Keeping Apple at bay

weekly roundup In December last year, Singapore's golden boy Creative Technology declared that it is expecting arch rival Apple Computer to pay royalties for a U.S.

weekly roundup In December last year, Singapore's golden boy Creative Technology declared that it is expecting arch rival Apple Computer to pay royalties for a U.S. patent the former has on navigation technology found on audio players, including iPods.

This week, Creative made good of its proclamation when it struck a settlement with Apple totaling US$100 million. It's a considerable win for a company that, in November 2004, publicly declared it was making a play for a market segment that Apple has firmly dominated with its popular iPods.

Interestingly, Creative--which made its name in sound cards--had set aside a worldwide marketing budget in excess of US$100 million to champion its goal to capture the MP3 market. It has obviously now managed to recoup this expense with the settlement. The figure seems to follow Creative, too, when CEO Sim Wong Hoo in July 2004 pledged that the company would want to grow its domestic sales to S$100 million (US$62.7 million) in the next few years.

This week's headlines threw up even more numbers when Apple, again, made news after the company said it's recalling 1.8 million Sony-manufactured batteries used in its iBook G4 and PowerBook G4 laptops. The announcement trails Dell Computer's landmark 4.1 million recall of its notebooks which also use the Sony batteries.

Exploding laptops aside, a Dell executive this week tells ZDNet Asia why the company is still not satisfied with its growing enterprise business. Find out also what else Dell shouldn't be happy about, while employees from Internet Security Systems, on the other hand, have cause to celebrate this week. And learn how your company can better manage its outsourcing relationships.

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