Oct. 26, 2015, 10:52 AM
- Apple suppliers Qualcomm (QCOM -2.9%), Cirrus Logic (CRUS -10.1%), Skyworks (SWKS -5.1%), Qorvo (QRVO -5%), Avago (AVGO -4.2%), Broadcom (BRCM -2.3%), NXP (NXPI -3.5%), InvenSense (INVN -2.1%), Synaptics (SYNA -4.4%), and Analog Devices (ADI -2.7%) are selling off after iPhone/iPad power management IC supplier Dialog Semi (down 18.8% in Frankfurt) reported 18% Y/Y Q3 revenue growth and guided for annual Q4 growth to be in a range of -1% to +6%. Both the Q3 sales and Q4 guidance missed consensus estimates.
- NXP merger partner Freescale (FSL -2.9%) is also lower. As is Atmel (ATML -8.1%), which is set to merge with Dialog in a cash/stock deal. Atmel was originally due to receive over half its payout in Dialog shares, whose value has fallen considerably since the deal was announced in mid-September.
- Broadcom, set to merge with Avago, reports after the bell. Apple reports tomorrow, and Cirrus, NXP, and InvenSense on Wednesday. With the help of improving demand and ongoing M&A, chip stocks had bounced strongly from their August/September lows in recent weeks.
Oct. 19, 2015, 1:51 PM
- U.K. retailer Carphone Warehouse has begun taking pre-orders for BlackBerry's (BBRY +0.4%) Priv Android phone. The device, slide-out keyboard/touchpad and all, goes for a steep £579.99 ($899) unsubsidized. Monthly payment plans start at £49/month ($76/month). Delivery is promised by Nov. 6.
- Carphone has also confirmed the Priv's specs. The phone has a curved 5.4" 2K OLED display, an 18MP rear camera with dual-LED flash, a 2MP front camera, a Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) Snapdragon 808 processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage, and a large 3,410mAh battery. (promo video)
- BlackBerry is hoping the Priv, which pairs Google's version of Android (and all the Google apps/services bundled with it) with BlackBerry apps/services, will carve out a niche with keyboard enthusiasts and high-end enterprise/government users. The company recognized revenue on just 800K phones in FQ2 (the August quarter), down from 1.1M in FQ1 and 2.1M a year ago.
- John Chen has suggested BlackBerry could exit the smartphone market if it doesn't sell 5M phones/year, the level he considers necessary for the company's smartphone ops to be profitable.
Oct. 16, 2015, 5:13 PM
- Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) "now has a thousand people or more working to outfit a 2016 iPhone" with its XMM 7360 2G/3G/4G modem, sources tell VentureBeat. It adds Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) may dual-source its 2016 iPhone modems via Intel and current supplier Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM).
- That meshes with a March VentureBeat report stating the XMM 7360 will go into 2016 iPhones aimed at emerging markets. Though an August Northland Securities report forecast Intel will supply modems for some iPhone 6S/6S+ units, teardowns indicate Apple is solely relying on Qualcomm's MDM9635M modem.
- The MDM9635M supports 300Mbps peak download speeds, and the XMM 7360 450Mbps peak speeds. Qualcomm, whose high-end modems are generally considered to have a performance/power consumption edge, recently unveiled the X12, which supports 600Mbps peak speeds and will be integrated with its Snapdragon 820 processor.
- Also: VentureBeat reports Apple would like to eventually develop an SoC that features both an A-series app processor and a 4G modem, and which would be manufactured using Intel's 14nm process. The site also suggests Apple is interested in Intel's 10nm process (due in 2017).
- Intel would provide modem IP for the SoC in addition to manufacturing the chip. To date, Intel has paired discrete A-series processors manufactured by Samsung (OTC:SSNLF) and TSMC (NYSE:TSM) with 3rd-party modems (in recent years, Qualcomm's). Intel recently bought 3G CDMA modem assets (needed to service Verizon, Sprint, China Telecom, and certain other carriers) from Taiwan's VIA Telecom.
Oct. 12, 2015, 9:29 AM
- Enterprise software firm PTC is buying Qualcomm's (NASDAQ:QCOM) Vuforia augmented reality technology unit, and acquiring the related developer ecosystem.
- Re/code reported in September Qualcomm is thinking of selling Vuforia, which provides developer tools and IP for creating apps supporting augmented reality (i.e. the melding of real-world and computer-generated material). Qualcomm has claimed Vuforia is supported by 175K+ developers and has been used by 20K+ apps.
