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Thursday, July 9, 2009

EMC to Acquire Data Domain

This is the official press release and is not my own work.

EMC to Acquire Data Domain 

HOPKINTON, Mass. - July 8, 2009 

EMC Corporation (NYSE: EMC) today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement with Data Domain, Inc. (NASDAQ: DDUP), a leading provider of deduplication storage solutions, under which EMC will acquire Data Domain in a cash tender offer for $33.50 per share. The transaction is expected to have a total enterprise value of approximately $2.1 billion, net of Data Domain’s cash.

EMC’s all-cash tender offer commenced on June 2 and is scheduled to expire at 12:00 midnight Eastern Daylight Time on July 17, 2009, subject to customary tender offer conditions being satisfied. EMC also announced today that the condition to its tender offer related to the termination of the NetApp merger agreement has been satisfied.

The acquisition is expected to be neutral to EMC’s non-GAAP earnings per share in its fiscal year 2009 and accretive to its non-GAAP earnings per share in fiscal year 2010. 

Following the completion of the acquisition, which is expected to occur before the end of July, Data Domain will help accelerate EMC’s pace of expansion and leadership in the fast-growing next-generation disk-based backup and archive market.

Joe Tucci, EMC Chairman, President and CEO, said, “This is a compelling acquisition from both a strategic and financial standpoint. We look forward to bringing Data Domain together with EMC to form a powerful force in next-generation disk-based backup and archive. I have tremendous respect for Data Domain’s people, technology and business, and anticipate great things ahead for our respective companies, our customers and partners.”
Important Information for Data Domain Stockholders

This press release is neither an offer to purchase nor a solicitation of an offer to sell any shares of Data Domain. EMC and Envoy Merger Corporation (“Envoy”) have filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) a tender offer statement on Schedule TO containing an offer to purchase, forms of letters of transmittal and other documents relating to the tender offer, and these documents have been mailed to the stockholders of Data Domain. These documents contain important information about the tender offer and stockholders of Data Domain are urged to read them. Investors and stockholders of Data Domain are able to obtain a free copy of these documents and other documents filed by EMC and Envoy with the SEC at the website maintained by the SEC at www.sec.gov. In addition, the tender offer statement and related materials may also be obtained free of charge by directing a request to the Information Agent for the offer, Morrow & Co., LLC at (800) 662-5200, or by email at emc.info@morrowco.com.
About EMC

EMC Corporation (NYSE: EMC) is the world's leading developer and provider of information infrastructure technology and solutions that enable organizations of all sizes to transform the way they compete and create value from their information. Information about EMC's products and services can be found at www.EMC.com.
Press Contacts

Michael Gallant

Forward-Looking Statements 

This release contains “forward-looking statements” as defined under the Federal Securities Laws. Actual results could differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements as a result of certain risk factors, including but not limited to: (i) adverse changes in general economic or market conditions; (ii) delays or reductions in information technology spending; (iii) our ability to protect our proprietary technology; (iv) risks associated with managing the growth of our business, including risks associated with acquisitions and investments and the challenges and costs of integration, restructuring and achieving anticipated synergies; (v) fluctuations in VMware, Inc.’s operating results and risks associated with trading of VMware stock; (vi) competitive factors, including but not limited to pricing pressures and new product introductions; (vii) the relative and varying rates of product price and component cost declines and the volume and mixture of product and services revenues; (viii) component and product quality and availability; (ix) the transition to new products, the uncertainty of customer acceptance of new product offerings and rapid technological and market change; (x) insufficient, excess or obsolete inventory; (xi) war or acts of terrorism; (xii) the ability to attract and retain highly qualified employees; (xiii) fluctuating currency exchange rates; (xiv) litigation that we may be involved in; and (xv) other one-time events and other important factors disclosed previously and from time to time in EMC’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. These statements are forward-looking, and actual results may differ materially. EMC disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements in this release after the date of this release.

EMC is a registered trademark of EMC Corporation. All other trademarks used are the property of their respective owners.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Sony Walkman Turns 30, But Who's Celebrating?

Happy Birthday! The Walkman Turns 30 by PC World: Yahoo! Tech

Posted using ShareThis

The Walkman is turning 30 as Sony’s media player sales slide into oblivion - does anyone care? Sony has been coasting on it’s brand recognition for years and it’s finally starting to catch up to them. They want to be a consumer products company, but treat the consumer like a criminal using proprietary, closed software, hardware and media codecs (formats). A prime example is the last Sony product I acquired: the Sony Mylo COM1 communication and media device.

I had high hopes for it based on the Sony brand and some of the features that seemed interesting that were not very common on similar media devices at the time. These included WIFI, IM (gTalk, Yahoo!, and Skype), and the Opera web browser. The device plays MP3’s, ATRAC (one of those proprietary Sony beasts), and WMA files. It played videos, but only in Sony’s old PSP MP4 format (SP) and didn’t even come with a useful tool to convert other video formats for portable play. In fact it only came with Sony’s SonicStage software for audio.

This device started crashing when trying to IM with Yahoo messenger, and sometimes when accessing the web. Other than Skype (and gTalk once in a while), Yahoo is the main IM service I use. The problem is likely that Yahoo had changed something on their servers or in their protocol that the Yahoo Messenger version on the Mylo couldn’t handle. This could easily be fixed with a software update, but there are no new updates for it. Sony hasn't released a firmware update in over 2 years. The last update was released only about a year after the product debuted. The unit carried a 1 year warranty, which is ridiculously short for a (originally) $350 dollar electronic device. For all intents and purposes, the Mylo COM1 is abondonware. This is one of the examples of treating the customer like a non-entity.

The SonicStage software that comes with it is a poor product. To copy music along with the cover art you have to meticulously and tediously apply the CD Cover Art to every song in your library, and that only works for the main memory. Playlists are only supported on the built in memory - at least I haven't seen or heard of anyone else being able to use playlists on their MemoryStick. SonicStage can't access the 1Gb MemoryStick Pro Duo I bought for additional storage. You can just drag and drop your music to the thing via a file manager - just don't plan to be able to use a playlist, have cover art, or have any decent media management capabilities.

Sony’s support desk was also not informed about the product. They were nice people, but had obviously not received training or information on the device. The only 3 answers they could offer were: format the device and reinstall the last firmware release, install the last firmware release without formatting the device, or send it in for repair. If it's out of warranty you have to pay a ridiculous amount for them to send it back to you in basically the same shape it left in if it's a software problem, or replace the hardware part and send it back to you with the same ancient firmware.

If Sony wants to stay in the game, they should listen to their consumers and provide quality service, open standards, and stand behind their products 10o%. They have gotten so big that they are disconnected from the people that buy and use their products. Sony, listen up! It’s time to reconnect with your customers so you can start to repair the damage to your reputation that has been caused by neglect on your part.

Support your products, and make sure everyone in your support organization is familiar with them. Allow the community to get involved - look at the success of Apple’s iPhone App store. People like to be able to update, customize, and add applications they like to devices they paid hard-earned money for. Become a friend of the Geek, the prosumer, and develop on a platform that encourages hacking and enhancing. Support open formats like OGG Vorbis, FLAC, other media formats, and standard peripherals like a 3.5mm headphone jack.

If Sony doesn’t get it’s head out of the sand, this will be the last Walkman anniversary they celebrate because they will be out of the media player business.

iolo System Mechanic

iolo technologies, LLC