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  • Is There Really A 'Big 4' In Cloud?  [View article]
    If you look at Netcraft Server count stats, you've missed Digital Ocean. Probably #2 by server count and the default choice of startup development shops. Their go to market is "Open Source as a Service", are outgrowing everyone on your list and are VC funded - including a16z.
    Jul 28, 2015. 01:42 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple (AAPL) Timothy D. Cook on Q3 2015 Results - Earnings Call Transcript  [View article]
    It looks like their Christmas quarter - where all those 2 year contracts switch into upgrades - is going to be stellar based on the numbers shown. This next quarter is relatively ticking along before the boom IMHO,
    Jul 22, 2015. 02:10 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon: 10 Implications Of A Profitable AWS  [View article]
    Wouldn't say bullish, just Long term buy and hold for AWS. Google, Microsoft et al are attacking them like the Spanish Inquisition Torture Sketch in Monty Python; bring on the comfy cushions!

    They are so far not competing effectively with a mix of historical software stack replacements plus provisioning new micro service orientated architectures.

    About the only folks taking any chunky share from them is Digital Ocean, aka Open Source as a Service and aimed at startup developers.

    But all eyes on Netcraft host move reports, and keep passing the popcorn...
    Apr 26, 2015. 07:32 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon: 10 Implications Of A Profitable AWS  [View article]
    The central premise that AWS is profitable is, at best, questionable. I do think they execute brilliantly, have a great platform, and are here for the long term, but i'm personally amazed how people took the margin story hook, line and sinker.

    Amazon, given the re-ploughing of margins back into investments in their infrastructure build-out, always focus on cashflow growth. The bit folks miss is how they account for capital equipment (which will include the infrastructure on which AWS is built). Amazon don't account for this in their cashflow figures in either upfront or depreciation costs - but rather punt it into the future leasing costs. This years costs booted straight into future years growth. So, it's more a bet that they will keep growing (and indeed, growth has been accelerating every quarter over the last year if you watch their server counts as an analogue for progress).

    Play it back in as most other companies would, and you're back to a model that looks like a traditional Amazon business. I've seen it reported that if AWS was over 47% of their spend (I suspect all of Amazon's compute spend to service their retail businesses are in AWS as divisional cross charge), then they'd be bordering on cashflow negative on AWS.

    As an Amazon shareholder (for the long term), i'm none-the-less surprised by the "surprising big profits in AWS" meme.

    As to Rackspace as #2, their business was being eaten at the top end by Amazon and at the low end, upcoming Open Source Developer base, by Digital Ocean (last year they were routinely losing 4 figures of customers to Digital Ocean every month - and were the only company who were eating a lot of AWS customers too from that part of the market). Do analysts not pay attention to reports from organisations who do rudimentary hosting vendor netblock analyses, and trace the source and destination of move trends between hosting vendors?

    The whole IT market is going into a period of flux where the cost base, and margin expectations, of brand server and storage vendors are running against the tide. Declarations of "Private Clouds" and "Hybrid Clouds" are attempts on brakes to the inevitable "Public Cloud" cost base, flexibility and big future.

    Amazon's pre-eminent position, and the foresight of Jeff Bezos in putting his teams on the AWS journey so early in their history, justify their future position in the industry and the share price multiples they are getting. That said, the "look, big profits" meme is, at best, a rather naive interpretation and less deserving of such accolades.
    Apr 26, 2015. 09:49 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Amazon And Android Forks  [View article]
    Two things. One is that Nokia X is probably the first Android Fork available outside of China - if indeed it has been released. Certainly announced well ahead of the Fire handset.

    Secondly, Amazon's Fire set-top box runs AOSP but nonetheless has the YouTube app on it - so at face value, Google are permitting limited subsets of their Play portfolio onto AOSP where and when it makes commercial sense for them to do so.
    Jun 23, 2014. 09:43 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Digesting WWDC: Cloudy  [View article]
    By the way, the other major change (and attempt to get parity with Android) is with Unified Story Boards for Apps - so for the first time, future Apple hardware can deviate from specific screen pixel dimensions (or simple multiples of earlier devices). The code to facilitate that has just been added for the first time.
    Jun 5, 2014. 06:57 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Digesting WWDC: Cloudy  [View article]
    I'm going to disagree with you about the leapfrogging. True for Healthkit, true for HomeKit, true for Continuity (which is really just for the folks with wall to wall Apple kit). Neutral for Swift (Google have Go). But for the myriad of Development tools and app integration with the OS, Apple are just about getting to parity with what Android has had for 1-2 years already. Same is true for notifications, for developer testing/bugtracking/usage stats and for "OK Google" (now "Hey Siri").

