Five Companies That Dropped The Ball This Week10:00 AM EST Fri. Oct. 19, 2012
AMD's business plan has yet to catch up with the notion that the PC market is shrinking and that it needs to be in the mobile market, causing the company to unveil a lousy third fiscal 2012 quarter and announce plans to lay off about 1,770 employees, or about 15 percent of its workforce.
"Shortly after joining AMD, I talked about the fundamental changes occurring in the PC industry. These trends are occurring now at an even faster rate than anticipated," AMD CEO Rory Read (pictured) told analysts.
Small consolation to the 1,770 soon-to-be-ex-employees.
Your iPad or iPhone may have been made by underage workers at a Foxconn plant in China.
Foxconn, the Taiwan-based contract manufacture that counts, well, almost every well-known brand name IT vendor as a customer, admitted it hired underage interns as young as 14 years old to staff its facility in Yantai, China, marking the latest in a string of events that have called the manufacturer's labor practices into question.
Foxconn's excuse? The interns came from local schools, and the company did not check the children's IDs.
It was bad enough when Google was forced to report poor earnings for its third fiscal 2012 quarter. But an error by R.R. Donnelley, its publishing firm, led to its quarterly report being released early in the day on Thursday, not after the close of the stock market as was expected.
For investors, the result was seeing over 8 percent of the company's equity vaporize on Thursday instead of on Friday.
Unlike rival AMD, Intel didn't announce layoffs or a poor fiscal third quarter. But like AMD, Intel has yet to grapple with the shift in the IT business from traditional desktop and portable PCs to fast-growing mobile device shipments.
Despite beating analysts' expectations, Intel's stock on Wednesday got hammered, and the company said the fourth quarter will be sluggish thanks to a PC-sales slowdown. Intel CEO Paul Otellini (pictured) said third-quarter PC sales grew only half the seasonal norm, with the same expected in the fourth quarter.
No doubt investors will be even more likely to read about the fourth-quarter results on their mobile devices than they were in the third quarter.
MetroPCS, along with T-Mobile USA and T-mobile's parent company, Deutsche Telekom, was sued by MetroPCS shareholders who complained that their shares in the company were terribly undervalued in the pending merger with T-Mobile.
They were probably even more depressed than normal this week upon hearing the news that Japan-based SoftBank plans to spend $20.1 billion for a 70-percent stake in rival Sprint Nextel, thus curtailing hopes that SoftBank might bid for MetroPCS.