Although the latest operating system from Microsoft hasn't had the kind of success Bill Gates must have hoped for at this point, it looks like the Richmond giant believes it will be able to turn things around soon.

In fact, Microsoft is reporting that it has already started to witness a mass adoption of Windows Vista on the part of businesses nearly a year after it was released. Even better for the company, it expects a strong holiday season at the year's end.

"We feel like we are starting to hit our stride not only in demand, but in deployment in business," Kevin Johnson, president of Microsoft's platform and services group, said in an interview.

Many consumers have been unhappy with Vista and influential companies such as Dell, Acer and HP have called on Microsoft to extend the life of its predecessor so they can continue to sell Windows XP for a while longer.

GPS prices coming down

V7, a division of Ingram Micro, has unveiled two low-cost GPS units that promise 400MHz processors and SD cards bundled with the satnav units that will provide access to maps, as well as any number of audio and video entertainment options. The Nav730, a stripped-down version, will retail for just $199 (£96), while the fully equipped Nav740 will cost $299 (£144).

Western Digital on Wednesday announced the immediate availability of its Scorpio 320GB notebook hard drive. According to the company, the new drive will offer a 3Gbit/s transfer rate and will be "extraordinarily quiet while running at cool operating temperatures". It's available now through the Western Digital store for $200 (£97).

Get a customised notebook

If you're looking for a snazzy notebook that no one else has, NVousPC may be the best place to start. Announced today, the company has officially released the Carbon notebook that, along with a 12.1-inch screen, comes complete with a custom-designed lid and a snazzy paint job. Prices start at $1,685 (£813).