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Qualcomm Inc. (QCOM)

- NASDAQ
  • Apr. 23, 2014, 4:05 PM
    • Qualcomm (QCOM): FQ2 EPS of $1.31 beats by $0.09.
    • Revenue of $6.37B (+4% Y/Y) misses by $110M.
    • 188M MSM chip shipments, in-line with guidance of 180M-195M.
    • Expects FQ3 revenue of $6.2B-$6.8B and EPS of $1.15-$1.25 vs. a consensus of $6.59B and $1.25, and MSM chip shipments of 198M-213M.
    • Expects FY14 revenue of $26B-$27.5B and EPS of $5.05-$5.25 vs. a consensus of $26.8B and $5.13. EPS guidance was previously at $5-$5.20.
    • Shares -2.6% AH.
    • Press Release
    | 4 Comments
  • Apr. 23, 2014, 12:10 AM
  • Apr. 22, 2014, 5:35 PM
  • Apr. 18, 2014, 5:03 AM
    • Globalfoundries has agreed to license Samsung's (SSNLF) most advanced chipmaking technology, 14-nanometer FinFET, in a co-operation deal that analyst Jim McGregor says poses "a huge competitive threat" to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSM), which controls around half of the $38.9B chip-foundry sector.
    • The collaboration could also make it more difficult for Intel (INTC) to gain a strong position in the foundry business, McGregor says.
    • The tie-up "provides an alternative to those companies that are looking to use leading-edge production." That could affect chip designers such as Qualcomm (QCOM).
    | 14 Comments
  • Apr. 15, 2014, 11:33 AM
    • Amazon's (AMZN -1.9%) rumored smartphone will have a 4.7" display sporting a modest 720p resolution (most high-end Android phones are now at 1080p), sources tell BGR, which has published photos said to show a prototype.
    • The device also reportedly features Qualcomm's (QCOM +0.2%) Snapdragon processor (no model # is given), 2GB of RAM, and a 13MP rear camera. Qualcomm is already the CPU provider for the latest Kindle Fire tablets, and the just-launched Fire TV set-top.
    • BGR joins the WSJ in reporting the phone will have a 3D display enabled by four front-facing cameras (one at each corner) to complement regular rear and front cameras. The cameras allow Amazon to enable 3D viewing without the parallax barrier needed by other glasses-free solutions (hurts image quality) .
    • With the 3D display Amazon's main point of differentiation - Google-backed Android phones will have a major app/services ecosystem edge - Amazon is reportedly supporting 3D viewing "in as many areas as possible," including wallpapers, app icons, its maps app, and its media stores.
    • The WSJ reported Amazon plans to ship its phone in September after unveiling it in June. Re/code followed up by reporting a low-end phone is also on tap, and that Amazon is working hard to woo Android developers.
    | Comment!
  • Apr. 8, 2014, 7:13 PM
    • 9to5 Mac, fairly accurate with Apple (AAPL) scoops, has provided a lengthy review of the features its sources suggest will be included in iOS 8 and Mac OS X 10.10 (Syrah).
    • In addition to its previously-reported Healthbook app (meant to work with multiple health sensors), iOS 8 is expected to feature an overhauled Maps app with better transit data, a simplified Notification Center, Wi-Fi CarPlay support, and better app-to-app communication. Voice-over-LTE support and a separate iTunes Radio app might also be in the cards.
    • OS X 10.10 is expected to feature a major Jony Ive-led design overhaul to go with under-the-hood improvements. Apple is reportedly testing Siri and AirDrop support, but 9to5 Mac hasn't confirmed if those features will be ready in time.
    • Details on both operating systems are due at Apple's June 2-6 WWDC conference.
    • Hit-and-miss Digitimes reports Apple "plans to form an R&D team to develop baseband processors for use in iPhones to be released in 2015."
    • The iPhone and 4G iPad's baseband chips are currently supplied by Qualcomm (QCOM), which dominates the 4G baseband market and has used a massive R&D budget to develop a lead in fields such as frequency band support and category 6 LTE (300Mbps peak speeds) integration.
    • Apple has hired Amazon search VP Benoit Dupin. He reportedly will work on improving Apple Maps' search capabilities, which have received their share of criticism.
    | 10 Comments
  • Apr. 8, 2014, 9:08 AM
    • Qualcomm (QCOM) declares $0.42/share quarterly dividend, 20.0% increase from prior dividend of $0.35.
