Apple Q2 Earnings: Another Strong Showing

apple earnsIn the second quarter, despite the economy’s effect on consumer sales, Apple’s train continued to roll ahead with plenty of steam. Wednesday, the company announced the best non-holiday earnings in its history.

After the close of market, Apple reported net income of $1.33 a share ($1.21b), up 15% year over, on revenue of $8.16b. Both numbers bested Apple’s own conservative guidance, and expectations.

On a non-GAAP basis, adjusted as Apple’s begun doing, adjusted sales totaled $9.06 billion for quarter. That’s $900 million higher than reported revenue. Adjusted gross margin was $3.62 billion and adjusted net income was $1.66 billion.

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Shakeup at MySpace: Staff Changing at the Top

When former AOL chief Jon Miller took the tiller to steer News Corps digital efforts a few weeks ago as Chairman and CEO of the Digital Media Group, and News Corp’s Chief Digital Officer, there was no masking the fact that change was gonna come.  Miller wasn’t taking a job reporting directly to Rupert Murdoch in order to be a chaperon.  He was going to be expected to do much more.

Today, expectation started to become reality.  After only a few weeks on the job, Miller is changing up the staffing chart at MySpace.  Chris DeWolfe, the co-founder and CEO of the social network is out. 

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Yahoo Earnings: Looking to the Future

yahoo earns metueWhile Silicon Valley and the rest of California suffered under an unprecedented spring heat wave, Yahoo announced earnings today that were anything but hot. Largely in line with expectations, but off  78% year over year, net income dropped to 8 cents a share, or $118m, down from 37 cents a share ($536.8m) last year.  Revenue fell 13%  year over year to $1.58 billion. 

Markets found reassurance lingering behind the digits in comments that showed new CEO Carol Bartz knows what she wants to do, even if the challenges are substantial.  

"We have a lot of people running around here telling engineers what to do, but no one is f***ing doing anything,” she colorfully said during the earnings call, and that’s going to change. That, and a whole lot more, as she continues to guide the company’s restructuring after her first full quarter on the job.

Yahoo will cut another 5% of staff, about 700 jobs, in the next two weeks, and refocus its efforts on core areas of the site including the home page, news, finance, sports, entertainment, mail and mobile.

From Bartz perspective, it’s all about the “wow” factor and user experience.  “If we are a hot site, advertisers follow.” she said during the analysts call.

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Earnings Watch: Barometers for this Week

earnings watch metueGoogle kicked off the earnings season for media and tech companies last week, sending a mixed a message with numbers nearly in-line, or ahead, of analyst expectations but showing net revenue down sequentially for the first time since the company went public in 2004.  This week and next, the earnings pace will pick up steam.  A number of key reports are likely to act as a barometer for the state of different sectors.   Yahoo, Microsoft, Apple, Netflix and more are all on the calendar.

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Applevine: More Netbook Rumors Circulate

Other than a cryptic comment about having some ideas, or remarks the market opportunity is still nascent, Apple has not said anything about making a netbook computer.  Still, the frequency of rumors about the so far non-existent device rate second on the Applevine only to iPhone chatter.

In early March, the big gossip was Wintek being contracted to supply touchscreens.  Now the latest? Today, Digitimes reported on the potentially lucrative manufacturing contract.

Citing reports first printed by the Chinese language news source Commercial Times, the report says Foxconn (Hon Hai Precision Industry) “is in the running” for the prize.

As is common for many of these Commercial Times reports that find their way into English on Digitimes,  the article cites unnamed sources in the supply chain.

Gossip? Fact? Tech tabloid fodder?

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NPD March Results: Gaming Sales Drop Off

Year over year comparisons in the entertainment industry aren’t always the best indicators of performance.  From one year to the next, there can be great variation in the slate of titles, their quality, or their release dates.  A hit one year can make an otherwise good performance the next seem weak.  A schedule change on a key release can make or break a quarter.  Even so, new March sales results released by NPD seem to show the U.S. video game industry’s growth hit a pothole.

Overall for the month of March, he industry was down 17% to total sales of $1.43B.  

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Exits and Beginnings: ex-Seattle P.I. Staff Start New Competitor

digital-news2-sm.jpgIn March, Hearst  made a difficult decision and shuttered the 146 year old Seattle P.I newspaper, hoping instead to salvage the brand as an online-only news portal.  The goal, Hearst CEO Frank Bennack, Jr., said in a statement, was to turn into “the leading news and information portal in the region.”   That goal may be a little harder to achieve thanks to some of the very staff the paper let go.

Tuesday, a collection of prior Seattle P.I. staff launched a competing site at

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