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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016


?Philips Electronics NV said last week its Media unit was launching a package allowing access to the Internet via television in continental Europe, starting in the Netherlands on March 13.

The electronics giant is offering a deal which combines its compact disc interactive, or CDi, players with a modem and software allowing access to the Internet, which currently links 30 million personal computer users via telephone lines. The product is aimed primarily at the consumer market.

The company has had a pilot scheme in Britain since late last year and said it was satisfied with the results. That scheme is currently going commercial while the new product will be available in Belgium and Luxembourg a month after the Dutch launch.

A roll-out in the U.S. is envisaged later in the spring.

Philips' CDi players retail for up to 1,000 guilders ($616) and can retrieve text, photographs, music and video images from a disc that looks like an ordinary audio compact disc. The new Internet package, costing 399 guilders, contains a modem that connects the user's television to the telephone system. (Reuters)

?The National Consumers League said last week it had teamed up with state and U.S. law-enforcement authorities in the first effort of its kind to combat fraud on the Internet.

The NCL is launching a data base that will transmit directly to the Federal Trade Commission and state attorneys general reports of consumer fraud perpetrated on computer online services and the Internet worldwide computer network.

Faced with the new territory of cyberspace, authorities are struggling to crack down on bogus get-rich-quick schemes, weight-loss miracles, AIDS cures, credit-repair programs, investment scams and gambling.

The Internet Fraud Watch can be contacted via telephone at 1-800-876-7060. The e-mail address is The address for the home page on the World Wide Web is (Reuters)

?AT&T Corp. last week began offering local telephone dial-up access to the Internet, jump-starting the new service with a free one-year limited trial for U.S. residential customers.

The AT&T WorldNet Service, available to businesses since September, will now be opened to long-distance home customers through regular phone lines.

Under the trial offer, home users who enroll in 1996 get their first five hours a month of Internet use free for a year, with no minimum subscription fee. Unlimited access is available to all AT&T customers, including businesses, for a flat monthly rate of $19.95.

Until AT&T's announcement, America Online had been the hands-down winner of the U.S. consumer marketing competition for online services, mailing out millions of free software disks in a successful campaign to win customers.

Miller said AT&T planned to offer a new standard of customer support with hundreds of operators answering customer inquiries around the clock.

The company said it will offer two plans for non-AT&T consumers in the United States, with one priced at $4.95 a month for the first three hours of access and $2.50 for each additional hour, and a second unlimited service plan priced at $24.95 a month with no further hourly charges.


Consumers can reach the organization's new "Internet Fraud Program" through a computer or over the phone.