Fri, Apr. 22, 9:57 AM
- Tech peace in our time? Microsoft (MSFT -7.3%) and Google (GOOG -4.8%, GOOGL -5.3%) have agreed to drop the regulatory complaints they have against each other, on a global basis.
- There's no product commitments in the deal, but it may help relieve headaches such as the one Google is facing with the EU's case against Android.
- “Microsoft has agreed to withdraw its regulatory complaints against Google, reflecting our changing legal priorities,” that company tells Re/code.
- Google: “Our companies compete vigorously, but we want to do so on the merits of our products, not in legal proceedings.”
- Now read Alphabet: Sunk By Hidden Costs »
Fri, Apr. 22, 9:13 AM
Thu, Apr. 21, 6:05 PM
- Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is now down 5% after hours, during an earnings call where the company's guiding on the low side of revenue expectations.
- The company expects fiscal Q4 revenues of $21.7B-$22.4B, vs. consensus for $23.1B. Guidance by segment: Productivity and business processes, $6.5B-$6.7B; Intelligent cloud, $6.5B-$6.7B; More Personal Computing, $8.7B-$9B.
- The company's shares fell postmarket shortly after announcing its miss on profits. CFO Amy Hood says the company would have beaten analyst estimates if not for tax expenses (A non-GAAP tax rate of 24% vs. the company's guidance for 20% can be seen as a $0.04 hit to EPS). Hood said full-year expectations for tax rate are now 20-21%.
- CEO Satya Nadella painted a picture of a company that is moving more rapidly (rapidly enough?) into the cloud as the worst quarterly PC numbers since 2007 held down Windows. Windows 10 is running on more than 270M devices now, and the company says it's on track to meet its promise of 1B within 2-3 years.
- Overall most markets performed as anticipated, Hood said, but "Latin America, the Middle East and Africa were more unfavorable than expected."
- Phone revenues fell 46%, while Surface tablet sales grew 61%. Unearned revenue was $25.9B, higher than $24.8B expected by analysts polled by Bloomberg.
- Conference call link
- Fiscal Q3 earnings slides
- Press release
- Now read The Wearables Revolution: Microsoft's HoloLens »
Thu, Apr. 21, 4:34 PM
- Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) has slipped 5% after hours after it missed profit expectations slightly and revenue fell 5.5% on a GAAP basis, amid currency headwinds and a continuing weak PC market.
- Commercial cloud annualized revenue run rate has surpassed $10B, it said. Revenue by segment (GAAP terms): Productivity and Business Process, $6.522B (up 1%); Intelligent Cloud, $6.096B (up 3%); More Personal Computing, $9.45B (up 1%).
- Cloud gains were 8% in constant currency and Azure revenue grew 120% in those terms; usage of Azure compute and SQL database more than doubled. Server products and cloud services revenue was up 5% ex-forex.
- Meanwhile, Windows OEM revenue fell 2% ex-forex. In Productivity and Business Processes, Office commercial products/cloud services revenue grew 7% (Office 365 up 63%), and consumer products/cloud service was up 6% (Office 365 consumer subs up to 22.2M).
- Income tax expense had a catch-up adjustment due to a changing geographic mix, and the company's GAAP tax rate was 25% (24% non-GAAP).
- The company should provide guidance on its conference call, set to begin at 5:30 p.m. ET.
- Press release
- Now read The Wearables Revolution: Microsoft's HoloLens »
Thu, Apr. 21, 4:09 PM
Wed, Apr. 20, 9:28 PM
- It looks increasingly like videogame console combatants Sony (SNE +4.4%) and Microsoft (MSFT -1.4%) will go for a mid-line chip refresh to their current-generation hardware, in order to juice margins and fight mobile competition.
- Rumors of an upgraded Xbox One may get new credence after Microsoft announced an end to production on its older-gen Xbox 360, which could free up a lot of resources for more productive use.
- Meanwhile, a "PlayStation 4.5" or "PlayStation Neo" is rumored as well. But while the older-gen systems got upgrades in hard drives, storage is plentiful now, so the new focus may be on a processor upgrade -- providing potential power for virtual reality and 4K, for example.
