Tech Biz Roundup: RIMM Rumors, Amazon’s Zappos Problem

Western Digital (NYSE:WD) was hit hard by the Thai floods, but output levels for the two factories in the country are expected to return to pre-flood output levels by September. One plant restarted production in November and the other is due to resume operations in March.

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Zappos (an online shoe store) were the target of hackers. The names, addresses, phone numbers and the last four digits of credit cards from around 24 million customer accounts were hacked. Electronic commerce sites need to maintain transparency and user trust, even as they are targeted by hackers, as this incident shows.

Investing Insights: Apple Analyst Conservative, Google Shares Positive, eBay Estimates Strong.

Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NYSE:AMD) appears to be following Intel Corporation’s (NASDAQ:INTC) lead once again: the chipmaker will reportedly respond to Intel’s much-hyped ultra book initiative by rolling out its own ultrabook-type platform, called Ultrathin. The new platform will be rolled out in May. AMD claims Ultrathin systems, which will be based on its upcoming Trinity processors will cost $100-$200 less than those currently available.

Sina’s (NASDAQ:SINA) gains today are being contributed to by a report from a government think tank claiming the number of registered users for Sina’s Weibo microblogging platform rose 296% in 2011. This translates into 249.9 million users, which is a figure that represents nearly half of China’s estimated 513 million Internet users. Weibo, which has occasionally gained the attention of regulators, was estimated to have 250 million users as of November.

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Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) shares spike on heavy volume. The spike is due to a report detailing Samsung’s (SSNLF.PK) possible interest in the economy. “One of the biggest assets RIM has is BlackBerry Messenger, and it would be a smart way for Samsung to differentiate itself inside the Android ecosystem,” speculates. “Jim [Balsillie] is going hard after Samsung.”

Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) pending revamp of System Center platform will represent an escalation of its efforts to compete with VMware (NYSE:VMW) in the market for cloud infrastructure management software. As is the case with Microsoft’s Azure platform for building cloud apps, the software mogul is hoping its focus on enabling privately-hosted cloud solutions will give it an advantage.

BroadVision (NASDAQ:BVSN) shares jump. It says Digital London will use the company’s Clearvale enterprise social networking solution to underpin and facilitate engagement for the entire event.

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To contact the reporter on this story: Tanya Harding at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at