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CEATEC: New HD Products on Display

Toshiba reportedly plans to show off its new slim-line HD-DVD drive that it says is suitable for a notebook computer (as well as desktop PCs) at the CEATEC conference underway this week in Chiba, Japan. The 12.7 MM high-drive can read HD DVD discs--and also read/write standard DVDs and CDs.

Also at this year's CEATEC, Sharp is touting a hard-disc, drive-based DVR that can record two HD programs simultaneously (as TiVo-like devices can do with SD), and can be prompted into full-record mode just one second after turning on the device.

Prototype cell telephones adorned with a number of new features should be in abundance, too, especially since Japan will soon begin terrestrial DTV broadcasting to cell phones. (So far, however, no HD content is being promised for those teeny-weeny screens. And is they were, how would anyone know?)

CEATEC was created five years ago through the merger of the Japan Electronics Show and Com Japan; last year its official five-day attendance totaled more than 182,000.