Kevin Murphy

Kevin Murphy
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  • Reports: Apple testing dual-lens camera modules, plans March 15 iPhone/iPad event  [View news story]
    Exactly! A projector like the Sony MP-CL1 should fit in a phone soon. Like having a TV in your pocket.

    The projector shown in a demo by Lenovo is also an input device. It projects a keyboard on a table, then follows your finger movements to see what your are typing. In a demo last June, Lenovo had a classical pianist come out and play a piano keyboard that was projected onto a desk top.

    Those are some cool features... cmon Tim & Jony, follow up on this.
    Feb 2, 2016. 02:54 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Report: Apple creates large virtual reality team, has built headset prototypes  [View news story]
    Good questions. No debt. Revenue is $8m as listed in Yahoo, but will be perhaps a bit more when they report next week.

    The revenue should start rolling in from royalties on product sold by Sony, Celluon, Sharp, Lenovo, Quilter -- sometime during 2016. This will depend on sales.

    They get fees from Sony, but I think that is spread across the 8 years of their licensing agreement. After that, revs are based on unit sales.

    Here's the question:
    - Will AAPL need some new feature in its new phones, and when?

    We all know that AAPL waits until others come out with a new product, like Sony's MP-CL1, Lenovo's planned & demoed projector integrated into a cellphone. But they cannot wait too long.

    And if AAPL does decide to integrate a projector, who will provide it?
    Sony already provides all iPhone cameras so they are in the supply chain & know how to work with AAPL. Sony has already paid millions of up-front royalties on future sales.

    Sony just in the past week announced a move of their Playstation division to Silicon Valley -- and they seem to be backing out of some consumer devices to focus on their most profitable unit, which is providing components to smartphone makers, specifically cameras.

    Sony initially marketed the MP-CL1 projector (released in mid 2015) as an accessory to the PS2 device - gamers like to get together and play games. If you can stick a projector in your cellphone pocket it's a lot easier than carrying a monitor to the neighbor's basement. But lately Sony has gone quiet on promoting MP-CL1. And MVIS has gone very quiet on announcing agreements with companies like Lenovo, Quilter, Sharp. The only way we know that it's MVIS inside is when these guys indicate that, yes it is - either from MVIS or Sony inside.

    With 200 patents in the laser projection space, MVIS is just sitting there. I reckon it's a good bet as an acquisition.

    Texas Instruments has led in small projectors, but they use DLP technology, which is different from the laser technology used by MVIS. Differences are: Uses less power, generates less heat, DOES NOT NEED FOCUSING - eliminating the focus wheel & allowing slim integration into smartphones.

    Enough for now.

    Jan 29, 2016. 10:45 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Report: Apple creates large virtual reality team, has built headset prototypes  [View news story]
    Yes it is small, but it's been around for 20 years with mostly DOD funding.

    Stock jumped up to $3 almost a year ago after they signed a deal with SONY, which gave Sony 8 years of non-exclusive license rights to the MEMS laser projector technology for $14 or 18 million, I forget which.

    MVIS has been working with Pioneer on using MEMS in HUD displays for automotive, also with UPS for the same in trucks. Lots of stuff going on but no profits yet.

    MVIS was highly promoted in 2005 by George Gilder. It's taken a long time before the technology was mature enough and could be manufactured in pico-size. The display unit is truly tiny.

    Yes, I own some, started buying last summer.
    Jan 29, 2016. 09:46 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Report: Apple creates large virtual reality team, has built headset prototypes  [View news story]
    MVIS provides laser projection that can be used to go directly into the eyes.

    MVIS technology is now packaged by Sony into a pocketable laser projector, which is now being sold by REI in their camping electronics dept. The laser projector is called MP-CL1, and it's also sold by Celluon, which is the version in REI.

    The MVIS technology is being packaged into a new smartphone by a Chinese company called Qualper, to be released in 2016. So you have a cellphone that can take fotos and videos, take it back to the camp, and display it on the inside of a tent, or on the wall of a bar.

    Lenovo also has demoed a smartphone with an integrated projector. Asia is big on nano-projectors. It is hard for us to imagine the market, as we all have 50" TVs or bigger. Asian living quarters are much smaller, not so much room for a home theater.

    MVIS has over 200 patents in this area, and its MEMS modules now have red, blue & green lasers with very high contrast ratio.

    Sharp is now making a robot called RoBoHon with a MVIS based projector in its forehead and an integrated smartphone, with Siri-like conversation. To be released in 2016, demoed widely in Asia.

    STM has been manufacturing some of the chips needed to integrate the projector into the phone. Sony is the major supplier of cameras for smartphones, especially for iPhones. Sony acts as the integrator of the pico projectors.

    I think there is a future in this. And also for MVIS based VR / AR stuff. MVIS has been in biz for 20 years and was largely funded by the DOD for inflight user projectors that go directly into the retina.
    Jan 29, 2016. 08:32 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Music now has more than 10M subscribers  [View news story]
    One trick freight train is more like it
    Jan 10, 2016. 08:58 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Premarket Biotech Digest: Tax Inversion Deals, Gilead's HIV Franchise, AbbVie's Outlook  [View article]
    On PFE tax rates vs Allergen tax rates: The question is as follows...

    If PFE sold its drugs in the USA at the UK drug prices, would it still be paying at a 25% rate?

