Archives for January 2011

Ultimate Electronics files for bankruptcy protection

Bloomberg reports Ultimate Electronics Inc., Thornton, Colo., the operator of 46 home-entertainment and electronics stores, filed for bankruptcy in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware.  The company listed both assets and debt in the range of $100 million to $500 million. An affiliate, CC Retail LLC, also sought protection.

Sony to launch dual-camera PSP

Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., Tokyo, Japan, announced its next generation portable entertainment system  — codename: NGP — will  debut at the end of the year 2011. The device will offer both Wi-Fi and 3G network connectivity, and will have two cameras.

Sony PlayStation Portable

New Sony PlayStation Portable sports two cameras

NGP incorporates a multi-touch 5-inch OLED as the front display and a high-performance CPU/GPU to offer “striking graphics.” The new system also incorporates a multi-touch pad on the rear, and together with the front touch display, NGP offers new game play allowing users to interact directly with games in three dimension-like motion, through “touch, grab, trace, push and pull” moves of the fingers.

For the first time, a portable entertainment system will feature two analog sticks, which enable a wider range of game genres to be brought into the portable experience.

NGP will also come equipped with two cameras on its front and rear, as well as three motion sensors, gyroscope, accelerometer and electronic compass, all of which are designed to enable users to enjoy the world of entertainment that is linked with real life experiences.

Canon profit drops for quarter, but full-year profits are up

Canon Inc., Tokyo, Japan, reported quarterly profit declined 12 percent. Net profit for the October-December quarter was 54 billion yen ($657 million). Quarterly sales rose 11.9 percent year-on-year to 1.07 trillion yen, thanks to steady global demand for laser printers and high-end digital cameras.

For the 2010 calendar year, Canon’s net profit increased 87.3 percent to 246.6 billion yen with revenue up 15.5 percent at 3.7 trillion yen.

In memoriam: Hedy Gaetano

Hedy Gaetano, wife of Ralph Gaetano of Think Inc., West Mifflin, Pa., died Jan. 24 after battling cancer. She passed away at a hospice in Bradenton, Fla., where she and  Ralph, her husband of 50 years, spent the winter months. She was 73.

Gaetano was born in Munich, Germany, where she trained as a tailor and apprenticed in her father’s shop. Afterward, she went to work for the Simplicity pattern company, traveling throughout Europe designing outfits for fashion shows.

Gaetano is survived by her husband; sons Ricky, Ralph and Mark; daughter, Linda Lytle; and six grandchildren.

A funeral is being held at noon Monday in St. Germaine Church, 7003 Baptist Road, Bethel Park.

Memorial contributions can be made to Family Hospice and Palliative Care in Mt. Lebanon or to Tidewell Hospice in Bradenton, Fla. Condolences may be sent to Ralph Gaetano at 7033 Dumbarton Place, Bethel Park, PA 15102.

Lockerz purchases Plixi (formerly TweetPhoto)

Lockerz, Seattle, Wash., a members-only social commerce website with nearly 18 million members worldwide, announced the acquisition of Plixi (formerly TweetPhoto), a service enabling users to instantly share photos via mobile devices and the Web. With this acquisition, now-rechristened “Lockerz Photos” will create a preeminent media sharing platform and content destination, leveraging combined traffic of more than 31 million unique visitors per month, the company claims.

“We share Plixi’s social approach to media sharing,” says Kathy Savitt, founder and CEO of Lockerz. “The acquisition enables Lockerz to offer its millions of members the most social and easy-to-use photo sharing experience, as well as introduce millions of Plixi customers to Lockerz’ interactive, engaging and rewarding site features, including e-commerce, music and videos.”

Lockerz is backed by Liberty Media Corporation and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.