January 24 Weekly News RoundupPosted: January 24, 2011
The big news around the tech world from the last week has been changes in the management structure at both Apple and Google.
- Apple’s Steve Jobs announced that he would be taking another medical leave of absence on the day immediately before their quarterly earnings announcement. Their stock fell a sharp 5% after Jobs’ announcement, but bounced back after reports of $26 Billion in earnings in the first fiscal quarter of 2011, a 71% increase year over year. Apple sold “7.3 million iPads, 16.2 million iPhones, 4.1 million Macs and 19 million iPods” during this time period, the iPhone unit sales alone showed an increase of 86%. Importantly, these figures reflect an iPad market that is larger than their PC market unit by unit and in revenue. The absolutely massive number of iOS devices in the marketplace has paved the way for the 10 Billionth App Store download.
- Meanwhile, Google’s Eric Schmidt announced that he’d be selling $335 Million of his shares in Google stock, and handing control of the company to founding partner Larry Page on April 4. Page is expected to, as CEO, handle internal affairs and the day to day operations of the company, while Schmidt will be focus on “external affairs, primarily partnerships, business relationships, government outreach and customer relations”. Sergey Brin will step down as president of technology and take the title of “co-founder” to focus on the company’s “strategic projects”.
This week’s news also reflected a growing focus on group sale sites.
- Groupon is expected to be gearing up for an IPO that could value the company at as much as $15 Billion.
- Competitor site LivingSocial had a revolutionary daily deal with Amazon selling $20 Amazon gift cards for $10. By the end of the day LivingSocial had sold well over 1 Million cards valued at over $20 Million. Amazon is one of LivingSocial’s major investors with about $175 Million stake in the company.
- Not to be outdone, Google, which had tried to purchase Groupon for $6 Billion late last year, announced that they would be launching their own group buying site, Google Offers.
In Facebook news:
- Facebook raised another $1.5 Billion increasing its total worth to $50 Billion.
- And they have announced they expect to file their IPO no later than April 30, 2012.
And all the rest that’s fit to print:
- Facebook Co-Founder is heavily invested in a new company, Qwiki, that they are declaring will be “generationally significant”. Becomes top Google trend.
- Verizon challenges the new Net Neutrality rules while the FCC approves the Comcast/NBC merger.
- The US Army puts out a Social Media handbook for soldiers and their families
- FourSquare has over 6 Million users, 381 Check-ins last year and is now worth over $250 Million.