Stock Watch: Netpliance Opens Strong

Netpliance (Nasdaq: NPLI) rose in its first day of trading Friday as the company raised $144 million in an IPO. Netpliance, which makes bare-bones devices that provide Internet access and e-mail, rose 4 1/16 to 22 1/16.

Netpliance’s “i-opener” debuted in November, offering Internet access and a consumer portal aimed at people who do not need all the functions of a PC. Computer hobbyists, however, may put a dent in profits: The New York Times reported Saturday that some enthusiasts are buying the $99 “Internet appliances” and converting them into full-fledged computers.

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