Samsung Needs Galaxy S6 At This Point To Stand Out
Google's Android One Initiative: The Impact On Samsung
- Through Android One, Google is looking to improve the user experience on low-priced smartphones, enticing customers in emerging markets to upgrade.
- We believe the move could pose a threat to Samsung, the world's largest smartphone manufacturer.
- The initiative could potentially compound Samsung's market share woes in emerging countries, where we expect much of the growth in the smartphone market to come from.
- Samsung now reminds me of Apple of about a year ago. Apple stock price increased more than 50% since then.
- Looking past the current events of shrinking market share and lower profits, we find Samsung deeply undervalued.
- Using DCF valuation makes me believe Samsung is a great long-term opportunity.
- Samsung’s smartphone business has gravely suffered from the rapid ascent of Xiaomi.
- Xiaomi displaced Samsung as the top vendor in China. Global expansion plans for Xiaomi means Samsung’s market share in other countries also will likely decline.
- The two biggest mobile carriers in the Philippines now offer free Xiaomi Mi 3 to their post-paid subscribers. Carrier support will add to the massive growth of Xiaomi.
- Samsung launched three new devices on September 3rd, including the Galaxy Note 4 phablet.
- Apple's stock declined 4% due to positive reviews after the Samsung launch, and fears that the iPhone 6 launch would not live up to expectations.
- Xiaomi Corp. and Lenovo Group Ltd. are hitting Samsung on the lower end the market.
- Samsung's preemptive strike may have been an attempt to soften the blow from the iPhone 6 on the premium end of the market.
- Based on pent up demand, the iPhone 6 launch should be a success. I expect Apple's stock to bounce back above $100.
- The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 was good enough when compared to other Android handsets.
- However, the upcoming iPhone 6 may top the Note 4.
- The Galaxy Note Edge moves in the right direction wise, and keeps the company relevant in the high-end of the smartphone market.
- Samsung Unpacked Episode 2 Will Soon be Underway On September 3rd.
- The Galaxy Note 4 will be launched at the event, putting Samsung in the hot seat to compete with the larger iPhone 6 variant.
- Samsung will have to surprise at the event especially if it wants to retain the most market share amongst smartphone OEMs.
Do You Believe Samsung's Mobile Phone Business Is Worth More Than Zero?
- Samsung has underperformed the S&P 500 by nearly 1000 basis points over the past year. Today, Samsung shares trade at just 7x earnings.
- Samsung has an incredible track record of profitable growth over the past decades.
- Samsung shares are priced as if its handset business is worth 0. There are good reasons to believe this is not the case.
- When investors begin to believe that the handset business will continue to generate meaningful profits in the future, Samsung shares could rise 60%.
- Samsung recently announced its acquisition of US company SmartThings, which builds ways to connect home devices.
- The acquisition should solidify Samsung's competitive position, alongside rivals Apple and Google, with regard to the new "internet of things."
- The acquisition makes strong strategic and fiscal management sense, given Korea's newly instated corporate tax.
- With solid results YTD and growth at home and abroad, we reiterate our positive stance on Samsung in the second half of 2014.
Samsung Galaxy Note 4 To Hit Stores Before iPhone 6
Can Samsung 'Galaxy Tab S' Crush Apple's Tablet Market Share?
- “There Is No Tablet Market, Only An iPad Market” days are over. Flagship Samsung's tab product launch will be a full-on attack on Apple's moat in the high-end tablet market.
- Apple remains the undisputed market leader in the high-end of the tablet space, with around 32% share of the overall tablet market.
- As things stand, the consumer trend is seen to be shifting toward Android smartphones which certainly rings alarm bells for Apple.
- Specifications indicate that the Galaxy Tab S is a better machine for customers than the iPad: Thinner, lighter but with larger screens.
- Given Samsung's success in the smartphone market, chances are good that the Galaxy Tab S will be a smash hit.
Galaxy Note 4 And Galaxy S6: What Will Samsung Deliver?
Samsung Blinked - Its Decision To Call Down The Quarter May Be An Indicator Of Slowing Markets
- Samsung called down its Q2 earnings guidance.
- When the world's largest smartphone suppliers report sagging sales, investors need to listen.
- Evidence of increasing competition is everywhere with new entrants growing at break neck speeds.
- Apple's June quarter will be worth watching.
- Samsung has played a crucial role in making Google’s Android the world’s most popular mobile platform.
- Samsung has finally launched its highly anticipated Tizen based smartphone, the first of its kind, in a bid to reduce its reliance on Android.
- This, however, is not just about one smartphone as Samsung’s move can have far reaching implications.
Samsung Launches Premium Tablets, But Going After Apple's Market Share Could Be A Challenge
- Samsung's new tablets may not contribute significantly to the bottom line given the possible high manufacturing costs and competition from Apple's iPad.