- Update: While Qualcomm didn't announce the deal price, PTC states it's paying $65M for Vuforia. The company expects the purchase to close by year's end, and doesn't expect it to impact 2016 EPS.
Oct. 9, 2015, 4:04 PM
- ITC administrative law judge Thomas Pender has ruled Samsung (OTC:SSNLF) and Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) didn't infringe two Nvidia (NVDA -0.4%) GPU patents asserted by the latter. He did rule the companies infringed a third patent, but also found it to be invalid, arguing the patent doesn't cover a new invention.
- The case will now go to the full ITC commission. Nvidia sued Qualcomm and Samsung last year, alleging their Snapdragon and Exynos processors respectively infringe the company's IP. It obtained a favorable Markman ruling from Pender in April. Samsung, meanwhile, has countersued Nvidia in a Virginia federal court.
- Update: Nvidia has issued a statement regarding Pender's ruling. "We now intend to ask the full commission (which is made up of six commissioners) to review this initial determination and to confirm the previous judgment of the U.S. Patent Office — that the third patent is valid. If they agree, the ITC would issue an order that would preclude Samsung from importing into the U.S. infringing Samsung mobile devices and smart TVs."
Oct. 9, 2015, 9:02 AM
- Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) declares $0.48/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.
- Forward yield 3.33%
- Payable Dec. 18; for shareholders of record Dec. 1; ex-div Nov. 27.
Oct. 8, 2015, 8:35 PM
- 11 months after announcing it plans to enter the ARM server CPU market, Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) says it has begun sampling to "tier-1 data centers" (possibilities include Amazon, Google, and Facebook) a development platform featuring a pre-production version of a 24-core CPU.
- Details are limited for now, though Qualcomm does state it's using custom ARM cores, as it does for many Snapdragon mobile processors. It also promises an upcoming server CPU "will be competitive in performance and price with current and future Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) chips," and that it will arrive "sooner rather than later" (no specific ETA is provided).
- AppliedMicro (NASDAQ:AMCC) and Cavium (NASDAQ:CAVM) are early leaders in the budding market for ARM server CPUs. Others in the space include AMD, Texas Instruments, and Marvell. Various Web/cloud service providers have shown interest in deploying the chips. But for now, they generally continue buying Intel Xeon CPUs by the thousands.
- Also: Qualcomm is partnering with FPGA vendor Xilinx (NASDAQ:XLNX) to create systems that pair Qualcomm server CPUs with Xilinx FPGAs to provide workload acceleration. Intel is doing something similar with Xilinx archrival Altera, which it's in the process of acquiring.
- A partnership has also been formed with InfiniBand/Ethernet connectivity hardware and chip developer Mellanox (NASDAQ:MLNX). Mellanox's 10-100G InfiniBand and Ethernet gear will be optimized for Qualcomm's CPUs.
Sep. 25, 2015, 4:48 PM
- Ericsson (ERIC +1.7%) and Qualcomm (QCOM -0.1%) have run a joint demo in China of LTE-Unlicensed -- showing that combining licensed and unlicensed parts of 5 GHz spectrum can support throughput of 300 Mpbs.
- The demo means a closer commercial launch for LTE-U, which provides a piece of the 5G puzzle. The approach means taking unlicensed spectrum used by Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to create an indoor 5G network.
- Ericsson says the technology will incorporate spectrum fair sharing in order not to interfere with traditional Wi-Fi throughput.
- The demo used a second-gen picocell indoor base station combined with Qualcomm's Snapdragon 820 processor with X12 LTE.
Sep. 18, 2015, 6:15 AM
- Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) is slashing more than 1,300 full-time jobs in San Diego and hundreds more in other states as it revamps its business in the face of slower growth in the maturing smartphone market.
- A statement by President Derek Aberle says the company will provide outplacement help and severance packages.
- Qualcomm revealed plans to slash its 31,300 global workforce by 15% in July and cut expenses by $1.4B annually.
Sep. 14, 2015, 2:18 PM
- Capsule Technologie (not a typo) provides a platform (known as SmartLinx) for connecting, integrating, and analyzing medical device data, as well as for sending time-sensitive clinical data and alerts, to 1,800+ hospitals in 38 countries. Qualcomm (QCOM -0.9%) has bought the company for an undisclosed sum.
- Qualcomm president Derek Aberle suggests there are synergies between Capsule's offerings and Qualcomm's connectivity chip business for embedded/IoT devices. "Qualcomm is focused on strengthening its position in specific Internet of Everything verticals, like healthcare. The acquisition of Capsule expands the breadth of our healthcare platform, enabling us to provide connectivity solutions for the entire care continuum and create one of the world's largest connected health ecosystems."
