AMAZON’S NEXT TABLET WILL BE A BLOCKBUSTER
We now have new details about the vaunted Amazon tablet. Here are the key points:
- Priced at $249;
- 7 inch touchscreen;
- New user interface based on Android with baked-in media stores;
- Coming out this fall.
It’s going to be a blockbuster.
- People want a cheaper tablet and Amazon can give it. Surveys show tablets are still too expensive, and most people are waiting for tablets to get cheaper to buy them. Apple knows it and will probably lower prices as much as it can, but someone who can undercut Apple on price with a halfway-decent tablet will clean up.
- Surveys also show people trust Amazon’s brand for tablets.
- Amazon has the biggest retail shop window in the world. The Kindle became a best-selling, category-defining consumer electronics product at least in part because it’s on the frontpage of Amazon.com most every day.
- Amazon has a media ecosystem that can compete with Apple’s. Possibly the most interesting rumour about the Amazon tablet is the idea that it could come with free Amazon Prime, Amazon’s service which not only includes free shipping on goods, but also streaming media. Amazon also has an app store, a well-regarded MP3 store and, of course, the Kindle store.
- Media is going to HTML5 faster than we thought. This is good for non-iPad tablets. We wrote about that last week.
GOOGLE’S MOTOROLA PURCHASE ONLY MAKES SENSE IF GOOGLE MAKES CHEAP TABLETS
There was some speculation that Google was buying Motorola for its software patents and would spin off the hardware business as soon as possible. Google Chairman Eric Schmidt poured cold water on that idea. Google wants Motorola’s hardware business. There’s only one way that makes sense: if Google makes cheap tablets to compete with the iPad on price. Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com.au/it-makes-sense-for-google-to-own-motorolas-hardware-business-to-build-super-cheap-tablets-2011-9#ixzz1XBucE3XM
ANALYST THINKS AOL A “BUY” BASED ON IMPROVING FUNDAMENTALS
UBS analyst Brian Fitzgerald has definitely taken a contrarian view reiterating his BUY recommendation on shares of AOL. He believes its dwindling subscriber base is a “potent cash cow” that can be used to fuel growth in online advertising and support a turnaround even though it is expected to decline 20% per annum over the next couple of years. While running counter to the herd mentality on Wall Street is always a good thing, it seems that Fitzgerald is looking for silver linings that simply don’t exist. AOL has been bludgeoned by investors since reporting lighter than expected display advertising revenues and a bottom line miss last month. Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com.au/analyst-you-wont-believe-this-but-aols-actually-a-buy-2011-9#ixzz1XC00g4XH
MobiTV’s IPO FILING: NOT A PRETTY PICTURE
MobiTV, one of the mobile video pioneers, recently filed for an IPO. It’s not a lovely picture.
Three customers — Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile — represent the “substantial majority” of its business. Sprint, in particular, is more than half of its revenue.
It’s not growing very fast. Revenue for 2010 was $67 million, up 7% from 2009. Revenue for the first 6 months of 2011 was $37 million, up 17% from the first 6 months of 2011. That’s an acceleration, perhaps, but still slow considering overall growth in mobile. (Verizon Wireless data revenue was up 22% year-over-year in Q2, for comparison.)
It’s still losing quite a bit of money. MobiTV lost $8 million in the first 6 months of 2011 and $15 million last year. Read more: http://www.splatf.com/2011/09/mobitv-ipo-filing/