Never let a crisis go to waste! Inspired by the transformative impetus of the economic downturn, we’ll soon be starting our series about “Meaning-Driven Business” that invites leading business thinkers as well as C-level executives to discuss alternative ways of doing business and creating value. The series is based on the assumption that the current crisis is also a moral crisis, a fundamental crisis of trust in business leadership. According to the Chicago Booth/Kellogg School Financial Trust Index from April 8, trust in business has reached unprecedented lows, with only 10% of Americans now saying they trust large … Read more
The mobile handset market is set for recovery after the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, according to Nokia, the world's largest maker of cell phones.
The cell phone market has been hit particularly hard by the worldwide economic slowdown. And companies such as Nokia and Sony Ericsson have taken a beating.
The second quarter of 2009 was particularly hard for Nokia. The company's earnings were ugly with a 25 percent drop in revenue, a 15 percent drop in handset shipments, and a more than 70 percent decline in operating profits, compared to the same quarter in … Read more
Maybe Dell's dark days are finally over.
All signs are pointing to an improved PC market that will start to materialize later this year and really regain ground next year. Dell, the PC maker that's arguably been battered most by the downturn, also stands to make the greatest gains when the seas begin to calm.Read more
There are more encouraging signs that the worst might be over for the PC industry.
For the second straight quarter, PC shipments worldwide were better than expected. Desktop and notebook shipments for the second quarter of 2009 decreased 3.1 percent from the same time a year ago, according to IDC's Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker, released Wednesday. Though it's still negative growth, it's being read as a positive sign since analysts were expecting a 6.3 percent drop.
Asian pears are delicious, which is why Jill Schlesinger--The 404's very own financial expert from CBS MoneyWatch--likes them so much! After getting through some munching and slurping noises in the first minute by Wilson, Jill explains to us what is going on with the economy and why we need to fear the End of Days. Just kidding...mostly.
Not being financial experts by any means, Jill explains some basic terms to us so we know what the heck is going on. Like what is the difference between the unemployment rate and weekly jobless claims? Plus, she goes on to say that she thinks that everybody should have at least six months of living expenses saved up, given that the average person is jobless for 22 weeks now. And maybe we should start spending money again if we know that we're not about to lose our job. It would help the economy out. We know it sounds very different than most of our inane topics to most of our audience, but money is something we all need to know and understand. Plus, we love how Jill lays it on us with financial straight talk.
On the second half of the show, Jill tells us about her CBS Evening News appearance and her lady crush on our very own Katie Couric. Jill comments about the growing political discourse about a possible second stimulus package. Check out the segment. We've embedded it into this blog post.
Come back tomorrow, where we've got Steve Guttenberg. Of course, we're got the doors barricaded, just in case HR comes running in. And! We've got Wilson's Audio Draft. (Editor's note: I promise I listen to music. Whale sounds anybody?)
Full Disclosure: CNET, The 404, MoneyWatch and the CBS Evening News all are properties of CBS.EPISODE 378 Download today's podcast Subscribe in iTunes audio | Suscribe to iTunes (video) | Subscribe in RSS Audio | Subscribe in RSS Video… Read more
Net neutrality advocates got a boost of support Wednesday from the Obama administration when it released grant guidelines for spending the government's $7.2 billion broadband stimulus package.
Companies winning grants to help build new broadband infrastructure will have to follow the Federal Communications Commission's Internet Policy statement, which prohibits companies from deliberately blocking or slowing Internet traffic on their networks.
Proponents of that concept, Net neutrality, have been pushing the government to pass laws or set stricter requirements to ensure that consumers get access to content they want and that competitors are not run out of business … Read more
The bad news: first-quarter spending on computing technology was worse than forecast. The good news: growth could resume earlier, according to a report Forrester Research released Tuesday.
The analyst firm reduced its forecast for 2009 information technology spending from a 3 percent decline to a 10.6 percent decline, but it's the hitting bottom, it said. Spending should return to growth in the fourth quarter in the United States, and in the first half of 2010 in Europe and Asia, Forrester said, basing its forecast on newly collected data.