- The acquisition is being made by the healthcare-focused Qualcomm Life subsidiary, which launched in 2011 and offers a cloud-based medical device data integration solution called 2net. Earlier this year, Qualcomm announced a partnership with Novartis in which 2net will be used to collect medical device data produced during Novartis clinical trials.
Sep. 13, 2015, 4:25 PM
- Having long provided phone reference platforms that leverage its processors and other ICs, Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) is now taking aim at the budding drone market via Snapdragon Flight, a board featuring a Snapdragon 801 processor (2.2GHz., quad-core), Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and GPS connectivity, and support for 4K video recording and rapid charging.
- Chinese drone maker Yuneec (recently received funding from Intel) is set to launch the first Snapdragon Flight-based drone in 2016. Qualcomm exec Raj Talluri states his company is also "in talks with a number of OEMs." Talluri: "Action cameras are moving into the mainstream, and drones are a natural extension of that with the market poised for major growth this year and beyond."
- Video processor developer Ambarella (NASDAQ:AMBA) is in the crosshairs: The GoPro supplier received over 10% of its FQ2 (July quarter) revenue from drones, aided by design wins with Yuneec and market leader DJI. On its FQ2 call (transcript), Ambarella downplayed competitive challenges from the likes of Qualcomm, Intel, and Nvidia, arguing its video processing expertise and algorithms (declared to provide an edge in power consumption and image quality) set it apart. Qualcomm, by contrast, appears to be pitching OEMs on a soup-to-nuts solution that cuts development times and costs.
- Earlier this year, Qualcomm took a stake in leading U.S. drone maker 3D Robotics. Though growing rapidly, drone volumes should amount to a small fraction of smartphone volumes for the foreseeable future. However, the adoption of end-to-end platforms such as Flight could allow Qualcomm to obtain a relatively high amount of chip content per drone.
Sep. 3, 2015, 6:33 PM
- Having just launched major job cuts and still under pressure from Jana Partners to streamline, Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) is thinking of selling its Vuforia augmented reality tech unit, Re/code reports.
- Qualcomm states Vuforia is supported by 175K+ registered developers and has powered over 20K apps. However, consumer adoption of augmented reality - apps/services melding real-world objects and computer-generated material - has generally been subdued. Microsoft is hoping its HoloLens headset can help change that.
- Separately, Qualcomm has shared more details about its Snapdragon 820 next-gen flagship processor, as well as the proprietary Kryo CPU cores powering it. The 820 will use a 14nm manufacturing process (likely Samsung's), and the 4 Kryo cores within it will be clocked at 2.2GHz., just slightly above the 2GHz delivered by the off-the-shelf ARM Cortex A57 cores used by the Snapdragon 810. However, thanks to architectural/process improvements, Qualcomm claims users can "expect up to 2 times the performance and up to 2 times the power efficiency when compared with the Snapdragon 810."
- Update: Some more Qualcomm news: President Derek Aberle suggests his company is cool to the idea of splitting its chip unit from its IP licensing unit. "You have to step back and say why is that and would a separation actually solve whatever the underlying issues are that are creating the current valuation?. You have to be careful that it's not too simplistic an analysis." Qualcomm stated in July it would consider a breakup and other strategic options, after being urged to by Jana.
Sep. 2, 2015, 1:33 PM
- After aggressively hiking their Ambarella (AMBA -12.9%) targets as shares soared well above $100 earlier this year, several firms have cut them following yesterday's FQ2 beat and in-line FQ3 guidance. However, no downgrades have arrived.
- "An in-line guide disappointed, as the typical beat and raise failed to play out this quarter," notes Ascendiant's David Williams. In addition to GoPro-related concerns, he thinks China fears are weighing on shares, but adds he believes Ambarella's Chinese exposure (includes security and auto cameras, as well as Xiaomi's Yi action camera) isn't huge.
- Pac Crest's Brad Erickson (Overweight rating, $123 target): "Timing and product mix affected AMBA's guidance, but we believe it remains sole-sourced at GoPro while the rest of the business is growing over 60% y/y ... China IP security paused in the quarter due to macro concerns and the company still beat revenue estimates, which highlights how diversified the business has become,"
- Canaccord's Matt Ramsay (Buy, target cut by $17 to $105): "[W]e maintain our belief Ambarella’s portfolio of highly differentiated application-specific video encode, compression, and analytics processors will maintain strong market share against SoC competition and positions the company for strong sales and earnings growth..." Morgan Stanley's Joseph Moore (Equal-Weight) dismisses fears of competition from Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM), arguing a Qualcomm video SoC based on its mobile processors would be more expensive, more power-hungry, and consume more DRAM than Ambarella's SoCs.
