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Trending Tech Top Ten – December 2, 2011

December 2, 2011

Welcome to our first online edition of Trending Tech Top Ten (say that three times fast!), a new weekly post from the Weber Shandwick Global Technology Practice. Here you can find our spin on the top ten tech news stories of the week. The technology world moves at a super charged pace…our goal is to help you stay on top of what matters.

This week’s news is all about social and mobile. Social gaming company Zynga and Facebook build buzz for big IPOs. Nokia withdraws itself from the Frankfurt stock exchange, though it remains the world’s biggest mobile phone maker, while AT&T appears to say goodbye to its planned marriage to T-Mobile.

10.  HP Seeks Stability in 2012 After Rocky Year
Meg Whitman, CEO of Hewlett-Packard, has labeled 2012 as a “reset and rebuilding year.” After clarifying HP’s direction in the PC and tablet markets, Whitman projected lower-than-expected earnings for 2012.

9. China in Smartphone Lead
Research firm Strategy Analytics reports that China is now the top cell phone market by volume. Smartphone proliferation in China has largely been driven by the introduction of low-cost smartphone models and subsidies offered to Apple’s iPhone operators.

8. Australian Court Lifts Ban on Galaxy Tab
Australian courts, which previously banned the Galaxy 10.1 tablet because of a copyright infringement lawsuit by Apple, will allow Samsung to sell the tablet until the suit is resolved.

7. Lenovo Smart TV Plans Announced, Coming Q1 2012
The Chinese computer manufacturer announced plans to manufacture web-based televisions, a space Samsung and LG also plan to occupy. Lenovo didn’t clarify what platform they would use on their web-based televisions, but TheVerge writer Dante D’Orazio speculates that Google TV would be a good fit.  Watch this space.

6. Facebook’s Settlement with FTC Confirmed: Privacy changes must be opt in
The FTC is requiring Facebook to receive explicit permission from users to share data with advertisers and to undergo privacy audits every two years for the next 20 years. Mark Zuckerberg wrote on Facebook’s blog that the company would create two C-level positions to formalize how privacy is handled.  Facebook and privacy issues will be a continuing theme, despite this decision.

5. SolarCity Moves Forward with SolarStrong
Despite losing a $344 million loan guarantee from the federal government, the solar panel company will roll out a $1 billion plan to put solar panels on 160,000 homes and military buildings. Bank of America Merrill is providing SolarCity with a $350 million loan for the project. Solar power is going mainstream.

4. Nokia Delists from Frankfurt Stock Exchange
The cell phone provider, which has been cutting costs by laying off workers and closing plants, is removing itself from the Frankfurt stock exchange, where it has been traded at low prices and volumes. Nokia still trades on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki stock exchange and on the New York Stock Exchange. It is do or die time for Nokia.

3. AT&T All but Gives Up on T-Mobile Merger
The telecom company is temporarily withdrawing from its merger with T-Mobile, but will continue to contest the merger’s legitimacy in court. Despite AT&T’s insistence that its retreat is temporary, many business analysts doubt that AT&T will continue on with plans for the merger. What does this mean for T-Mobile?  Stay on the line.

2. Facebook Targeting IPO for Between April and June
The Wall Street Journal reports that the social networking site is discussing its IPO filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and speculates that Facebook will try to raise $10 billion, which could give the company a valuation of more than $100 billion. Now that is real money.

1. Social Gaming Pioneer Zynga Poised to Go Public in Closely Watched IPO
The social gaming company is preparing for an offering that some analysts expect could raise as much as $2 billion – the biggest IPO since Google went public in 2004. The company will begin its IPO roadshow on Monday and looks to be on track for a mid-December public offering. Will be interesting to see if the negative press Zynga has sustained recently will have any impact.

Disclosure:  Samsung is a Weber Shandwick client.