In a sign that Linux may not yet be ready to burst into the mainstream, Wal-Mart has stopped selling computers outfitted with the open-source operating system. Roughly 600 stores carried the $199 'Green gPC' made by Everex of Taiwan, and while sales figures have not been released, Wal-Mart spokeswoman Melissa O'Brien said "This really wasn't what our customers were looking for." Walmart.com continues to sell both an updated version of the Everex desktop, the gPC2 ($199), and a pair of Linux-based Everex laptops, the CloudBook ($399) and gBook ($398).
Beatles Back Catalogue Coming to iTunes?
Sir Paul McCartney's no stranger to cheering fans, and this time he's garnering applause over the internet from Beatles fans, both old and new. Reports surfaced that the 65-year-old knight has given the green light for the Fab Four's back catalogue to be made available on iTunes and other digital download services "within months." Both Apple and Apple Corps (which owns the Beatles' legacy) are taking an offical "no comment" stance, but speculation pegs the release as imminent. More here.
Tough Month for Motherboard Makers
Several first-tier motherboard makers watched their revenues drop last month from a combination of heavy snowfall in China and fewer working days in February due to the Lunar New Year. The one-two punch affected Asus, MSI, Gigabyte, and ECS, but despite a disappointing month, three of the four companies still recorded increased revenues for the year, with ECS marking a 15.19 percent drop, possibly because of a shortage in PCB supply. ECS recently received approval from China to expand its PCB production capacity, and expects a recovery in late March.
European Console Wars
For the second time in less than a year, Microsoft will slash prices for the Xbox 360 in Europe, this time by 80 euros, or up to 28 percent. That will put the Arcade version at 200 euros ($307), making it less expensive than a Nintendo Wii, and Elite model at 370 euros ($568). The price cuts are expected to help Microsoft better compete with the suddenly attractive Playstation 3 console, which sports a Blu-ray player.
Cuban Blocks Bloggers
Mark Cuban, the billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks, has created the first blogger-free policy in the NBA. Cuban implemented the policy after denying access to a reporter for The Dallas Morning News who covers the newspaper's sports blogs. A blogger himself, Cuban said it was an issue of space and that "you've got to put the velvet rope somewhere. So what do you do? Do I say, 'Oh, you're major media, you can get in and little mavsforum and mavstalk and mavswiki, you can't get in?' I'm not going to do that."
Hollywood Honing in on 3-D
Over the next three years, up to 10,000 more theater screens will undergo a digital conversion, providing not only sharper images and eliminating the need for costly celluloid film, but also opening the door for more 3-D movies. Access Integrated Technologies said it reached agreements with Disney, 20th Century Fox, Paramount, and Universal Pictures to finance the $700 million project and equip the screens. Riding on the success of the 3-D movie Hanna Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert, Hollywood's busy producing at least 30 more 3-D flicks. More here.