThinkVision projectors
As of February 29, 2008, 44.4% of Lenovo is owned by public shareholders, 41.8% by Legend Holdings Limited, 6.7% by IBM, 6.5% by Texas Pacific Group, General Atlantic LLC and Newbridge Capital LLC and 0.6 by the directors. Because the Chinese Academy of Sciences, a Chinese government agency, owns 65% of Legend Holdings, effectively the Chinese government owns about 27.17% of Lenovo and is the largest shareholder.
The company was founded in 1984 by a group of eleven engineers, headed by Liu Chuanzhi, in Beijing. Originally known as Legend Group Ltd and New Technology Developer Incorporated, the listed holding company was incorporated in 1988 in Hong Kong. The company had become the biggest PC manufacturer of domestic and distributed third party products through its wholesale business.
The company underwent restructuring and separated into two entities. They were Lenovo and Digital China Holdings Limited. Lenovo became the personal computer manufacturer and Digital China took on the wholesale and distribution of IT products and services.[5]
In 2005 Lenovo purchased IBM's PC Division which transformed it into a major international personal computer manufacturer. Lenovo paid $1.27 billion to IBM which consisted of $655 million in cash and $600 million in Lenovo stock. As a result of the acquisition, Lenovo gained the rights to the product lines as well as licensed trademarks such as ThinkVision, ThinkPad, ThinkVantage, ThinkCentre, Aptiva, and NetVista. As of May 1, 2005, IBM owned 19.9% of Lenovo.
Legend-Lenovo-IBM Time Line
* 1981: IBM PCD introduces its first personal computer, the IBM PC.
* 1984: IBM PCD introduces its first portable computer, the IBM Portable PC, weighing 30 pounds. With an initial capital outlay of only RMB300,000 (US$30,000) Lenovo’s founding chairman Liu Chuanzhi, together with 10 like-minded colleagues, launches the New Technology Developer Inc. (the predecessor of the Legend Group) funded by the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
* 1986: IBM PCD announces its first laptop computer, the PC Convertible, weighing 12 pounds.
* 1987: IBM PCD announces the Personal System/2 personal computer. Legend successfully rolls out the Legend Chinese-character card.
* 1988: Legend’s Chinese-character card receives the highest National Science-Technology Progress Award in People's Republic of China. Legend Hong Kong is established.
* 1989: Beijing Legend Computer Group Co. is established.
* 1990: The very first Legend PC is launched in the market. Legend changes its role from that of an agent for imported computer products into that of a producer and seller of its own branded computer products. Legend PCs are ratified and accepted by the China Torch Program.
* 1992: IBM PCD introduces ThinkPad series, the industry’s first notebook with a 10.4 inch color Thin Film Transistor (TFT) display and a TrackPoint (red ball) pointing device. Legend pioneers the home PC concept and Legend 1 + 1 home PCs enter the Chinese marketplace.
* 1993: Legend enters the Pentium era, producing People's Republic of China’s first “586” PC. Legend establishes 1+1 retail network.
* 1994: IBM PCD introduces the industry’s first notebook with integrated CD-ROM, the ThinkPad 755CD. Legend is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. The Legend PC business division is formally established.
* 1995: IBM PCD introduces the “butterfly” keyboard. Lenovo moves from Boca Raton, Florida, to Raleigh, North Carolina. Legend introduces the first Legend-brand server.
* 1996: Legend becomes the market share leader in China for the first time. Legend introduces the first Legend brand laptop.
* 1997: IBM PCD introduces the industry’s first notebook equipped with a DVD-ROM, the ThinkPad 770. Legend signs an Intellectual Property agreement with Microsoft, the most valuable deal ever made in China at the time. Legend launches the first multi-function laser printer.
* 1998: IBM PCD introduces the ThinkLight, a small light that illuminates the keyboard for use in low-light work environments, such as aboard an airplane. The millionth Legend PC comes off the production line. Intel Chairman Andy Grove attends the ceremony, and takes the PC for Intel’s museum collection. Legend establishes the first Legend Shop.