    Tim Cooks bashing of Android hence is a questionable pursuit.

    Fact is that about the only stuff portable between apps on Android and iOS are the class and object definitions unique to the application code. All the procedural work and platform nuances are unique. Hence why folks like WhatsApp have platform specific Dev teams.
    Jun 5, 2014. 06:41 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Long Case For Liquidmetal Technologies  [View article]
    One of the news wires suggested that one of the Independent Directors had resigned from the board, nominally for personal reasons and without any acrimony toward the company. Quite a frenzy of activity and a 25% ish drop in one day... but I'm in it for the long term.
    Feb 13, 2014. 08:14 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Long Case For Liquidmetal Technologies  [View article]
    One of the news wires suggested one of the Independent Directors had resigned, apparently for personal reasons and with no acrimony towards the company.
    Feb 13, 2014. 08:12 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tableau +14.2% AH after trouncing estimates on 93% license growth  [View news story]
    Beautiful software wins. Well done, Tableau!
    Feb 4, 2014. 04:56 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • iPhone 5c Failure? Baloney!  [View article]
    Great article. One other point of view:

    One thing that always confused me was how close the unsubsidised 5c price was to the 5s. On the one hand, the 5c looks like it was aiming at a younger demographic, likely to be absorbed slowly as parent funded iPhone 4/4s contracts came up for renewal anniversaries. So, I sort of expected a slow burn for the 5c.

    There is a good book by Dan Ariely called “Predictably Irrational”, where he gives an example of three offers for subscriptions to “The Economist”. One the online version ($59), a second for the print version only ($125) and a third for both the paper and online version ($125). It turns out that if options (1) and (3) were the sole offers presented, takeup would be 68%/32% respectively. But sticking the apparently useless “decoy” price in the middle, the takeup profile went 16%/0%/84%.

    Doesn’t that sound like the effect of having the prices of the 4s, 5c and 5s next to each other? It looks that’s exactly as it panned out – the 5c was the slightly less desirable phone decoy price.

    Time will tell if the one piece Liquid Metal casing and Sapphire Glass fabrications will help drop the 5c class handset into the $300 bracket and allow Apple to retain their margins at that level. If so, that would give a different result that the one Dan Ariely’s work suggests.
    Feb 4, 2014. 02:38 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bob Galvin Turning In His Grave  [View article]
    Hiya, it was the definition of the Mueller blog as "definitive resource" on patent related issues. Given its funding sources, it is usually a Microsoft or Oracle opinion piece, so I'd counsel anyone to seek other sources of opinions before they let their investing batting average depend on his words alone.
    Feb 4, 2014. 08:35 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bob Galvin Turning In His Grave  [View article]
    Anyone who thinks that FOSSpatents is a definitive source of patent news is tragically misguided. It is an anti-Google resource that has, in the past, been found to be being paid by Oracle and by Microsoft to promote their agendas without declaring such interest alongside its pronouncements.

    Everyone entitled to their own agenda of course, but balance isn't best served by relying on paid shills.
    Feb 2, 2014. 06:43 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Long Case For Liquidmetal Technologies  [View article]
    After noticing a patent filing in Nov and Apple starting to trademark "iWatch" in a few countries, I bought 22,000 shares at 20c. Big departure for me, as most of my plays are long term buy and hold (Google, Apple, Amazon, Tableau, ARM) alongside some index trackers. I put around the same value into GTAT as I did into LQMT, given their Texas Sapphire Plant is starting to hire production staff.

    Apple employees filed around 17 Liquid Metal related patents in the first two weeks of Jan 2014. However, on the bear side, there appeared to be a legal dispute with an "exclusive" manufacturing partner who appear to be taking 10%-ish positions in LQMT, and there's little news of what happened to an exclusive agreement with Omega/Swatch. So, sitting very firmly on the fence right now, but very happy with nearly 100% returns within 2 weeks. I just wonder if it will continue.

    Major trading announcement for Apple today or tomorrow, so will wait to see how they do and if any mention is made of this stock.
    Jan 27, 2014. 11:36 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Apple TV Ready For A Face To Face Battle With Google's TV Terminator?  [View article]
    Apple are not, in this case, providing a superior user experience with their device. Chromecast is likely to surpass the size of the installed base of Apple TVs this side of Christmas, and will provide another rich source of data on consumption habits.

    Apple make their money selling devices. Google by monetising purchase intentions. Both will be the successful duopoly, and the only folks suffering are gaming console suppliers, who'll find their aspirational place as "the households entertainment hub" completely marginalised.
    Oct 9, 2013. 12:37 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment