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All Eyes on Apple as it Unveils iPad 2

CNBC Asia Pacific
Wednesday, 2 Mar 2011 | 10:47 PM ET

This is a transcript of top stories presented by China's CCTV Business Channel as produced by CNBC Asia Pacific.

Hi, I'm Saijal Patel and welcome to "Asia Market Daily".

U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has played down the impact of rising oil prices on the American economy.

Bernanke made the comments during his semi-annual testimony before the Senate Banking Committee, speaking for the first time since violence broke out in Libya.

(SOT) Ben Bernanke, U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman:
"The most likely outcome is that the recent rise in commodity prices will lead to, at most, a temporary and relatively modest increase in U.S. consumer price inflation - an outlook consistent with the projections of both FOMC participants and most private forecasters."

But some analysts warn rising crude prices will have a negative impact on U.S. growth - creating further problems for the Fed.

(SOT) Axel Merk, President and Chief Investment Officer, Merk Investments:
"As the headwinds increase, I think Bernanke's just going to print more money. Obviously that's going to cause more ripple effects, but he's fighting the disease um, with the virus so to speak in order to try to get through this and unfortunately we're creating an environment that's going to be increasingly unstable. Make no doubt about it. I think the instability is going to be with us not just a few weeks or months, it might be with us for years to come".

In just a few hours, Apple is widely expected to take the wraps off the iPad 2.0 - at a highly anticipated media event in San Francisco. But, with a growing number of tablets for consumers to choose from, can Apple impress?

CNBC's Jon Fortt has more.

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John Fortt, CNBC, Silicon Valley:
Apple's big iPad 2 announcement in just a few hours. Let's jam through the basics. We're expecting a thinner lighter iPad, with battery life at least as good. A new custom A5 chips from Apple perhaps and cameras to enable video conferencing. This is a big deal for Apple, because the company last quarter sold 7.3 million iPads, nearly one iPad for every two iPhones at an average price of $600. iPad contributed 16.4 percent of Apple's $26.7 billion in revenue. If this new version, and the software and services that come with it keeps sales growing, the iPad could quickly become a major financial force. How major? A little bit of perspective. Last quarter alone, the iPad did a billion dollars more revenue than Dell's consumer PC business. Now assuming the iPad 2 does well, and has what we expect, what's the impact on rivals? Believe it or not it's actually good for Qualcomm & Nvidia who supplies chips to Apple's competitors. When Apple raises the bar it stokes demand for their latest snap dragon integra chips. Samsung & Motorola have the most skin in the tablet game so far. Motorola CEO Sanjay Jha says initial sales of Motorola Xoom have been strong. If the new iPad beats the Xoom on features and price, and it might, that would clearly hurt. It would also hurt Google, whose Android OS powers those rivals. A strong iPad 2 debut could be the toughest on PC incumbents. Microsoft, Intel, HP, all three saw consumer weakness over the holidays while iPad went to town. If iPad keeps growing, it'll probably be eating their lunch. We'll see tomorrow, if Apple has got the goods to do it.

For CNBC Asia, I'm John Fortt.

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Can't wait to see if all the rumored features will be unveiled.

Well that wraps up the latest "Asia Market Daily".

I'm Saijal Patel from CNBC.

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