Chief correspondent, Seattle
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Jan 29, 2013

Microsoft launches new Office for consumers

SEATTLE, Jan 29 (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp launched
its new Office software on Tuesday, featuring constantly
updated, online access to documents from a range of devices as
the world’s largest software company attempts to tailor its most
profitable product to a mobile generation.

The new Office suite of applications – including desktop
staples Outlook email, Excel charts, Word and PowerPoint – marks
the first overhaul since 2010 and aims to beat back growing
competition from Google Inc’s free online apps.

Jan 26, 2013

Lengthy 787 probe, fixing problem, may cost Boeing dear

SEATTLE (Reuters) – The slow progress of investigations into battery problems on Boeing Co’s (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research) 787 Dreamliner jets suggest the new plane could be grounded for months, raising fears that the financial hit to Boeing will be greater than had been initially predicted.

Wall Street had been working on the assumption that safety inspectors would find the root cause of two battery incidents in the United States and Japan within weeks and Boeing would implement a speedy fix costing no more than a few hundred million dollars.

Jan 26, 2013

Analysis: Lengthy 787 probe, fixing problem, may cost Boeing dear

SEATTLE (Reuters) – The slow progress of investigations into battery problems on Boeing Co’s (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) 787 Dreamliner jets suggest the new plane could be grounded for months, raising fears that the financial hit to Boeing will be greater than had been initially predicted.

Wall Street had been working on the assumption that safety inspectors would find the root cause of two battery incidents in the United States and Japan within weeks and Boeing would implement a speedy fix costing no more than a few hundred million dollars.

Jan 24, 2013

Microsoft profit dips ahead of Office revamp

SEATTLE, Jan 24 (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp’s
quarterly profit edged lower as Office software sales slowed
ahead of a new launch, offsetting a solid but unspectacular
start for its Windows 8 operating system and sending the
company’s shares down 2 percent.

The results mark a stark change from the 1990s, when
Microsoft was the unchallenged king of computing and the release
of a new Windows operating system would generate excitement and
generally boost its stock.

Jan 22, 2013

Former Microsoft exec says CEO Ballmer culls internal rivals to retain power

SEATTLE, Jan 21 (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp Chief
Executive Steve Ballmer is not the right leader for the world’s
largest software company but holds his grip on it by
systematically forcing out any rising manager who challenges his
authority, claims a former senior executive who has written a
book about his time at the company.

“For Microsoft to really get back in the game seriously, you
need a big change in management,” said Joachim Kempin, who
worked at Microsoft between 1983 and 2002, overseeing the sales
of Windows software to computer makers for part of that time.
“As much as I respect Steve Ballmer, he may be part of that in
the end.”

Jan 21, 2013

Seattle group signs deal for Sacramento pro basketball team

SEATTLE (Reuters) – A Seattle-based investment group led by hedge fund manager Chris Hansen has signed a binding agreement to buy a controlling interest in the Sacramento Kings basketball team, paving the way for a return of professional basketball to a city still pining for the loss of its SuperSonics in 2008.

Terms of the deal, announced by Hansen’s group and confirmed on Monday by the National Basketball Association, were not disclosed. The NBA must approve the deal and that could take several months.

Jan 17, 2013

Gleaming new 787s stack up at Boeing factory

SEATTLE (Reuters) – At the giant plant north of Seattle where most 787 Dreamliners are made, Boeing Co mechanics and engineers darted back and forth quickly and quietly on Wednesday, readying aircraft for delivery even as U.S. authorities grounded them.

Across the highway from the Everett plant at Paine Field airport, a line of completed 787s stood gleaming in the bright afternoon sun beneath the snow-capped Cascade mountains, waiting to be picked up by their owners.

Jan 11, 2013

Holiday PC sales dip for first time in five years

LAS VEGAS (Reuters) – Holiday-season sales of personal computers fell for the first time in more than five years, according to tech industry tracker IDC, as Microsoft Corp’s new Windows 8 operating system failed to excite buyers and many instead opted for tablet devices and smartphones.

The slump caps a miserable year for PC makers such as Hewlett-Packard Co, Lenovo Group and Dell Inc, which saw the first annual decline for more than a decade with no immediate signs of relief.

Jan 11, 2013

Holiday sales of PCs dip for first time in 5 years-IDC

SEATTLE, Jan 10 (Reuters) – Holiday-season sales of personal
computers fell for the first time in more than five years,
according to tech industry tracker IDC, as Microsoft Corp’s
new Windows 8 operating system failed to excite buyers
and many instead opted for tablet devices and smartphones.

The slump caps a miserable year for PC makers such as
Hewlett-Packard Co, Lenovo Group and Dell Inc
, which saw the first annual decline for more than a
decade with no immediate signs of relief.

Jan 10, 2013

Lenovo entering ‘PC plus’ era, CEO says

LAS VEGAS (Reuters) – China’s Lenovo Group Ltd, on track to become the world’s No.1 personal computer maker, is leveraging on what it calls the “PC plus” era as the company ramps up its plant capacity in major markets including the United States.

PC demand growth has waned over the past year as more consumers flock to ultraportable and increasingly powerful tablets and smartphones for basic computing. Hewlett Packard (HP), Dell and other stalwarts of the PC industry are now fighting to sustain growth as tablet computers eat into their PC-related businesses.

    • About Bill

      "Bill Rigby is Reuters' chief correspondent in Seattle, reporting on Microsoft and Boeing and overseeing coverage of general news in Washington state, Oregon and Alaska. He has been a Reuters journalist since 1998, reporting on banks, insurers, stock markets, defense companies and airlines from Reuters bureaux in London, New York and Seattle."
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