- The high-end of the smartphone and tablet market is all about the margins.
- Additionally, the company's marketing and promotional costs for the device could also be significant.
- Samsung is set to launch its high-end tablet product, the Galaxy Tab S, which is a major threat to Apple's iPads.
- Specifications indicate that the Galaxy Tab S is a better deal for customers than the iPad: Thinner, lighter, but with larger screens.
- Samsung is smart enough to leverage its Galaxy S success by building on established technology and market recognition.
- Given Samsung's success in the smartphone market, chances are good that the Galaxy Tab S will be a smash hit.
- Samsung's tablet product launch will be a full-on attack on Apple's moat in the high-end tablet market.
Is Samsung Finally In The Smartphone Driver's Seat?
- Never before has Samsung been stronger relative to Apple.
- The Galaxy S5 and iPhone 5s are both "mature" products.
- Samsung recently announced its first Tizen OS smartphone.
- SSNLF was recently ordered to pay Apple $120 million for patent infringement on three of its patents.
- Apple is continuing to pressure Samsung to bar another nine of its devices.
- Although Apple is more flexible to fight Samsung, after recently resolving issues with Google, Samsung's strength YTD will likely not be strongly affected.
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Fri, Sep. 19, 4:49 AM
- Despite cancelling the launch of its homegrown Tizen operating system already twice this year, a company exec now says Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) will attempt the release again in November.
- With the new OS, Samsung is looking to lessen its reliance on Google' Android, which currently powers the vast majority of the mobile devices sold by the South Korean giant.
Tue, Sep. 9, 9:23 AM
- A large patch of the retail sector will have their ears perked up this afternoon to see what Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) delivers up with its iWatch announcement or teaser.
- Though the company's entry into wearable technology is considered nearly a certainty, the unknown variable is if the product will end up falling under the "gadget" category or be another Apple device revolution.
- Computerworld's Mike Egan is in the latter camp: "The iWatch should be most comparable to the Mac and the iPhone, Apple's two most stunning revolution."
- Forrester Research isn't waiting for details, forecasting 10M iWatch sales by 2016 - a mark which could dent demand for high-end watches.
- Showtime is 1:00 pm ET. (webcast)
- Luxury watchmakers: Movado (NYSE:MOV), Fossil (NASDAQ:FOSL), Swatch (OTCPK:SWGAY), Tiffany (NYSE:TIF), Richemont (OTCPK:CFRUY), LVMH Moet Hennessy (OTCPK:LVMHF), Hermes (OTCPK:HESAF)
- Wearable technology players: Sony (NYSE:SNE), Nike (NYSE:NKE), Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY), Garmin (NASDAQ:GRMN), Basis (NASDAQ:INTC), Fitbit, Jawbone, Adidas (OTCQX:ADDYY), Under Armour (NYSE:UA).
Wed, Sep. 3, 11:52 AM
- The Gear VR, long rumored to be in the pipeline, relies on Samsung's (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) just-announced Galaxy Note 4 to run Oculus VR's (FB -1.1%) software, and provide the device's display and sensors. For now, no other phones work with the device.
- Unlike the gaming-focused Oculus Rift (still in beta), the Gear VR doesn't need a wired connection to a PC. Users interact with the headset through a trackpad and head movements. No price details have been given yet.
- Initial testers are intrigued by the Gear VR's potential, but are also quick to point out content/game support and software/UI development are still very much works in progress. Samsung/Oculus promise a content store will soon be available, and note initial content partners include DreamWorks, Warner Bros., Fox, and Marvel.
- Facebook was recently reported to be working with Hollywood on Oculus deals. Meanwhile, Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe has made it clear he considers OEM deals crucial to his firm's efforts to drive mass adoption of its platform, which has a solid head-start on rivals from a software standpoint. Competition will be provided by Sony's Morpheus headset and Google's Cardboard Android VR platform.
Wed, Sep. 3, 10:13 AM
- As rumored, Samsung's (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) Galaxy Note 4 sports a 5.7" quad-HD (2560x1440) display; the Note 3 has a 1080p display. Other improvements include a revamped S Pen (twice the pressure sensitivity, among other things), a metal rim, and the addition of optical image stabilization, a fingerprint scanner, and a heart rate sensor.
- The U.S. version will run on Qualcomm's (QCOM +0.8%) high-end Snapdragon 805 processor (2.7GHz., quad-core) and support Cat-6 LTE; the Note 3 uses the Snapdragon 800. Some international models will use Samsung's Exynos 5433 processor (1.9GHz., 8-core) and only support Cat-4 LTE. The 5433 beat the 805 in some early benchmarks.