- The motivation is an old one: keeping the $300-$500 price points and maximizing console revenues. Console sales have been in decline, mainly due to price cuts by the competitors.
- Now read Virtual Reality To Give Further Boost To Sony In 2016-17 »
Wed, Apr. 20, 5:35 PM
Wed, Apr. 20, 2:15 PM
- Microsoft (MSFT -0.7%) says it's halting production of the Xbox 360, its last-generation game console -- an update to the original Xbox that helped it firm up a position as one of the big three console makers.
- The machine is now more than a decade old and has sold more than 80M units. The next-gen machine, the Xbox One, was launched in 2013, and all older-gen console sales have been in steady decline since, slipping more than 70% as the machines creep up in years.
- The company will continue to support the box. As for the Xbox One, on a monthly basis it is almost always outsold by Sony's PlayStation 4, while it finishes ahead of Nintendo's Wii U.
- Now read Microsoft And Amazon's Latest Cloud Moves Show How Different Their Visions Are »
Mon, Apr. 18, 7:23 AM
- UBS recently hosted a call with Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) expert Mary Jo Foley, who has covered the company for 2+ decades. Highlights:
- Q: How far along is the company in its transition to the cloud? A: Microsoft continues to show progress across multiple product fronts as the company manages its way through the cloud transition. The company is well on its way to management's stated goal of a $20B commercial cloud run rate by FY18, having recently reached a $9.4B run rate at +71% y/y growth. We think the company gets there much quicker, but caution that MSFT's expansive customer base could present additional challenges. Evidence: FQ2 commercial cloud revenue accelerated to a >$9.4B run rate (up more than 70% y/y, w/ >350 of the Fortune 500 now using 2+ MSFT cloud offerings). This puts the business well above pace towards reaching mgmt's stated objective of a $20Bn run rate in FY18 (which assumes a ~35% CAGR). We note that this growth has been entirely organic (w/ no major acquisitions boosting numbers), and that at the current pace (~70% y/y growth), the company would reach this target ~1 year ahead of schedule.
- Q: How much upside remains given share price appreciation over the past 12 months? A: MSFT shares have traded up ~30% over the past 12 months (vs. NASDAQ down 3%), but we still think there is room left in the tank, as the company is demonstrating product strength in several new categories (CRM + ERP, O365, security, IaaS/PaaS, BI/analytics), which we believe present MSFT with $185B+ of additional market opportunity.
- UBS: MSFT is executing a balanced top- and bottom-line story, featuring CEO Nadella "innovating" and CFO Hood "disciplined spender." With a strong initial push, we see real benefits starting to show through in the numbers, including: 1) Unearned revenue building (flat in F15, but est. +11% in F16); 2) cost cutting measures taking hold, with opex flat (F14 to F16) and margins inflecting (~30% OM in F15, which we think can get back to the mid-30s); and cash flow trending in the right direction (1H16 FCF +9% y/y). The new era of MSFT is resonating with investors and we expect shares to continue to benefit from the move to higher-quality platforms and the company's aggressive push to the cloud.
- Firm has an $60 base price target on MSFT. Implied upside 8%. Its upside case valuation is $80. Implied upside 44%.
- Now read Microsoft Build Shows A Very Intriguing Path »
Thu, Apr. 14, 3:50 PM
- Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) has filed suit against the Department of Justice, the latest legal maneuver in a battle brewing over data privacy between Feds and tech companies.
- The company is fighting government gag orders that prevent firms from telling their users when the government is reviewing their digital information.
- The suit specifically says that such orders when used as part of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act violate Fourth Amendment search and seizure rights, as well as Microsoft's First Amendment right to talk with its customers.
- Secrecy orders that have no fixed end dates mean "we effectively are prohibited forever from telling our customers that the government has obtained their data,” says Microsoft Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith.
- Now read Microsoft Enters New Growth Era »
Tue, Apr. 12, 2:09 AM
- According to research firm Gartner, global shipments of personal computers fell 9.6% to 64.8M units during Q1, marking the sixth consecutive quarter of declines and the first time since 2007 that shipments dropped below 65M units (IDC reported similar results worldwide).