"The big drops are not precursors to further declines,&… Read more
NEW YORK--Collins Osei, who had bought an iPhone 3G last year, came to the AT&T store Friday not to buy the latest-generation iPhone 3G S, but instead he wanted to downgrade to a less expensive Nokia phone.
Osei said his decision to go back to a basic-feature phone was all about cost. The iPhone and its service plan are simply too expensive, he said. Osei, who is in the middle of his two-year contract with AT&T, had his iPhone 3G stolen recently. But he said replacing it with a new one would cost too much. Instead, he picked up a Nokia 2600 for a mere $43.
But Osei's decision didn't hinge just on the upfront cost of the phone. He also said he was tired of paying the additional $30 a month data charge that is mandatory with the iPhone.
"The iPhone plan was just too expensive," he said. "They made me pay $30 extra a month for data, and I don't really need the Internet on my phone. So I went back to a regular phone. And now I'm on a plan that costs $39.99 a month."
Osei might not be the only consumer out there turned off by the high cost of the iPhone service fee. Unlike previous iPhone launch days, there was no line of people this morning waiting outside the AT&T Time Square store hoping to get the latest iPhone 3G S. In fact, it looked like more customers were leaving the store empty-handed or with other devices than those leaving with new iPhones.… Read more
q&a Leap Wireless is finally in the right place at the right time.
The company, which sells its prepaid service under the Cricket and Jump Mobile brands, has been in the wireless service market since 1998, when it was spun off from mobile chipmaker Qualcomm. It filed for Chapter 11 protection in 2003 and was restructured and emerged from bankruptcy protection a year later.
Now the company is strategically expanding its network into 14 new markets with spectrum it won in two recent Federal Communications Commission auctions. It now operates in 29 states and holds licenses in 35 of the top 50 U.S. markets, including Chicago and Philadelphia, where it recently launched service, and in Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, where it plans to launch soon.
And all of this happening as Americans are getting fed up with lengthy and expensive wireless contracts from national carriers, such as AT&T and Verizon Wireless. And as finances tighten, people are looking to reduce their monthly expenses by finding cheaper options for phone service. Prepaid service plans, which allow customers to pay in advance for service without signing a contract, provide a good alternative. Low-cost unlimited plans, from Leap and others, make it an easy choice even for wireless subscribers who talk and text a lot.
I recently chatted with Leap CEO Doug Hutcheson to get his take on the prepaid wireless market and get his thoughts on the future of the industry. Below is an edited version of our conversation.
Q: Prepaid cell phone plans are getting a lot of attention lately. Why do you think that is? Hutcheson: The prepaid cell phone market is in its third or fourth phase of development right now in the U.S. And it's at the same phase that the European market entered about five or six years ago. Prepaid really started to take off in Europe as wireless penetration started to reach 100 percent. And of course the economic realities of today are also a factor. For a number of people, prepaid wireless is the best value.
Do you think prepaid carriers, such as Leap Wireless, are in a position to threaten the nationwide incumbents, such as AT&T or Verizon Wireless? Hutcheson: I don't think we are a material threat to either AT&T or Verizon Wireless. They have built great, broad franchises with 80 million customers. What we are trying to do is focus on our customer base, which tends to be younger and more ethnically diverse with people at the median to below median household income level. We serve this market really well. And this is a customer base that others aren't as interested in serving or aren't able to focus on. These operators have their own prepaid products, but I think AT&T's primary focus is on selling iPhones and two-year contracts. And Verizon is focused on its 4G rollout and combining those services with its Fios fiber network.… Read more
The famous Paris International Air Show opened Monday amidst troubled times for the airline industry with plummeting sales, employee layoffs, canceled orders, rising oil prices, and the recent as-yet unexplained crash of Air France Flight 447.
Against the cloudy backdrop, key airline manufacturers like Boeing and Airbus expressed optimism at the show. Scott Carson, president and chief executive of Boeing's commercial aircraft division, told reporters on Monday that he believes the recessionary downturn in the commercial aircraft market has hit bottom.
"Are we down in the dumps about the status of this industry? Have we allowed the current … Read more