MicroScope's top stories, week ending 21 June 2013

Our regular look back at the most important IT channel news stories from the past seven days, as selected by MicroScope readers

Tech firm ditches Rackspace hosting service for lack of support

A cloud sales service company, Price & Quote, has ditched its IT hosting provider, Rackspace, because of “lack of support and unresponsiveness”.

It was hard to get the level of support that Price & Quote needed, according to Seamus Devine, co-founder and managing director of Price & Quote, which opted for Rackspace’s service in September 2012.

“The issue was that Rackspace was too big for us. We weren’t getting the one-to-one service that a startup such as ourselves needed,” said Devine.

Price & Quote provides cloud-based sales engine software to its customers. The nature of the business means that a fast and reliable IT service is critical to its business, according to Devine.

“As a new business, it was crucial to support our goal by working with an IT provider that could deliver high levels of support and offer the expertise and guidance on the services we needed to build a successful business,” he said.

HP looks to former Acer, Lenovo boss to run PPS

One time Acer UK managing director Dion Weisler has been tapped by his paymasters HP to take charge of the troublesome Printing and Personal Systems business unit as Todd Bradley moves to China in the newly-created role of EVP, strategic growth initiatives.

Weisler first pitched up at HP in December 2011 and has been running its PC business in APAC and Japan for the past 18 months.

Prior to that he served as Lenovo’s COO of Product and Mobile Internet Digital Home Groups, and between 1987 and 2001 held various senior roles at Acer.

He will report directly to Meg Whitman and also gets a seat on HP’s executive council.

Windows 8.1 not a magic bullet for PC sales

The anticipated launch of Windows 8.1 may not be the longed-for shock therapy that will push PC sales and shipments back into growth mode, according to analysts at Context.

Economic conditions will probably wipe out any expected bounce from the new OS

Speaking to MicroScope, Context senior PC analyst Marie-Christine Pygott said that while Windows 8.1 could be a help its impact would most likely be outweighed by macroeconomic concerns, and in the near-term, growing interest in and acceptance of low-cost Android tablets which, she said, are beginning to come into their own.

Pygott was speaking after Context revealed a new round-up of Western European PC distribution data, which revealed that all PC form factors declined in the early second quarter of the year, and although Windows 8 adoption was running at 95% in the consumer segment during May, this was only due to a lack of alternatives.

Entatech nabs five from Northamber to run Surrey base

Entatech has snaffled five former Northamber employees to get a new southern sales office in Leatherhead, Surrey, up and running.

The Shropshire-based distie threw open the doors at its new office this week, with former Northamber Microsoft business manager manager Dominic Hoskins heading up the operation as sales office manager.

Operating losses widen at Daisy in otherwise strong year

Unified business communications services specialist Daisy Group has booked a full-year operating loss of £16.8m for the 12 months to 31 March but insists its overall position is still strong.

The firm said it saw significant growth in cash generation, ahead of market expectations, while full-year sales and adjusted EBITDA came in at £351.5m and £56.3m were both flat compared with the previous financial year.

Equanet, PIXmania costs push Dixons Retail to pre-tax loss

Dixons Retail has fallen to a full-year pre-tax loss of £115.3m, barely improving on the year-ago loss of £118.8m after booking non-underlying items of over £200m.

Annodata hires Azzurri, Intrinsic talent in sales push

Business communications reseller Annodata has announced the appointment of former Azzurri and Intrinsic CEOs Martin St Quinton and Mike Mason as non-executive chairman and managing director of UC and collaboration respectively.

What's big data got to do with the channel?

Dave Tweddle, head of UK Alliances and Channel at Oracle, asks what big data means for the channel and whether big data is ready for a channel sell.

Ingram makes changes at top of European organisation

Broadliner Ingram Micro will hand the role of senior EVP and president of Europe to current SVP of Central and Eastern Europe and head of DACH (Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Hungary) on 1 August, following the redeployment of incumbent Alain Maquet.

Microsoft extends Office 365 to iPhone users

Microsoft is extending the compatability for Office 365 to include the iPhone as it looks to tap into the wide user base that chooses the rival to its own phone platform.

Binding gets Southern region role at Avnet

Avnet continues to solidify the positions of the former Magirus management team with Andrew Binding joining the distributor's EMEA executive team from the start of next month.

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