* 1999: IBM PCD introduces the industry’s first sub-notebook, weighing under three pounds, with standard ports and a keyboard that is 95 percent the size of full-size keyboards. Lenovo announces its exit from the retail business. IBM PCD introduces the industry’s first PC with an embedded security chip. Legend becomes the top PC vendor in the Asia-Pacific region, and heads the Chinese national Top 100 Electronic Enterprises ranking. Legend launches pioneering Internet PC, with its “one-touch-to-the-net” feature, which enables millions of Chinese PC users to easily access the Internet.
* 2000: IBM PCD ships its 10 -millionth ThinkPad notebook PC. Legend becomes a constituent stock of the Hang Seng Index - HK. Legend ranked in top 10 of world’s best-managed PC vendors.
* 2001: An IBM notebook with an embedded security chip becomes the industry’s first notebook with a security chip designed to the Trusted Computing Group specification, an industry body setting data security standards. Legend successfully spins off Digital China Co. Ltd., which is separately listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Legend appoints Yuanqing Yang as President and CEO. Legend first introduces “digital home” concept and launches accessories-enabling PC.
* 2002: Lenovo PC outsourcing pact with Sanmina-SCI. Legend debuts the DeepComp 1800 supercomputer. It is People's Republic of China’s first computer with 1,000 GFLOP (floating point operations per second) and PRC's fastest computer for civilian use, ranked 43rd in the Top 500 list of the world’s fastest computers. The mobile handset joint venture announced, marking Legend’s formal entry into the mobile handset business.
* 2003: Lenovo introduces a notebook with battery life up to 11 hours. Lenovo introduces its ThinkCentre desktop PC line. IBM PCD ships its 20-millionth ThinkPad notebook PC.
* 2004: IBM PCD introduces the ThinkCentre desktop PC. Lenovo ships its 100-millionth PC. Lenovo becomes an Olympic worldwide partner. Lenovo launches the “Yuanmeng” PC series designed for home users in small villages. Lenovo and IBM announce an agreement by which Lenovo will acquire IBM’s Personal Computing Division, its global PC (desktop and notebook computer) business.
* 2005: Lenovo completes the acquisition of IBM’s Personal Computing Division, making the company the world's third largest computer manufacturer (after Hewlett-Packard and Dell). Lenovo announces it closed a US$350 million strategic investment by three leading private equity firms: Texas Pacific Group, General Atlantic LLC and Newbridge Capital LLC. Lenovo establishes a new Innovation Center in Research Triangle Park, N.C. Lenovo introduces the ThinkPad X41 Tablet and Z60. William Amelio is appointed as CEO and President of Lenovo.
* 2006: Lenovo introduces dual-core ThinkPad notebook PCs. Lenovo supplies the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Torino, Italy with 5,000 desktop PCs, 350 servers and 1,000 notebook computers. The first Lenovo-branded products outside of China debut worldwide.
* 2007: Lenovo introduces the ThinkPad R61 and T61 notebook PCs. These are the first notebooks to use the new Santa Rosa platform from Intel.
* 2007: Lenovo announces that they are to start selling laptops to business and consumers with Linux pre-installed on their machines. [6]
* 2008: Lenovo enters the Worldwide consumer PC market with the new "Idea" Brand. Lenovo announces 3 new IdeaPad laptops, the Y510 and Y710 desktop replacement computers available by the end of January and the ultraportable U110 available by March 2008.[7]
Environmental Record
The term "green computing" focuses on computers' energy consumption. The less power a computer needs, the less harm to the environment it does. The owner will spend less on energy as well. As environmental ratings become more prominent for computer manufacturers, green computing has gained their attention, and Lenovo has accommodated with this trend. Tom Tobul, executive director of marketing for Lenovo's emerging products business unit, said: "We are seeing a continuing evolution of environmental ratings. Different standards exist in different countries. A trend is starting with more customers specifying green their purchasing requests."[8]
With the launch of ThinkCentre A61e desktop PC in 2007, Lenovo has become a leading manufacturer of environment-friendly computers.It was also the first time a Lenovo product received the prestigious EPEAT Gold Status.[9]
Greenpeace also rated Lenovo as the world's most environmentally friendly electronics firm in 2007, ahead of Nokia, Sony/Ericsson, Dell, and Samsung. Greenpeace examined the companies by which toxic chemicals electronics they use while making hardware, and what efforts the companies employ to help former customers recycle their products when they're no longer usable. Lenovo was ranked poorly in the past surveys but made huge breakthroughs by offering no-questions-asked recycling services for old hardware in all of the countries where its products are sold.