- In the U.S., PC shipments totaled 13.1M units, representing a 6.6% decline from a year earlier and the lowest volume in three years.
- The sector has faced headwinds in recent quarters which include an economic slowdown in China, the strong U.S. dollar and the growing popularity of smartphones.
- Related stocks: OTC:ASIYF, AMD, HPQ, INTC, OTCPK:LNVGY, MSFT, MU, NVDA, SNE, STX, OTCPK:TOSYY, WDC
Thu, Apr. 7, 2:58 PM
- Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) shares have jumped into positive ground, now up 1.2%, on news that Verizon (NYSE:VZ) is proceeding with a bid for its core assets.
- Shares were down as much as 2.6% today.
- Alphabet unit Google (GOOG, GOOGL) is also weighing its own bid, Bloomberg reports, with interest also showing up from Bain Capital and TPG. Time Inc. (NYSE:TIME) is still out there as well.
- AT&T (NYSE:T) and Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) are losing interest, Bloomberg also said, with Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) also deciding it wouldn't bid.
- Verizon might also put in for Yahoo's Japan interests, the report said.
- Updated 3:06 p.m.: After a big spike into positive ground, Yahoo shares have gone negative again, -0.1%. Verizon is said to value the core business at less than $8B, vs. Yahoo's hopes for a $10B valuation, and has engaged three banks.
- Now read Yahoo Should Be At Least $48 A Share »
Wed, Apr. 6, 4:16 AM
- It has been confirmed that Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) are in talks with Germany's premium carmakers about taking minority stakes in their HERE digital mapping service.
- BMW (OTCPK:BAMXY), Daimler (OTCPK:DDAIY) and Audi (OTCPK:AUDVF) agreed last year to pay €2.5B ($2.8B) for the Nokia business to build a platform for self-driving cars connected to the Internet.
- "We need a cloud provider to handle the huge amounts of data created by HERE and its users," said Thomas Weber, a Daimler board member.
- Previously: Amazon in talks to take stake in HERE (Apr. 01 2016)
Mon, Apr. 4, 7:25 AM
- March monthly performance was: +6.95%
- 52-week performance vs. the S&P 500 is: +1%
- $0.07 in dividends were paid in March
- Top 10 Holdings as of 2/29/2016: Coca-Cola Co (KO): 4.24%, Altria Group Inc (MO): 3.5%, Microsoft Corp (MSFT): 3.45%, Apple Inc (AAPL): 3.13%, AbbVie Inc (ABBV): 2.72%, International Business Machines Corp (IBM): 2.19%, McDonald's Corp (MCD): 2.08%, Cisco Systems Inc (CSCO): 1.91%, 3M Co (MMM): 1.85%, Home Depot Inc (HD): 1.8%
Mon, Apr. 4, 7:23 AM
- March monthly performance was: +6.82%
- 52-week performance vs. the S&P 500 is: 0%
- $0.18 in dividends were paid in March
- Top 10 Holdings as of 2/29/2016: Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM): 3.58%, AT&T Inc (T): 3.52%, Microsoft Corp (MSFT): 2.95%, Verizon Communications Inc (VZ): 2.84%, Apple Inc (AAPL): 2.7%, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ): 2.34%, General Electric Co (GE): 2.28%, Chevron Corp (CVX): 2.12%, Procter & Gamble Co (PG): 2.03%, Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT): 1.92%
Thu, Mar. 31, 4:08 AM
- Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) has outlined plans to put an array of chatbots, intelligent agents and digital assistants at the center of its future technology.
- "Bots are the new apps. Digital assistants are like...the new browsers, and intelligence is infused into all your interactions," CEO Satya Nadella said at the company's annual Build conference in San Francisco.
- The drive follows an embarrassing miscue last week when a Microsoft chatbot spewed racist comments on Twitter. The rogue bot, called Tay, was mistakenly released briefly for a second time on Wednesday.
- Previously: Microsoft apologizes for chatbot, preps for Build conference (Mar. 28 2016)