Does the Galaxy Note 9 Really Hold a Candle to the iPhone X?

“If you don’t have a competitive advantage, don’t compete”

-Jack Welch

(Source: Samsung)

Last week, Samsung, Apple’s biggest competitor, unveiled the brand new Galaxy Note 9. Coming in at the same price as the iPhone, the Note 9 looks to snatch Apple sales.

But what does the Note 9 have in store? Firstly, the screen difference is massive. The Note has a 6.4 inch screen screen, which, when compared to the iPhone X’s 5.8 inch screen, is incomprehensible.

(Source: Samsung)

Remember the times of the Galaxy Note’s battery exploding? Well, hopefully those days are over as the Apple competitor adds a 4,000mAh battery, compared to the iPhone X’s 2,716mAh battery.

With all this brand new information about the Note, 9to5Mac decided to put the phones to the test and decide which one was more powerful. What they found was phenomenal for Apple: the iPhone X was able to outperform the Galaxy Note 9 in overall performance, which has a Geekbench 4 testing of 8,876, compared to the iPhones 10,357.  Not only that, but the iPhone won the graphics test. The only testing that the Galaxy Note 9 won was the display testing.

With the current gen iPhone X beating the Galaxy Note 9 in so many aspects, it’s safe to say that when the new iPhones launch this fall, there should be no competition.

AAPL has been up this past week

(Source: Yahoo Finance)

I Know First Algorithm is still bullish for AAPL.

Apple Stock Forecast: Bullish Rally Goes On With Expansion To Austria And Leaks Of New Water-Resistant Lightining

Gleb ZInkovskii_photo

 

 

The article was written by Gleb Zinkovskii, a Financial Analyst at I Know First.

 

 

“Older people sit down and ask, ‘What is it?’ but the boy asks, ‘What can I do with it?’.”
-Steve Jobs

Highlights:

  • Apple has ideas for water-resistant Lightning connectors
  • Apple opens its first store in Austria
  • Apple’s Unusual Pursuit of Cobalt

Apple has ideas for water-resistant Lightning connectors

Apple is known for patenting concepts way before their introduction to the products. Recently, US patent bureau received applications from Apple regarding new moist and water resistant Lighting connectors for the iPhone chargers. As far as the latest phones produced by Apple can withstand inadvertent trips into puddles, sinks and toilets, it seems a reasonable step to make the most important iPhone accessory to be a water resistant as well.

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[Image Source: USPTO. See more details here]

The other Lightning cable design presents a deformable rubber or plastic O-ring to seal a cable connection against moisture.

Besides the new concepts described in the patent application filed on Thursday March 8th it contains the similar approach to protecting USB-C connectors, too. “A liquid-tight seal is formed between the accessory and the electronic device,” the application says, making them “… useful in moist, wet and/or dirty environments.”

As far as the competitors flagship devices from Samsung are already waterproof and have wireless charging abilities, it becomes crucial for Apple’s devices to keep up with this pace and have the ability to withstand hard treatments, especially when you consider that an iPhone X costs more than $1,000. But as countless shattered screens and a thriving smartphone case market show, true ruggedness remains elusive.

Apple’s ideas include a tapered Lightning connector that stuffs into its port and a rubber gasket that squeezes tightly to seal a port when a cable is inserted.

This Apple design shows a USB-C connector — found on Macs and some Android phones — that offers a water seal.

It isn’t clear whether Apple ever plans to ditch its proprietary Lightning connector for the increasingly common USB-C ports sprouting on Android phones and Apple laptops. But USB-C fans can take heart that Apple has an idea for sealing that connector, too.

Apple opens its first store in Austria, expanding its worldwide presence to 19 countries

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[Image Source: via Wikimedia Commons]

It has been less than a month since Apple opened its first official store in Seoul, expanding its presence to 18th country – South Korea. Now, Apple makes move to Austria and shifts its presence to 19th country by opening its store just in the heart of Vienna – between St. Stephen’s Cathedral and the Vienna State Opera. According to the latest data from www.statcounter.com, the current share of Apple vs Samsung is 30.34% and 41.88% respectively.

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[Image Source: www.statcounter.com]

At the same time, as per Statista data, it is projected that the smartphone penetration in Austria should increase from 62.32% in 2016 to 72.4% in 2022 of the total population. Effectively, one can consider it as a proxy to identify the potential growth of the smartphone market in Austria for the next 4 years.