However, Greenpeace stated that no electronics firms are truly "green" in that all of them contribute, in some way, to environmental distress. Lenovo also used some of the most toxic chemicals possible in its manufacturing plants, according to the same article.


International Business Machines Corporation, abbreviated IBM and nicknamed "Big Blue," NYSE: IBM, is a multinational computer technology and consulting corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York, USA. The company is one of the few information technology companies with a continuous history dating back to the 19th century. IBM manufactures and sells computer hardware and software, and offers infrastructure services, hosting services, and consulting services in areas ranging from mainframe computers to nanotechnology.[1]
IBM has been known through most of its recent history as the world's largest computer company; with over 388,000 employees worldwide, IBM is the largest information technology employer in the world. Despite falling behind Hewlett-Packard in total revenue since 2006, it remains the most profitable. IBM holds more patents than any other U.S. based technology company.[2] It has engineers and consultants in over 170 countries and IBM Research has eight laboratories worldwide.[3] IBM employees have earned three Nobel Prizes, four Turing Awards, five National Medals of Technology, and five National Medals of Science.[4] As a chip maker, IBM has been among the Worldwide Top 20 Semiconductor Sales Leaders in past years, and in 2007 IBM ranked second in the list of largest software companies in the world.
Current projects
Eclipse is a platform-independent, Java-based software framework. Eclipse was originally a proprietary product developed by IBM as a successor of the VisualAge family of tools. Eclipse has subsequently been released as free/open source software under the Eclipse Public License.
developerWorks is a website run by IBM for software developers and IT professionals. It contains a large number of how-to articles and tutorials, as well as software downloads and code samples, discussion forums, podcasts, blogs, wikis, and other resources for developers and technical professionals. Subjects range from open, industry-standard technologies like Java, Linux, SOA and web services, web development, Ajax, PHP, and XML to IBM's products (WebSphere, Rational, Lotus, Tivoli and DB2). In 2007 developerWorks was inducted into the Jolt Hall of Fame.[8]
alphaWorks is IBM's source for emerging software technologies. These technologies include:
* Flexible Internet Evaluation Report Architecture - A highly flexible architecture for the design, display, and reporting of Internet surveys.
* IBM History Flow Visualization Application - A tool for visualizing dynamic, evolving documents and the interactions of multiple collaborating authors.
* IBM Linux on POWER Performance Simulator - A tool that provides users of Linux on Power a set of performance models for IBM's POWER processors.
* Database File Archive And Restoration Management - An application for archiving and restoring hard disk files using file references stored in a database.
* Policy Management for Autonomic Computing - A policy-based autonomic management infrastructure that simplifies the automation of IT and business processes.
* FairUCE - A spam filter that verifies sender identity instead of filtering content.
* Unstructured Information Management Architecture (UIMA) SDK - A Java SDK that supports the implementation, composition, and deployment of applications working with unstructured information.
* Accessibility Browser - A web-browser specifically designed to assist people with visual impairments, to be released as open-source software. Also known as the "A-Browser," the technology will aim to eliminate the need for a mouse, relying instead completely on voice-controls, buttons and predefined shortcut keys.
Semiconductor design and manufacturing
Virtually all modern console gaming systems use microprocessors developed by IBM. The Xbox 360 contains the Xenon tri-core processor, which was designed and produced by IBM in less than 24 months.[9] Sony's PlayStation 3 features the Cell BE microprocessor designed jointly by IBM, Toshiba, and Sony. Nintendo's seventh-generation console, Wii, features an IBM chip codenamed Broadway. The older Nintendo GameCube also utilizes the Gekko processor, designed by IBM.
