ITProPortal Morning Roundup 21-05-12

Hewlett-Packard may cut as many as 30,000 jobs as part of a restructuring plan to be announced to shareholders next week. The cuts, which will affect eight per cent of the company's 324,600 employees, mark new HP chief executive Meg Whitman's attempt to turn around the company's decline. Whitman, a former chief executive of eBay, replaced Leo Apotheker, under whom HP's profits shrunk by some 40 per cent. She has previously indicated a plan to implement cost-cutting measures and reinvest those savings into the company's key businesses.

Amazon will launch a new version of its Kindle eBook reader in July, reports Reuters, citing a source who has seen the prototype. Despite online speculation that the new device would be colour-equipped, it appears it will instead be a monochrome e-reader with front lighting. This will be a welcome addition to the device series, as consumers have long complained about having to attach an external light, for reading in the dark.

Facebook has announced the pricing of its initial public offering (IPO) at $38 (£24) per share. The shares are set to begin trading on the NASDAQ Global Select Market today, as Mark Zuckerberg prepares to find out just how much his social networking phenomenon is worth on Wall Street. The pricing comes in at the higher end of most expectations and has been met with scepticism by some analysts who still doubt the Facebook business model.

Before it has even hit UK shores, Amazon's Kindle Fire tablet has opened itself up for welcome screen adverts. Currently rated as Amazon.com's best-selling product, home page exposure on the tablet offers a major opportunity for companies worldwide. But it won't come cheap, as an agency executive has revealed Amazon will demand $600,000 (£379,000) for any package that includes such an ad.

UK government staff have been caught accessing private and confidential citizen data, according to details obtained through Freedom of Information requests made by Channel 4's investigative program Dispatches. The data, which includes medical records, social security information, employment details and criminal records, was accessed by employees of the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department of Health.