Entertainment: Gearmakers Cash In

The phrase rip and burn is music to sellers of digital hardware

Big record labels may be weeping these days, but consumers' desire to rip and burn their favorite songs is ringing up sales for gearmakers and retailers.

Americans bought 635,000 digital-audio players last year, up from just a few thousand in 1999, according to the market-research firm NPDTechworld. Electronics retailers sold 10.4 million CD burners (half of them installed in PCs), a 50% increase over 2000. Computer makers increasingly market their machines as rip-and-burn ready. Come June, you won't even need a PC to do the job. A firm called QPS is launching the first portable CD burner, called Q007, that copies...

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