Aug. 1, 2013, 9:37 AM
- "Mass production" of an iPad Mini (AAPL +0.9%) sporting a retina display made by Samsung (SSNLF.PK), Sharp (SHCAY.PK), and LG Display (LPL) will reportedly start in Q4. No word on whether the device will also launch in the quarter, or in Q1 2014, as others (I, II) have suggested.
- 9to5 Mac just reported iOS 7 SDK code indicates a non-retina Mini is also on tap. Will Apple offer a non-retina model for less than $300 to take on cheaper, share-gaining, 7" Android tablets?
- Recent reports have also indicated Apple, in spite of its obvious differences with Samsung, plans to continue using the company as a chip foundry partner (along with TSMC), and will rely on it to supply thin LCD glass.
- AU Optronics (AUO +3%), which (together with LG Display) supplies LCDs for the current Mini, reportedly won't be a retina Mini supplier.
- Previous: Misek hikes PT to $540
Jul. 30, 2013, 12:52 PM
- Goldman's James Schneider, who has cut shares to Neutral, thinks NAND flash supply could grow faster in the next few quarters than previously expected, and that margins "are likely to peak in 2H13" thanks to price pressure and slowing cost reductions.
- SanDisk (SNDK -2.3%) shares nearly doubled from last summer's lows thanks in large part to healthy pricing, rising margins, and expectations NAND supply growth will remain limited. These factors have also given a big lift to Micron (MU +0.6%) shares.
- Yesterday, Morgan Stanley asserted there is "no more upside" in the memory chip space, while predicting DRAM growth/ASPs/margins will peak in Q3.
- MS observes Samsung (SSNLF.PK), Hynix, SanDisk partner Toshiba (TOSBF.PK), and Micron's Elpida and Inotera units are all set to expand capacity in response to strong smartphone, tablet, and SSD-related orders.
- MS: "Most investors we met are convinced that this time it is different ... However, industries do not stay in a vacuum or steady state when faced with huge excess returns building and significant shortage heading into 2H13."
Jul. 29, 2013, 1:41 PM
- Bloomberg reports Samsung (SSNLF.PK) is close to buying German OLED materials/tech provider Novaled for $200M+. Novaled's CMO says "negotiations are ongoing."
- Samsung invested in Novaled in 2011, and the companies signed a licensing/materials purchasing deal in 2012.
- Novaled claims its PIN OLED doping tech allows for fewer manufacturing process steps, low driving voltages, and greater design flexibility.
- Universal Display (OLED -9.2%) shares aren't taking the news well. Universal remains very dependent on Samsung's materials purchases and (fixed-fee) licensing payments for now. It's counting on expected manufacturing ramps from AU Optronics, Innolux, and LG Display, among others, to help lower its dependence.
- Universal's Q2 report arrives on Aug. 8.
Jul. 26, 2013, 3:22 AM
Global smartphone shipments grew 47% on year to a record 230M units in Q2, research firm Strategy Analytics estimates, with the devices accounting for 59% of all phones sold as the industry benefited from surging demand for 4G models in developed regions and 3G devices in emerging markets. Samsung (SSNLF.PK) held its position as sector leader as its shipments grew 56% to 76M devices, giving it a market share of 33.1%. Apple's (AAPL) sales rose 20% to 31.2M, leaving it with a lower share of 13.6%. (PR)| Jul. 26, 2013, 3:22 AM | 5 Comments
Jul. 26, 2013, 3:11 AM
More on Samsung (SSNLF.PK) Q2: Chip business, which accounts for 18% of operating profit, enjoys 71% increase in income to 1.76 won. Profit at display division +58% to 1.12T won. Consumer-electronics income 430B won vs 730B won last year as TV prices fall. Ends Q2 with 33.2T won in cash. To increase capex 5.3% this year to 24T won, including 13T won to expand its chip facilities. (PR)| Jul. 26, 2013, 3:11 AM
Jul. 26, 2013, 2:43 AMSamsung (SSNLF.PK): Q2 net profit +50% to another record of 7.6T won (US$6.8B), Revenue +20.7% to 57.46T won. Operating profit +47.5% to 9.53T won, with income at the mobile unit rising to 52% to 6.28T won; however, operating-profit margin at the division drops to 17.7% from 19.8% in Q1, and the company expects smartphone prices to slip in Q3 due to increase in sales of mid- and low-end phones. Shares -0.9% in Seoul. (PR) | Jul. 26, 2013, 2:43 AM
Jul. 19, 2013, 3:52 PMApple (AAPL -1.5%) and Samsung (SSNLF.PK) are still holding patent settlement talks, but there's no sign a resolution is near, the WSJ reports, citing sources and legal docs. The companies have reportedly held face-to-face talks in Seoul and drafted a memorandum of understanding about a deal in February, but discussions appear to have faltered afterwards. Apple and its top rival/component supplier continue to battle in the U.S. (via the ITC and federal courts), Europe, Japan, and elsewhere. An Apple/HTC licensing deal was reached last November. | Jul. 19, 2013, 3:52 PM | 1 Comment
Jul. 15, 2013, 6:46 PM
