MET Technology, Ricoh’s Taiwan distributor, will begin volume production of own-brand DVD+RW players reading at 4x speed using Ricoh solutions in the first quarter of next year. The company said Philips is the only company that has launched a DVD+RW player aimed at the consumer market. At present, the majority of DVD+RW drives are sold as PC peripherals.
As Ricoh’s distributor, the company sells DVD+RW component kits to several local storage makers such as AOpen and Ultima Electronics. The company said it will add four more clients next year – two PC makers and two IA (information appliance) companies. According to sources, Legend is one of the sought-after clients.
The DVD+RW player, incorporating a TV tuner and MPEG-4 decoder, will be priced higher than the US$65 quote price for DVD+RW drives that the company offers to clients.
Backed by PC industry heavyweights such as Dell Computer, Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Microsoft, the DVD+RW devices will become more affordable and gradually replace CD-RW drives. According to Ricoh’s estimate, worldwide consumption of DVD+RW devices came to 200,000 units in 2001 and will grow to 53.4 million units in 2006.
The company will be listed on Taiwan’s OTC (over-the-counter) market on December 26 at NT$65 per share.