- Samsung has also launched the Note Edge, a phone with combines most of the Note 4's specs with a display that curves downwards at the sides. Samsung argues the edges of the display can be used to quickly glance at information while the phone is lying on a table.
- Samsung, which pioneered the phablet market 3 years ago, is counting on the Note 4/Edge to both counter hungry Chinese OEMs that have been grabbing share, and deal with the pending launch (per numerous reports) of a 5.5" iPhone 6. The company still maintains a high phablet share in the U.S.
- Universal Display (OLED +1.4%) benefits from Samsung's use of a quad-HD display, since the panel requires more OLED materials than a 1080p display.
Tue, Sep. 2, 6:55 AM
- In yet another round of Samsung restructuring, Samsung Electronics (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) says it will consider acquiring the shares of unlisted medical equipment maker Samsung Medison that it does not currently own.
- Samsung Electronics currently holds a 68.5% stake in Samsung Medison, which has a book value of about 478B won ($472M).
- Samsung's restructuring has accelerated since the May hospitalization of the group's chairman Lee Kun-hee, and has sparked investor speculation to the group's succession.
Thu, Aug. 28, 4:45 AM
- Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) and LG (OTC:LGEIY) will face off at a trade show in Berlin next week, showing off their new smartwatch models.
- Unlike its previous versions, Samsung's new "standalone" watch will support 3G wireless networks and be able to make and receive calls without having to be tethered to a smartphone. The watch, called the "Gear S," will run on the company's Tizen operating system.
- LG’s new smartwatch, called the "G Watch R," will be powered by Android and have a rounded 1.3-inch plastic OLED screen.
Thu, Aug. 28, 2:26 AM
- In the latest round of the remaining Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) patent wars, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh has denied Apple's bid for a permanent injunction prohibiting Samsung from selling infringing features on its smartphones that relate to three earlier patents.
- Earlier this year, Apple won a $120M jury verdict against Samsung related to the patents and was hoping to extend the ruling.
- Until recently, the two have been been embroiled in untold numbers of global patent lawsuits, but both dropped all claims on battles outside the U.S. earlier this month.
Tue, Aug. 19, 5:59 AM
- Drifting again toward the "Internet of Things", Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) has purchased U.S. air conditioner distributor Quietside.
- The acquisition is aimed at strengthening the company's "smart home" business, which enables users to control multiple household appliances from a mobile device.
- Last week, Samsung snapped up SmartThings, a developer of home automation hardware/software platforms.
Mon, Aug. 18, 4:34 AM
- Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) is planning to set up a factory to produce mobile phones primarily for Indonesia, one of the world's fastest growing markets for the devices.
- Production capacity at the facility in West Java will be initially set at 100K units per month, but will eventually climb to 900K.
- Seeing sales of its flagship Galaxy models weaken in more established markets, Samsung is turning to markets with low smartphone penetration rates and higher disposable incomes like Indonesia.
Thu, Aug. 14, 7:16 PM
- Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) has acquired SmartThings, developer of a home automation hardware/software platform. Re/code reports the purchase price is $200M.
- SmartThings' platform relies on kits featuring a router and small sensors that attach to various home items. Once installed, users can monitor, control, and customize connected devices using mobile apps.
- The acquisition follows Google's purchases of smart thermostat/smoke detector vendor Nest and Wi-Fi monitoring camera maker Dropcam, and the launch of Apple's HomeKit platform, which aims to let 3rd-party home devices be controlled with iOS hardware.
- SmartThings is looking to differentiate itself by creating an open platform for 3rd-party apps/services - founder/CEO Alex Hawkinson claims SmartThings supports 1K+ devices and 8K+ apps. Control4 (NASDAQ:CTRL), whose shares took off after the Google/Nest deal was announced, is among SmartThings' rivals.
Wed, Aug. 13, 11:28 AM
- Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) has partly given in to calls to offer phones with Apple-like metal cases rather than plastic ones: Its new Galaxy Alpha sports a metal frame around its sides. However, the device still has a plastic rear shell that strongly resembles the Galaxy S5's.
- Moreover, unlike the rumored Galaxy F (expected to have a full metal case), the Alpha carries mid-range specs notably worse than the S5's: It has a 4.7" 720p display, 12MP rear camera, and 2GB of RAM.
- Separately, The Verge has posted pictures of Samsung's upcoming VR headset (will use a phone's display/sensors), and states the device will be unveiled at a September event also expected to feature the Note 4, which might also have a metal frame. Past reports have stated Samsung is relying on Facebook's Oculus VR to provide the headset's software.
Tue, Aug. 5, 10:48 PM
- Following untold numbers of lawsuits, injunction requests, court petitions, and billed legal hours, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) have agreed to drop all suits against each other in Germany, the U.K., Japan, Australia, the Netherlands, France, South Korea, and Italy. The deal doesn't involve any licensing agreement.