Apple (AAPL) is talking with TV networks and cable providers about a service that would let users skip ads and compensate networks when they do so, sources tell former WSJ reporter Jessica Lessin. However, she adds it isn't clear how the feature would differ from the ad-skipping abilities of DVRs. Bloomberg recently reported of a pending deal to give Time Warner Cable subs the ability to watch via Apple TV. Also: The Korea Economic Daily reports Samsung (SSNLF.PK) will produce Apple's A9 CPU, via a 14nm process, starting in 2015. The report comes shortly after ones stating Apple will tap TSMC (TSM) to make 20nm chips in 2014, and (if true) suggests Apple is going for a dual-supplier strategy.| Jul. 15, 2013, 6:46 PM | 4 Comments
Jul. 11, 2013, 4:59 AM
Nokia (NOK) is today due to unveil the latest phone that will supposedly turn around its fortunes and make the company great again - the Lumia 1020. The device's most notable feature is a 41 mega pixel camera using the company's PureView technology, which will give it a high-resolution 3x zoom. If the camera is the element Nokia is banking on for success, it might be problematic that Samsung (SSNLF.PK) has launched the Galaxy S4 Zoom, a camera-phone with a 10x optical zoom.| Jul. 11, 2013, 4:59 AM | 43 Comments
Jul. 10, 2013, 1:45 PM
Canaccord's Mike Walkley cuts his 2013 smartphone sales forecast by 20M to 959M, and his 2014 forecast by 40M to 1.25B, citing surveys pointing to softer high-end sales, especially in Europe. While the surveys indicate iPhone 4 (AAPL -0.1%) and Galaxy S III (SSNLF.PK) sales were above expectations, they suggest the opposite for the iPhone 5 and Galaxy S4. Also, low-end/mid-range Android sales from Chinese OEMs are said to be "very strong" (good for SPRD), and high-end Lumia (NOK -2.4%) sales soft. Sales of the cheaper Lumia 520 and 620 are deemed "solid," but Walkley expects sell-in to slow as inventories rise. His report comes shortly after Samsung forecast light Q2 profits, and Wedge Partners reported of iPhone build order cuts. (also)| Jul. 10, 2013, 1:45 PM | 8 Comments
Jul. 8, 2013, 4:25 AM
Jul. 5, 2013, 7:17 PM
"A big part of Samsung's (SSNLF.PK) problem, in one chart," tweets Benedict Evans about a graphic showing Baidu's Android page view share by OEM. While Samsung's share fell slightly from Dec. '11 to Sep. '12, and the share of other top-6 OEMs collectively declined steeply, the share of "Other" OEMs doubled to ~40%. This happened while Chinese Android sales skyrocketed. Smartphone sales have shifted heavily to cheap emerging markets hardware, with much of it coming from second-tier and white-label OEMs. Samsung isn't fully immune, not when rivals can offer the same OS and core services. Apple (AAPL) can offer a differentiated OS, but is that enough to maintain growth while protecting unmatched ASPs and margins? (Samsung Q2)| Jul. 5, 2013, 7:17 PM | 15 Comments
Jul. 5, 2013, 1:30 PM
NAND flash supply will stay tight through Q3 thanks to strong smartphone/tablet and data center SSD demand, Digitimes reports. Also, mobile DRAM supply is also expected to "fall short of demand" in Q3. That's music to the ears of Micron (MU +0.5%) and SanDisk (SNDK +0.9%), who have been benefiting from restrained capex and industry consolidation. NAND controller vendor Silicon Motion (SIMO +3.2%) blamed tight NAND supply for memory card/flash drive makers when issuing a Q2 warning on Tuesday, while adding embedded NAND controller sales are strong. Samsung (SSNLF.PK) just warned its Q2 profits will miss estimates, but that likely has to do with phone sales rather than DRAM/NAND demand. (Micron production shifts)| Jul. 5, 2013, 1:30 PM | 1 Comment
Jul. 5, 2013, 2:07 AM
Samsung's (SSNLF.PK) shares slide 3.95% in Seoul after its Q2 operating profit projection of 9.5T won ($8.3B) misses consensus of 10.16T won. The company expects sales of 56-58T won, up from 47.60T won a year earlier but below analyst forecasts of 58.6T. In addition to the earnings miss, analysts are concerned about slowing handset sales and falling margins due to intense competition at the lower-end of the market. Still, Samsung has lots of businesses, and prices of memory chips are expected to remain strong.| Jul. 5, 2013, 2:07 AM | 5 Comments
Jul. 4, 2013, 8:23 PM
Jul. 3, 2013, 1:09 PMSamsung (SSNLF.PK) has bought Web streaming set-top/DVR maker Boxee for ~$30M, TechCrunch and Israeli site The Marker report. Boxee, reported to be looking for funding or a buyer last month, made some noise last fall by launching a $99 set-top featuring dual TV tuners, mobile streaming options, and (with a subscription that now goes for $10/month) unlimited cloud DVR storage. But sales have been light in the face of competition from Roku, Apple, and others. Look for Samsung to integrate Boxee's offerings with its TV and mobile lineups - the Galaxy S4 already has some living room-focused features. | Jul. 3, 2013, 1:09 PM