Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Morning Brief: NYT reports that Microsoft will try it again; one media investment firm sells B2B flagship to another

Rumors are flying that Microsoft will introduce a line of slates* early next year after canceling earlier efforts to enter the market.

According to the report, the new products would run Windows 7 when in landscape mode, and Angry Birds when in portrait -- or something like that.

The New York Times report was written by Nick Bilton but could have been written by Judith Miller or John Burns:

The people with knowledge of these devices asked not to be named as they are not authorized to speak publicly by Microsoft or partnering companies. Microsoft declined to comment about coming products that have not been announced.
* Slates are tablet computers that are slow and buggy because they run full operating systems rather than slimmed down mobile operating systems.

In B2B media: Wasserstein & Co. acquired Nation's Restaurant News from GE Capital yesterday. Penton Media and Lebhar-Friedman Inc. served as the middle men.

Proving the value of media monopolies, the government of Silvio Berlusconi survived a second round of no-confidence voting in the Italian parliament today. The vote was 314 to 311.

Earlier in the upper house, Berlusconi won as well -- 162 votes to 135. Four opposition members switched their votes at the last minute and voted with the government. According to the Guardian report, one of the senators was later expelled by his party, Sicilian-based Movement for Autonomies, as one party member accused the party member of "one of the most squalid examples of this buying and selling [of votes] that has turned parliament into a sort of cattle market".

Back in the US no-confidence votes are not allowed, otherwise governments would fall weekly.