Tech wrap: HP TouchPad’s second coming?
In an interview with Reuters, the head of HP’s PC business Todd Bradley gave the throngs of people who lined up outside stores to snap up discontinued and deeply discounted TouchPads hope that the company wouldn’t abandon them, saying the tablet could be resurrected. This, as the TouchPad was on track to become the second-best selling tablet of all time behind Apple’s iPad.
GigaOm’s Ryan Kim says HP’s revelation muddies the waters, making the biggest maker of PCs in the world seem indecisive, which hurts it’s stock price.
There are lessons to take away from HP’s TouchPad firesale, argues Jon Collins of The Register. Chief among them is that there’s a massive pent-up demand for tablets from any manufacturer at the expense low-end PC and netbook sales.
Barnes & Noble forecast sales of its Nook e-reader and e-books would more than double this fiscal year to $1.8 billion. Sales of the Nook group of devices, which includes a standalone as well as a touch-screen reader, rose 140 percent to $277 million in the quarter, comprising nearly 20 percent of the company’s total sales and making it a larger business than the College Bookstore chain of 635 stores, where sales fell. CEO William Lynch said that the bookseller has 26 percent to 27 percent of the e-book market, the same market share he claimed last quarter.
Apple’s iCloud isn’t what it’s made out to be, writes AllThingsD’s Peter Kafka. In a demonstration of Apple’s upcoming music service iTunes Match, what looked like streaming, whereby files are stored remotely and accessed online, was actually just an option to listen to songs while they are downloaded to the device used to play them. And that eliminates one of the main advantages of a cloud: freeing up much needed space on users’ devices. Kafka suspects legal and licensing issues with big music labels and publishers are behind the move.
Google’s board of directors faced a lawsuit for previously allowing Canadian pharmacies to advertise prescription drugs to U.S. customers via the Web search leader. The civil lawsuit claims the ads — which Google stopped displaying in February 2010 — led to what it calls the “illegal importation” of the drugs. Last week, the Department of Justice said Google agreed to pay $500 million to settle the investigation into ads it accepted for online Canadian pharmacies selling drugs in the United States.
Steve Jobs made Apple great by ignoring profit, Clayton Christensen and James Allworth argue. Disruptions, or incumbents moving upmarket and leaving the bottom of the market completely open for scrappy upstarts to enter, can explain the rise and fall of many great companies. But, despite being perceived as a premium, high-end player, Apple under Job’s leadership has not only managed to avoid being disrupted by others, it has disrupted entire industries. Even more impressive, it’s disrupting itself, Christensen and Allsworth add.