Daily News Brief: Meet the World's Priciest Blu-ray Player!


Meet the $17K Blu-ray Player

Manufacturer Goldmund calls it the Eidos 20 BD Blu-ray player ; we call it a bargain! Scoff at the $16,900 price tag if you will, but remember this is the same company that brought a $300,000 turntable to market last year to celebrate its 25th anniversary. So what exactly does a near $17K Blu-ray player have to offer? An AC-Curator power supply circuit, mechanical grounding construction to reduce vibrations and jitter, and a magnetic damper to reduce disc errors. How could you not buy one?

VMware Vulnerability

We've long preached the benefits of running a virtual machine, which can keep your main system free from cruft while experimenting with beta software or dancing on the more dangerous side of the web. But hiding behind a guest operating system doesn't mean you're completely secure. Core Security Technologies recently discovered a critical vulnerability in VMware's Windows client virtualization programs. According to a statement by CST, the bug " allows attackers to break out of an isolated guest system to compromise the underlying host system that controls it ." Read more about the bug here and what you can do to protect yourself.

Xbox 360 HD-DVD Player Drops to $50

Perhaps for the last time, Microsoft again slashed the price point for the Xbox 360's HD-DVD add-on drive , this time settling at a scant $50. Purchase the drive by February 28, and you're eligible to receive 5 free HD-DVDs (albeit from a limited selection), essentially making the player free. But even at no cost, it's a tough sell given the recent turn of events.

iTunes Continues to Rise

It was only eight months ago that iTunes overtook Amazon.com as the number three music retailer, and now the online store has moved into the number two position, edging ahead of Best Buy. According to the NPD Group, only Wal-Mart sells more music. The ranking includes both digital downloads and CD sales, though the NPD Group estimates a million customers stopped buying CDs in 2007. And as all music labels have moved toward offering DRM free music, legal downloads is on the rise, while the penchant for P2P seems to have reached a plateau at 19 percent. Read more here .

Internet Explorer 8 Enters Beta Stage

Flying under the radar, Internet Explorer 8 enters into Beta 1 form . But if you're an IE fan eager to get your hands on the next-gen release, don't go salivating just yet - participation is by invitation only (read the email text here ). Microsoft claims the new browser will pass the stringent ACID 2 compatibility test, but it's the " version tag that's attracting attention. The version tag system allows developers to add a meta tag telling IE if it should render a page in traditional mode, standards mode, or super standards mode. More on the new browser and different modes here .

ABC Joins Online Revolution

Miss the latest episode of Lost or Desperate Housewives ? Put your Bittorrent client away and instead head over to ABC.com. ABC, in an agreement with over 200 affiliates around the country, will begin airing television shows online for free via video-on-demand. Just as with regular television, users will be subjected to commercials with fast forwarding disabled. However, expect anywhere between 2 to 5 minutes of commercial content for an hour long program, compared to roughly 17 minutes with regular TV. More here .

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