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AAPL Up With Markets
Employers added 200K jobs for the third straight month, contributing to the biggest corporate hiring spree in 5 years. Markets are responding well, reversing a week-long slide. Shares of AAPL are up over 2 points, in line with the rest of tech. Upcoming catalysts include the WWDC starting June 6; iPad 2 supply stabilisation; the iPhone 5 launch this summer / fall; smartphone push into China and emerging markets; iTunes and other cloud initiatives; the continued evolution and adoption of Apple TV; and new platforms such as video, books / publishing and social (Ping). Shares of Apple trade at 11x Enterprise Value / Trailing Twelve Months Free Cash Flow (incl. long-term marketable securities).
The Lower Price-Point iPhone Is Coming, It’s Just A Matter Of When (Barron’s)
Oppenheimer & Co analyst Ittai Kidron took over coverage of Apple with an Outperform rating and a $450 price-target, saying stock is a “core holding in any technology or growth portfolio.” He believes the rumoured lower price-point iPhone, is more a question of when, not if, following the footsteps of the iPod which worked its way into lower price tiers. Kidron predicts 73 million iPhones to be shipped this fiscal year ending in September, and 28.5 million iPads.
Apple Anticipated To Take 75% Mobile App Market Share This Year (Boy Genius Report)
According to the latest projections by iSuppli, Apple’s App Store may very well claim a much bigger share of the mobile app download market than anyone previously anticipated. Estimates for the Apple App Store this year call for revenue of $2.91 billion, up 63.4% from $1.78 billion year-over-year. Total industry app revenues rose to $2.1 billion last year and is estimated to increase to $3.8 billion in 2011. Meaning Apple will account for approximately three-quarters share of the market.
Apple Moves to Number Two Worldwide Smartphone Manufacturer (GigaOM)
Apple replaced RIM as the second largest worldwide smartphone vendor during the first quarter of 2011, according to IDC. Apple is led only by Nokia, and followed by RIM, Samsung and HTC which round out the top five. Apple’s shipments grew 114% from the previous year, jumping from 8.7 million to 18.7 million handsets. The company now trails world industry leader Nokia by only 5.5 million shipped units. Read more at Business Insider.
News Corp. Might Be Losing Money On The Daily, But Apple Isn’t (Electronista)
News Corp’s digital publication, The Daily, which premiered on the iPad in February, hasn’t had too impressive a first quarter. Even though the app was downloaded over 800K times, the publication made a loss of around $10 million. The Daily was the first iOS app to support Apple’s recently introduced in app subscription policy, and can be subscribed to for $0.99 a week. While the iPad may not save the publishing industry, that’s still a cool $240K that Apple pocketed for providing the distribution vehicle.
Tablets Now Eating Into Other Devices (Nielsen)
A survey from Nielsen shows tablets cutting into not only desktop and laptop usage, but stealing time from e-readers and dedicated gaming machines as well. The computing load is clearly shifting away from more traditional machines, presenting a significant challenge to hardware makers. The study also shows Apple growing its U.S. tablet share rather than decline amid more than two hundred tablets swarming the market, with 82% of tablet owners buying an iPad.
Is Apple Compromising On Publisher Terms? (Venture Beat)
Hearst, one of the major U.S. magazine and newspaper publishers, will begin implementing iTunes subscriptions in three of its iPad apps starting with the July issues. A Hearst representative is quoted as saying, “Our deal is fundamentally different from any other deal Apple has done with a publisher.” Does that mean a deviation from Apple’s subscription plan (which has been criticised for requiring publishers to give Apple 30%)? Maybe Apple is showing some flexibility.
What’s Up Apple’s Sleeve Hiring The Inventor Of LucasFilm THX Sound System? (GigaOM)
The big buzz around Silicon Valley is that “sound legend” and venerable cinematic audio innovator Tomlinson Holman has been hired by Apple to help dramatically improve the company’s audio-related efforts. Does this mean Apple may be looking into the possibility of creating its own, Apple-branded sound systems? That would be great, because according to Business Insider what they offer right now is marginal.