In May 2002, IBM and, Inc. announced the Butterfly Grid, a commercial grid for the online video gaming market.[10] In March 2006, IBM announced separate agreements with Hoplon Infotainment, Online Game Services Incorporated (OGSI), and RenderRocket to provide on-demand content management and blade server computing resources.[11]
Open Client Offering
IBM announced it will launch its new software, called "Open Client Offering" which is to run on Microsoft's Windows, Linux and Apple's Macintosh. The company states that its new product allows businesses to offer employees a choice of using the same software on Windows and its alternatives. This means that "Open Client Offering" is to cut costs of managing whether Linux or Apple relative to Windows. There will be no necessity for companies to pay Microsoft for its licenses for operations since the operations will no longer rely on software which is Windows-based. One of Microsoft's office alternatives is the Open Document Format software, whose development IBM supports. It is going to be used for several tasks like: word processing, presentations, along with collaboration with Lotus Notes, instant messaging and blog tools as well as an Internet Explorer competitor – the Firefox web browser. IBM plans to install Open Client on 5 percent of its desktop PCs.
UC2 (Unified Communications and Collaboration) is an IBM and Cisco joint project based on Eclipse and OSGi. It will offer the numerous Eclipse application developers a unified platform for an easier work environment.
The software based on UC2 platform will provide major enterprises with easy-to-use communication solutions, such as the Lotus based Sametime. In the future the Sametime users will benefit from such additional functions as click-to-call and voice mailing.[12]
Internal programs
Extreme Blue is a company initiative that uses experienced IBM engineers, talented interns, and business managers to develop high-value technology. The project is designed to analyze emerging business needs and the technologies that can solve them. These projects mostly involve rapid-prototyping of high-profile software and hardware projects.
In May 2007, IBM unveiled Project Big Green -- a re-direction of $1 billion per year across its businesses to increase energy efficiency.
Virtual Innovation Center[13]
The Virtual Innovation Center is an easy access to technical development, technical training and sales support from IBM meant for Business partners and Independent software vendors. It is a source for technical and sales resources for IBM products and services. A PartnerWorld membership is required to access the Virtual Innovation Center benefits. If you are not a member, join now!
You can get personalized access to support and education to help build your skills:
* 24/7 access to the IBM technical enablement portfolio
* One-on-one guidance for development projects during all stages
* Interactive online courses
* Virtual and classroom-based workshops
* Live support and virtual mentoring through online chat and e-mail
* Architecture consultations in over eight languages
IBM Software Group
This group is one of the major divisions of IBM. The various brands include:
* Information Management Software — database servers and tools, text analytics, content management, business process management and business intelligence.
* Lotus Software — Groupware, collaboration and business software. Acquired in 1995.
* Rational Software — Software development and application lifecycle management. Acquired in 2002.
* Tivoli Software — Systems management. Acquired in 1996.
* WebSphere — Integration and application infrastructure software.
Environmental Record
IBM has a long history of dealing with its environmental problems. It established a corporate policy on environmental protection in 1971, with the support of a comprehensive global environmental management system. According to IBM’s stats, its total hazardous waste decreased by 44 percent over the past five years, and has decreased by 94.6 percent since 1987. IBM's total hazardous waste calculation consists of waste from both non-manufacturing and manufacturing operations. Waste from manufacturing operations includes waste recycled in closed-loop systems where process chemicals are recovered and for subsequent reuse, rather than just disposing and using new chemical materials. Over the years, IBM has redesigned processes to eliminate almost all closed loop recycling and now uses more environmental-friendly materials in their place.[14]
IBM was recognized as one of the "Top 20 Best Workplaces for Commuters" by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2005. This was to recognize the Fortune 500 companies that provided their employees with excellent commuter benefits that helped reduce traffic and air pollution.[15]
However, the birthplace of IBM, Endicott, suffered IBM's pollution for decades. IBM used liquid cleaning agents in its circuit board assembly operation for more than two decades, and six spills and leaks incidents were recorded, including one recorded 1979 leak of 4,100 gallons from an underground tank. These left behind volatile organic compounds in the town's soil and aquifer. Trace elements of volatile organic compounds have been identified in the Endicott’s drinking water, but the levels are within regulatory limits. Also, from 1980, IBM has pumped out 78,000 gallons of chemicals, including trichloroethane, Freon, benzene and perchloroethene to the air and allegedly caused several cancer cases among the villagers. IBM Endicott has been identified by the Department of Environmental Conservation as the major source of pollution, though traces of contaminants from a local dry cleaner and other polluters were also found. Despite the amount of pollutant, state health officials cannot say whether air or water pollution in Endicott has actually caused any health problems. Village officials say tests show that the water is safe to drink.[16]
Corporate culture of IBM
Big Blue is a nickname for IBM; several theories exist regarding its origin. One theory, substantiated by people who worked for IBM at the time, is that IBM field reps coined the term in the 1960s, referring to the color of the mainframes IBM installed in the 1960s and early 1970s. "All blue" was a term used to describe a loyal IBM customer, and business writers later picked up the term.[17][18] Another theory suggests that Big Blue simply refers to the Company's logo. A third theory suggests that Big Blue refers to a former company dress code that required many IBM employees to wear only white shirts and many wore blue suits.[19][17] In any event, IBM keyboards, typewriters, and some other manufactured devices, have played on the "Big Blue" concept, using the color for enter keys and carriage returns.
