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Qualcomm Inc. (QCOM)

  • Aug. 5, 2014, 6:50 PM
    • Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) has hired Peggy Johnson, an EVP for Qualcomm's (NASDAQ:QCOM) chip unit (Qualcomm Technologies), to be its new business development chief. Johnson arrives 5 months after Microsoft announced her predecessor, one-time CEO candidate Tony Bates, is leaving.
    • At Qualcomm, Johnson was responsible for creating new business opportunities and strategic relationships, a role not too different from the one she'll have at Microsoft. Johnson was also in charge of Qualcomm Labs, the mobile chip/IP giant's business incubation arm.
    • "Peggy shares our worldview and knows what it takes to drive new growth in mobility and the cloud," says Satya Nadella. The hiring of a mobile exec to run business development  comes shortly after Microsoft added mobile industry vet John Stanton to its board.
  • Jul. 24, 2014, 9:18 AM
  • Jul. 23, 2014, 5:29 PM
    • "We ... believe that certain licensees in China currently are not fully complying with their contractual obligations to report their sales of licensed products to us," Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) states in its FQ3 report.
    • The company thinks device sales are being under-reported, and that some firms might be holding off on getting licenses while the Chinese government continues its antitrust probe (widely seen as an attempt to negotiate lower 4G royalty rates). Qualcomm is also dealing with an SEC probe over alleged Chinese bribery.
    • While Qualcomm now expects 1.3B global 3G/4G device shipments in calendar 2014 - that's up from 1.075B-1.091B in 2013 and at the high end of a prior 1.22B-1.3B guidance range - it expects only 1.04B-1.13B to be reported to the company for royalty payments.
    • FQ3 EPS received a lift from $1.35B in buybacks. Qualcomm plans to spend a minimum of $1B on buybacks in FQ4.
    • A 31% increase in MSM shipments led to a 17% increase in chip division sales to $5B (lower ASPs?). Cost controls helped the division's op. profit rise 51% to $1.12B. FQ4 MSM chip sales are expected to be up 25% at the guidance midpoint.
    • On the other hand, licensing division revenue fell 3% to $1.8B, and segment op. profit fell 5% to $1.55B. With China weighing, Qualcomm expects reported device sales to be down 2%-12% Y/Y in FQ4.
    • FY14 3G/4G device ASP guidance has been tweaked to $222-$228 from $218-$228. That's nearly even with FY13's $223-$229.
    • FQ3 results, PR, slides (.pdf), device forecasts (.pdf)
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  • Jul. 23, 2014, 4:05 PM
    • Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM): FQ3 EPS of $1.44 beats by $0.22.
    • Revenue of $6.81B (+9% Y/Y) beats by $290M.
    • 225M MSM chip shipments, +31% Y/Y and above guidance of 198M-213M.
    • Expects FQ4 revenue of $6.5B-$7.4B and EPS of $1.20-$1.35 vs. a consensus of $7.15B and $1.39. Expects 230M-245M FQ4 MSM chip shipments.
    • Shares -0.7% AH.
    • Press Release
  • Jul. 22, 2014, 5:35 PM
  • Jul. 22, 2014, 2:52 PM
    • Qualcomm's (QCOM +2.4%) chip unit likely exceeded Street expectations in FQ3 on the back of solid 4G chip demand, writes Cowen's Timothy Arcuri ahead of tomorrow's earnings report.
    • Arcuri also believes licensing/royalty revenue will beat estimates thanks to strong shipments of royalty-bearing 3G/4G devices (royalties will be based on FQ2 shipments).
    • Though Qualcomm is facing tougher 4G baseband chip competition this year thanks to new launches from Intel, Broadcom, and Nvidia, the company still accounts for the lion's share of the market, and maintains an edge in areas such as app processor integration, frequency band support, and the integration of LTE-Advanced features.
    • Shares are rallying following Cowen's note and a strong Q2 report from ARM. The CPU core developer collected royalties on 2.7B Q1 chip shipments (+11% Y/Y), and says it expects a 2H royalty pickup as "more chips are sold to OEMs building more advanced devices."
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  • Jul. 18, 2014, 9:27 AM
    • Qualcomm Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) declares $0.42/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.