    • Forward yield 2.15%
    • Payable June 25; for shareholders of record June 4; ex-div May 30.
    | 12 Comments
  • Apr. 7, 2014, 7:16 PM
    • As rumored, Qualcomm's (QCOM) next-gen flagship baseband/app processor, the Snapdragon 810, will feature eight 64-bit ARM (ARMH) cores. However, it'll do so by using ARM's big.LITTLE architecture, pairing four powerful ARM cores with four low-power cores meant to handle less demanding tasks. (technical details)
    • ARM has been pitching big.LITTLE (also used by Samsung's Exynos 5 Octa CPU) to chipmakers as a way to improve battery life. It also serves to improve ARM's royalty rates, given the company charges higher rates for chips with more cores.
    • Qualcomm states the 810 is designed for 4K displays, and will be able to record 4K video at 30fps and 1080p video at 120fps. A slightly less powerful CPU, the Snapdragon 808 (2 high-power and 4 low-power ARM CPUs), is designed for 2560x1600 displays.
    • The chips are expected to sample in 2H and ship in commercial hardware in 1H15. Qualcomm, only five months removed from announcing the quad-core Snapdragon 805 (expected in commercial hardware soon), still has the market for high-end, integrated, 4G baseband/app processors to itself. It also has a dominant mid-range share, but competition is starting to pick up.
    | 3 Comments
  • Apr. 2, 2014, 7:06 PM
    • A Chipworks teardown of Samsung's Galaxy S5 has turned up six Qualcomm (QCOM) chips: Two power management ICs, two RF transceivers, an audio codec IC, and the previously-disclosed Snapdragon 801 baseband/app processor.
    • One of the power management ICs is part of Qualcomm's much-hyped RF front end, and improves 4G battery life via envelope tracking. Google/LG's Nexus 5 also contains the chip.
    • Three Avago (AVGO) RF components are also inside the S5, including a 2G/3G/4G module. It's worth noting a phone's RF circuitry can vary depending on the particular market it's being sold into.
    • Other components include an Audience (ADNC) voice processor, a Lattice Semi (LSCC) FPGA, an RF Micro (RFMD) antenna control chip (the company has strong Galaxy S4 exposure), and a Silicon Image (SIMG) MHL video transmitter IC.
    • A previous teardown from a Russian site revealed components from Maxim, Synaptics, NXP, InvenSense, and Skyworks (SWKS). Aside from the Skyworks components (apparently swapped out for Avago parts in Chipworks' S5 model), the Chipworks teardown largely turns up the same parts.
    • Earlier: Snapdragon 600 inside Amazon's Fire TV set-top
    | 8 Comments
  • Apr. 2, 2014, 2:11 PM
    • Qualcomm's (QCOM -0.1%) quad-core Snapdragon 600, designed last year into Samsung's Galaxy S4 and plenty of other smartphones, is found inside Amazon's new Fire TV streaming/gaming set-top (retails for $99, with an optional $40 game controller).
    • The Fire TV's volumes will likely be well below those of the iPhone and Samsung's high-end Galaxy hardware. But it nonetheless acts as an important reference win for the mobile chip giant, which has struggled to improve its living room presence.
    • Qualcomm recently cancelled plans to launch the Snapdragon 802, a high-end processor meant for 4K smart TVs, declaring "the overall demand for processors uniquely designed for smart TVs has proven to be smaller than anticipated."
    • The Amazon announcement comes shortly after shares topped $80 for the first time since the Dot.com bubble. A furious buyback pace has helped their cause.
    | Comment!
  • Mar. 28, 2014, 10:06 AM
    • Tessera (TSRA +1.2%) has struck a deal with Qualcomm (QCOM) to dismiss its suit against the mobile chip giant. As part of the deal, the companies will "explore potential technical collaborations concerning camera functionality and imaging performance of mobile devices."
    • In January, Tessera's DigitalOptics (DOC) unit announced plans to cease manufacturing operations. But the company is still looking to monetize DOC's technologies, including its MEMS auto-focus and image-processing tech, within the smartphone camera market.
    | Comment!
  • Mar. 17, 2014, 2:32 PM
    • China Mobile's decision (officially announced on Friday) to require all 4G phones sold by the company as of May 31 to support five air interfaces should bolster Qualcomm's (QCOM +3.4%) 4G baseband chip sales and Chinese royalty collections, thinks Goldman's Simona Jankowski.
    • Jankowski observes Qualcomm "has the most mature and broad portfolio" of 5-mode mobile SoCs, and that the company could have an easier time collecting royalties from Chinese OEMs on sales of phones supporting the globally-adopted 4G FDD-LTE and 3G W-CDMA standards. Qualcomm has had trouble collecting on sales of phones supporting China Mobile's 3G TD-SCDMA standard (but not W-CDMA).