    My guess is that its tax rate in the USA would then be even lower than Allergens rate in the UK
    Nov 2, 2015. 10:17 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Music misses a beat  [View news story]
    By Jove I think you've got it!

    A self-driving Toro lawnmower could be in AAPL's future. That would free up a lot of talent that AAPL could draw on to replace Mr. Cook.
    Aug 28, 2015. 10:09 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Plan To Destroy The Large Cable Bundle  [View article]
    What if your phone had an inbuilt laser projector? Then you could display on a wall, or seat back, or tent wall, or sheet held between two trees.

    If this seems like a good idea, check out MVIS. Also check out Lenovo's video of a demo of this in Shanghai in June. Also check out Celluon's pico projector, about the size of an iPhone, on Amazon. And check out Sony's about to be announced accessory for Playstation, which is a pico projector much like the Celluon unit, so you can take your playstation anywhere & project onto any surface.
    Aug 27, 2015. 03:40 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Plan To Destroy The Large Cable Bundle  [View article]
    I get local TV via aerial. I get other stuff via Apple TV, paying only for internet access.

    If I want to watch sports that are not available on local TV, I go to a bar. I can afford to with the money saved on TV subscriptions.
    Aug 27, 2015. 03:33 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Plan To Destroy The Large Cable Bundle  [View article]
    If AAPL holds bonds and rates rise, the amount paid by the bond says the same. The price of the bond drops -- that;s what it means when rates rise.

    AAPL may be very smart and sell all bonds before a rate rise, then buy back later. If it bought the same bonds, they would be at a lower price to reflect the higher rates.

    seems like not everyone understands bonds very well.
    Aug 27, 2015. 03:30 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple's Plan To Destroy The Large Cable Bundle  [View article]
    If rates rose, the value of AAPL's bonds would drop. Simple equation, known to all bond investors.
    Aug 27, 2015. 03:27 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stocks: Perspectives On The Selloff  [View article]
    S&P is at 1925 as I write this, up from 1922. We'll see by the end of the day.

    That's with efforts by the markets to limit drops in price.
    Aug 24, 2015. 10:51 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Can Apple Add Enough Hardware To Keep The iPhone Relevant?  [View article]
    You see no laser projector in the future? Lenovo and Sony are both working on them. STM and MVIS have apparently teamed to provide the basics, licensing to phone builders.

    It would be nice to project an image, video, game, movie or whatever on a wall from a laser pico projector built into the phone. I've seen reports that AAPL is working on such a thing.
    Jul 10, 2015. 11:38 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Any Company A Major Threat To Apple?  [View article]
    Yes, but, the next Motorola phones will be built by Lenovo... and be quite different from the old Moto or GOOG phones. Lenovo is now the 3rd biggest phone producer, after AAPL and Samsung. If we are gonna talk about threats to AAPL, Lenovo should be one of the three in the conversation.

    They have resources and cred.
    Jul 7, 2015. 12:08 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Any Company A Major Threat To Apple?  [View article]
    We have to consider Lenovo as a rival to AAPL. They recently bought from Google the Motorola phone business and significant IP. Lenovo has huge presence in corporate America, to a much greater extent than Samsung, due to Lenovo's purchase of IBM's small computer businesses especially PCs. Certainly, Lenovo's PC biz in corporate America can be a counterweight to AAPL's alliance with IBM, and Lenovo has proven itself by retaining excellent relations with corporate IT departments.

    Meanwhile, Lenovo recently demo'd a new phone with an inbuilt laser projector. Have a look at this demo...

    This phone is the size of an iPhone 6, and it can display photos, charts, movies, TV shows, your family videos or whatever on the wall - with auto focus, in large screen format. Major cool. In your home, on the airplane, at a party, in a local bar...

    Or, get this, flip the little display module around and it will show a keyboard on the table in front of you, and track your keystrokes. It's like having a full sized keyboard in your phone. Or, it can display a piano keyboard and read your fingertips pushing the keys.

    In the video (see link above), at the recent Lenovo tech conference in China, they had classical pianist Lang Lang come in and play some Beethoven and ragtime from a piano keyboard projected on the table in front of him. Lang Lang is a world class concert pianist. Imagine the new apps that could follow... in music, medicine, gaming...

    This is the most exciting announcement of a new cellphone product that I can remember since the early Steve Jobs iPhone announcements, and the audience, mostly members of the press, seem amazed at this innovation via the oohs and aahs captured by the video.

    I look forward to other comments on this topic, as I think it is a potential game changer.

    In fact, recent events in AAPL might be signaling an AAPL reaction to this Lenovo demo. At about the same time as the demo, AAPL suddenly pulled its scheduled demo of AppleTV (not ready for prime time, they said); and they suddenly moved Jonny Ive upstairs to a less significant corporate role, stripping some of his power as the product boss. Is this all connected? Pure speculation on my part, but the timing is close enough that something smells a bit off to me.

    Disclosure: I own AAPL stock and the family has many AAPL products from phones, pads to MacBooks & IMac. I do not own Lenovo stock. I do own a bit of Sony, as they seem to be working on a similar cellphone laser display, based on their recent $14million payment to Microvision (MVIS) -- which makes embeddable lasers. And I own a bit of MVIS.
    Jul 6, 2015. 07:41 PM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment