Seeking Alpha

Dialectical Materialist

Dialectical Materialist
Send Message
View as an RSS Feed
View Dialectical Materialist's Comments BY TICKER:

Latest  |  Highest rated
  • Apple Sold 13 Million iPhones On Launch Weekend - That Should Frighten Investors [View article]
    Illuminati, Richbar was referring to Fiscal year 2015, so his clock has already run out.

    Apple clocked $234B in Rev and Net Income of over $53B in Fiscal 2015. Richbar was 14% low on Rev and over 26% too low on Net Income. For comparison 26% too low would be like naming all 39 US States. Not too close.
    Oct 29, 2015. 01:28 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Earnings: Record Breaking Quarter, Anemic Guidance [View article]
    You have to use your noodle when looking at Apple guidance.

    Last year they guided to $65B in q1 2015. They beat this by 14%.

    This year they are guiding more than 18% HIGHER than their 2015 guidance.

    What does this tell you about their growth potential?

    There is of course no guarantee that they will beat guidance by 14% again, but only a very silly person would think Apple is guiding to the exact number they think they'll hit. 18% higher guidance YoY does not suggest anemic growth. The fact that guidance is higher than actual revenue YoY is a very positive sign.
    Oct 28, 2015. 11:23 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: Mac Sales Delivered Increased Market Share But Still Posted Negative Growth [View article]
    Author said, "Gartner claimed that Apple Mac sales increased 1.5% YoY but IDC said the global shipment of Macs for Q3 2015 was actually -3.4% YoY compared to Q3 2014. I will go with the assessment of IDC that Mac sales still declined by volume, in spite of it growing its market share from 6.9% to 7.5%."

    Now we know that instead of -3.4% it was actually +3.4% from a then record 5.5 million to a current record of 5.7 million.

    All of the analysis for why they experience "negative growth" is now defunct, because they in fact experienced yet more sales growth in an otherwise declining segment. Just for the record.
    Oct 28, 2015. 02:11 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Fiscal 2015 Should Be Strong, But Lagging Sales Might Put A Damper On Q1 2016 [View article]
    I remember once the iPhone 5 came out, an analyst said that iPhone mania was about to end because "No one will want to stand in line and buy an iPhone 87". That's right, he projected 164 years into the future (assuming each model had an 's' cycle). He was being facetious, but his point was the iPhone's run was pretty much done because the novelty had worn off and that is why he was bearish on AAPL.

    Apple has sold about 500 million phones since then. And every model year is the year they are supposed to finally lose momentum.
    Oct 27, 2015. 02:24 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: A Misunderstood Giant [View instapost]
    Karl Denninger from How to Admit You're Out of Ideas (April 24 2013)

    "A company with a cash hoard of some $40 billion on the balance sheet that decides to buy back shares is a firm that is telling you it has nothing in the oven that is revolutionary to drive future EPS with."

    and betters still,

    "The iFeminineProduct is about to run into some trouble."

    That's the opening line of his Sep 28 210 Article, Now Apple Could Have Some Problems.

    He finishes with the line, "With RIMM selling at a P/E of 9 and Apple at nearly 22, you may have a wee problem down the road if you're an Apple Stock Fanboy."

    Seriously, an actual article. I'd recommend you read them for a laugh but I respect your time too much.
    Oct 23, 2015. 09:27 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Report: Apple Music near release of Android app [View news story]
    Gregg, I'm not stalking you, I just happened to have finally gotten around to reading your excellent blog post and made a couple comments there. But now you have me thinking about how Apple Music connects (or doesn't) to what you have said about the company.

    I subscribe to Apple Music. I use it. I enjoy it. Having said that I can't for the life of me figure out what Apple is thinking with its design of iTunes to begin with and with the new iTunes and Apple Music monster they have created currently.

    Design at this level is not arbitrary. They had some philosophy or goals in mind when they made the decisions they did. But I can't for the life of me figure out what they were.

    I once read a book that suggested the problem with Microsoft Office (specifically Excel) was that the toolbar was developed by the marketing department and not by the users. The thinking goes the toolbar (and later ribbon, which was even worse) was designed to show off all of Office's gee whiz features and not for the person who would actually have to select among them in the course of daily productivity.

    That made some sense to me and got me to be a lot less hostile toward the product. I just gritted my teeth and invested the time to customize the thing for my workflow. After that I had a lot fewer problems and was less puzzled by the whole sloppiness of the original design.

    But I can't bring even that explanation to Apple Music and come away with any satisfaction. Because I can't figure out even what gee whiz features they might be trying to show case if that were the point of the design.

    How does this tie in with your excellent description of Apple? I don't see much of the addictive reinforcement taking place because I've been too often reduced to poking at things in blind frustration. I was a hobbyist programmer for many years and I know enough about toolbar design as a developer and as user to really admire when something is where it ought to be. Save me clicks, or save me thinking, or grab the brass ring and do both at once. I love a well designed program. Like we all do, of course.

    But what was iTunes and why did they go ahead an lay another blanket of fog on top of it with Apple Music?

    I have poked around enough to learn how to get it to perform some basic functions that are the ones I need. But I have no idea why I must choose the items I do and there are still things I'd like to do that I haven't figured out.

    You say that software shapes the brain. Well they seem to want to assume I think of music in playlists and if I don't, I'm pretty well out of luck.

    The way I actually think of music is the way I was trained in my youth. Select a song or album, listen to it, and then think of what I want to listen to next. Listen to that.

