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Jun 28, 2011

Microsoft puts Office in the “cloud,” confronts Google

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp is making its biggest move into the mobile, Internet-accessible world of ‘cloud’ computing this week, as it takes the wraps off a revamped online version of its hugely profitable Office software suite.

The world’s largest software company is heaving its two-decade old set of applications — including Outlook email, Excel spreadsheets and SharePoint collaboration tools — into an online format so that customers can use them on a variety of devices from wherever they can get an Internet connection.

Jun 22, 2011

Overachiever Oracle faces high growth hurdles

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Oracle Corp has a habit of beating Wall Street expectations, but some investors fear billionaire Larry Ellison’s software and server juggernaut will find it hard to keep up its own pace when it reports earnings and sets new forecasts on Thursday.

The world’s No. 1 database software maker is facing wobbly economies across the world, especially in Europe, and might already have reaped the greatest gains from the purchase of Sun Microsystems 18 months ago.

Jun 18, 2011

Boeing refuses to rush decision on 737 upgrades

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) says it feels no pressure to rush a decision on whether to re-engine or redesign its best-selling 737 narrow-body, despite impressive orders for an upgraded version of the competing plane — the Airbus A320neo.

Customers will wait for the best, most-fuel efficient plane Boeing can make, and the company cannot risk promising a plane it cannot deliver, said Nicole Piasecki, vice president of business development and strategic information for Boeing Commercial Airplanes told reporters earlier this month.

Jun 14, 2011

Boeing, U.S. labor board lock horns over 787 plant

SEATTLE, June 14 (Reuters) – Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is bracing
for what could be a years-long battle over its decision to put
a production line for the 787 Dreamliner in South Carolina and
not in Washington state, where its unionized work force has a
history of labor strikes.

The matter has become the fulcrum of a larger conflict
between supporters of labor union rights and those who believe
U.S. companies should have the freedom to build factories where
they want.

May 26, 2011

Microsoft board backs Ballmer over Einhorn

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp’s board stood behind Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer on Thursday, defending its longtime leader after influential hedge fund manager David Einhorn touched off a debate by calling for his dismissal.

The fund manager, who made his name warning about Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc’s financial health before the investment bank’s collapse, accused Ballmer on Wednesday evening of being stuck in the past, launching the sharpest attack yet by a high-profile investor against the company’s leadership.

May 26, 2011

Hedge fund star calls for Microsoft CEO to go

NEW YORK/SEATTLE (Reuters) – Influential hedge fund manager David Einhorn has called for Microsoft Corp Chief Executive Steve Ballmer to step down, saying the world’s largest software company’s leader is stuck in the past.

“His continued presence is the biggest overhang on Microsoft’s stock,” Einhorn said in reference to Ballmer.

May 23, 2011

IBM passes Microsoft’s market cap after 15 years

SEATTLE (Reuters) – International Business Machines edged past old rival Microsoft Corp in market value for the first time since April 1996, marking the latest twist in the fluctuating fortunes of two of the world’s most storied technology companies.

IBM ruled the computer industry for decades until it hired the tiny, unknown Microsoft to provide an operating system for its new range of personal computers in the early 1980s.

May 18, 2011

Death of PC exaggerated, sales look OK

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Talk of the death of the desktop personal computer is premature, and the ‘post-PC’ era is not here just yet, according to industry executives at Reuters Global Technology Summit.

Sales of PCs this year may not match growth rates for smartphones and tablets, but key manufacturers believe businesses and emerging markets will keep the PC at the center of the computing experience, at least for the next few years.

May 13, 2011

Mobile generation upends tech

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp’s (MSFT.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) unexpected move to buy online phone service Skype for $8.5 billion this week is a stark illustration of the forces reshaping the technology industry.

Stalwarts such as Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), vanguards of tech a few decades ago, are now supplanted by a generation of hot start-ups.

May 13, 2011

Reuters Summit-PREVIEW-Mobile generation upends tech

NEW YORK, May 13 (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp’s (MSFT.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz)
unexpected move to buy online phone service Skype for $8.5
billion this week is a stark illustration of the forces
reshaping the technology industry.

Stalwarts such as Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz),
vanguards of tech a few decades ago, are now supplanted by a
generation of hot start-ups
.

    • 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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