Today, 2:49 PM
- Aetna's (AET -0.7%) made a hefty move toward Apple's (AAPL -1.5%) wearables platform, and it's having ripple effects on the competition.
- Aetna's choice to subsidize Apple Watches for select employers and individual customers during this healthcare enrollment season comes along with a decision to offer the watch for free to its nearly 50,000 workers (not to mention some privacy concerns around insurers having direct access to health measurements).
- The insurer is also pushing a number of iOS exclusive health apps and associated programs for managing health.
- That deal's also a "substantial negative" for Fitbit (FIT -9.5%), says Pacific Crest's Brad Erickson, who downgraded that stock to Underweight with a fair value of $11 (shares are trading off heavily at $15.11 today).
- Erickson says checks indicate Fitbit's flagship holiday offering, the Charge 2, is off to a slow start: "Inventory is accumulating in the channel and sell-through is below initial Blaze/Alta levels."
Today, 10:33 AM
Today, 5:09 AM
- Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is bolstering its growing business with corporate IT customers, as the company moves to capitalize on BlackBerry's withdrawal from the smartphone market.
- As part of the deal, Deloitte will create a "first-of-its-kind" practice focused on Apple products.
- The tie-up marks Apple's fourth significant partner in business technology following deals with IBM, Cisco and SAP over the last two years.
Yesterday, 7:59 AM
- Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has boosted its part and component orders for iPhone 7 devices, with order visibility for Q4 20-30% higher than expected, reports Digitimes, citing sources from Taiwan-based touch panel makers TPK Holding and General Interface Solution (GIS).
- A subsidiary of Foxconn, GIS is expected to see revenues grow significantly in Q4, say sources. TPK, on the other hand, says touch panel orders from major clients haven't been completely fixed as of yet, and adjustments could still be made later.
- Shares +0.4% premarket
Mon, Sep. 26, 11:30 AM
- Bank of America is not concerned regarding third-party data circulated last Friday that sent Apple (AAPL +0.2%) shares lower into the weekend.
- Analyst Wamsi Mohan: "Our conversations suggest that the sellout data from a third party released Friday indicated iPhone 7/7+ sales down 25% Y/Y in International (non-North American) markets over the launch weekend." Further: "In our opinion this data is not representative of true demand. ... Apple may have allocated more supply to U.S. locations in general, and/or to its own retail stores in other countries vs. to other outlets. We would view the pullback in shares as a particularly attractive opportunity."
- The bank retains a Buy rating and $125 target (current price $112.94).
Fri, Sep. 23, 2:24 PM
- Apple (AAPL -1.8%) shares were stable throughout the day, though took a sharp downward turn within the last hour on a supposed iPhone 7-related report out of market research firm GfK.
- Update (3:35PM ET): GfK has confirmed existence of a report, though won't publicly disclose any of its data. From 1:30PM ET to 2:00PM ET, Apple shares dropped 2.3%. While third-party research can't offer concrete indicators of a company's performance, they can and do impact share price, and in this case, the report out of GfK appears clearly attributable to the sell-off.
Fri, Sep. 23, 9:47 AM
- Cited features (voice-activated home functions, appliance control) similar to Amazon's (AMZN +0.3%) Alexa-powered Echo.
- Facial recognition capabilities also claimed. Apple (AAPL -0.3%) has previously acquired facial-expression technology companies Emotient (January 2016) and Faceshift (November 2015).
- Nothing is confirmed or finalized, however, with the project reportedly having just moved on from the research and development lab to prototype testing.
- Nonetheless, a development this way would signal entry into an entirely new hardware category for the company and bring it in line to compete with products already offered by Amazon (Echo) and those in the works at Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) [Google Home].
Fri, Sep. 23, 6:34 AM
- Japanese regulators are considering taking action against Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) over possible antitrust violations that may have helped it dominate the nation's smartphone sales, a move that could hit the company's margins in one of its most profitable markets.
- Japan's Fair Trade Commission said that NTT Docomo, KDDI Corp and Softbank were refusing to sell older surplus iPhone models to third party retailers due to supply agreements, thereby hobbling smaller competitors.
Thu, Sep. 22, 2:40 PM
- Apple's (AAPL +0.8%) reportedly offered its "Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans" response to queries by TechCrunch.
