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AAPL Rising With Markets
The market is climbing after recent weakness with shares of AAPL up nearly 2%. Apple’s developer conference (WWDC) is slated to start Monday, June 11 where the company is expected to make a slew of announcements. Investors remain focused on iPhone penetration globally and the anticipated launch of the next generation in the fall; iPad adoption; market share growth of the Mac business as well as the upcoming refresh; the introduction of the anticipated Apple TV set; and platforms such as Siri, iAd and iBooks. Shares of Apple trade at 8.8x Enterprise Value / Trailing Twelve Months Free Cash Flow (including long-term marketable securities).Apple Could Sell 50 Million iPhones This Holiday (Barron’s)
Let the bullish iPhone 5 sales estimates begin. Mike Walkley with Canaccord Genuity says that Apple may sell more than 50 million iPhones in the first quarter that the new iPhone goes on sale if it is a major redesign. “We believe global demand for a new iPhone 5 could exceed our December quarter 50M unit estimate due to Apple’s expanding distribution base and large installed customer base.” To put that in perspective, Apple sold 37 million iPhones in total during the same quarter of 2011.
What To Expect From Tim Cook’s Keynote On Monday (Forbes)
Barclay’s analyst Ben Reitzes laid out his expectations for Tim Cook’s keynote at the company’s WWDC next Monday:
- “A major upgrade” to the Mac line: new MacBook Airs (with cheaper pricing) and Pros and new iMacs with Intel Ivy Bridge processors and retina displays.
- New details on Mac OSX Mountain Lion: the next version of the company’s Mac operating system software with a late summer release.
- Deeper iCloud integration: on Macs, iOS and Apple TV
- A look at iOS 6: the next version of the iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch operating system software with a focus on “software and services.”
- Better social media integration: in iOS an OSX.
- APIs: for Siri and iCloud to app developers.
- A major back-to-school promotion: with a free Apple TV (that’s a wild guess)
Should be exciting.
Has Microsoft Leapfrogged Apple? (Innovation Excellence)
Steve Ballmer seems to have finally put all the pieces together to gear up for a major resurgence. Over the next few years, Apple and Google will be the ones playing catch up. Apple’s resurgence was led not by computers, but by consumer products. Playing well with others has always been Apple’s Achilles heel and it is here that Microsoft has a distinct advantage. Microsoft’s strength is its modular, collaborative approach. While Apple is famously prickly, Microsoft encourages third party development. Right under our noses, Microsoft might just be pulling of one of the great turnarounds in history. I completely disagree but a worthwhile read.
WSJ Confirms Apple To Drop Google Maps (WSJ)
Present and former Apple employees have confirmed that the company is set to bump Google’s maps service from its mobile OS. Instead, Apple will “release a new mapping app that runs Apple’s own technology.” More than likely, Apple will show off the new software at the WWDC and is reportedly looking to convince third-party application developers to implement its technology into their offerings. Given the amount of acquisitions and focus, the plan to oust Google Maps has been in motion for years.
Sprint’s Virgin Mobile To Offer Pre-Paid iPhone (WSJ)
Here’s the low-end market opportunity. Sprint is preparing to announce the iPhone on its no-contract, prepaid Virgin Mobile carrier this week with a launch as early as July 1. The move would make Sprint the second carrier to offer the iPhone on a prepaid basis following an announcement from Leap Wireless last week about its intentions to begin selling prepaid iPhones on its Cricket brand starting June 22. Perhaps more interesting is Virgin’s $35 per month all you can eat data plan which would be by far the cheapest option for iPhone use in the US.
Smaller iPad Seen As Big Success For Education Market (Apple Insider)
If Apple releases a smaller, less expensive iPad this September, a new analysis suggests it could be a big success with schools under budget constraints, and students looking for a lighter, more portable iPad. Analyst Brian White with Topeka Capital Markets has continued to hear that Apple plans to launch a so-called “iPad mini” this September. White thinks a smaller iPad would expand Apple’s addressable market opportunity. By offering a new iPad at a lower price point, it would attract more price sensitive customers, and also offer an alternative for those who want a smaller tablet, such as schools under budget constraints.
Apple Continues To Dominate Tablets (MacDailyNews)
According to ABI Research, the media tablet market shipped 18.2 million devices in the first quarter, which represents a 185% year-over-year gain and a (33%) sequential loss in shipments. Apple’s 11.8 million iPad shipments were spurred by the launch of a third-generation lineup and price reduction on iPad 2 models, while Samsung’s 1.1 million shipments returned the vendor to the number two spot after Amazon’s Kindle Fire shipments fizzled entering 2012. Apple continued to lead the market with nearly 65% of worldwide units and surpassed 67 million cumulative shipments in its first eight quarters of availability.
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