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  • Google Needs A Breakthrough Product Now [View article]
    At its core google is an ad company. I think this is fundamentally incompatable with being a great software or hardware company. It can do these other things but it will never be great at them and will only detract from its core mission.
    Jul 13, 2012. 02:46 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: $420 A Share Could Have Marked The Bottom [View article]
    Apple shares will continue to be dicey until the company builds a bigger phone, which probably won't happen this year. The high-end market has spoken and the new standard is 4.8-5" If Apple expects to make another round of profit with a product refresh, it needs to give its fans a reason to upgrade. Two extra lines of text wasn't enough to upgrade from the 4s to the 5, which is why the 4s has been selling so well. A fingerprint scanner or faster processor won't justify an upgrade to the 5s for many people. While most Apple fans don't believe a bigger screen is warranted, those who have experienced various screen sizes, e.g. Android users, have settled on the 4.8-5" phones as the ideal size. Unfortunately, the longer Apple waits to enlarge its screen size the bigger lead it gives Android developers in building apps optimized for this size.
    Mar 17, 2013. 05:11 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google Needs A Breakthrough Product Now [View article]
    I would add that while Google is currently winning in the smartphone market, developing the next generation of mobile os technology is going to be a full time job. Phones, tablets, smart tv's, smart kitchen appliances! All of these things will require an OS and a company devoted to make it all work seamlessly. Google has already shown that it cant even integrate android across diifenent phones. I see only MSFT and Apple as having the OS expertise and focus to lead into there.
    Jul 13, 2012. 03:00 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Samsung's (SSNLF.PK) Galaxy Note 8.0 might be the most serious rival the iPad Mini (AAPL) has seen thus far. The Note 8.0, which ships in Q2, sports a 1200x800 display, a 1.6GHz. quad-core Exynos CPU, split-screen app viewing support, and (like Note smartphones) an S Pen stylus and several apps built for it. No pricing details for now. IDC estimates Samsung's tablet share grew to 15.1% in Q4, though that's still well behind the 43.6% claimed by the iPad, which continues to offer far more tablet-specific apps than Android tablets. (next-gen Nexus 7[View news story]
    The utility of the S pen cannot be understated. A functional stylus is one area Apple has missed the boat on big time and will suffer the loss of market share for it.
    Feb 24, 2013. 06:56 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft's (MSFT) plans to make Internet Explorer's "Do Not Track" feature a default setting isn't just upsetting the online ad industry - Microsoft's ad division is reportedly up in arms about it as well. Some sources even claim Microsoft, which just took a $6.2B write-off related to aQuantive, might exit the online ad business, already reeling from executive departures. The fact the browser division made the Do Not Track decision without advertising's input has upset many (ed: that sounds familiar).  [View news story]
    Nearsighted on the part of the ad business execs. Here msft takes a step towards reparing its anti-consumer image by doing whats best for the end-user for a change and the marketers are up in arms? They should all be fired! Of all people, those in the ad business with a background in marketing should recognize the value of restoring brand image and consumer trust.
    Jul 7, 2012. 08:15 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Microsoft: 25% Gains Likely On Mobile Push [View article]
    "some analysts have predicted it will overtake Apple by 2015" hahahaha,
    but seriously, the real play here is Nokia. Msft won't overtake anyone, especially Apple. It just needs to execute and gain a foothold. Theres room for a professional business focused smartphone maker in the market to take RIM's lost market share, which will keep imploding due to a lack of critical mass in its app offerings and little or no chance for positive momentum there. Apple is for lay consumers and Android is for teens and techies. If Msft can attract enough mobile developers to achieve a critical mass, it will capture the professionals in the room. When it becomes evident that MSFT is gaining traction with its mobile platform in the business world, investors will take note and Nokia will pop. Msft has already lost the lay consumers in the market by allowing pc makers to peddle windows bloatware for too many years and failing badly in its first mobile iteration. Lay consumers are still scarred but it could still make a comeback and business is its entry point.