IBM has often been described as having a sales-centric or a sales-oriented business culture. Traditionally, many IBM executives and general managers are chosen from the sales force. The current CEO, Sam Palmisano, for example, joined the company as a salesman and, unusually for CEOs of major corporations, has no MBA or postgraduate qualification. Middle and top management are often enlisted to give direct support to salesmen when pitching sales to important customers.
The uniform
A dark (or gray) suit, white shirt, and a "sincere" tie[20] was the public uniform for IBM employees for most of the 20th Century. During IBM's management transformation in the 1990s, CEO Lou Gerstner relaxed these codes, normalizing the dress and behavior of IBM employees to resemble their counterparts in other large technology companies.
IBM company values and "Jam"
In 2003, IBM embarked on an ambitious project to rewrite company values. Using its Jam technology, the company hosted Intranet-based online discussions on key business issues with 50,000 employees over 3 days. The discussions were analyzed by sophisticated text analysis software (eClassifier) to mine online comments for themes. As a result of the 2003 Jam, the company values were updated to reflect three modern business, marketplace and employee views: "Dedication to every client's success", "Innovation that matters - for our company and for the world", "Trust and personal responsibility in all relationships".[21]
In 2004, another Jam was conducted during which 52,000 employees exchanged best practices for 72 hours. They focused on finding actionable ideas to support implementation of the values previously identified. A new post-Jam Ratings event was developed to allow IBMers to select key ideas that support the values. The board of directors cited this Jam when awarding Palmisano a pay rise in the spring of 2005.[22]
In July and September 2006, Palmisano launched another jam called InnovationJam. InnovationJam was the largest online brainstorming session ever with more than 150,000 participants from 104 countries. The participants were IBM employees, members of IBM employees' families, universities, partners, and customers. InnovationJam was divided in two sessions (one in July and one in September) for 72 hours each and generated more than 46,000 ideas. In November 2006, IBM declared that they will invest $US 100 million in the 10 best ideas from InnovationJam.[23]
Open source
IBM has been influenced by the Open Source Initiative, and began supporting Linux in 1998.[24] The company invests billions of dollars in services and software based on Linux through the IBM Linux Technology Center, which includes over 300 Linux kernel developers.[25] IBM has also released code under different open-source licenses, such as the platform-independent software framework Eclipse (worth approximately US$40 million at the time of the donation)[26] and the Java-based relational database management system (RDBMS) Apache Derby. IBM's open source involvement has not been trouble-free, however (see SCO v. IBM).
* IBM AIX (operating system)
* IBM OS/2
* IBM PS/2
* IBM System/360
* IBM System/370
* IBM ESA/390
* IBM System z9, IBM System z10
* IBM System p, POWER6
* IBM System i
* IBM PC compatible (or IBM PC clone)
* List of Computer System Manufacturers
* List of IBM acquisitions and spinoffs
* List of IBM products
* List of IBM facilities
* SCO v. IBM
* IBM Rochester
* IBM and the Holocaust
* IBM's Deep Thought (chess computer)
* Extreme Blue