- For now, the world's biggest smartphone and tablet OEMs remain at odds in the U.S., but there are signs that battle is also winding down. In June, Apple and Samsung dropped their appeals of an ITC case that led to an injunction on older Samsung phones. The prior month, a CA jury awarded Apple $120M in an infringement suit against Samsung, much less than the $2B it sought.
- Apple settled its patent dispute with Motorola Mobility in May in a deal that didn't feature a cross-license, and agreed to work with Google on "some areas of patent reform." A cross-licensing deal with HTC was struck in 2012.
Mon, Aug. 4, 2:06 PM
- With a 14% unit share on the back of 15M shipments (+240% Y/Y), Xiaomi passed Samsung (OTC:SSNLF) in Q2 to become China's top smartphone OEM, per research firm Canalys.
- Samsung, Lenovo (OTCPK:LNVGY), and Yulong (Coolpad) are each estimated to have ~12% of the market. In Q1, Samsung had 18.3% to Lenovo's 11.3% and Xiaomi's 10.7%.
- Xiaomi has gained ground by offering Android phones with high-end specs at mid-range prices. Successful viral marketing campaigns and a popular custom Android UI (MIUI) also haven't hurt.
- The company just launched a new flagship (the MI4) that starts at $320 unsubsidized, and features a 13MP f/1.8 camera and 5" 1080p display. It's counting on former Google exec Hugo Barra to spearhead an international push; Canalys estimates 97% of Xiaomi's Q2 shipments went into mainland China.
- Xiaomi's "borrowing" of ideas from Apple and other rivals has produced controversy. Not only does Xiaomi's hardware take many design cues from the iPhone, founder Lei Jun has cultivated a Steve Jobs-like image, and ended his MI4 launch presentation with a slide prefaced by Apple's "One more thing..." catchphrase.
Fri, Aug. 1, 6:11 PM
- Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) has sued Samsung (OTC:SSNLF) for alleged breach of contract over unpaid Android royalty payments related to the companies' 2011 licensing deal.
- Microsoft suggests Samsung stopped paying per-device royalties in late 2013 due to the Nokia deal, with Samsung arguing the deal nullifies the 2011 pact. Microsoft wants a ruling on Samsung's claim, and is also seeking unpaid interest.
- Likely at issue: Samsung and Nokia have a patent cross-licensing deal in place for each others' patents, one that was extended for 5 years last November. Though the deal involves payments from Samsung to Nokia, Nokia's phone unit (now a part of Microsoft) has made use of Samsung's IP through it. That opens the door to Samsung arguing a new/separate cross-licensing deal with Microsoft is needed.
- The financial implications of the legal spat could be big: Though struggling a bit lately, Samsung still had a 25.2% Q2 smartphone unit share (per IDC).
- Surging Android royalties led Microsoft's "Windows Phone" revenue to rise $1.2B in FY13 (ended June '13). With Samsung apparently halting payments midway, "Windows Phone" licensing revenue grew by $822M in FY14 to $2.54B. Nokia payments accounted for $382M of the total.
Thu, Jul. 31, 11:18 AM
- Samsung's (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) memory sales were a strong point for the company in Q2: They rose 10% Q/Q and 21% Y/Y to KRW6.92T ($6.7B). But the company also hiked its 2014 DRAM industry bit supply forecast to low-30% growth from a prior high-20%. Samsung itself expects to grow bit production at a high-40% rate.
- Morgan Stanley notes Samsung once forecast mid-20% industry growth, and that it's increasing capex to make another production line DRAM-capable in 2015. MS reported earlier this month Samsung is planning to hike its DRAM output.
- Micron (MU -7.7%), whose shares have soared on expectations a favorable DRAM supply/demand balance will continue, isn't taking the news well. Samsung's production hike is also a negative for SK Hynix (OTC:HXSCL).
- Samsung fell 3.7% overnight in Seoul, though that arguably had more to do with the performance of its mobile ops than its chip ops. Weak high-end tablet sales and smartphone share losses to Chinese OEMs led mobile sales to fall 12% Q/Q and 21% Y/Y to KRW27.5T ($26.6B).
- The company expects 2H mobile sales to grow with the help of seasonality, but also (in what's at least a partial reference to the iPhone 6) cautions competition is set to intensify.
- Samsung's Q2 slides (.pdf)
Thu, Jul. 31, 3:05 AM
- Samsung (OTC:SSNLF, OTC:SSNGY) is planning a few new global smartphone launches to retrieve its lost market share and make up for its first quarterly net loss in almost three years.
- Two high-end smartphones releases are planned within the next six months. "One model will have a large screen while the other will be built using "new materials", says SVP Kim Hyun-joon.
- The company will also introduce new mid-to-low-end models to counter low-cost Chinese competition.
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