    May 31, 2012. 12:37 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Not A Buy-And-Hold Investment? That's News To Me [View article]
    If I could take a stab at what this author neglected to do: Apple will become the company that manages your digital life, providing you with both the devices and the ecosystem to make sense of an increasingly complex and fragmented array of technologies. In the near future it will do so primarily through media: music, books, tv, video, social networking, consolidating these and other features into a neat package that the average condumer can pick up and comprehend. As technology becomes more pervasive, it will incorporate the appliances in our home into its ecosystem. It won't be the only company on the block to do this, Google is going there and Amazon looks like its headed in that direction. But it already has a huge headstart which will make it #1 or #2, a spot that justifies a mega market cap in a future dominated by technology. The future will be just to complex and rich with technology for the prevailing open source "fragmented" status approach to make sense to the average consumers. As far its current mega cap status, if you consider that Apple is like an amalgam of pieces of Microsoft, Dell, Sony, Samsung and many others, its size is well justified.
    Dec 6, 2011. 06:35 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Best Buy Survey Reveals The Reason Behind Sluggish Windows 8 Sales [View article]
    Great points. A tablet is not a pc and a pc is not a tablet. It was a dumb idea to merge the two. Thankfully for MSFT its easily correctable with just one software update: make the metro interface optional. For all the OEM manufactures that drank the coolaid and invested in touch screen products however, its allot of money down the drain.
    Mar 11, 2013. 03:41 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Best Buy Survey Reveals The Reason Behind Sluggish Windows 8 Sales [View article]
    Touchscreens are more hype than substance. Two things become clear when you use a touchscreen computer: (1)one you get smudges all over your screen (2) the mouse/trackpad is both more efficient and more accurate.
    Mar 10, 2013. 08:09 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • With international smartphone buyers clamoring for large displays and cheap Android phones spreading like wildfire in fast-growing emerging markets, "Apple’s (AAPL) competitors are finally doing a better job of making the kinds of phones that customers want," writes The New Yorker's James Surowiecki, summing up the biggest fear on investors' minds. But Apple has shown a knack for innovating its way out of tough spots, and can do so again. "Failing to build a phablet or a cheap phone may well have been mistakes, but they’re fixable mistakes." [View news story]
    I like how you put that, the "one hand theory." Probably the dumbest strategic move Apple could make in its smartphone business. It will pay for it, not now but give it six months and we will see how well the iphone 5s with its narrow screen competes against a whole breed of largers phones with beautiful larger HD displays. The apple advantage in ecosystem is negated by the small form factor. 4.7-5" phones are not "phablets" lake Galaxy Note, you can still hold them comfortably in one hand and you don't look ridiculous holding one up to your ear. However, you can now browse the net without straining your eyes or type without as many errors, both important for the majority of adults. There was a big lack of vision there on Apple's part given that smartphones are used more for browsing and apps than as phones. It will be at least until 2014 that Apple will correct that error since it apparently still doesn't believe it made one (the "one hand theory" commercials are still running). Meanwhile, people can see what's coming down the road and the stock is getting beat up even while the sales numbers look so good.
    Mar 3, 2013. 12:14 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Apple Just Boring? [View article]
    Great article. I would disagree that phablets are a serious concern for Apple though. Too bulky and silly looking to go mainstream. However, the iPhones small form factor is indeed a big problem. Apple's greatest strategic blunder at this time is convincing itself that it didn't need to upgrade its screen size, merely adding couple of lines out of a concern for app "fragmentation". As Android manufactures have hit on the sweet spot of ~4.7" long ago Apple arrogantly keeps its course.
    Feb 25, 2013. 08:55 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Samsung's (SSNLF.PK) Galaxy Note 8.0 might be the most serious rival the iPad Mini (AAPL) has seen thus far. The Note 8.0, which ships in Q2, sports a 1200x800 display, a 1.6GHz. quad-core Exynos CPU, split-screen app viewing support, and (like Note smartphones) an S Pen stylus and several apps built for it. No pricing details for now. IDC estimates Samsung's tablet share grew to 15.1% in Q4, though that's still well behind the 43.6% claimed by the iPad, which continues to offer far more tablet-specific apps than Android tablets. (next-gen Nexus 7[View news story]
    Yes, I neant "overstated." Using a capacitive stylus on an iPad is like using a crayan, so no I don't think the thousands of such products qualify as a stylus or anything comparable to the S pen. Their popularity however speaks to the market demand for such a product. The demand is there, especially in business and education, and apple is completely missing it. Samsung gets it.
