Google (GOOG) is preparing once again to take on the world. This time we're talking about the launch of its new line of tablets. Despite Hurricane Sandy's wrath, Google launched its new product line, the tablet Nexus 7 and Nexus 10. Rumors published on specialized sites were proved correct when it was mentioned that there would be a version with 32 GB memory.
It was recently reported that Google's Nexus 7 tablet is selling close to 1 million devices a month. This is still lower than Apple's iPad, but I think this huge number will have a positive impact on Google's profit margins and revenue. With a price to sales ratio of 4.75, we may assume that Google is doing much better than it was doing earlier. I wouldn't say Google's performance is as good as it was at its peak in the mid-2000s, but the new tablets and their increasing sales will certainly boost Google's stock performance. Google's price to book ratio is 3.32, which suggests Google is slightly undervalued. Google has a lot of potential, and considering its Nexus tablets and Nexus smartphones are becoming a rage, the revenue that these devices will bring to the company will ensure that Google will soon be bullish.
Google's latest smartphone comes with a decent screen size that has increased from 4.65 to 4.7 inches while the resolution has increased from 1280 x 720 pixels to 1280 x 768 pixels. The smartphone will be available in two models: 8GB ($299) and 16GB ($349), both unlocked, available at Google Play in the United States, Australia, Germany, Spain and Canada. It also will be sold in partnership with T-Mobile in the United States for $99 on contract for two years. The good news is, Google did not stop there. Recently, research firm IDC revealed that Google extended its lead over Apple (AAPL) by taking 75% of the world's smartphone share thanks to the Android system. The company's cash flow of $15.09 billion and its revenue of $39.98 billion will certainly increase with the combined sales of Nexus tablets and smartphones. Moreover, Google's profit margin of 27.09% will increase too, thanks to the million plus sales.
However, I believe Google made a strategic mistake by betting on the markets of developed countries, and forgetting the rest. What I do not understand is why Google decided to limit its products to developed nations when there is a greater chance of success in other markets such as India, China, Brazil and Russia. This reminds me of Apple's preference for developed countries as opposed to developing countries.
Another fact that draws the attention of consumers is that the three big names of current technology, Apple, Google and Microsoft (MSFT), all scheduled the announcement of their products during the last couple of weeks of October. Microsoft is betting on its own tablet, the Surface. The tablet Surface RT had success with the public and had its cheaper version sold out on the first day of pre-sale, which began on October 17th in the U.S. Journalists and experts who have evaluated the product mostly had positive things to say. Another important thing to say about Microsoft is that the new Windows 8 brings a new reality for consumers. For years, when Microsoft launched its operational systems, it was necessary to upgrade the desktops, adding more memory. With Windows 8, this is not necessary anymore. It seems that Microsoft understand that consumers want flexibility with desktops, and this is achieved with a balance between processors and memory, something that Windows 8 allows.
Apple, on the other hand, launched the iPad mini with a shrunken screen resolution and processor. The iPad Mini comes with the powerful A6X processor but it has the same cameras for photo and video (better than iPad 2, still on sale). It also comes with the virtual assistant Siri, something the iPad 2 does not have. iPad Mini may pose a significant threat to Google's tablets in the coming months.
Amazon (AMZN), for its part, has faced problems such as damage caused by the Kindle Fire, which is sold at a lower cost that would be profitable for the company. Kindle Fire has also been criticized for its design and it has been noted that Barnes & Noble's Nook is preferred by many Android fans.
Besides, Amazon's strategy is to differentiate itself from Apple. Apple makes profit every time it sells an iPhone or an iPad, but Amazon prefers profiting from content, and that doesn't seem to be working. Here is how it works: the strategy is to sell consumer electronic readers or tablets at the lowest price possible. At the outset, customers only buy the devices once, but then buy books or movies on Amazon. The profit that Amazon cannot make with the sale of the devices is offset by profits on sales of content. Although the tablet prices are low, the strategy, again, doesn't seem to be working.
Samsung faces criticism over its tablet, the Galaxy Tab 2 10.1, which, according to experts, brings nothing innovative to the consumer, despite being a good tablet. On the other hand the South Korean manufacturer sold 56.3 million handsets between July and September this year, 109% more than its main competitor, Apple.
Google's financial data reveals that the company is in good standing. With a revenue of $47.54 billion and a profit margin of 22.20%, there need not be any concern related to its total debt of $7.89 billion. Google's market cap is $221.30 billion and its enterprise value is $183.47 billion. This can only mean that Google is one of the most valuable tech companies out there, and this status will continue to remain the same. The new Nexus tablets may face stiff competition from iPads, Kindles and Nooks but they will continue to be popular among those who value the Google experience.
Data indicates that more than one million Nexus 7 were already sold, and those numbers should improve further, making Google the most competitive technology company yet. I have a feeling Google will eventually market the new tablets in the BRIC countries as well, where the company is viewed more favorably than Apple. The holiday season will see a huge number of Nexus tablets being sold, which will help Google's investors in the short term. The new line of Nexus products seems to be a hit. As Google has millions and millions of fans around the world, probably the sales will be huge. Besides, the prices are competitive and this should attract even more consumers, especially considering the success of new Nexus 7 and 10.
In the long-term, I believe Google will continue to be one of the strongest technology companies in the world, and that position is not likely to change anytime soon. The fundamentals will be influenced positively by these newer Nexus tablets and smartphones. Investors should purchase Google stock before it becomes unaffordable. Moreover, Google's business is not limited to hardware alone. It continues to be an internet leader and has the most successful search engine business. This unique balance between mobile operating systems, hardware, and internet technology makes Google a very prolific company for investors.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.