Reverberations from HP’s announcement that it intends to shed its PC business, the world’s biggest by volume, is being felt far and wide across the global IT industry. While no clear buyer has yet emerged, executives in the PC supply chain, analysts and even government officials are all trying to make sense of its impact.

Nowhere is this search for answers more urgent than in Taiwan, where much of the world’s PC supply chain resides. HP’s computers are assembled by Hon Hai, Quanta, Inventec and Wistron, all Taiwanese companies. Read more

Acer boosted its cloud computing capabilities on Thursday by announcing that it plans to spend $320m to acquire iGware, a US cloud computing company whose technology powers Nintendo’s WiFi Connection. Read more

Google logoAct one of Google’s spat with the Chinese authorities over censorship and government-backed hacking closed last year with Google partially retreating from the world’s most populous nation.

There was, however, still the unresolved issue of Google Maps, and act two of Google versus China may now be beginning with Google having submitted an application to Beijing to allow the service to remain in China. Read more

It may not be quite as serious as the Federal Trade Commission’s anti-trust probe in the US, but Google is facing a fight with the regulators in Taiwan that has forced the internet giant to suspend all paid apps in Android Market on the island of 23m people.

At issue is Taiwan’s consumer protection laws, which require online retailers to give customers a seven-day period for getting a full refund on their purchases – much longer than the 15 minutes Google currently gives its customers. Read more

Laptops are becoming interesting for Arm again, admits its president Tudor Brown, despite the bevy of increasingly powerful Arm-based tablet models shown at this year’s Computex. Read more

Intel’s vision of a new category of ‘Ultrabooks’ that would revolutionise the consumer PC industry has won over at least one important convert.

Speaking at a separate press conference just minutes after Intel’s keynote speech, Ray Chen, president of Taiwan’s Compal, the world’s second-biggest contract PC maker, praised the idea of Ultrabooks and said it would “ignite the next wave of laptop replacements” next year when those new models come onto the market. Read more

The new Chromebooks by Acer and Samsung may look like regular notebooks on the surface, but Sundar Pichai, Google’s senior vice president of Chrome, said that the parameters for every last detail, down to the individual components, were set by Google. Read more

Critics like to say that PC makers were slow to recognise the threat from tablets and to respond with their own versions to rival Apple’s iPad.

This narrative may be the popular one, but it underestimates the challenges faced by traditional PC makers in coming up with a competitive and profitable tablet, Henry Lu, senior vice president of Micro-Star International, told the Financial Times. Read more

If consumers like iPad-like devices, and they also like smartphones, what could be even better than a Padfone?

That was the thinking at Asus, which on Monday unveiled its latest invention ahead of the Computex trade show. Read more

Last year, 23m flat-screen television sets were sold in Japan. This year, according to AU Optronics, the third biggest flat panel maker in the world, there may only be 12m unit sold.

Impact from the earthquake and tsunami? The spirit of jishuku, or self-restraint, sweeping through Japanese consumers? Neither, says Paul Peng, executive vice-president of AUO. Rather, it is the end of the Y290bn ‘eco-point‘ stimulus programme that is threatening TV demand in Japan. Read more