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MSFT Is Off Despite Rising Market
The markets are up in early trading, despite initial jobless claims missing expectations. Shares of MSFT are off in a positive NASDAQ. Catalysts for the stock include Windows 8, Windows Server 8, Office 15 and Windows Phone 8; expansion in the smartphone market with primary hardware partner Nokia; strides in cloud computing; profitability in the online business, including integration of Skype; and continued evolution of Kinect and next generation Xbox. The stock currently trades at 8.2x Enterprise Value / TTM Free Cash Flow.Microsoft Signs Up Another One For Android Licenses (9to5Google)
Microsoft signed a patent agreement with Pegatron (parent company is Asustek) that covers the Windows maker’s patent portfolio for a variety of Android and Chrome-based consumer electronics, giving the software giant coverage for eReaders, smartphones, and tablets running Google’s operating system. Microsoft will receive royalties from Pegatron. The agreement with Pegatron reflects continued success of its Android licensing program by settling IP issues regarding Android OS and Chrome-powered devices in the marketplace. Microsoft has now licensed four of the top five Taiwanese original design manufacturers.
Microsoft Showing Zune Replacement At E3 (The Verge)
Microsoft will offer a sneak peek at its Zune replacement during E3 2012. The new music service, codenamed Woodstock, will continue Microsoft’s shift away from the Zune brand towards the well known Xbox one. Insiders have revealed that Woodstock will be a cross-platform play, available to Windows 8, Android, iOS, and Xbox users, playable from a browser. The service won’t require any browser plugins and is said to integrate deeply with Facebook, allowing friends to build group playlists and share tracks.
Nokia Struggling To Keep Up With Lumia 900 Demand (Electronista)
Nokia’s UK Lumia 900 launch originally anticipated to launch April 27 has been bumped back to ‘around May 14,’ the reportedly the result of stronger than expected demand for the flagship Windows Phone 7 device in the US. The company has said that demand for the device is outstripping supply and that it is ramping up production of the Lumia 900 so that can strike a better balance between supply and demand. Strong demand is actually a relief.
Microsoft’s Mobile Strategy Is Not Looking So Good (ReadWriteWeb)
As the future shifts toward mobile devices, things are not looking good for Microsoft. The most troubling sign is that even now, more than a year after Microsoft started shipping Windows Phone 7 devices, U.S. mobile customers are getting rid of Microsoft devices faster than they’re buying new ones. According to comScore, in the three months ending in February, Microsoft’s share of U.S. smartphone subscribers was 3.9%. That’s down from 5.2% last November and 7.7% last February (a longer term look is even worse). Microsoft mobile devices just aren’t good enough to demand attention.
The iPad Will Continue To Dominate Tablets, Windows Will Steal Share From Android (Forrester)
Tablets are rapidly becoming the primary device of choice for millions of people. Forrester Research says that sales of tablet computers worldwide are predicted to hit 375 million in 2016. That compares to 56 million tablets purchased worldwide in last year, or a compound annual growth rate of 46%. The iPad will represent one-third of all tablet purchases by 2016. Google’s Android operating system will actually see a net decline in market share due to the launch of Microsoft Windows 8. That said, Microsoft’s new tablet OS won’t really start taking off until 2014. Are you spending more time on your tablet than your PC or laptop?