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[Image Source: www.statista.com]

This 10% potential market growth is a plum that both Samsung and Apple, as well as their Chinese rival – Huawei, are willing to get the first. Samsung had already opened its stores in Austria way before 2017 and Huawei opened its store in December 2017, Apple’s move to follow their example seems not just logical, but a required measure to keep up with the market competition. “We can’t wait to join the bustling city of Vienna, a European crossroads so rich in history and culture,” said Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s senior vice president of Retail. Eventually, it became a priority for Apple to reach the existing and potential clients as soon as possible using Apple’s original store approach – Apple store is the place for Apple community rather than just commerce. The press release that followed the store opening states that “Visitors can participate in free Today at Apple sessions every day focused on photography, coding and app development, music, art and design, and more in The Forum. The diverse programs include Quick Start and How To sessions, Music Labs and Studio Hours, all led by Apple Creatives, the store’s experts in liberal arts. Interactive Photo Walks and Sketch Walks take participants outside the store to explore nearby sites in the city while learning new skills.” There is no need to add anything more to see that primarily this expansion has more marketing and promo role rather than just an official selling point. At the end of the day following this approach has great chances to improve the Apple’s position in the market by showing the personalized attitude to the user audience and the overall experience they receive from using of Apple’s products.

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[Image Source: By Tiger7253 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Wikimedia Commons]

Apple’s Unusual Pursuit of Cobalt

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Smartphone production comprises about 25% of the worldwide demand for cobalt. The element is one of the most important chemicals that gives significant increase to performance of the Lithium-ion batteries of every single modern smartphone that we got used to in our everyday lives. As far as the requirements for smartphones’ performance increase power consumption perspective wise, the smartphones’ manufacturers increase their demand for batteries. The challenge is that Apple and its rivals are not the only consumers in the cobalt and batteries market and the price fluctuations for cobalt may significantly affect the cost for iPhone and Mac production and decrease the margin received by the company. Recently, it became known that Apple is in direct discussions with cobalt suppliers, i.e. miner companies, to secure the supply of cobalt to Apple’s contractors which provide Apple with batteries for their products. Although it is not something that investors may have expected from Apple, it may be a smart and strategic move for a company that is ultimately responsible for the design and sale of a device and which should be best aware of the potential demand for batteries and respective costs planning. The result will be much more sustainable and stable delivery of Apple’s devices to the customers and, as a result, stable cash flow to be ultimately delivered to its investors. It is not clear what is the stage of those discussions, but taking into account increasing price of iPhones from generation to generation it may become crucial to secure the costs by Apple itself alongside the whole cost chain so as to be sure that it will stay competitive comparing to Samsung, for instance, which actually manufactures their devices rather than outsourcing it to Foxconn. The other side of such move is that Apple enters competition for cobalt supply with electric cars manufacturers like Tesla and traditional automotive groups such as Daimler.

I Know First Forecast on Apple

We see that Apple goes nose to nose with its competitors both on local and global scales. On local level it results in rapid expansion on a country-by-country basis through opening of official retail stores to 19th country and it is known that the expansion will continue to India, Thailand and even Saudi Arabia. From global perspective we see that Apple continues its good tradition of patenting every single technological development that may or may not be implemented in its products and even starts to strengthen it competitive advantage from the very bottom of the supply chain through new approach of taking control over the input supplies for its own suppliers. All that gives strong sense to me that the management focuses not only on tactical short term marketing and software measures for promoting new features of existing products, but elaborates on more long term strategy of achieving opportunity for stable products production costs and resulting prices that serve best interests of Apple’s clients and investors. I Know First forecast supports my opinion that Apple’s stock is going to become even more bullish over 1 month, 3 months and 1 year time with the signal and corresponding predictability increasing over those periods.

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Past I Know First Forecast with Apple

[Image source: Yahoo Finance]

On March 23rd, 2017 I Know First published an article by Motek Moyen, Senior Financial Analyst at I Know First, about cheaper new iPads that can shore up Apple’s waning tablet unit sales. We expected bullish behavior on 1 year horizon which almost passed since the forecast publication date and the shares went up by 27.26% shares since then. The bullish endorsement for Apple was backed by the positive algorithmic forecasts from I Know First.

