From the end of April through May, various PC makers are announcing their new models for Japan's coming summer sales season. The prices of these new models are likely to increase by more than 20,000 yen, due to the rise in prices of memory chips and LCD panels.
Optical drives for notebook PCs are typically a combo drive of CD-RW and DVD-ROM. An official at Toshiba Corp. said that it will enhance AV functions.
"We would like to be the first to launch a PC equipped with writable DVD drives in the autumn and after that, although it's not ready for this season," the Toshiba official said
As for desktop PCs, writable DVD drives will become popular. DVD multi-drives are the hottest feature because they support such a wide range of media as DVD-R, DVD-RW and DVD-RAM. Fujitsu said that it would expand its lines of DVD multi-drive-equipped PCs ranging from low-end to high-end models.
Intel Corp. is expected to release a chip set based on a front side bus of USB2.0 and 533MHz, but NEC said it will not be ready for the summer. Likewise other makers are expected to provide them from this autumn. Dell Computer Corp. Japan is positive about employing such features.