Tue, Oct. 4, 1:41 PM
- Google (GOOG, GOOGL) CEO Sundar Pichai began today's event noting a shift from a mobile-first to AI-first focus, highlighting Google Assistant, software the company intends to be universally available, natural and in context with daily life.
- Pixel (video): Detailed with Google Assistant built in, DxOMark's highest-ever rated smartphone camera, the ability to generate seven hours of battery life after fifteen minutes of charging, free and unlimited storage of full-resolution photos and videos, Android Nougat operating system, 24/7 customer care, "Daydream-ready" functionality and "Switching" tools to migrate from other smartphones and ecosystems. Pre-orders begin today in the U.S., UK, Australia, Canada and Germany with 5 and 5.5-inch models available starting at a $649 price point. Verizon to originally be exclusive U.S. carrier. N.B. Apple (AAPL +0.3%) iPhone, Samsung (OTC:SSNLF) Galaxy.
- Daydream View (video): Flexible, microfiber-structured VR headset. Controller detailed. Available in November for $79.
- Google Wifi (video): Designed for strong, reliable, fast connections across multiple devices. Available for pre-order in November with single and three-pack options priced at $129 and $299, respectively.
- Chromecast Ultra (video): 4K, HDR, Dolby Vision capabilities noted. Available in November for $69.
- Google Home (video) Voice-controlled, integrated with Google Assistant. Pre-orders begin today at $129. N.B. Amazon (AMZN -0.5%) Alexa/Echo.
- Rumored "Andromeda" operating system not discussed.
- Made By Google
Mon, Oct. 3, 1:40 PM
- Intensifying competition with Amazon (AMZN -0.5%), which just announced a new AWS region in France on Friday. Both companies set 2017 timeframes to begin datacenter operations in the country.
- In Microsoft's (MSFT -0.4%) announcement, doubled cloud capacity across Europe over the last year and total cloud investment in the continent of $3B are highlighted.
- CEO Satya Nadella: "We continue to invest heavily in cloud infrastructure to meet the growing demand from European customers and partners. Building a global, trusted, intelligent cloud platform is core to our mission to empower every person and organization on the planet to achieve more. There’s never been a better time for organizations across Europe to seize new growth and opportunity with the Microsoft Cloud.”
- In annother move revealed today further signaling Microsoft's intention to compete more aggressively in the cloud space, Azure prices have been lowered, in some cases by up to 50%, effective as of October 1.
- Azure pricing details
Mon, Oct. 3, 12:16 PM
- Analyst William Power restates an Outperform rating and $155 price target (current price $129.97) on Facebook (FB -0.1%) subsequent the company's introduction of a new e-commerce product.
- Power: "Combined with Messenger, Facebook is well positioned, in our view, to take a bite out of the e-commerce Marketplace market, and in turn, boost revenues from the lucrative retail/e-commerce market. While Facebook has been testing a version of marketplace functionality, and has a light classifieds tool live in Australia, today’s announcement is clearly a more concrete step towards competing in the market dominated by Amazon and eBay, and to a lesser extent by companies such as walmart.com, Jet and Rakuten."
- eBay (EBAY -1.9%) shares have been hardest hit on Facebook's announcement, falling over 4% from late-Friday levels in earlier trading. Amazon (AMZN -0.2%) shares have been relatively unmoved over the same period.
Mon, Oct. 3, 9:47 AM
- September monthly performance was: -0.52%
- 52-week performance vs. the S&P 500 is: -11%
- $0.16 in dividends were paid in September
- Top 10 Holdings as of 8/31/2016: Apple Inc (AAPL): 5.01757%, Microsoft Corp (MSFT): 4.59213%, Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM): 3.65506%, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ): 3.32616%, General Electric Co (GE): 2.90192%, Procter & Gamble Co (PG): 2.3854%, Wells Fargo & Co (WFC): 2.34646%, Pfizer Inc (PFE): 2.17377%, JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM): 2.08563%, Amazon.com Inc (AMZN): 2.02582%
Fri, Sep. 30, 11:30 AM
- Sees AWS, cloud strength as key profitability drivers. Further confident in international Prime flywheel and Amazon's e-commerce prospects resulting from evolving consumer spending.
- Note: "We believe the Amazon Web Services (AWS) segment remains a key driver for the share price. The segment is benefitting meaningfully from the increasing IT acceptance of public cloud infrastructure and reacceleration of data spending in 2016. Given AWS's rapid pace of innovation (>1,100 new services in 2015/1H16), strong customer base, and ongoing efficiency gains, we expect cloud computing dominance and increased profitability to continue."
- Amazon (AMZN +1%) received a $1,000 target at J.P. Morgan earlier in the week.
Wed, Sep. 28, 9:52 AM
- Amazon (AMZN +0.6%) continues down a path of building out its own delivery network as it looks to lower shipping costs, reports The Wall Street Journal.
- Despite growing evidence that Amazon's shipping ambitions are more than just a passing fancy or negotiating chip, analysts as well as execs at FedEx (FDX -0.3%) and UPS (UPS -0.5%) are somewhat skeptical that Amazon can self-ship at scale.
- "The level of global investment in facilities, sorting, aircraft, vehicles, people to replicate the service we provide, or our primary competitor provides, is just daunting, and frankly, in our view, unrealistic," says FedEx CFO Alan Graf.
