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AAPL Flat As Market Bounces
Moody’s downgraded eight Greek banks, citing exposure to government’s bonds and the deteriorating economic situation. The G20 did little to help sooth falling stocks either and as such, the markets are wavering. Shares of AAPL are trading around break-even with the rest of technology. Catalysts include the launch of the iPhone 5 in the next few weeks; update of the iPad likely in the spring of 2012; continued growth of the Mac business line; mobile adoption in China and other emerging markets; iCloud / iOS 5 rollout and adoption; the continued evolution and next generation of Apple TV (see below); and new platforms such as mobile advertising (iAd), books / publishing and social (Ping). Shares of Apple trade at 10.2x Enterprise Value / Trailing Twelve Months Free Cash Flow (including long-term marketable securities).Apple Users Are Loyal, 89% Plan On Sticking With iPhone (AppleInsider)
The iPhone 5 could certainly be a massive upgrade cycle. A whopping 89% of iPhone owners have indicated they will stick with Apple for their next handset, dwarfing all other hardware makers, according to a new survey by UBS Investment Research. The next nearest competitor to Apple in terms of hardware manufacturers is HTC, which earned a 39% retention rate. In terms of Android, 55% would stick with Google’s mobile platform, but 31% indicated switching to the iPhone.
Apple’s Four-Year Product Rollout (Shawn Blanc)
Apple has but one product: Their products. Their product lineup is, in a sense, one single product. The “walled garden” is the whole point. But It hasn’t always been like this. Their products used to be silos. It wasn’t until 2007, with the advent of the iPhone, that it became clear Apple was trying to incorporate everything together and to build a single product. And Apple is just now finishing the first step of what it began in 2007. After all, the future of technology is extreme usability coupled with extreme simplicity.
The iPad To Dominate Market For The Next Few Years (Gartner)
The tablet market is going to continue to grow and expand, but that growth will largely belong to Apple’s iPad, according to Gartner. The tablet market will increase from 17.6 million total sales in 2010 in 2011 to 326.3 million by 2015. The iPad is expected to account for 73% of the tablets sold this year. Tablets running on Google’s Android operating system are predicted to represent 17% of sales this year. However, Android will cut into the iPad’s market share over the next few years dropping Apple’s market share to 45% by 2015.
More Supplier Problems For The iPhone 5 Reported (DigiTimes)
One of Apple’s key suppliers, Wintek, is running into production problems with the touch panels for the iPhone 5. Wintek’s production line produced defective touch screens with something called a “delayed bubble,” which doesn’t show up immediately. Wintek will provide 20%-25% of the touch panels for the iPhone 5. Apple’s iPhone 5 will be a scarce product already. Wonder how this will affect the holiday quarter?
Apple Continues To Spread Its Retail Dominance… (MacStories)
Apple has been very active the last few months in opening numerous new Apple Stores across the world and this weekend is no exception, with a total of six new stores opening. It starts with the Nanjing East store in China opening today and then the IFC (Hong Kong), Hornsby (Australia), Centro Sicilia (Italy), New Haven (Connecticut) and Metrotownn (Canada).
…But Falls Short In China (The Wall Street Journal)
Apple’s two newest retail stores in the Greater China region are drawing much fanfare even as the company has shifted to a more measured expansion strategy. The company is opening larger stores at a slower pace in China, where demand for its iPhone 4 has outstripped supply in local Apple stores. But analysts say the company’s distribution network in Greater China still lags behind competitors. There are just 6 stores in the region so far, despite originally planning to open 25 stores by the end of the year.
Apple Continues To Diversify Its Supply Chain Away From Samsung (DigiTimes)
Apple has increased its purchases of flash (DRAM and NAND) memory from Japanese suppliers like Toshiba and Elpida Memory to reduce its reliance on Samsung for its A6 processors. Chinese tech industry sources are saying that Apple is slowly reducing its dependency on Samsung for key hardware parts, as tension between the two keeps building up, amid their ongoing patent lawsuits. Apple is one of Samsung’s biggest customers, contributing $6 billion worth of business to the company’s bottom line in 2010 alone.
Apple Trying To Bury Motorola By Putting Patent Battle On Stand-Still (TechCrunch)
Just over a week ago, Apple filed requests with the Western District Court of Wisconsin and the Southern District Court of Florida to put their current patent battle with Motorola at a stand-still. Well, Motorola wasn’t cool with this plan and has asked the court to keep things moving along. Motorola says that if the court is leaning toward granting the stay for Apple, then Motorola would like the opportunity to fix its standing issues. And, until the Googorola transaction is officially closed, Motorola must operate as its own independent company under its own management.
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