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  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    I just updated my work iMac to Yosemite. I had to wait on an accounting software update for the new OS. I now have my Messages streaming through all of my devices. This is a big productivity leap. With the preponderance of iPhones among those with whom I actively converse, Messages are a much more efficacious way of communicating bits of information and is leaps and bounds above what email can deliver.
    Oct 30 02:40 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    Yes. Because I can pay someone at the rate of about $15 per hour plus employer taxes to do the same thing. If it's an outside vendor I'm contracting for the PC box, the cost might be a little bit more, but it will be delivered and installed on a network, software installed and data migrated from an old PC. Total services cost about $100 with the same savings on the PC. This doesn't include the saving on volume software licenses. My primary PC technician will also handle most troubleshooting remotely for a nominal charge.

    In a commercial or enterprise environment, I'm more concerned about uniform components and the risk of potential down time. If an employee sits idle because of a failed component on a custom-built box my organization is losing dollars by the minute.

    Increasingly I am installing Apple products. iMacs, iPads and iPhones work seamlessly together and even the savings on custom PC boxes are nothing compared to the productivity gains that can be achieved from a seamless workflow. Employee productivity gains are far more valuable than any upfront savings on the tools used by the staff. Macs or PCs are only one piece of an overall enterprise technology strategy. In this instance I can source from one device maker. If a product fails I can have it swapped out for free or repaired quickly at no charge.
    Oct 29 10:49 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    I work with two iMacs each day (one at home, one in my office) and an iPad and an iPhone throughout the day. I’ve never been more productive. Information moves seamlessly between home and office and everywhere in between. There isn’t a moment of the day I can’t access the information I need from any of these integrated devices that also share Apple-based services

    I’ll be keeping my 5s for another year in favor of purchasing an iPad Air 2. I’m interested in knowing your thoughts on the iPhone 6 Plus soon after it arrives.
    Oct 29 01:39 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    The global PC market is in a state of economic decline. Consumers are moving away from desktop PCs and adopting highly mobile devices. I was in college when the so-called "PC revolution" began and writing code was a requisite of even introductory computer classes. Building your own PC was common among early adopters.

    In those days we’d work on the engines of our own cars and for those with the time and inclination would build their own TVs. We’d actually fix our own TVs. Kits and parts were commonly available at that time similar to the way computer parts are widely available today.

    As a former technology instructor and program director, students in my program would be well-versed in computing components and platforms. But the focus of my program was building the critical thinking skills among my students to compete in a world economy in which accessing, distilling and effectively dispatching information are the marketable skills.

    Understanding technology has helped when ordering custom built servers and custom PCs. Unfortunately I wouldn’t have the time to order the components and assemble the PCs myself. In a world in which time is money, time is better spent ordering custom builds through a web interface and is much more time-effective and cost-effective than taking time to assemble the components myself.

    I”m partial to Apple products in enterprise installations because of the shared functionality across the devices. There isn’t a single major device maker outside of Apple that develops its own custom SOCs (64-bit) for a 64-bit native operating system for smartphones and tablets and seamlessly integrates the flow of content and services with the company’s PCs.

    My interest isn’t the components as much as it is the ability to move information across devices to people of varying degrees of technology literacy. For example, when I hire a person to handle social media, I’m not concerned if the person can build their own smartphone. I’m interested in how quickly the person can take the content I’m sending to their smartphone, assimilate into a uniform and consistent message and dispatch that information across multiple social media platforms in a matter of minutes.

    In a global economy in which one’s competitor might be next door or in an office on a distant continent, the deciding factor in choosing technology solutions isn’t how inexpensively one could acquire the devices but how well one can keep people working efficiently to access and move information from content source to destination.

    Using iMacs, iPhones and tablets allows me to access, acquire and dispatch information seamlessly saving both time and dollars. From morning until night I work with each of these devices and I’ve yet to find a more productive platform for personal productivity.
    Oct 29 01:00 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    Thank you for your kinds words and encouragement. There's much to cover with Apple and I'm already at work on my next article.
    Oct 28 11:50 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    The Apple Watch will be Apple Pay-equipped and the iPad mini can use Apple Pay for purchases within apps. I'm looking at the new iPad Air 2 to replace my iPad 3. I worked with the new iPads at an Apple retail store on Saturday. Both the Air 2 and iPad mini 3 are impressive devices.

    The new 5K iMac is gorgeous. I replaced an aging iMac last spring so that won't be on my purchase list for a while, but I like where the product line is headed.

    The one product I'd like to see refreshed sooner rather than later is the Apple TV. Migrating the device to 802.11ac and adding a newer A series SOC for gaming would add new appeal and further the transformation of the living room experience. I cut the cable cord a while back saving well over $100 a month. Hulu Plus and Netflix over Apple TV provides ample content for my needs.