    I do like the singer-songwriter channel and have discovered new music with that. And that music discovery experience was what made me conclude it was worth paying for. So maybe that particular experience fits with your description of Apple as selling experience. But the rest of the software is to brain training as The Rack is to Yoga.
    Oct 23, 2015. 08:16 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: A Misunderstood Giant [View instapost]
    Gregg, Are you familiar with the articles Karl Denninger used to write? They allowed him to say ridiculous things that would be deleted as abuse if they appeared in the comment stream. Pure click bait.

    Along the same lines, have you ever wondered why you can't "ignore" certain commenters? The initial explanation SA's then Editor in Chief (and presently CEO) Eli Hoffman gave was that it would be "confusing to the reader to see responses to invisible comments". I think a quick mental experiment about what would happen to the click count if folks weren't compelled to check back on a thread only to see it was Mr. Bozo with his latest hyperbolic ad hominem tells the real story.

    Imagine how stingy traffic would be on Seeking Alpha if only thoughtful people came to read thoughtful articles. It's hard to support that kind of business with page-click revenue.
    Oct 23, 2015. 07:39 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: A Misunderstood Giant [View instapost]
    Gregg, I have one question that seems unrelated, but it's not. Are you an ex-smoker?

    Your willingness to explore software as cigarettes seems apt, but also not something that would be common in an active smoker.
    Oct 23, 2015. 07:19 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Fiscal 2015 Should Be Strong, But Lagging Sales Might Put A Damper On Q1 2016 [View article]
    Retired One, as I have repeatedly suggested in the past, some funds can't touch a dividend stock unless the company has increased its dividend regularly for a number of years. These funds will not get into AAPL no matter how high the dividend is unless it meets the criterion of historic increases. Apple is sure to meet this criterion soon, as they have stated they will be increasing the dividend each year.

    But those calling for 4 or 5% dividends now must realize Apple doesn't have the domestic cash to meet this demand right now. That's something around $5 a share for about 5.5 billion shares. So that amounts to $27.5 billion each year in dividends. Apple needs domestic cash for dividends and this would leave them no operating cash unless they borrowed a great deal every year against their foreign holdings.

    It is one thing to borrow money opportunistically. It is another to lock yourself in to having to borrow on a regular timetable. The position this would put Apple in would be disadvantageous.

    It is smarter for Apple to be relatively stingy with its dividend now as it seeks to unlock its foreign earnings by borrowing opportunistically and by reducing the share count. It may very well be that in another few years they could meet an obligation of $5 a share and still have domestic funds left to run the business. But that is certainly not the case now.
    Oct 22, 2015. 11:03 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Fiscal 2015 Should Be Strong, But Lagging Sales Might Put A Damper On Q1 2016 [View article]
    I think Apple will raise its dividend in the spring just as they have been doing for years. And I suspect it will be a smaller increase than many would like. But over time, their repeated drumbeat of increasing dividends will attract a boatload of institutional dividend growth investment money.
    Oct 22, 2015. 02:15 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple $1000: Why It's Time To Buy [View article]
    "Competition is catching up and margins are shrinking. Gravy train is OVER."

    Or not, as it turns out. Still more gravy in this train...
    Oct 22, 2015. 02:12 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Fiscal 2015 Should Be Strong, But Lagging Sales Might Put A Damper On Q1 2016 [View article]
    Zed, you said,

    "In the UK, the largest mobile phone retailer is showing every model in every colour in stock and has been showing that for the 6s since launch. Very different situation to what happened with the 6."

    And yet you told us last January 15th:

    "Certainly in the UK the iPhone 6 never really seemed to be in short supply after the first week nor have I seen large number of them being used."

    Makes you think.

    The reason I went back to check was your comment about the iPhone 6s being widely available in the UK reminded me of a theme that was being repeated last year about the iPhone 6. It seems your observation of availability in the UK, even if accurate, is not a good indicator of sales.
    Oct 21, 2015. 01:39 AM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Arrogance Of Tech [View article]
    What they need is an app to gets those darn kids off my lawn!
    Oct 20, 2015. 03:42 PM | 17 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: The One Item Nobody Is Mentioning [View article]

    Do your wife and kids live in China?

    Apple has been without Jobs since 2011. In those four years, Apple has hardly been rudderless. The stock is now down to split adjusted 780 or so. Why am I not concerned?

    I do suspect the Apple car will not rely on a rudder, so in some sense Apple's future is "rudderless".
    Oct 20, 2015. 03:36 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: The One Item Nobody Is Mentioning [View article]

    Every shareholder gets votes in proportion to his shares. And Carl Icahn has 45 million shares and supports buybacks. You will have your work cut out for you marshaling retail investors to demand a larger dividend.

    But I wonder if the average retail investor even agrees with you. If you expect to hold AAPL at least ten more years, it would be beneficial to increase the future cash available for dividends by reducing the float. That's just how the math works out. You can get one dollar now or two dollars later. Depending on your own horizon, the dollar up front may be a better deal, but I hope and expect Apple will continue its current strategy of incremental increases to the dividend while aggressively buying back undervalued shares.

    If a 4% dividend is really that important to you, there are plenty of stocks that will pay you one. (PSEC pays 13%.) Or you could hope to find enough like minded shareholders to match Uncle Carl's votes.

    Lastly, as I have pointed out before, many important dividend funds will not invest in a stock until they have shown a long history of dividend increases. If Apple were to declare a high dividend all at once, it would not attract the investment dollars that getting there more slowly would. So be patient. Or not.
    Oct 20, 2015. 12:08 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment