NEC tries to knock out makers of Internet TVs

In an effort to grab a share of the household appliances market, NEC Corp., Japan’s top personal computer maker, on Jan. 27 introduced a new PC that can be used as a wide-screen television, a digital video disc player and a game machine.Cereb, priced at 698,000 yen, comes with a 28-inch monitor, a broadcast satellite tuner and a wireless keyboard. The PC uses the MMX Technology Pentium processor, Intel Corp.’s new microprocessing unit.NEC predicts that growth in Japan’s PC market will slow in fiscal 1997. Amid intensifying competition, NEC Managing Director Yoshi Takayama said the firm wants to compete face to face with makers of TV sets and audio visual devices who are looking to join the communications market. Other companies have released wide-screen TV sets that provide easy access to the Internet, but NEC officials said such TV sets are not suited to rapid changes in the communication field.