    • Forward yield 2.15%
    • Payable Sept. 24; for shareholders of record Sept. 3; ex-div Sep 1.
  • Jul. 11, 2014, 7:46 AM
    • The catalysts noted in the November upgrade "have largely played out," says analyst Simona Jankowski, cutting Qualcomm (QCOM) to Buy from Conviction Buy.
    • The team trims its June and September quarter estimates to reflect weaker handset demand, but views the issues as "transitory and not thesis-changing over the longer term."
    • Shares -1.2% premarket
  • Jul. 8, 2014, 4:40 AM
    • Samsung (SSNLF), Intel (INTC) and Dell have teamed up to create a standard by which household gadgets communicate with each other, called the Open Interconnect Consortium. The partnership also includes chipmakers Broadcom (BRCM) and Atmel (ATML).
    • The new consortium will rival the AllSeen Alliance, a similar framework supported by Qualcomm (QCOM), LG (LGEIY), Microsoft (MSFT) and other companies.
  • Jul. 3, 2014, 3:39 PM
    • Qualcomm (QCOM +1%) has struck a deal with SMIC (SMI +2.5%) to have the Chinese foundry to produce 28nm Snapdragon processors. SMIC has previously manufactured (less demanding) power management and connectivity ICs for Qualcomm.
    • The deal comes ahead of Apple/Samsung's fall hardware refreshes, and undoubtedly has much to do with tight 28nm capacity at main foundry partner TSMC (TSM +1.5%). Digitimes has reported Qualcomm and MediaTek (among others) are looking to secure 28nm capacity from SMIC, UMC, and Globalfoundries due to TSMC's supply constraints.
    • Digitimes states Qualcomm has booked over half of SMIC's 28nm capacity, and that MediaTek will be placing orders of its own. The site has also reported Qualcomm has placed orders with Globalfoundries and Samsung for their next-gen 14nm process (set to go live in early 2015).
    • TSMC's efforts to ramp 20nm production for Apple could be contributing to its 28nm crunch. JPMorgan expects TSMC to produce 120k-130k 20nm wafers for Apple in Q3, up from just 30K-40K in Q2. It sees Apple respectively making up 13% and 15% of TSMC's Q3 and Q4 revenue vs. just 4% of Q2 revenue.
    • Yesterday: Qualcomm buys WiGig chipmaker Wilocity
  • Jul. 2, 2014, 6:51 PM
    • Israel's Wilocity is a top developer of chips/firmware for the nascent WiGig (802.11ad) standard, which (using 60GHz. spectrum) can deliver speeds of up to 7Gbps to devices within 10m of each other, and thus act as a USB/HDMI replacement. (PR)
    • No acquisition price has been given. The Marker reported in May Qualcomm (QCOM) is in talks to buy Wilocity for ~$300M.
    • Qualcomm's Atheros unit has been working with Wilocity since 2011 to develop tri-band Wi-Fi/WiGig offerings for the PC market. Going forward, Qualcomm plans to develop mobile/networking tri-band platforms, and offer a reference design that pairs one with its Snapdragon 810 processor (next-gen flagship, due in commercial hardware in 1H15).
    • Yesterday: Qualcomm buys CSR's Israeli imaging IP unit
  • Jul. 1, 2014, 2:40 PM
    • Qualcomm (QCOM +0.7%) is buying U.K. chipmaker CSR's (CSRE -0.6%) Israeli ops. TheMarker reports the purchase price is $45M.
    • The purchase provides Qualcomm with imaging IP and engineering talent. The company states the deal will help it "continue successfully developing cameras so that smartphones will provide the same quality as a digital camera."
    • Qualcomm doesn't compete in the image sensor market, but it has integrated a decent amount of image-processing IP into its Snapdragon processors. Its flagship Snapdragon 805 can handle 55MP images with the help of dual image signal processors (ISPs).
    • Last week, Qualcomm announced it has bought power amplifier vendor Black Sand.
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  • Jun. 25, 2014, 6:22 PM
    • Black Sand Technologies, based out of Austin, was founded in '05 and has raised $28.2M in funding over its history.
