All posts in category Android
Posted by jackbassteam on March 23, 2015
Android’s future lies not in expensive, feature-packed smartphones for the tech elite. Instead, it’s all about getting smartphones to the rest of the world.
Google today officially launched Android One, its initiative for cheap-yet-high quality smartphones for developing countries. The program is debuting in India with three cheap devices starting at around $105 off-contract, and the company is also planning to expand the program to Indonesia, the Philippines, and the rest of South Asia by the end of the year.
While high-end Android devices will be a mainstay among gadget geeks, there’s a much bigger opportunity for Google in focusing on the more than 5 billion people worldwide that currently don’t have smartphones. After getting its hooks into those potential consumers early, Google will likely be able to make them lifelong customers.
Cheap Android devices have already helped the platform dominate smartphone market share (85 percent of smartphones shipped in the second quarter ran Android, according to IDC), but with Android One, Google is aiming to bring some stability to the low-end market. It’s similar to Google’s Nexus line, which highlights what Android can do for higher-end phones (while still focusing on relatively inexpensive off-contract pricing).
Google says it’s working together with phone and component makers by sharing reference hardware designs, which could lead to cheaper devices with high-quality specs. Just like Nexus devices, Android One phones will get updates directly from Google, so users won’t be beholden to the whims of their carriers. The devices also include features that are particularly useful for the developing world, like dual SIM capabilities, expandable storage, FM radio, and removable batteries.
Android Wear is launching in India with phones from Micromax, Karbonn, and Spice. They all share similar specs: A 4.5-inch processor, 1 gigabyte of RAM, a quad-core processor, and a 5-megapixel camera.- the phones look fairly indistinguishable now. But you can expect phone makers to get more creative with their designs down the line. Google also revealed new partners for Android One, including Acer, Asus, HTC, Lenovo, and Qualcomm.
Google has also partnered with Airtel in India to offer free updates over cellular for the first six months. During that time, Airtel customers can also download up to 200 megabytes worth of apps for free every month.
Google also plans to launch an offline version of YouTube in India, which will let consumers rewatch videos without eating up their mobile data.
“Access for access’s sake is not enough,” wrote Google VP Sundar Pichai, who leads Android and Chrome, in a blog post today. “With Android One, we not only want to help people get online, we want to make sure that when they get there, they can tap into the wealth of information and knowledge the web holds for everyone.”
And of course, it also helps that all of those new web users will likely be dependent on Google’s services.
Posted by jackbassteam on September 15, 2014
Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s prospects seem a lot brighter than they were the last time Tim Cook introduced an iPhone.
When Chief Executive Officer Cook unveiled two new smartphone models 12 months ago, Apple’s stock was slumping and the company was losing market share to Samsung Electronics Co. and low-cost manufacturers such as Xiaomi Corp. Questions abounded about whether Apple could keep innovating without co-founder Steve Jobs.
Fast forward to a year later and the company’s stock is flirting with a record high. Anticipation is building for the bigger-screen iPhones, a wearable device and a mobile-payments system that people with knowledge of the matter have said Apple is set to announce today. Even the recent stolen pictures of naked celebrities such as Kate Upton from Apple’s iCloud service have done little to derail investor enthusiasm.
Driving the change are shifts in the smartphone industry and how investors have come to accept that Cook is firmly in charge of Apple. Rival Samsung (005930) is losing momentum as its multiple-device strategy to please all people at all prices is stalling, making Apple’s decision to stick just with high-end phones look smart. Cook is also set to give investors what they’ve been seeking: a new category of products, and larger-screen devices that consumers have been craving.
“They’re on top of the world,” said Tim Bajarin, an analyst at Creative Strategies Inc. “The No. 1 difference between last year and this year is the fact that Wall Street and even the customers have embraced the fact that this is Tim’s company — he’s proven that he not only can pick up the mantle of Steve Jobs but advance it.”
Even Cook’s venue choice for tomorrow’s event is symbolic, Bajarin said. Apple will reveal its latest gadgets near its Cupertino, California-based headquarters at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts. That’s where Jobs introduced the Macintosh computer in 1984 and the iMac in 1998, both of which triggered growth spurts at the company.
Cook still has a lot to do to maintain Apple’s growth streak. The wearable device, which may include features for tracking health and fitness activity, along with a push into mobile payments, will test Apple’s ability to integrate hardware and software to make the products easy to use. Competition against deep-pocketed Samsung remains stiff in smartphones and other mobile devices.
Trudy Muller, a spokeswoman at Apple, declined to comment.
Apart from investors, software developers are also optimistic about Apple’s prospects. Mark Kawano, CEO and co-founder of Storehouse Media Inc., said he’s looking forward to iPhones with larger screens, a better camera and an operating system that will likely let his company’s storytelling application be better utilized.
