Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet exploded onto the scene late last year. Despite only being available for a month and a half in the holiday quarter, Amazon shipped nearly 4 million Kindle Fires in its launch quarter to take 14% of the global tablet market according to market research firm IHS iSuppli. While many touted the tablet as the iPad’s biggest competitor, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook insisted that Amazon’s tablet had absolutely no impact on iPad sales. Now, in the first quarter of 2012 it looks like the tablet that was once said to be Apple’s biggest tablet threat may have seen drastically reduced demand following Apple’s move to drop its pricing on the previous-generation iPad 2 to $399. More →
HTC’s new line of One-series smartphones launched on April 2nd in Europe and parts of Asia, but HTC’s performance hasn’t yet caught up to the impressive earnings it managed last year. HTC reported six consecutive months of record revenue in 2011 before increased competition from Samsung and the launch of Apple’s iPhone 4S began a steep slide that continued last month. HTC on Monday announced that its consolidated revenue for the month of April totaled NT$31.03 billion, or approximately $1.06 billion. Performance improved for the second consecutive month, up from NT$30.88 in March, but sales were down 20% from NT$38.73 in April last year. HTC’s One S smartphone launched late last month on T-Mobile and the flagship HTC One X became available from AT&T on Sunday.
Following the announcement of its next-generation flagship Galaxy S III smartphone, Samsung’s mobile boss JK Shin has revealed that the South Korea-based consumer electronics giant has its sights set sky high in 2012. According to Shin, Samsung is looking to sell 200 million smartphones this year, increasing its share of the global market to between 23% and 24%, up from 21.1% in 2011, MarketWatch reports. According to the latest numbers from market research firm Strategy Analytics, Samsung is well on its way to achieving the lofty goal; the firm estimates that Samsung sold 44.5 million smartphones into sales channels during the first quarter, pushing the company past Apple to become the No.1 vendor in the world. Shin also noted that the Galaxy S III includes various software and design modifications that will help it avoid becoming a target in the numerous patent cases Samsung currently faces. More →
Samsung reported a blow-out first quarter on Friday as strong mobile phone sales helped the consumer electronics giant increase profits by 82% to a record 5.05 trillion won. The numbers were undoubtedly impressive as they stood, but market research firm Strategy Analytics helps us paint a broader picture of just how dominant Samsung’s mobile business was in the first quarter. On the smartphone side, Strategy Analytics estimates that Samsung sold a staggering 44.5 million smartphones into channels last quarter, overtaking Apple’s 35.1 million iPhones by a landslide and making Samsung the top-selling smartphone vendor in the world. More →
Samsung managed to top its pre-announced earnings when it reported results for the first calendar quarter of 2012 on Friday morning. The company reported a record operating profit of 5.85 trillion Korean won, up 98%, and a consolidated net profit of $5.05 trillion won, up 82% over the same quarter last year. Revenue came in at 45.27 trillion won, beating expectations. TV and semiconductor sales were down in the quarter, but any potential impact was offset by strong sales of high-margin display panels and mobile phones. Samsung’s mobile sales grew 86% over the year-ago quarter to 18.9 trillion won, and the company’s combined operating profit margin climbed 1.7 points to 12.9%. Samsung’s full press release follows below. More →
Huawei, the world’s sixth largest mobile phone vendor, said on Wednesday that it expects to ship more than 100 million mobile phones in 2012, including 60 million smartphones, Reuters reported. The Chinese company sold a total of 55 million handsets, including 20 million smartphones, in 2011 and is now looking to increase its global market share with a focus on key markets. “We plan to target China, the United States, western Europe and Japan as key markets,” said Shao Yang, chief marketing officer of Huawei Device. The executive also said he expects consumer device sales to reach $30 billion in five years, up from $7 billion, becoming as large as its telecommunications equipment business. “This means that by that time, the revenue will be comparable to our telecom equipment business,” Shao said. “We feel the room for growth for devices is much bigger than the telecom carrier sector.” More →
