Daily Sprout

Solar Swing and a Miss: JA Solar (s JASO) has reported a net loss of $23.3 million on $33 million in revenue for the first quarter of this year, missing analyst estimates “by a mile and a half.” — Business Insider’s Green Sheet

A123Systems Update: Battery developer A123Systems said at a DOE merit review that it’s developing a full portfolio of prismatic, or flat, cells for vehicle car batteries, and working on what it calls a nanocomposite separator, “essentially a cell without a separator…It’s not a conventional approach.” — Green Car Congress

Energy Bill Markup Slog Begins: The GOP will likely focus on 150 possible amendments to the energy and climate bill during markup sessions this week in the House Energy and Commerce Committee. First up: Tweaking the definition of “renewable” for the renewable electricity standard. — ClimateWire via NYT

Ford Fires Up EcoBoost Plant: Ford plans to kick off production of its new fuel-efficient “EcoBoost” engine, which combines turbocharging with the direct injection of gas, today at a plant in Ohio. — Detroit Free Press

Greener by Design: The second annual Greener By Design conference starts today, and host Joel Makower asks how “relocalizing, reprioritizing and reconnecting” are changing how companies are thinking about their next generation of products and services. — GreenBiz.com

Cleantech Business Competition Heading to Colorado

The California Clean Tech Open is broadening its horizons and will be taking its clean tech business plan competition to the mountains to accept submissions for the first Colorado Clean Tech Open in Spring of 2009, CCTO Programs Director Brian Prayer announced last night. Members of the Denver Chamber of Commerce were on hand at the CCTO’s Energy Efficiency Symposium at PG&E’s headquarters in San Francisco. Katie Roberts of the CCTO tells us the competition is also looking elsewhere in the country but isn’t ready to announce any other programs just yet.

The greater Denver-Boulder area should prove to be fertile grounds for a clean tech competition. The state already has a renewable portfolio standard in place. It’s also home to the University of Colorado and several federal institutions, including the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which have been researching energy efficiency.
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Google Pushes Media to Your TV

Google yesterday released Google Media Server, a tiny application that runs in the background on users’ desktops to send their media files as well as Picasa photos and YouTube video to a TV via a “universal plug-and-play” device like the PlayStation 3.

You’ll need Windows, Google Desktop, and a UPnP-enabled device (for instance, a HP or Loewe television, a Roku SoundBridge, an Archos portable media player, or a PlayStation 3) to try it out, so this does require some tinkering. However, Google Media Server won’t work for the XBox 360 because apparently to link it up, Google would have had to say its server was made by Microsoft (at least according to someone from the Media Server team commenting in their forum).

Alternatives include Orb and TVersity, but they don’t connect directly to YouTube and Picasa (Update: TVersity does connect to YouTube, per the comments). On the web streaming front, YouTube has also been upping its game to get onto living room devices.

BlackBerry 8830 World Phone heading to Verizon?

8830frontIt sure looks that way based on pictures like this one over at Howard Forums. The BlackBerry 8830 is expected as a hybrid CDMA phone for use here in the US but also supports GSM service overseas. Gizmodo also indicates EV-DO support, QVGA screen, and microSD memory card slot, but no camera. If you’re a globe-trotter that wants 3G EV-DO stateside but still want to phone home from around the world, this might be worth the wait. The question is: how long will we wait before availability?

If you want to wait with other 8830-lusters, you can follow along this forum over at BlackBerryForums.com.

Silicon, always tells the true story

If you believe in the dictum, that all mysteries are solved by following the money, then the latest financial update from Texas Instruments bodes well for the whole digital life ecosystem. The company today raised its revenue targets, up from $3-to-$3.24 billion to $3.12 to $3.24 billion. It also indicated that chip sales are going to be in closer to the top end of its previous forecast, somewhere between $2.65 to $2.75 billion. Now a $100 million is clearly not a big number in larger scheme of things, but is a relative good indicator of things to come. For one, these are numbers for the second quarter, not exactly a quarter known for stellar performance. Secondly, since the chip sales of today end up in products that hit the shelves four-to-six months from now, this bodes well for the consumer electronics sector.
Given the close relationships between Nokia and Texas Instruments, my feeling is that Nokia is doing better than expected, and the recent product introductions have started to pay-off for the company. I have heard stronger than expected demand for its high end phones, especially the N-Series which is getting a lot of early buzz. Gartner recently increased its 2005 mobile-phone handset forecast to 750 million units from 720 million, which bodes well for Nokia and TI. Texas-based chip giant still has some problems – it has too much inventory of DLP chips, which are used in new kind of DLP television sets and projectors, which are moving far slower than expected. You can figure that out by lack of interest in those televisions versus LCD TVs, by visiting any local Best Buy store.
Nevertheless, these are good signs – and hopefully we shall hear from others as well reaffirming the good news!