    • She also points out China Mobile is hoping to sell 100M 4G phones this year, after having launched commercial 4G services in late 2013. The Chinese government's antitrust probe remains an overhang, though as Jankowski notes, that's tied to royalty rates rather than Qualcomm's right to collect.
    • Previous: Qualcomm could benefit from China Mobile 5-mode requirement
    • Update: SA commenter Philip Marlowe notes RF component makers (RFMD, TQNT, SWKS, AVGO, ANAD) should also benefit from the policy change, as 5-mode phones require more RF circuitry than 3-mode phones.
    | 2 Comments
  • Mar. 11, 2014, 2:54 PM
    • BrightWire and Marbridge Consulting report China Mobile (CHL -0.6%) has told its phone suppliers all 4G phones provided from May onwards must support five air interfaces - 4G TD-LTE and FDD-LTE, 3G TD-SCDMA and W-CDMA, and 2G GSM. Currently, OEMs can get away with supplying phones supporting only the three interfaces used by China Mobile - TD-LTE, TD-SCDMA, and GSM.
    • The move could benefit baseband chip giant Qualcomm (QCOM -0.4%), given the company's expertise in supporting a huge variety of air interfaces and frequency bands. That is, provided the Chinese government's antitrust probe doesn't get in the way.
    • Strategy Analytics estimates Qualcomm, buoyed by a dominant 4G baseband position (97% share as of Q1 2013), had a 64% 2013 baseband revenue share. But competition is intensifying: Intel, Broadcom, MediaTek, and Nvidia are all in the midst of launching 4G baseband parts.
    • Last November, Qualcomm announced the Gobi 9x35, a next-gen 4G baseband that offers theoretical max speeds of 300Mbps (2x its predecessor) and supports six air interfaces.
    | 1 Comment
  • Mar. 5, 2014, 6:06 PM
    • After growing ~60% in 2013 (and fueling global shipment growth of 39%), IDC expects Chinese smartphone shipment growth to slow to ~20% in 2014 and just ~10% in 2015.
    • Though only 40% of China's 1B+ mobile users now use a smartphone, IDC's Kiranjeet Kaur notes most users who can comfortably afford a smartphone have already bought one. Plunging low-end Android prices could expand the addressable market in a country whose nominal per capita GDP is around $6K.
    • India, which has a sub-10% smartphone penetration rate, still presents a major growth opportunity. But with a nominal per capita GDP of ~$1,500, the country is even more cost-sensitive than China.
    • With China slowing down and developed markets living up to their name, IDC expects global smartphone growth to slow to 19% in 2014; that still spells total volumes of 1.2B. Tough competition and the ongoing mix shift towards emerging markets is expected to lead the industry's ASP to fall $27 to $308.
    • Smartphone OEMs with strong Chinese exposure: AAPL, SSNLF, LNVGY, ZTCOY
    • Chip suppliers: QCOM, BRCM, CRUS, SWKS, RFMD, MRVL
    • Chinese carriers: CHL, CHU, CHA
    | 26 Comments
  • Mar. 4, 2014, 7:46 AM
    • The quarterly dividend is raised 20% to $0.42 per share for an annualized yield of 2.3% based on last night's close. $5B is added to the buyback program, bringing the total authorization up to $7.8B. Thus far this year, the company has bought back 7.6M shares for $2B.
    • Press release
    • QCOM +3.2% premarket
    | 9 Comments
  • Feb. 24, 2014, 2:40 PM
    • As expected, Samsung (SSNLF, SSNGY) has unveiled its next-gen flagship smartphone at a Mobile World Congress event (live blog). Whereas the Korean electronics giant trumpeted a variety of bells and whistles (some might say gimmicks) when launching the Galaxy S4 a year ago, it's taking a more low-key approach with the S5.
    • The S5 has a 5.1" display, just slightly larger than the S4's 5" display. The resolution is unchanged at 1080p; past reports had pointed to a 2K resolution. Like Apple (AAPL) with the iPhone 5S, Samsung is integrating a fingerprint sensor into the S5's home button, and is offering a gold model.
    • A 16MP camera supporting 4K video recording is included (the S4 has a 13MP camera), as is a perforated back meant to provide better grip. Qualcomm's (QCOM +0.2%) Snapdragon 801 baseband/app processor (2.5GHz., quad-core) powers the device. A heart rate monitor and slightly larger battery are also on board.
    • Remarks from co-CEO JK Shin point to a shift in Samsung's product philosophy, one that arguably meshes with reports of a deal with Google to tone down Samsung's efforts to customize its hardware. "Our consumers do not want eye-popping technology or the most complex technology."
    • Likely S5 suppliers with strong exposure: OLED, MXIM, SYNA, ANAD
    | 33 Comments
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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.