After a rough month that saw Apple’s stock tumble nearly $90 from a high of $644 earlier this month to as low as $555.18 on Tuesday, Apple reported its earnings for the second fiscal quarter on Tuesday after the market closed. Following a last-minute round of panic that swept Wall Street, Apple posted a net profit of $11.6 billion, or$12.30 per share — up 94% year-over-year — on revenue of $39.2 billion, crushing the Street’s consensus. Analysts were expecting earnings of $10.06 per share on $36.81 billion in sales. Read on for more. More →
Apple’s stock continued to slide on Tuesday morning as some analysts suggest AT&T’s earnings point to a possible rare miss for the Cupertino, California-based company. Wall Street expects Apple to report iPhone channel sales of 32 million units when it posts its earnings after the market closes on Tuesday, but several analysts have made last-minute adjustments to their estimates following AT&T’s earnings report on Tuesday morning. More →
4G LTE devices are apparently so hot this year, Sprint is selling LTE phones without a network to support them. Sales of 4G-equipped smartphones, tablets, portable hotspots and other devices are set to explode in 2012 as carriers continue to expand 4G coverage and roll out new networks. In a recent report, market research firm ABI Research said that 4G device sales will balloon nearly 300% to 87 million units in 2012. ABI notes that higher prices are still a barrier to 4G devices in some regions, however, and consumer confusion is an issue as well. “As evidenced by the Australian iPad 3 promotion fiasco, when iPad 3s were being promoted as being ‘LTE-ready,’ even though the modem is unable to access the Australian LTE spectrum band, the number of LTE spectrum bands will hamper initial pricing and product roll-out,” ABI analyst Philip Solis said. “Nevertheless, in addition to 61 million 4G handsets being shipped in 2012, we estimate 26 million 4G non-handset products will be shipped. In the short-term, most of that will reflect customers purchasing USB dongles for legacy laptops and netbooks, followed by customer premise equipment, or home modem, purchases.” ABI’s press release follows below. More →
Microsoft and its partners have seemingly set some very lofty goals for Windows 8. Citing multiple anonymous sources at various unnamed Taiwan-based original device manufacturers, DigiTimes on Wednesday reported that Windows and Intel want top-tier vendor partners to launch an all-out assault on Apple’s iPad. The iPad’s share of the tablet market currently sits at 70% according to the report, but Microsoft and Intel want to push that figure down to 50% by the middle of next year. If earlier reports pan out, devices powered by the Windows 8 platform will begin rolling out early in the fourth quarter this year, and that gives Microsoft and its partners roughly three quarters to steal 20% of Apple’s market share. DigiTimes states that there will be 32 Windows 8 tablets available from various vendors by the end of the year. More →
Following a huge week that saw Apple’s stock climb above $630 amid a fresh round of analyst upgrades, one analyst isn’t sold on the notion that smooth sailing is assured in the immediate future for the world’s most valuable company. BTIG Research analyst Walter Piecyk thinks Apple is set to report blowout earnings for the second fiscal quarter — he sees Apple earning $10.75 per share on sales of $40 billion in the quarter, versus Wall Street’s consensus of $9.81 and $36 billion — but he downgraded Apple’s stock to Neutral from Buy, noting that it’s time for investors to “take a breather.” Read on for more. More →
HTC on Friday reported unaudited earnings for the first quarter, revealing an extremely rocky start to the new year. The company warned that its first quarter results would see decline as the Taiwan-based vendor prepared to launch its new flagship smartphones, and preliminary numbers are in line with HTC’s earlier forecast. Revenue of NT$67.8 billion in the first quarter is down 35% from the same period last year, and HTC posted an after-tax profit of just NT$4.7 billion, down 70% year-on-year. HTC hopes business will pick up significantly as its new flagship smartphones, the One X and One S, begin to launch in various regions abroad. In the United States, the One X will launch on AT&T this month and before the end of June on Sprint as the HTC EVO 4G LTE. The HTC One S will be released in April on T-Mobile.
Reviews of Nokia’s new Lumia 900 smartphone have been mixed. We thought the sleek handset was a breath of fresh air for Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform when we reviewed the phone earlier this week, but a number of other sites found the software to be lacking. Now, bears at two investment firms have weighed initial reactions to the Lumia 900 and determined that this smartphone likely won’t be the savior Nokia needs to gain significant ground in the United States. Read on for more. More →