- UPS execs have expressed similar thoughts. Chief Commercial Officer Alan Gershenhorn noted recently that matching the UPS network would be "very difficult" for a rival.
Tue, Sep. 27, 3:30 PM
- Following recent $1,000+ target raises at RBC Capital Markets and Evercore ISI.
- Analyst Doug Anmuth: "We believe Amazon continues to show strong ability to take share of overall eCommerce, and its flexibility in pushing first-party versus third party inventory is a major advantage compared with other retailers." Further: "Our price target is based on a sum-of-the-parts analysis as we believe this methodology appropriately attributes value to the company’s large, fast-growing and surprisingly profitable …Amazon Web Services segment, which Amazon continues to invest in."
- J.P Morgan previously held an Amazon (AMZN +1.8%) target of $925 (current price $813.68).
- Overweight rating maintained.
Tue, Sep. 27, 9:45 AM
- The original concept of Amazon's (AMZN +0.8%) "Pilot Season" was for viewers to vote on one original show that would move on to full production.
- All three candidates, however, are now slated to premier in the U.S., UK, Germany, Austria and Japan on Amazon Prime video in 2017 on what the company states was its "most watched ever" season of the program.
- Pilot Season
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, 2:48 AM
- Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) shares closed past the $800 mark for the first time on Thursday, more than doubling its stock price in just 17 months.
- That gives Amazon a market cap of over $380B, trailing only Apple, Alphabet and Microsoft as the fourth most valuable company in the U.S.
- Several analysts have upgraded the stock, including Argus, Evercore and Mizuho Securities. Price targets vary from $855 to well over $1000 per share.
Thu, Sep. 22, 11:40 AM
- Rolling out in the UK, Germany, Spain, France, Italy and across the continent.
- The marketplace launched in the U.S. last October with Amazon (AMZN +1.8%) now reporting handcrafted product volume across all 50 states and more than 80 other countries has increased 5x to 500K items.
- Director at Amazon, Steve Johnson: "When we introduce a new business at Amazon we think long-term and globally. Since launch, we’ve received feedback from customers and artisans around the world that they want a Handmade at Amazon store in their local marketplace. With our focus on genuine handcrafted products, the Handmade at Amazon store has been a big hit with artisans and customers in the U.S. and we’re encouraged by the strong growth of sales and customer traffic. Amazon has become a one-stop shop for holiday gifting, and this year customers will see hundreds of thousands more handmade items, with thousands eligible for Prime two-day shipping."
- The move comes a day after handmade marketplace competitor Etsy (ETSY -1%) was trading 10%+ above Tuesday's close and Shutterfly's move lower on the introduction of Amazon Prints.
- Amazon additionally expanded Echo into the UK and Germany earlier this month.
- Handmade at Amazon
Wed, Sep. 21, 3:04 PM
- With Amazon (AMZN +0.9%) introducing a new portal for photo printing services, Shutterfly (SFLY -11.4%) shares are feeling the heat.
- Photo prints and custom photo book products are now available to Prime Photos and Amazon Drive members. Calendar and stationary offerings are also noted to be coming soon.
- Shutterfly is trading at a 685K volume level over a 263K average on the news.
Tue, Sep. 20, 1:29 PM
- A day after Google (GOOG, GOOGL) acquired Api.ai.
- Though no formal announcement has been made, TechCrunch reports Angel.ai's co-founder and CEO is now employed by Amazon (AMZN +0.4%).
- With Google, Facebook (FB -0.1%) (Messenger bots), Microsoft (Genee), others and now Amazon seemingly making moves in the natural-language and bot-software arenas, it appears a field to attract increased attention going forward.
Mon, Sep. 19, 11:04 AM
- Thalmic Labs specializes in developing wearable technology that translates muscle electrical activity to control of various devices (see Myo armband).
- Intel Capital (INTC -0.5%) and Amazon's Alexa Fund (AMZN -0.6%), along with other investors, participated in the fund.
- Thalmic Labs was founded in 2012 and with this raise, counts total funding of $135.61M.
- With Amazon focused on its Alexa and Echo products of late and Intel fresh off Nervana and Movidius acquisitions, the investment in gesture-control signals the possibility for some unique future integrations.
Mon, Sep. 19, 4:58 AM
- Oracle's (NASDAQ:ORCL) Larry Ellison fired a shot across Amazon's (NASDAQ:AMZN) bow Sunday evening, declaring that with the release of Oracle's second generation IaaS data centers, "Amazon's lead is over."
- The Seattle-based company is currently considered the leader in cloud computing.
- Earlier this year, Morgan Stanley estimated Amazon Web Services generated $7.9B in sales in 2015, nearly 8x as much as Microsoft's Azure, the second largest IaaS player.
Fri, Sep. 16, 10:38 AM
- Mark Mahaney at RBC Capital Markets restates an Outperform rating and raises his price target to $1,000 from $840 (current price $776.44). He cites "flywheels" momentum and Alexa's potential to become the company's "fourth pillar".
- Ken Sena at Evercore ISI reissues a Buy rating and increases his target to $1,015, up from $930, while highlighting logistics innovation (aircraft, truck trailers, route and mapping technology assets) and automation technology initiatives (estimates 10%-25% per unit expense reduction).
- Amazon (AMZN +1.1%) is trading up over 8% on the last three months and nearly 50% higher on the year.