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theEweekly Wrap: stock prices, search issues and secret Apple offices

Facebook highs and lows Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has had a busy week, going from soaring highs to colossal lows over the space of a few days. On Friday, 18 May 2012, the social network finally released its widely anticipated public shares. Zuckerberg then followed the momentous occasion by marrying his girlfriend of nine years Priscilla Chan the following day.

However, the honeymoon quickly ended for Zuckerberg as the Facebook IPO came in for heavy criticism, and stock prices tumbled upon his return. A lawsuit filed at a Manhattan Court claims that the company has misled its investors by concealing “a severe and pronounced reduction” in its financial performance. Meanwhile, the public stock launch stumbled at the first hurdle due to technical faults on the Nasdaq stock exchange. The trouble doesn’t appear to be over, as the stock price has significantly fallen from $38 (£24.21) to $31.78 (£20.24), leaving Facebook £4 billion worse off since the IPO launch.

An antitrust issue Google has “a matter of weeks” to remedy its antitrust issues, according to a statement made by Joaquin Almunia, vice president for competition policy at the European Commission. The commission first launched its Google antitrust investigation in November 2010, alleging that the search engine giant was abusing its dominant market position.

Within his statement, Almunia said: “Our investigation has led us to identify four concerns where Google business practices may be considered as abuses of dominance.” This includes Google displaying links to its search services differently to its competitors, taking content for its own products, conducting exclusive advertising deals and limiting data transfer from AdWords to other services. A Google spokesperson has since responded, saying: “We disagree with the conclusions but we’re happy to discuss any concerns they might have.”

Secret-Ive It has been revealed that the office of Sir Jonathan Ive, chief designer at Apple, is off limits to nearly every member of the company. In an attempt to keep prototype Apple devices under wraps, Ive works in a secluded area of the Cupertino campus. As his office contains some of Apple’s best kept secrets, dimmed windows are used to prevent prying eyes from peeping in, while only a few trusted staff members can step foot into the work space.

Those trailblazing designs recently resulted in Sir Jonathan Ive being knighted at a formal ceremony at Buckingham Palace. Ive has helped to create some of Apple’s most iconic devices including the iPod and iPhone, and received his award for services to design and enterprise. When the New Year Honours List was announced in December 2011, Sir Jonathan told the BBC that he was “both humbled and sincerely grateful”.

Written by lauren_knowles_swapLauren Knowles
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