“More and more, the iPhone is just getting better and better at things that a traditional computer used to be good at,” he said. “Those things are what we are really well positioned for.”
Apple’s perceived renaissance dates back to earlier this year. At the end of 2013, Samsung, with its panoply of multipriced Galaxy devices running on Google Inc.’s Android operating systems, loomed large. The Suwon, South Korea-based company’s share of the global smartphone market had surged to 31 percent, while Apple held about 15 percent, according to researcher IDC.
Apple, meanwhile, faced criticism from analysts and investors for holding to a single phone style and high prices. Its then-new iPhone 5s started at $199 with a wireless contract and the less-expensive iPhone 5c was offered at $99 with a contract. The unsubsidized iPhone 5c was priced at $549 in the U.S. and 4,488 yuan ($733) in China while Xiaomi’s handset cost 1,999 yuan and Lenovo Group Ltd.’s flagship K900 IdeaPhone sold for 3,299 yuan.
“There was speculation in the tech media that the 5cs were going to be the low-price phones, so when they came out and the pricing didn’t really address the broader emerging markets that wanted cheaper phones, that obviously led to some level of disappointment and sell off,” Walter Piecyk, an analyst at BTIG LLC in New York, said.
Yet Samsung — instead of ratcheting up its revenue at Apple’s expense — began facing slowing sales growth as it got squeezed by competitors such as Xiaomi on the low end and Apple on the high end. Samsung’s global smartphone market share slid to 25 percent in the second quarter from 32 percent a year earlier, according to IDC. In July, Samsung reported sales and profit that missed analysts’ estimates.
“The loss of momentum at Samsung creates an unforeseen buffer globally — and is timed perfectly into a launch of larger screened phones with the potential to even get customers to switch back to Apple,” Ben Reitzes, an analyst at Barclays, wrote in a July note to investors.
By contrast, Apple steadily reported increasing year-over-year iPhone sales that topped analysts’ estimates. The new handsets “primarily” fueled Apple’s 12 percent sales gain by unit during the first three quarters of the company’s 2014 fiscal year, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
At the same time, Apple executives began a drumbeat to raise anticipation for new products. In May, Eddy Cue, head of iTunes, said products to be introduced later this year are the the best pipeline Apple has had in 25 years. In July, Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri echoed that by saying he was “expecting a very busy fall.” Cook chimed in and said the company has an “incredible pipeline” that “we can’t wait to show you.”
Cook has appealed to investors in other ways as well. In April, Apple said it would expand its shareholder payout program, increasing its share repurchase authorization to $90 billion from $60 billion and announcing a 7-for-1 stock split, as well as a bigger dividend. The company’s stock surged in the aftermath of the announcements.
The CEO has also shown he’s serious this year about boosting growth through acquisitions. In May, Apple agreed to pay $3 billion to buy headphones and streaming-music service Beats Electronics LLC, the company’s biggest-ever purchase.
By the end of trading yesterday, Apple’s stock was up 38 percent from a year ago, ending the day at $98.36. Shares are up 23 percent so far this year, exceeding the 8.3 percent gain of the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.
There’s a new willingness by investors to see “the glass as half full rather than half empty,” Piecyk said. “They’ve earned more investor trust.”
Seeking Alpha says Blackberry To Benefit
- Apple’s iPhone 6 is about to make the phablet form factor the dominant one for consumers.
- While Apple’s first iPhone destroyed BlackBerry, this release will catalyze BlackBerry.
- The BlackBerry Passport could become the dominant business phablet in the marketplace.
- The BlackBerry Passport could become the dominant business phablet in the marketplace.Apple will have validated for the masses the value of a bigger screen, and BlackBerry will have the biggest screen around. And this time, BlackBerry won’t be competing with Apple for the consumer market. It will be re-entering familiar territory with familiar customers in mind: working professionals for whom productivity is paramount,
Posted by jackbassteam on September 9, 2014
from Business Insider
RANKED: The Best Smartphones In The World
#14 BlackBerry Q10
Up five spots from last month
Link to full rankings http://www.businessinsider.com/ RE Best-smartphones-2014
Posted by jackbassteam on September 6, 2014
BlackBerry’s ‘cloud’ difficult to hack, analyst say – could have saved Jennifer Lawrence from “Bimbo ” status
Businesses using BlackBerry’s cloud-based services should not be spooked by hackers who stole nude photographs of celebrities out of the Apple iCloud, says an independent technology analyst.
London, Ont.-based Carmi Levy said Apple’s iCloud was built for consumers and BlackBerry’s suite of cloud services are for the corporate and enterprise world.
“That has significant implications for the kinds of security features built into the service,” Levy said. “They are two very different animals.”
