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Ellis Hamburger, Business Insider
MSFT Off With Markets¬†¬†
The market is tanking in early trading as Greece completely melts down. Shares of MSFT are off with the rest of tech. 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 7.7x Enterprise Value / TTM Free Cash Flow.The Facebook Phone Will Be Windows-Based If Microsoft Has Any Say (Business Insider)
If Microsoft has its way, the long-awaited Facebook Phone will actually be a Windows Phone. Nicholas Carlson at Business Insider learned this, and everything else in this post from a single source briefed on Microsoft’s mobile strategy. Though several other sources in the mobile industry described this news as plausible, logical, and even likely, none were able to fully corroborate it. So what’s the timing? Not imminent. Sources say Microsoft is “hanging around the hoop,” hoping to be there when Facebook finally gets serious about phone development. Makes sense considering Facebook was the smartest investment Ballmer ever made.
Microsoft Changing How The Console Market Prices (VentureBeat)
Microsoft confirmed that it will offer a $99 Xbox 360 console and Kinect bundle. The deal includes an Xbox 360 with 4 gigabytes of storage, and the $15 subscription fee includes Xbox Live Gold service (typically a $40-$60 annual cost). This is a fundamental change in the way the console market works. Typically, companies debut expensive new consoles that are heavily subsidized, with the hopes of making back money with game sales. Given that the Xbox 360 is now almost seven years old, Microsoft can afford to be creative with its pricing model. That said, Google’s got Microsoft in a headlock over Xbox sales in the U.S.
Smartphone Penetration Blows Through 50%, Windows Phone Still Nowhere (Nielsen)
According to Nielsen, in March 2012, a majority (50.4%) of U.S. mobile subscribers owned smartphones, up from 47.8% in December 2011. Consumers purchasing new phones picked smartphones more often, and among smartphone owners Apple was the top manufacturer of smartphone handsets, while Android was the top smartphone OS (49% share versus Apple’s 32% share). Combined, Windows Mobile and Windows Phone have 5.8% mobile OS share.
Nokia Being Sued For Terrible Windows Phone (BGR)
Adding insult to a string of injuries, one man has filed a class action suit against Nokia in New York because its comeback, thus far, has been anything but. Complaint Robert Chmielinski, represented by Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd, alleges that Nokia’s shift to the Windows Phone platform has not halted its sliding position in the global smartphone market, as the company promised it would. Chmielinski and his layers seek unspecified damages for themselves as well as all individuals and institutions that owned publicly traded shares of Nokia stock during the class period. The American way.