- Regarding GoPro (GPRO -7.3%), Raymond James' Tavis McCourt (Outperform, target cut by $21 to $50) thinks Ambarella's guidance suggests there won't be a holiday season camera refresh, and that the Hero4 Session "was the company’s biggest product launch of the year." McCourt also notes Ambarella's sales to GoPro contract manufacturer Chicony have risen over 100% Y/Y (easily topping GoPro's shipment/revenue growth), and thinks this is a sign GoPro was stockpiling inventories the last 3 quarters.
- JMP's Alex Gauna (Outperform rating, $105 target on GoPro) has cut his GoPro Q3 estimates due to Ambarella's guidance. But he adds retail/online checks are in-line with seasonality, and show little evidence of competitive pressure. "[W]e would be buyers of GPRO on any potential weakness in sympathy with AMBA."
- Prior Ambarella coverage
Aug. 28, 2015, 11:10 AM
- There's plenty of precedent for the recent market action, says Morgan Stanley's Adam Parker, noting the market has dropped more than 5% 16 times since March 2009, and each time has moved on to new highs.
- His half-glass view is that the economy is in the middle of its longest expansion ever, and a less-active Fed, a nervous consumer maybe saving more, a lower oil price, and a flattish dollar all argue for continued expansion.
- Morgan's top ideas to buy on the pullback: AGN, AMZN, AAPL, AVGO, BAC, BKU, DAL, GILD, GOOG, GOOGL, HLT, JPM, KR, LEN, LMCK, MGA, MBLY, NWL, QCOM, SABR, CRM, SBAC, SBUX, BX, TMO, VRSK, WWAV, XL.
Aug. 24, 2015, 7:08 PM
- Two weeks after Northland Securities predicted Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) will have a ~50% iPhone 6S modem share, Raymond James' Hans Mosesmann reports "multiple [Silicon] Valley datapoints" suggest Intel will take iPhone share in 2016, not 2015, via its XMM 7360 4G modem.
- Mosesmann: "At IDF, the Street got the opportunity to meet newly promoted GM of the Communications and Devices Group, Aicha Evans, who refreshingly and bluntly told the audience of analysts and investors that if Intel couldn’t get to scale in modems, it would basically be done. Our sense is that she knows it will have scale and Apple is that avenue."
- Cowen's Tim Arcuri also doubts Intel will take 6S share from Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) in 2015, but leaves the door open to other wins. "[F]ield work with carriers and otherwise suggests QCOM will keep thin [modem] for 6S and 6S+. While we believe INTC has been evaluated for 6C (the 4″ model expected in CQ1:16), checks w/carriers and otherwise still do not support a new premium-tier modem – the addition of which would require at least 9 months of extensive testing (lab, interoperability, etc.) to get approval from the large US carriers."
- He adds checks also suggest Samsung will use both Qualcomm's Snapdragon 820 app processor and its own Exynos processors in the Galaxy S7, after using only the Exynos 7420 in the Galaxy S6. Recently-leaked Samsung docs suggest the 820 is being tested by Samsung with the S7.
- VentureBeat reported earlier this year Apple plans to use Intel 4G modems in 2016 iPhones aimed at emerging markets. Meanwhile, Digitimes has reported Qualcomm is "partnering with TSMC to supply 100% of the modem chips for use in the new iPhones slated for launch in September 2015."
- Qualcomm fell 4% today amid a 3.8% Nasdaq drop. Intel fell 1.2%.
Aug. 14, 2015, 11:58 AM
- Qualcomm (QCOM +0.1%) has sold its L-Band (1452MHz.-1492MHz.) U.K. spectrum to Vodafone (NASDAQ:VOD) and Three's U.K. subsidiaries. The Times reports total proceeds are expected to be above £100M ($156M).
- Qualcomm announced in June it would sell the spectrum, following an EU decision allowing the L-Band to be used for mobile downlink capacity. The company paid just £8.3M ($12.9M) in 2008 to buy the spectrum.
QUALCOMM, Inc. engages in the development, design, manufacture, and marketing of digital telecommunications products and services. It operates through three segments: Qualcomm CDMA Technologies, Qualcomm Technology Licensing, and Qualcomm Strategic Initiatives. The Qualcomm CDMA Technologies... More
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