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Cisco Drops STB Division

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Cisco exits the network STB business as it sells the Connected Devices division to French firm Technicolor for €550 million in a deal involving a "strategic partnership" in next generation video and broadband solutions.

CiscoWhile the deal has Cisco stop making video customer premises hardware for service providers the company will continue selling IPTV and video service software and cloud services to telcos.

"This is a win for us, a win for Technicolor, and a win for our customers, partners and employees," Chuck Robbins-- who takes the mantle of Cisco CEO from John Chambers next week-- says.

HP, CenturyLink Team Up in Hybrid Cloud

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HP forms a partnership with CenturyLink bringing HP-powered CenturyLink hybrid IT services, such as managed hosting, co-location, storage, cloud and big data solutions, to customers via the HP PartnerOne program.

CenturyLink servers"CenturyLink solutions, powered by HP, provide compelling value for organisations seeking hybrid IT solutions," the company says. "CenturyLink complements the HP portfolio with a breadth of hybrid solutions for enterprises, offering customers the ability to choose the services that make the most sense today, while retaining the flexibility to evolve as business demands shift."

Microsoft's Worst Loss: Nokia's Fault!

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Microsoft reports a $3.2 billion net loss on its fiscal Q4 2015-- the biggest loss suffered by the company yet, caused by the writing down of the Nokia phone business and, of course, the current decline of the PC market.

Microsoft HQOverall Microsoft fiscal Q4 2015 revenues total $22.2bn, a -5% Y-o-Y decline.

The quarter saw the company hit by one-off charges worth $8.4bn caused by the $7.5bn writedown of Nokia assets and various restructuring charges. Announced earlier in July, the writedown involves 7800 job cuts (or 7% of the total Microsoft workforce) and the scaling back of smartphone plans.

ALSO Buys into Poland

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The ALSO Group expands into a 13th European country as it acquires Polish distributor PC Factory for an undisclosed sum.

Poland PC Factory works with a number of tier-one vendors, including Acer, Sony, Lenovo, Microsoft, Intel and HP. It has been active since 2001 and reports 2014 revenues worth €400 million.

The acquisition covers the PC Factory customer base and manufacturer franchises, as well as renaming to "ALSO Polska." It is subject to certain conditions, including "approval by responsible cartel authorities."

IDC: EMEA PCs "Continue to Suffer"

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IDC reports more declines for the EMEA PC market, as Q2 2015 shipments drop by -21.6% Y-o-Y to reach 17.2 million units due to a combination of unfavourable Y-o-Y comparisons, high inventories and higher price points.

H1 2014 was a particularly strong period for the industry, being the time when Windows XP-related renewals boosted shipments across the region.

IDC EMEA Q2 PCs

"Q2 2015 was, as expected, a transition period between the very popular Microsoft Bing promotion, which supported sales over the past 4 quarters, and the forthcoming launch of Windows 10 at the end of July," the analyst remarks.

All 3 EMEA regions see "strong" contractions-- W. Europe posts a -19.3% Y-o-Y decline, CEE shipments drop by -24.3% and MEA is hit worst at -25.7%. The regions are equally hit by currency fluctuations and inventories, as well as double-digit declines in both consumer (-24%) and commercial (-18.9%) segments.

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