iFive: HP’s Missing CEO, Facebook Cozies Up to Skype, Nintendo’s 3DS Disaster, Dell’s Tablets, Google’s Happy Workforce

While you were busy sleeping others were busying themselves with the business of the day, so here’s the early tech news, digested:

As you blearily stumble to your breakfast bar for a morning snack, spare a thought for Ivi’s executive team–they’ll be in a much sadder state than you are as the list of big-name movie and TV content providers we’d heard about before is now definitely suing Ivi for copyright infringement. It’s a headache for Net-based re-broadcaster Ivi, but is it also a blow to plans for freer Net TV in the future?


1. HP’s doing well, you know–its freshly revealed finances predict an earnings-per-share of $5.05 to $5.15 for the end of the fiscal year in October 2011, which is a boost of 14% on this year’s figure and well up on many analysts’ estimates. Revenues for next year are expected between $131.5 billion to $144.5 billion, a boost of some 5% to 7%. That’s all good, but what many industry figures were hoping for was news on the next CEO from interim CEO Cathie Lesjak. There was no word, however, though we know that Lesjak, previously the CFO, has no plans on retaining the role forever. And rumors about Apple’s Tim Cook have been definitively squashed. So how long will HP’s limbo last? The limbo doesn’t seem to affect HP’s ability to make bold business decisions–for example, the company’s now confirmed it’s ditched plans for an Android tablet or smartphone–so perhaps it doesn’t matter.

2. Big rumors are hitting that Facebook and Skype are planning “deep integration.” Does this make sense? For Facebook, it sure does because it’ll add in some serious voice chatting powers to the social network to give its users another way to communicate in addition to text chats and status-update conversations. Skype benefits because it gets to augment its stack of registered users with more folks from Facebook, and they may choose to spend hard cash on Skype’s ancillary services outside of the user-to-user chats in Facebook. The plan is to allow Skype users to call their Facebook friends from inside Skype’s app, and to allow video calls too–which is perhaps a bit of a response to Apple’s FaceTime app, poised to make its own splash in the social network chatting sphere. It’s also good news for Skype in one other way: It looks great ahead of the planned Skype IPO.

3. Nintendo’s just downgraded its end-of-fiscal-year net income forecasts for March 2011 from 200 million yen to just 90 billion yen. The reason is partly due to movements in the yen’s value on international markets, which have deflated the value of Nintendo’s overseas business. But the other reason is more significant: The highly anticipated 3DS 3-D games console now won’t arrive in time for this year’s holiday season due to constraints in the manufacturing pipeline. This is terrible news, since it means Nintendo will miss out on the pre-season sales hype, and the piles of lovely cash from millions of potential sales. Sony and Microsoft will also steal some of Nintendo’s limelight with their motion-powered gaming systems, depressing Wii sales and deepening Nintendo’s woes.

4. Dell’s Greater China president Amit Midha has just spilled the official beans on the company’s tablet plans: A 7-inch device is due within a “few weeks” and an iPad-rivaling 10-inch unit will arrive sometime in the next six to 12 months. These’ll be Android units, but there are also plans for Windows 7 systems and the company is mulling a Chrome OS device too. Will Dell’s multiple-guess shotgun style attack on the tablet market yield the same sort of successes as the 5-inch Streak has seen?

5. Whose offices are you commuting to this morning? If it’s Google’s then you should be happy to hear it’s just been re-elected to the role of “world’s most attractive employer” and not in a dinner-and-a-movie sense. Universum’s annual list also saw Microsoft slip to 7th position in the Engineering category, which is reflective of MS’s general fortunes in the press and business at the moment.

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