    Positioning the Apple TV with console-like iOS gaming functionality would be a very big step forward for the product and would add appeal for consumers.
    Oct 28 10:59 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    I'm sure Apple is adjusting the product mix on the iPhone 6 handsets as quickly as possible. An interesting aside: Apple has pre-purchased as much air carrier capacity as possible out of the production region for the holiday quarter. You might be pleasantly surprised by an early arrival.
    Oct 27 11:57 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    You're certainly not the only one. After experiencing the "new card roulette" following a data breach at a major retailer, I have far better things to do with my time than comb through notes as to what automatic payments had been tied to a compromised card or be concerned with noting exactly which cards I have in my possession at a given time in case I lose my wallet.

    Savvy consumers desire to use the latest technologies and the security enhancements created through Apple Pay are a "value added" for iPhone owners.
    Oct 27 11:53 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    The high iPhone adoption rate in Japan is beyond remarkable. The ongoing rollout of 4G/LTE on China's mainland will support strong iPhone unit sales over the next few years. Apple is smartly adapting its approach to sales in the Rest of Asia Pacific geographic region and is laying the foundation for strong growth in previously under served markets.

    I do expect a rebound in growth in Europe due in part to the high concentration of retail stores on the continent, the appeal of the Mac in many European nations and, of course, the larger-screen iPhones that have just been released.

    I expect strong rates of revenue growth in each of Apple's five geographic regions this fiscal year. There are also real growth opportunities over time in currently under served areas of the Americas.
    Oct 27 11:41 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    Buying and holding the shares of smartly managed growth companies is a time-tested approach to increasing personal wealth. Among an individual investor's best resources are time invested in research and an understanding of the value of time and patience in creating long-term returns.
    Oct 27 11:16 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    You've just described why, no matter today's headlines about early resistance to Apple Pay by a few retailers, why the service will be very successful and be widely adopted by merchants.

    Appealing to Apple customers through the adoption of Apple Pay may be a very smart way to increase customer traffic.
    Oct 27 11:11 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    I'm sure there are many, many shareholders of Apple that first purchased the products and after becoming fascinated with the products chose to invest in the company.
    Oct 27 11:08 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    Apple's hyper-growth since 2003 has been fueled by entering new product markets. By disrupting established markets first with the iPod, second with Intel-based Macs, third with the iPhone, followed by the iPad and quite soon the Apple Watch, the company appeals to more consumers and a broader segment of the global consumer market.

    With each disruptive product, Apple adds tens of millions of new content customers each year. This is why Apple's growth has not been limited so much by the company's bigness as it is limited by infrastructure to acquire and serve new customers.

    Apple is building out its content delivery infrastructure at a rapid pace while opening new Apple retail stores and adding 3rd-party retail partners in emerging markets.

    Please keep in mind if Apple adds $37 billion in revenue this fiscal year the company will acquire in new revenue more than the total revenue of over 400 enterprises in the current Fortune 500 list.

    Gauging Apple's revenue growth in volume terms versus percentage terms will reveal a different dimension of the company's growth dynamic.
    Oct 27 10:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]
    For the benefit of Seeking Alpha readers I’d like to provide details on the Braeburn Group. As the group’s description states, “The Braeburn Group is a global community comprised of Apple independent analysts, Apple product enthusiasts and individuals with an interest in the evolution of digital products and related technologies.”

    Although our members discuss Apple’s share price as a derivative of our interest in Apple, it is not a trader’s forum of an investment community. In fact, nothing posted in the Braeburn Group is or should be considered investment advice. It’s a discussion community for conversation about all things Apple.

    Although outcomes will change by quarter, for the September quarter six of the seven Braeburn Group participating analysts finished in the top 10 of all analysts polled for revenue and earnings per share estimates and four of the seven affiliated analysts were in the top 10 for estimates covering all categories.

    The opening of the Braeburn Group was announced during my presentation at the Apple Investor Summit held at the Los Angeles Convention Center in mid-March 2012. Steve Wozniak and Walter Isaacson were the keynote speakers at the event.

    My story and the development of the Braeburn Group received wide media coverage in the months following the group’s debut.

    While I consider mischaracterizations of the group unfortunate, individuals are entitled to their own points of view. Fostering informed discourse about Apple is the Braeburn Group’s primary mission. Again, it is not an investment community. This is among the reasons the group is private and real name registration is required by all members.

    I’d like to restate that I am a long-term Apple investor. I have never played options or used any kind of leverage instruments such as margin. I would disclose my use of options or any kind of leverage instruments in the disclosure at the bottom of each of my articles if I engaged in those practices.

    Although membership in the Braeburn Group is effectively closed, anyone interested in more information about the group or its mission may contact me at: robert(at)braeburngrou...

    I believe disclosure is an integral part of informed discourse. I ask anyone commenting on the Braeburn Group in the context of this article or comments on this article to disclose their full name.
    Oct 27 12:42 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Magical Mystery Year [View article]

    I don't know Apple's plans for the future with 5K, but the new iMac is quite impressive with the display. Additionally, the new iPad Air 2 is an attractive product.

    Concerning the iPhone, this will be the biggest upgrade cycle in the history of the product line. The larger-screen handsets are a draw for those purchasing their first smartphone, for current iPhone owners upgrading to a new handset and for those that left the iPhone eco-system for whatever reason over the past few years.
    Oct 27 03:30 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment