Bill Would Help Phone Companies

Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.) introduced legislation that would make it easier for phone companies to offer television. His proposal would eliminate a requirement that new TV providers obtain licenses from local governments, a change sought by Verizon Communications and SBC Communications. The measure also would eliminate state and federal oversight of phone-service terms and pricing, and would end most requirements that phone companies share their copper-wire networks with competitors after 2010.


Microsoft Launches Windows Test

Microsoft released a test of the new version of Windows. Windows Vista has more resistance to computer viruses and monitors systems for abnormal activity that may indicate problems, said G. Michael Sievert, who heads marketing for the new program.

Windows hasn't had a major upgrade since 2001's XP, the longest gap to date.


Intel's Server Share Slips

Intel's share of the market for chips that run powerful server computers slipped to 89 percent in the second quarter, the first time the company has held less than 90 percent of the market. The decline came because Advanced Micro Devices was a year ahead of Intel in offering server chips that can process data in both 32- and 53-bit slices.


IRobot Plans to Go Public

IRobot, which makes such products as robotic vacuum cleaners and bomb-disarming robots, said it plans an initial public stock offering valued at up to $115 million.

IRobot says it is the world's largest company devoted solely to robotics.

Sprint Profit Up Sharply

Led by strong growth in wireless services, Sprint's second-quarter profit more than doubled, to $599 million (40 cents a share) from $229 million (16 cents) a year earlier, after preferred dividends were paid. Revenue increased 3.6 percent, to $7.1 billion.

Monster Worldwide, operator of job-recruitment site, said its second-quarter profit rose 21 percent, to $19.6 million. Revenue totaled $239 million, up 32 percent. Monster said revenue from its job-recruitment division rose 40 percent, to $198.1 million. Advertising and communications revenue rose 4 percent, to $40.9 million.

Compiled from news service reports.