Posts by Aaron Pressman
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance17 hrs ago
Expectations are rising for Apple’s (AAPL) newest iPhones, coming next month, which will carry larger screens and possibly fatter profit margins.
With Apple’s rumored iPhone introduction less than a month away, Asian factories have already cranked up production on the next version of the popular smartphone, generating numerous leaks of new features. Apple shares are up 16% over the past three months, as anticipation builds. After closing at $99.16 on Monday, the stock is nearing its all-time high, adjusted for the June split, of $100.72, reached in September, 2012. In afternoon trade on Tuesday, shares are at $100.29.
Investors and analysts say a larger screen is likely the top new iPhone feature, based on the leaks and credible media reports. Such a move would also be consistent with Apple’s strategy of revamping the iPhone’s physical appearance every two years, as it last did in 2012.
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance5 days ago
As Apple (AAPL) prepares to launch its newest iPhones next month, the company could see big sales even in emerging-market countries where consumers have lower incomes.
Conventional wisdom says Apple needs to offer a much cheaper iPhone – current models start at around $450 – to succeed in countries such as Russia, India and Vietnam. But hidden amongst the hundreds of millions of mobile-phone buyers in those countries is a sizable and growing base of consumers who value the cachet and quality of iPhones and can afford the price tag, analysts say.
Apple’s market share in less wealthy countries lags far behind its share in countries such as the United States, where more than 40% of smartphone users have an iPhone versus about 50% who use phones running Google’s (GOOGL) Android software. Apple’s high share comes in part from wealthier customers but is also aided by carrier subsidies – which mask the total cost of a phone – and Apple’s prior success with its iPod music player that attracted millions of people to its iTunes store.
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance6 days ago
Something didn’t go wrong for Candy Crush publisher King Digital Entertainment (KING) in the second quarter – everything did.
The number of people playing Candy Crush Saga plummeted, the number of people playing its other games grew only modestly and the number of people paying to play all of King’s games dropped. Not quite as much as King’s share price is dropping, however.
The stock, which was priced at $22.50 at the March initial public offering and has since struggled to get back to even $20, fell 23% to $14 in active trading on Wednesday.
King actually met Wall Street expectations for adjusted profit per share, at 59 cents. The company remains a cash flow machine and announced a special dividend of 46.9 cents per share payable to holders of record on September 30.
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance8 days ago
As the big book publishers, led by Hachette, battle with Amazon (AMZN) over ebook pricing and related issues, the publishing industry and media are twisting a legendary author's words to make an erroneous point.
In March 1936, George Orwell decided to review 10 books offered via a new-fangled, low-priced process – the Penguin paperback. The books were just fine and a good value to the reader, Orwell conceded, but the pricing was an unmitigated disaster for the publishing industry. And he went on to explain, at length:
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance11 days ago
Amazon (AMZN) used to set the prices people paid for ebooks, but, thanks to an illegal price fixing conspiracy, they lost most of that power to publishers. Almost everyone -- probably even the big publishers -- would be better off if they got it back.
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance13 days ago
Sprint (S) is backing off its plan to acquire wireless competitor T-Mobile US (TMUS), but the deal’s demise should prove to be a win for consumers.
T-Mobile has already shaken up the market, cutting prices and slashing fees with its self-proclaimed “Uncarrier” strategy. Now, analysts say, Sprint will also have to improve its offerings and cut prices to succeed on its own.
The proposed $32 billion deal was the brainchild of Japanese billionaire and Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son, who bought Sprint last year to expand into the United States. Son argued that the combination would create a more formidable competitor to market leaders AT&T (T) and Verizon Wireless (VZ).
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance13 days ago
Surprising almost no one, Apple (AAPL) plans to unveil its iPhone upgrades on September 9, about the same time of year as last year and the year before. But the company also faces new complications in China, one of its most important markets.
The web site Recode reported the Sept. 9 date for the expected iPhone 6 roll out. Apple is expected to offer two new models, one with a 4.7-inch screen and the other with a 5.5-inch screen, entering the so-called phablet category for the first time.
The larger screens, up from Apple’s current 4-inch models, could hit sales of phones running Google’s (GOOGL) Android software, especially those made by Samsung, which is already suffering from an onslaught of cheaper phones made by Chinese competitors.
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance15 days ago
The Black Hat Hackers conference going on this week in Las Vegas looks a little more corporate than it used to – glance at the website and you might confuse it for a Google (GOOGL) or Microsoft (MSFT) developers meeting.
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance18 days ago
The recovery in Apple’s (AAPL) share price over the past year was well deserved but further gains could push the stock into overvalued territory, says Sam Peters, who runs the $2.8 billion Clearbridge Value Trust fund.
Last year, investors dumped Apple, sending the price below $60 (adjusted for the recent stock split), amid fears cheaper competitors would erode iPhone and iPad profits. But Apple’s profit margins have held up as consumers have proven their willingness to pay more for Apple's unique iOS software and vast app and media selections.
“They’re still sucking in incredible amounts economic value from the food chain of their ecosystem,” says Peters.
Instead, that fate has befallen makers of phones running Google’s (GOOGL) Android software. Shares of Sony (SNE) and Samsung Electronics (005930.KS) have slumped after both companies reported disappointing second quarter phone sales and falling profit margins.
- Aaron Pressman at Yahoo Finance19 days ago
A possible blockbuster deal to merge T-Mobile USA (TMUS) with French upstart carrier Illiad would also bring together two of the telecommunications industry’s most colorful figures.
T-Mobile CEO John Legere has tweaked competitors and doubters at live events and on Twitter, often with profane language. Illiad founder Xavier Niel, who got his start in the sex-chat business and owned a chain of peepshow parlors, is famous for quips including, “Steve Jobs is the American Xavier Niel.”
News of the possible deal, reported by the Wall Street Journal, sent shares of T-Mobile up 7% Thursday, hitting a high of $33.75 on a day when the broad market is sharply selling off.
Both executives have expressed little patience for the mobile business as run by large incumbents such as Verizon Wireless (VZ) and France Télécom, now known as Orange SA.
Niel announced a new, cheap mobile phone service in 2012 with a massive press conference, declaring war on his larger competitors, SFR, Bouygues and Orange. “The other operators have been swindling you,” he said. “This is the beginning of your freedom.”