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CeBit: New Products

by Hu Yoshida on Mar 12, 2006

Last Thursday and Friday I was at CeBit, the worlds largest trade fair for information and telecommunications technology in Hanover Germany. They expect to get over a million people between March 9 and 15. I was there to support the Hitachi/HDS stand in Hall 1.  While I was too busy to see any of the other halls, I did see a few new items of interest.

One was the introduction of Origami from Microsoft. This is a described as a 7" Ultra Mobile PC, a cross between a game controller and a PDA for about $1000. Don’t know if I would trade in my Blackberry for this yet. The value of the Blackberry is that I can do email and make phone calls almost any where in the world, there is wireless service, and it fits on my belt, so I don’t have to lug around a carrying case. However, I might consider it as a replacement for my laptop.

Another interesting product was a flash disk based laptop by Samsung. 32GB of flash memory in a case the size of a 1.8" hard drive. It is faster and more durable than a hard drive, and the cost is about $30 per GB or $960 for the 32GB SSD that Samsung showed.  A little pricey for PCs, but coming down to a very interesting price point.This will be interesting to watch over the next few years.

The other interesting product was right on the other side of our Hitachi stand. It was Hitachi’s Finger Vein Technology for authentication. While finger prints can be hard to read if the finger is dry or injured, vein patterns in the finger can be recognized under all conditions. This biometric scan is more reliable and less expensive than other approaches like iris scanning. This is being implemented in Japan at ATMs of major banks such as Mizuho and Sumitomo Mitsui. The vein pattern is recorded on a chip on the ATM card. Once the card is inserted, the index finger is inserted in the reader and a match is made between the pattern on the ATM card and the finger to do the authentication. The bank does not have to keep any record of the vein pattern. The user is responsible for protecting his ATM card and his finger. Other uses can be seen for this technology like access to door locks, or access to computer key boards. 

I walked around to the other storage vendor stands and did not see any new products. However, I was struck by the absence of signage about ILM. May be this translates differently in Europe, or the hype has played out.

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Comments (2 )

Pavel Mitskevich on 13 Mar 2006 at 11:20 pm

HDS didn’t present any new products during CeBIT also… When can we expect replacement for Thunder 9585?

Hubert Yoshida on 03 Apr 2006 at 5:04 pm

The announcement for the 9585 replacement was done today, April 3, 2006 at SNW. You can link to An OVUM report on my latest blog.

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