    • Notably, the product page on Black Sand's site only shows 3G amplifiers, and the most recent PR on its news page is from 2012. All signs suggest Qualcomm (QCOM) is buying the company to strengthen its power amplifier IP and/or engineering talent, as it encroaches on the turf of established vendors such as Skyworks (SWKS), TriQuint (TQNT), RF Micro (RFMD), and Avago (AVGO) with system-level solutions.
    • Qualcomm, estimated to have 64% of the 2013 baseband processor market, made a dramatic entry into the amplifier market last year by announcing an RF front end solution (amplifiers included) that promised superior 3G/4G multi-band support and (via technologies such as envelope tracking) power efficiency. Skyworks, TriQuint, and RF Micro all tumbled following the announcement.
  • Jun. 24, 2014, 6:29 PM
    • Nvidia's (NVDA) Project Denver (involves CPUs based on custom ARM cores) is only aimed at the mobile market for now, though the chipmaker is keeping its server options open, says a spokesman.
    • Nvidia announced its first Denver CPU - a dual-core mobile chip expected in 2H14 - under the Tegra  K1 moniker in January. CEO Jen-Hsun Huang has previously said Nvidia is "seeing a lot of interest in putting something like Tegra in micro servers." This week, Nvidia showed off a solution that pairs its Tesla HPC GPUs with 3rd-party ARM (ARMH) server CPUs.
    • Meanwhile, a source tells the WSJ Samsung has decided to drop its ARM server CPU efforts. The company was previously reported to be working on ARM server parts with the help of AMD-poached talent.
    • AppliedMicro (AMCC) and Cavium (CAVM) must be pleased. Each has bet big on the budding ARM server CPU market, hoping to tap into growing interest in using them in microservers, application-specific hardware (e.g. networking or security gear), and hyperscale data centers. AMD, Marvell, and TI have also announced or launched parts.
    • The WSJ also reports Qualcomm (QCOM) is "working on [ARM] server chips," though no announcements have been made yet.
    • CEO Steve Mollenkopf hinted at CES Qualcomm, which has a huge R&D budget at its disposal, could go after the market. "I think there's going to be a tremendous amount of growth in computing and resources dedicated to supporting the cloud ... We look at that as an opportunity."
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  • Jun. 23, 2014, 9:30 AM
    • Bloomberg reports the judge handling ParkerVision's (PRKR) infringement suit against Qualcomm (QCOM) has ruled in Qualcomm's favor. A Qualcomm motion for a judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) has been granted, and so has a motion for a new non-infringement trial.
    • ParkerVision received a $173M jury verdict against Qualcomm last October. The company announced a new suit against Qualcomm (it also covers HTC) in May.
    • SA author Alpha Exposure offered a downbeat take last month on the original suit's May 1 hearing. Shares remain halted.
    • Earlier: ParkerVision -34.1% prior to halt
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  • Jun. 18, 2014, 2:52 PM
    • Samsung's (SSNLF, SSNGY) Galaxy S5 LTE-A, launching today in South Korea, sports a 2560x1440 OLED display that's a marked improvement from the 1080p display found on the regular S5.
    • It also features Qualcomm's (QCOM -0.2%) flagship Snapdragon 805 (quad-core, 2.5GHz.) baseband/app processor - the regular S5 uses the Snapdragon 801 - and can handle theoretical max download speeds of 225Mbps thanks to its support for the LTE-Advanced standard.
    • The display and CPU are among the features rumored to be on a next-gen flagship called the Galaxy F. But two other features - OIS and a long-demanded metal case - aren't found in the S5 LTE-A.
    • The 805, first announced last November, sports a newer custom ARM CPU core than the 801 and 800 (Krait 450 vs. 400), as well as a faster GPU (Adreno 420 vs. 330) and more memory bandwidth.
    • A next-gen flagship CPU, the Snapdragon 810, will feature a 8 64-bit non-custom ARM cores (4 high-end cores and 4 low-power cores). It's expected to arrive in commercial hardware in 1H15, prior to the launch of a 64-bit flagship sporting custom cores.
    • Samsung's launch comes as Amazon unveils its Fire phone, which sports a less less powerful Snapdragon CPU (appears to be the 800 or 801).
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Company Description
Qualcomm Inc develops digital communication technology called CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access), & owns intellectual property applicable to products that implement any version of CDMA including patents, patent applications & trade secrets.