- With the acquisition of Turi in August, such a deal would further a heightening trend of large-cap companies buying out smaller machine-learning, deep-learning and other AI-affiliated platforms (recently Nervana, Movidius, Api.ai).
- Tuplejump LinkedIn
- Tuplejump Github
Thu, Sep. 22, 12:34 PM
- Apple's (AAPL +0.9%) claimed to have looked at locations in close proximity to Samsung's (OTC:SSNLF) headquarters and D'light global flagship location. An Apple spokesman is not providing much further clarity, however, commenting that "no announcements about a store there" have been made.
- Stores in mainland China (36), Hong Kong (6) and Japan (7) are presently open, though an entry into South Korea would signal a more pronounced effort to compete in its smartphone market where Samsung and LG Electronics hold an estimated 80% share.
Thu, Sep. 22, 10:01 AM
- Analyst Jeffrey Kvaal maintains a Buy rating on Apple (AAPL +0.9%) while raising his target from $120 (current price $114.76).
- Kvaal: "The steady positive news across geographies on the iPhone 7 launch implies demand is stronger than thought. We believe the supply chain is preparing for upward revisions to production forecasts."
- Further cites aggressive carrier promotions, difficulties Samsung's having with its Galaxy Note 7 and a subscriber base 35% larger than it was for the iPhone 6.
- Raises FY 2017 iPhone 7 unit estimates to 234M from 230M.
- The call aligns similarly to one issued by UBS earlier in the week.
- Positive notes from RBC Capital and Cowen and Company out today as well.
Wed, Sep. 21, 1:47 PM
- While a rumored deal with McLaren is not in the making, a New York Times write-up claims Apple (AAPL -0.9%) is in talks with Lit Motors regarding a possible acquisition. Both parties have denied comment.
- Lit Motors is headquartered in San Francisco, was founded in 2010 and specializes in designing two-wheeled, gyroscopically stabilized electric vehicles.
- Although a stark departure from the supercar pedigree associated with McLaren, a deal on this front could possess its own virtues. Nonetheless, a wait-and-see outlook is probably best with the high volume of rumors circulating today.
Wed, Sep. 21, 1:03 PM
- Following an earlier report out of the Financial Times, McLaren now appears to have denied claims either a full takeover or investment by Apple in the British company are being considered.
- McLaren spokesperson: "There's no takeover, no strategic investment."
- Further updates appear to corroborate the dismissal.
- Apple (AAPL -0.8%) shares have been lower by less than 1% on the day and were mostly unmoved by the earlier buzz.
Wed, Sep. 21, 10:44 AM
- Report notes a full takeover or strategic investment have been under consideration and that initial discussions began a few months ago.
- The company, which encompasses McLaren Racing, McLaren Automotive and McLaren Applied Technologies, is pegged to be worth between $1.3B and $1.95B.
- While nothing is confirmed, a move in this direction would reignite confidence in Apple's (AAPL -0.1%) automotive prospects.
- McLaren Technology Group
Wed, Sep. 21, 2:56 AM
- Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone margins have narrowed with the release of the iPhone 7 according to an analysis by IHS.
- The all-in cost to make the iPhone 7 rises to $224.80, $36.89 higher than the iPhone 6S; both sold for $649.
- All things equal, Apple still makes more margin from hardware than Samsung, but materials costs are higher than in the past, IHS noted. It has not yet done a teardown of the iPhone 7 Plus.
- The base memory increase (from 16GB to 32GB) is the main source of the higher manufacturing cost.
- Note that on a recent earnings call, CEO Tim Cook said about teardowns that he's “never seen one that is anywhere close to being accurate.”
Tue, Sep. 20, 11:56 AM
- Previous Apple (AAPL +0.3%) target of $115 (current price $113.85).
- Analyst Steven Milunovich on early iPhone 7 indicators: "Given positive pre-order data, aggressive US carrier promotions, and positive supply chain chatter, we have somewhat more confidence that the upgrade cycle may not be lengthening as much as previously thought."
- Increases upgrade estimate to 44% from 41% and FY 2017 EPS to $9.30.
- Further: "Increased procurement could reflect demand or just timing. The UBS Asia tech team's latest estimates show iPhone 7 procurement plans for F17 have increased from 80mn to 89mn, mainly due to 7 Plus needs."
- Maintains Buy rating.