Anyone who's been shopping recently won't be surprised to learn that China is now the biggest supplier of electronics to the US. Within the past three years, the massive Asian nation has surpassed Japan, Mexico, and Korea to claim the top spot. During the same period, US exports of high technology have dropped 25%, according to figures released June 19 by the American Electronics Association, now known as "AeA."
Retailers accused of selling pirated compact discs are feeling legal heat from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). In May, the organization launched copyright infringement suits against 18 retail businesses in Texas, Florida, and New York—primarily convenience stores, gas stations, grocery stores, and small independent music stores.
There may be hope for the most common type of hearing loss. Researchers at the University of Michigan have succeeded in growing new hair cells in the inner ears of laboratory animals, the first time that such cells have been regenerated in mammals.
All of us at Stereophile were saddened to learn of the death of audio pioneer David Hafler, who died Sunday, May 25 of complications of Parkinson's disease at St. Agnes Hospice in Philadelphia. Hafler was 84.
Sirius Satellite Radio may be positioned to make the next great leap forward. In mid-May, Kenwood and Audiovox announced the first transportable receivers, which will let Sirius listeners enjoy the service wherever they go—home, office, boat, beach, etc—not only in the comfort of their cars.
Retail sales of recorded music in the United Kingdom sagged by an unprecedented 13% in the first three months of 2003, according to figures released May 14 by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI). British music fans spent £216 million ($351 million) in the first quarter of this year, compared to £249 million ($404.6 million) in the same period a year ago. In unit sales, albums in the UK declined only 4.8% to 44 million, but prices dropped 9.4%. UK album sales totaled £200 million ($324.9 million); singles were off 42%, accounting for only £16.2 million ($26.3 million).