IBM this week reported fourth-quarter 2009 diluted earnings of $3.59 per share compared with diluted earnings of $3.37 per share in the same quarter one year ago. That represents a 10 percent jump, and the first time IBM has seen revenues increase in more than a year.
"We concluded a strong year with a solid performance in the fourth quarter in which we again delivered growth in margins, profit and earnings," said Samuel J. Palmisano, IBM chairman, president and chief executive officer. "IBM continued to benefit from our strategic transformation, offerings that our clients value in this economy, and our commitment to developing countries around the world."
Big blue also attributed its numbers to several investment opportunities, including cloud computing. Based on this, and other factors, IBM said it expects full-year 2010 diluted earnings per share to reach at least $11.00.
The powers that be at Twitter have always skirted questions concerning the three-year-old social media company's lack of a revenue model. With them focusing solely on wooing more and more people to the microblogging platform, profitability seems improbable, if not impossible. But Twitter has managed to do the unthinkable.
According to a BusinessWeek report, which cites unnamed sources, Twitter has finally become profitable. It achieved this unlikely feat by inking separate search deals with Google and Microsoft. Although the news of the deals is rather stale and the ink on them fully dry now, this report is the first to quote definite figures.
BusinessWeek claims to have learned from its sources that the two deals, signed back in October, have together earned Twitter $25 million. The deal with Google is said to be worth $15 million and that with Microsoft around $10 million. Twitters's annual expenses, though officially unknown, are said to be in the region of $20-25 million. So even despite the two deals, Twitter must have only managed a small profit at best. The sources also revealed that Twitter's “telecom expenses” - it has to pay carriers for the millions of text messages sent through its service - have been reduced greatly after it successfully negotiated more favorable deals with carriers.
Desktop-style internet browsing is expected to become a mainstream feature across all mobile phone segments, including budget and feature phones, as mobile phones are now being taken very seriously as internet devices by vendors and users alike. With an increasing number of people taking to the internet on mobile phones, the mobile internet market is certainly headed upwards, both in terms of its overall worth and bandwidth consumption.
Morgan Stanley has published a couple of voluminous reports, called 'The Mobile Internet Report” and 'The Mobile Internet Report Key Themes,” in order to quantify this boom. According to the two documents, it expects the mobile internet market to be "at least 2x size of Desktop Internet” in the coming few years. A recent study had confirmed the iPhone's status as the most popular mobile internet device when it revealed that the smartphone accounted for half of the world's mobile data bandwidth.
Does this mean that the iPhone will ride the mobile internet wave to become just as popular an internet device as the ubiquitous PC? Morgan Stanley definitely believes the odds favor the iPhone, which "may prove to be the fastest ramping and most disruptive technology product / service launch the world has ever seen." The firm believes that smartphone shipments will outnumber PC shipments by 2012.
Where is half of the world's mobile data bandwidth disappearing? The avaricious Apple iPhone is devouring more than half of the global mobile data bandwidth, according to a new report published by mobile advertising company AdMob. The report details the mobile internet usage trend during the month of October. This is the first time that the iPhone's share of the global mobile internet traffic has gone past 50 percent. It stood at 43 percent at the end of September.
The iPhone is almost performing out of its skin when it comes to hogging mobile data bandwidth. This is because its share of the global smartphone market is just a third of its contribution to the world's mobile internet traffic. Symbian smartphones came in a distant second in October with a 25% share, down 4% from the previous month. While RIM and Blackberry smartphones lost a bit of their share, Android's share rose to 11% during the month.
While most segments in the tech industry have had a hard time coping with a global recession, the smartphone market seems to have weathered the economic storm just fine, suggests a new report from research firm Canayls.
According to Canayls, smartphone sales saw growth of 4 percent against the same quater last year, and shot up 14 percent from last quarter.
"While growth has undoubtedly slowed, it is still outperforming the overall mobile phone market by some margin, as well as driving data revenue for operators, and smartphones are ushering in a range of changes in user behavior when it comes to what people actually do on their phones," said Canalys senior analyst Pete Cunningham.
The smartphone market has been particularly kind to Apple, whose iPhone 3G S helped the iPhone grow its market share by 4 percent to settle in at 18 percent of the market. That puts it in third place behind RIM, which holds a 21 percent share.
"Demand for the iPhone 3G S far outstripped supply, and we expect to see continued growth for Apple, especially with new operators coming onboard, for example in the UK with teh end of O2's exclusivity on the device," Cunningham added.
The price of a fake security software program usually hovers between $30 and $100. But the hidden costs seem to be greater. Installing rogue security software can not only wreck the system but it also makes the owner vulnerable to identity theft. Deceptive ads linking to rogue software appear on both malicious and legit sites. Cybercriminals are also using search engine optimization (SEO) and social media tricks to ensnare even more people.
While you contemplate whether or not it's worth upgrading your work PC to Windows 7 or trashing the old hardware for something new, one thing's for sure - moving to Windows 7 will be "all but inevitable," according to a report from market research firm Gartner.
"The Windows 7 release will generate renewed interest in consumers and small businesses following its release, but corporate demand is not expected to gain momentum until the end of 2010," said Charles Smulders, managing VP at Gartner. "An overdue PC hardware upgrade cycle and the economic environment will be as equally important as Windows 7 in determining final demand in 2010."
Before taking the plunge, Gartner senior analyst Michael Silver said corporations will have to consider five factors, including moving off of XP by the end of 2010, starting their migration projects now instead of later, they should avoid skipping Windows 7 to avoid the kinds of problems that plagued "organizations that skipped Windows 2000 and waited for XP," larger organizations should budget carefully and take note of the migration costs (as much as $1,930 per user to move from XP to Windows 7, and up to $510 to move up from Vista), and avoid waiting for Windows 7 SP1 before making the jump.
According to market research firm Ovum, WiMax doesn't have much of a future outside of niche markets. In a report titled WiMax in emerging markets, the opportunity assessed, Ovum said that this holds true both for developed regions and emerging markets.
"Two thirds of the 300+ WiMax networks globally are in the emerging markets of Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Latin America," said Angel Dobardziev, practice leader at Ovum. "Yet, most emerging market WiMax operators currently have thousands, or tens of thousands of subscribers, rather than the hundreds of thousands of subscribers they planned to have at this stage."
Dobardziev attributes part of the problem to the pricing structure, pointing out that on a non-subsidized basis, WiMax is priced and positioned as a broadband option for businesses or wealthy consumers. Ovum doesn't see this changing any time soon and predicts that WiMax will account for less than 5 percent of the 1.5 billion fixed and mobile broadband access connections in the emerging markets by 2014.
Although the task force didn’t name any decent ways to express dissent, it is suggested that indignant consumers learn the art of protesting from the true masters of the art: the Palestinians, who have pioneered some of the most effective and economical techniques, including stone pelting and the fabled catch-and-hurl-back-teargas-grenade technique.
Coming back to the subject of broadband access, the task force is busy preparing a report on ways to enhance broadband penetration in rural and urban areas. The panel will submit its final report to Congress in February. It said in an interim report that anywhere between $20 and $350 billion might be needed for installing necessary wireless and landline infrastructure. Its estimate depends on the internet speed.
The panel said in its report that while nearly 2/3 of Americans are wallowing in broadband bliss and 1/3 have access but haven’t subscribed, 4% have no access whatsoever. The panel also expects smartphones to march ahead of blander phones by 2011.