    Feb 25, 2013. 12:20 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Will The iPhone Mini Save Apple? [View article]
    In addition to the lower cost iPhone, Apple has missed the boat in three other areas:
    1. Larger screen sizes: something like 4.7" is ideal. Considering smartphone users use their phones mainly for reading/web and not as much for talking, it makes sense that the largest holdable/pocketable form factor is ideal. Unfortunately, the Apple leadership (and fan base for that matter) is too enamored with their slick iphone 5 commercial to take notice. Android manufacturers have latched on to the larger form factor a long time ago and as they begin to produce phones as aesthetically pleasing as the iPhone 5 (a host are on their way) Apples advantage in apps and OS won't look so great when places side by side.
    2. Search. Perhaps it was never a boat it could catch, but something like Siri, which is really the future of portable technology, is really incomplete without an information base and a way to access it. Only Google, and maybe Microsoft with its Bing data, can deliver the AI capabilities to bring us a truly intelligent personal assistant. Apple has nothing on this end and doesn't seem too interested as Google invades its OS with its intelligent cloud based services.
    3. Steve Jobs was good at doing an about face and embracing an approach he had previously derided. The apple leadership doesn't have the same kind of skill. One area that I think needs an about-face on apples part is its aversion to a stylus. The iPad really isnt possible to use to its fully capacity without a precise stylus. Windows and Samsung have embraced the stylus's potential for its utility in business and note taking. Even as the market for clunky capacitive stylus's proliferates, Apple is unwavering in its dedication to the "pure multitouch" experience. The lack of a good stylus will torpedo the iPads progress in business and education.

    These are all choices that will hurt Apple's growth in the future. For now, the business, its cash horde and its margins are the envy of all. But the market doesn't look to the present but to the future. As margins tighten and its competitors innovate and Apple stays the course on its bad choices, 8x earnings will look like a rich valuation for this company. For my part, I sincerely hope they do a Steve Jobs style about face on the above mentioned. I really loved this company and its products; its hard to see this former innovator move so slowly.
    Feb 20, 2013. 09:27 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 3 Reasons Google Has Already Peaked [View article]
    this article is devoid of substance. Here a couple of points to consider with Google:

    (1) Google's biggest weakness is its execution on products. Its products are always half-baked and take several itirations to perfect. This hurts its brand and marketing potential, especially as it moves outside of search.

    (2) Google's biggest strength is its data, which no one seems to be able to match. Make no mistake, the future of technology, be it mobile or whatever, is Artificial Intelligence (as best illustrated and now popularized by Apples Siri). What Siri lacks Goog is well positioned to deliver because of its massive data infrastrucure. Whether in the near future it will deliver an AI package that leverages its lead in data is another quesion.
    Oct 28, 2012. 03:54 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stung by Apple's abandoning of Google Maps on iOS, Google (GOOG) says it will slash prices for high-volume access to its Maps API (previous) by 87%. Google is also staying committed to iOS via its own mapping apps, and is talking up the higher click rates obtained by new ad formats for its mobile maps. With mobile ads related to maps and locations accounting for an estimated 25% of mobile ad revenue, Google has plenty of incentive to invest heavily in this space.  [View news story]
    My experience has been that the google maps service on iOS has lately been more and more inferior to google maps over a web browser. Data has been often incorrect or outdated. Not sure what the deal is but methinks goog handicapped their iOS service or just didn't pay it as much care and attention as the browser based ones where they can plant cookies and track you. In any case they have been asking for the break-up for some time. That or they saw it coming for some time. Their other services on iOS are prettty subpar. Somehow, I dont see that changing so long as apple and google are competitors.
    Jun 26, 2012. 12:46 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment