This will be particularly interesting, especially after all the cool announcements from the xbox team at E3 this week.
Microsoft planning its own Windows 8 tablet to take on iPad?
Microsoft is reportedly in talks with manufacturers to launch a Windows 8
tablet with its own branding, effectively creating an official Microsoft tablet, supply chain sources tell the Taiwanese news site Digitimes reports.
Microsoft didn’t confirm the rumor, but an official Windows 8 tablet from the company certainly isn’t out of the question. It would simplify tablet decision-making for consumers, and it would give Microsoft its own product to directly counter the iPad.
The company is still aiming to work with other computer makers to deliver their own Windows 8-powered tablets, but you can bet that they won’t take too kindly to an official Microsoft tablet. The situation sounds reminiscent of the fiasco surrounding Microsoft’s PlaysForSure partners, who developed Microsoft-approved media devices that were superseded by Microsoft’s own Zune players.
Microsoft officially announced Windows 8 last week, which aims to combine the company’s traditional desktop environment with a slick new tablet user interface.The tablet would also put Microsoft in a spot between Apple and Google: Apple only offers its iPad, and Google is working together with third-parties to develop Android tablets. For Microsoft, having its own tablet could give it the benefits of both approaches (though it does bring up new potential issues).
Juice in the City (aka GroupMom) scores $6M to do Groupon for moms
(June 3, 2011 | Matt Marshall)
(Reproduced from VentureBeat)
Juice in the City, a San Mateo, Calif., company that wants to be the Groupon for moms, has raised $6 million to ride the coattails of Groupon’s success.
The company circulated a press release last night, calling itself GroupMom, and saying it wants to empower moms to “battle groupon.” It makes sense for the company to use the publicity swirling around Groupon’s IPO filing yesterday. Just too bad it’s not actually called GroupMom, a catchy, albeit copycat name.
The company, founded last year, said it wants to hire more than 2,000 moms to recommend their favorite locally owned businesses in 100 markets across the country. This second round of funding was led by Tandem Entrepreneurs. There’s no telling how this company will do. Scores, if not hundreds, of Groupon clones, have emerged over the past two years, and many have raised money. Groupon itself has attracted $1.1 billion in backing, and LivingSocial has pulled in $632 million. But most of the clones we’ve seen have been weak, either focusing on specific geographical and language markets or choosing aggregation plays. But at least moms is an effective niche.
From its release:
How it works:
A matchmaker between local businesses and moms, Juice’s mission is to ‘grow local’ by featuring daily deals at locally owned businesses. Juice in the City is supported by a large and rapidly-growing community of bloggers, mom groups, local vendors and local sales moms. Moms recommend their own favorite locally owned hidden gems to other moms based on personal experience.
Juice in the City customers get insanely great local deals thanks to these moms, who in turn earn a percentage of the deal’s revenue.
97 percent of the local businesses surveyed say that moms are their most valuable customers. Juice in the City is in a unique position to deliver those quality customers. Unlike other deal sites, Juice in the City uses its local mom sales force to both reach out to local businesses and then promote them to other local moms in the community. As a result Juice in the City vendors are thrilled with the results, and 80% have indicated they want to work with Juice in the City again.
Nokia Shares Slump
Wil microsoft buy Nokia Mobile in Q4 2011 ? My bet is yes.
(Reproduced from the Wall Street Journal)
By ARILD MOEN (June 1st, 2011)
HELSINKI—Shares in Nokia Oyj fell further Wednesday as analysts slashed forecasts amid concerns that the world's largest handset maker may struggle to pull off a turnaround quickly enough to halt the continuing decline in its market share.
Finland-based Nokia warned Tuesday of an unexpected slump in handset prices and volumes in Europe and China and analysts voiced concerns that there could be worse to come for the company, which has been struggling to maintain its position in a competitive marketplace.
Nokia Corp. denied Wednesday that it is in talks to sell its core handset business to Microsoft Corp., dismissing market speculation that had moved its stock price. Marcelo Prince reports.
Royal Bank of Scotland said Nokia is only just starting to feel the effect of strong competition from Google Inc.'s Android operating system in emerging markets. The bank said the launch of low-cost Android models from Asian rivals could further dent Nokia's profitability, and it isn't convinced that Nokia's switch to Microsoft Corp.'s Windows operating system later this year will substantially improve gross margin.
RBS lowered its target price on Nokia shares to €4.50 from €5.25 and retained its sell rating. Goldman Sachs also cut its target price and downgraded the stock to neutral from buy, voicing concerns the rapid loss of market share threatens Nokia's distribution advantage and could make it harder for the company to regain market share when it launches Windows phones.
The Finnish Federation of Professional and Managerial Staff, which represents more than 10,000 Nokia employees in Finland, also voiced its concern. "Frankly speaking, we are worried about Nokia's future," said spokesman Ari Aberg. He said he doesn't expect further staff redundancies as a result of the profit warning, but added that "it all depends on Nokia's partnership with Microsoft. If that doesn't succeed then I don't know." Nokia has already said it will cut its global workforce by 4,000 by the end of 2012 as part of its cost-cutting plans.
The company's shares were down 4.8% at €4.52 by late Wednesday in Europe, after falling 18% on Tuesday.
Nokia said in February it was planning to adopt the Windows operating platform in place of its own Symbian platform in an attempt to compete with rivals such as Apple Inc. and Google, whose phones and operating platforms have proved more popular than Nokia's, especially in the lucrative smartphone market.
Android's share of the smartphone market increased to 36% in the first quarter from 9.6% a year earlier, according to research firm Gartner. Nokia's Symbian platform saw its market share drop to 27.4% from 44.2%, while Nokia's share of the total mobile-handset market fell to 25.1% from 30.6%.
But Nokia isn't launching the first Windows phone until the fourth quarter, and expects 2011 and 2012 to be transition years, before sales of its handsets based on the Windows platform start to pick up.
Analysts are concerned, however, that those sales may come too late and there is little that the company can do in the meantime to halt its decline.
Read more: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303657404576359230836473332.html#ixzz1OQiX1MLz
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