On Sunday, hackers posted hundreds of nude photos of celebrities stolen from their personal Apple accounts. Apple says the hackers made targeted attacks against select celebrities.
“This incident uncovered a fundamental weakness in Apple’s security infrastructure for the iCloud that it has since resolved,” Levy said.
Apple users have a security code that is four digits by default. Such codes can be cracked by regular computers using programs that run all possible combinations in a short period of time.
This is known as a bruteforce attack.
In addition, the iPhone app called Find My Phone had no limits on how many times a user tries an incorrect password. Users or hackers are locked out of most other systems after three incorrect attempts.
That made the Find My Phone app easy pickings for a brute-force attack.
“It was all too easy for hackers using a certain piece of software known as iBrute to bypass the alarm that would advise a user that someone is repeatedly trying to break into their account,” Levy said. The security standards in the enterprise sector are far more stringent, and information technology professionals there would respond differently, he said.
“An IT decision maker would know full well to implement two-factor authentication on all devices, right out of the gate,” Levy said. “Whereas in Apple’s case, consumers don’t necessarily think or act that way.”
The cloud became a popular term in the digital world around 2010. It is marketing jargon for third-party data centres where information is stored, rather than on individual phones, laptops and tablets. Earlier this year, BlackBerry made it clear it would expand its offerings of cloud-based services for enterprise customers as a key part of its turnaround strategy.
“You cannot shut down investments in technology, including mobility, including the cloud, every time someone suffers a breach,” Levy said. “The Apple iCloud experience gives us an opportunity to learn some very important lessons about mobile security, but it is not a reason to write off the entire space.”
Nobody should be too hard on Apple for being hacked, he said.
“It is somewhat unfair to single out Apple, given the fact that any technology company can be victimized on any given day,” Levy said.
“It is almost impossible to find a major vendor that has not been compromised in some way, or whose name has not been dragged through the mud by hackers.”
DISCLOSURE: BBRY is the largest long position held by Jack A. Bass Managed Accounts
Posted by jackbassteam on September 4, 2014
go to Bloomberg TV
or my Facebook page has the video : Jack Bass – placed on Facebook today)
Aug. 12 (Bloomberg) — Antivirus Pioneer John McAfee discusses his internet privacy concerns on “Bloomberg West.” (Source: Bloomberg)
Posted by jackbassteam on August 13, 2014
AAPL : NASDAQ : US$550.50
Apple designs, manufactures, and sells PCs, portable digital music players, and mobile communication devices, along with related software, services, peripherals, and networking solutions globally. The company was founded in 1976 and is headquartered in Cupertino, California.
Technology — Communications Technology — Wireless Equipment
SOLID RESULTS WITH HEALTHY GROSS MARGIN, BUT SOFTER IPHONE SALES IMPACT GUIDANCE
Apple reported December quarter sales at the high-end of its previous guidance range with EPS above its implied guidance. However, total sales were below our expectations due to softer than anticipated iPhone sales of 51M versus our 54M estimate. While we anticipated softer Q2/F14 sales with seasonally lower iPhone and iPad product sales post the Holiday quarter, Q2/F14 guidance was below our expectations. Specifically, while our estimates anticipated a sharp Q/Q decline in iPhone sales during Q2/F14 consistent with Apple’s implied guidance, we anticipated this decline from our 54M December quarter estimate versus the 51M reported. Given the anticipated sell-off in the shares tomorrow combined with our belief Apple has a stronger pipeline of new products for C2014 versus C2013, we maintain our BUY rating. We also believe the continued large share buyback program should contribute to a return to EPS growth in F2014/15. We reiterate our BUY rating but lower our price target to $570.
Apple reported December quarter sales of $57.6B and EPS of $14.50 versus our $58.4B/$14.27 and StreetAccount consensus estimate of $57.5B/$14.09. While iPad and Mac sales exceeded our expectations, iPhone and iPod sales were below our estimates.
We believe Apple’s soft Q2/F14 guidance is consistent with our expectations for a roughly 25% sequential decline in iPhone units post the Holiday season. We also note on a year-over-year basis, Apple’s guidance does not include inventory builds for iPhones or iPads, includes greater revenue deferrals and unfavorable F/X to create tougher year-over-year comparisons for growth. We were impressed with stronger gross margin results and guidance than our estimates.
Primarily due to our lower iPhone unit estimates and somewhat due to a sharper decline in our iPod sales expectations, we lower our F2014 EPS estimate from $44.85 to $42.86 and our F2015 estimate from $50.24 to $47.56.
Valuation: Our $570 price target is based on shares trading at roughly 12x our F2015 EPS estimate
Posted by jackbassteam on January 29, 2014