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From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Newton MessagePad Sales Weaker Than Expected: Michael Spindler, Apple Computer Inc. president and chief executive, said sales of the product the company heralded as the future of computing have not met expectations. He would not give specific sales figures, but blamed the poor performance on what he called retailers' inability to present the product to customers. The Newton, introduced in July, is a hand-held computer designed to aid communications for executives on the go. Sales of the device, which has optional paging and wireless faxing functions, has been hurt by glitches that can prevent its recognizing handwriting.

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