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Loaded:Sprint is focusing on WiMax. Find out just how many resources are going into this rollout that could get us all connected. Grand Theft Auto sells out like gang busters. Pun intended. And NBC and Warner Music both find ways to get around Apple's pricing...
[ background music ] >> Spring is focusing on Wymax, Grand Theft Auto sells out like gang busters, pun intended, and NBC and Warner Music both find ways to get around Apple's pricing for music and TV Shows. It's Wednesday, May seventh, I'm Natalie Del Conte, and you're getting loaded. Well Sprint is looked to sell of Nextel, garage sale style, and possibly even sell itself to [inaudible] Telecom, the company may also be close to a big Wymax alliance with Clearwire. The Wall Street Journal reports that both companies are close to a Wymax alliance that will be worth twelve million dollars. It's being backed by Comcast, Time Warner, Intel, and even Google. An official announcement could come as early as today. The latest Grand Theft Auto game racked up five hundred million dollars in sales last week. Take Two Interactive, publisher of GTA, says six million copies were sold, with three point six million on the first day alone. According to the Times, some analysts predict as much as five million copies sold, so it's a big win for GTA. Currently Take Two Interactive is fighting off a hostile takeover bid from Electronic Arts. With GTA beating expectations, we'll see how that changes the boardroom [inaudible]. Barnes and Noble has partnered with Zinio, the digital magazine company that we talked about on Earth Day. The book retailer will now offer downloadable magazines, with discounts of up to 90% less than printed retail cost. There will be over a thousand titles available. I have to say, as much as I like the idea of saving the planet with fewer magazines, I really only think the mobile client of Zinio is compelling. Otherwise, most magazine articles hit the internet before they reach newsstands anyway, and that's free. Don't most people read magazines specifically because they have no internet access? It'll be interesting to see how this will encourage loyal magazine readers to go the digital route. NBC is getting back at Apple by getting in bed with Microsoft. After a pricing spat last year over NBC shows on iTunes, the network will now sell its shows in the Zune marketplace. The studio joins Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodean, Turner Broadcasting, and VH1 in selling shows to Zune users for just a dollar ninety nine each. That price point is a slap in Apple's face, because it's what Apple insisted on charging while NBC wanted to increase the price. Meanwhile in the UK, NBC will be selling a limited number of shows on iTunes for variable pricing. In the U.S. NBC has flexible pricing options with Microsoft, and an option for more direct sales on the X-Box in the future. I don't understand why the UK model will be so much different, but whatever. Apple may not be able to get away with setting the price of songs either. Warner Music is set to start testing a model where songs are sold based on their demand, instead of just a static ninety nine cents. The studio's working with a company called Diginix [assumed spelling] that tracks the popularity of songs all over the internet, and then prices them accordingly. This could be good for consumers and artists. Network Records experimented with the same system last year, charging thirty three, sixty six, or ninety nine cents for singles, and between three thirty and ten dollars for albums. This means that less popular artists could sell their music faster, because consumers are willing to take a chance on music for less money. It also means that consumers could get some cheaper music. Tests for this model start this month. Asus has confirmed that the nine inch e-PC will officially be available on May twelfth in both Linux and Windows. You can now preorder the laptop, and both cost five hundred and forty nine dollars. Although the hard drive is smaller on the Windows version because of the additional cost of licensing Windows of course. The Dell Inspiron got tagged this weekend, and I don't mean like delicious, I mean like real graffiti. The company launched two new versions of this laptop with art from New York artist, Mike Ming. I think the art is nice, but it does look a little contrived, especially for a Dell. But far be it from me to tell you how to accessorize your electronics. Dell has two different interpretation of Ming's work on the Inspiron fifteen twenty five, which starts at six hundred and ninety nine dollars. You can find it at dell.com/art. Bill Gates was in Asia today, and he said that so far Microsoft is not reconsidering Yahoo. Meanwhile I want to defer to you guys on this one. I asked you what you thought of the Microsoft Yahoo failure to launch, and here's what you've said. First from Steve. I would really hate to see Microsoft acquire Yahoo. Both companies lack focus outside of their core expertise, and seem to be failing at having explosive growth, even in their core areas. I really have no belief that the two companies together would be able to combine their strengths. Paul writes, I think it's a huge plus for Yahoo to be done with Microsoft. I have paid services with Yahoo, and would relocate my services to another provider if Microsoft bought them. I only hope this is real, and not some tactic to get Yahoo at a lower price. And finally from Robert, I'm glad that Yahoo held out. I know if Microsoft bought Yahoo they would change everything, and piss people off, and lose money from it. Only one person, who did not sign their email, agreed with me that this is a mistake on Yahoo's part. I don't love the idea of Microsoft and Yahoo together either, but I did think that it would have been the strongest combination of companies that could possibly take on Google. Separately they're no real threat to Google at all. Together they could provide real competition, which is good for everyone. But it looks like we'll never know, at least for now that's what it looks like. Those are all your headlines for today, join us tomorrow when we give you some tips for giving your mom something very cool for Mothers Day. And I'm talking about more than just a phone call. I'm Natalie Del Conte with CNET TV, and you've just been loaded. ^M00:05:15 [ music ]