Tech Rewind: Earnings, Tablets & In-Flight Electronics

More quarterly report cards came out of Wall Street this week with some of the biggest Silicon Valley heavyweights announcing results, but while the results were mostly positive, the forecasts were less than sunny.   On Monday sector bellwether Apple, Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) announced results that easily topped expectations even though the company posted a year-over-year drop in profits and gross margins.  Apple reported profit that fell 9% to $7.5 billion, as revenue rose 4.2% to $37.5 billion.  The Street had expected earnings of $7.96 a share on revenue of $36.9 billion, according to analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.  Apple sold 33.8 million iPhones during the quarter, up 26% from the year-ago quarter.   Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) weighed in with results that smashed expectations on both the top and bottom line, as revenue surged to a record $2 billion for the quarter.  The social network posted adjusted profit of $621 million or 25 cents a share in the third quarter on revenue that grew 60% to $2.02 billion.  Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had expected earnings of 19 cents a share on revenue of $1.9 billion.   Still, the company said it does not expect to “significantly increase” the number of ads in user’s newsfeeds and warned that U.S. teens spent less time on Facebook than in the previous quarter, and shares fell on the news.  Facebook’s stock closed the week down 4.2%.   Sony (NYSE:SNE) shares slumped on Thursday after the company reported a fiscal second-quarter net loss of $197 million and cut its outlook by 40% to 170 billion yen from 230 billion yen. Sony’s electronics business is still facing headwinds as TV sales missed expectations,  and the company cited difficulties in in its entertainment business as a result of box-office flops like White House Down.  Sony shares plunged on the results; the stock finished the week down 13%.   Outside of earnings news, Twitter kicked off its pre-IPO investor “roadshow” in Philadelphia on Monday, before heading to New York for meetings with hedge funds and money managers at the Mandarin Oriental on Tuesday andWednesday.  Before Twitter’s stock prices on Nov. 6 and begins trading on the New York Stock Exchange Nov. 7, the social media broadcasting company is anticipated to meet with investors in Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles and San Francisco.   Lenovo tapped its newest newest product engineer and spokesperson, Ashton Kutcher, to announce its tablet, the Yoga. The Yoga Tablet runs on Android Jelly Bean and comes in an 8-inch model that starts at $249 or a 10-inch version that runs $299.  Both versions include a built-in kickstand and boast impressive battery life, able to run for 18-hours on a single charge.    More good news for tablet owners emerged on Thursday when the Federal Aviation Administration said it will soon relax rules for mobile device use during flights.  Passengers still cannot talk on their phones while in flight, but the agency said airlines could begin submitting plans that would allow for gate-to-gate use of cell phones, laptops and tablets to watch movies, listen to music or play games utilizing onboard wi-fi.    On Friday, both Delta (NYSE:DAL) and Jet Blue (NASDAQ:JBLU) airlines confirmed that the FAA had approved their requests to allow customers to use their gadgets throughout takeoff and landing.