Apple Stock Forecast

Current I Know First subscribers received this bullish forecast for AAPL on March 23rd, 2017

To subscribe today click here.

I Know First Algorithm Heatmap Explanation

The sign of the signal tells in which direction the asset price is expected to go (positive = to go up = Long, negative = to drop = Short position), the signal strength is related to the magnitude of the expected return and is used for ranking purposes of the investment opportunities.

Predictability is the actual fitness function being optimized every day, and can be simplified explained as the correlation based quality measure of the signal. This is a unique indicator of the I Know First algorithm. This allows users to separate and focus on the most predictable assets according to the algorithm. Ranging between -1 and 1, one should focus on predictability levels significantly above 0 in order to fill confident about/trust the signal.

How_to_read_IKF_heatmap

To subscribe today and receive exclusive AI-based algorithmic predictions, click here.

[1] Includes sales of Apple TV, Apple Watch, Beats products, iPod touch and Apple-branded and third-party accessories [Source: Apple Inc. Q1 2018 Unaudited Summary Data, Official Apple Inc. Press Release on February 1, 2018]

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Apple Stock News: Apple Files Patent For A Foldable Electronic Device

Apple Stock News

The technology Giant Apple has filed an application with the United States Patent & Trade Office for a foldable electronic device. The application states that this technology is related to any kind of electronic gadget that has a display: laptop computer, tablet computer, cellular telephone, a wristwatch, or other electronic device.

Most likely that Apple’s most popular product, the iPhone, will be the device utilizing this technology. Apple is not the first company working on a foldable phone. Samsung is expected to release a foldable smartphone in 2018. The company has been working on this project for around five years. The Galaxy X will allow users to fold, bend, and change its size to suit their needs.

Moreover, ZTE has already launched a foldable phone this year. The Axon M. has two screens and a central hinge, which allows it to fold in half and open like a book. The dual screen can work in several modes, such as traditional – folded in half and behaving like a regular smartphone, independently – each screen operates by its own, extended – as a tablet, and most impressive in a mirror mode, where the folded phone can operate a double viewing screen.

Therefore, the world’s largest market capitalization company is joining the foldable phone race. Despite not being the first to launch this technology, Apple has much more of a chance of owning the market, since ZTE’s foldable smartphone has a far less impressive dual-screen device. Unlike other companies, Apple is going all out with an actual flexible, folding screen rather than a dual-panel design.

For the latest Apple Stock News, AAPL closed at $174.09 per share on November 27th, 2017. It generated losses of 0.5% from its previous close on November 24th, 2017, when it closed at $174.97 per share.

In the past, I Know First issued a bullish forecast for AAPL in 2016.

Since then, AAPL is with 49% gain.

I Know First subscribers received this forecast on October 23rd, 2016. To subscribe today click here.

Keep checking back for more news regarding AAPL. For Full AAPL forecasts and investment advice by our state-of-the-art algorithm click here.

Apple Stock News: Which New iPhone Has Higher Margins?

Apple Stock News: Which New iPhone Has Higher Margins?

October 4, 2017

Apple Stock News

For the latest Apple Stock News, AAPL closed at $154.48 per share on October 3rd, 2017. Its share price increased 0.44% from its previous close on October 2nd, 2017, when it closed at $153.81 per share.

Image Source: Apple

An interesting question is starting to be asked.  Which new iPhone is more profitable-the iPhone 8 or the iPhone X?  The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are similar to the iPhone 7 in terms of manufacturing cost.  Even so, Apple bumped up the price of these phones compared to the iPhone 7 due to the higher storage capacity of 64 GB.  There is also the option to upgrade to 256 GB storage for $150 which applies to all 2017 models.  These facts indicate a healthy margin for the iPhone 8.  But everyone knows the X starts at $1,000 so shouldn’t it have a higher margin?

$$ for Samsung

Maybe or maybe not.  The X model is believed to cost significantly more to manufacture due to the radical redesign.  An example being the new OLED screens supplied by Samsung as well as the more advanced cameras.  Samsung is estimated to earn at least $110 from each iPhone X model sold which could amount to $4B over the first 20 months after the X model ships according to Counterpoint Technology Market Research.  These new screens cost significantly more than the screens in previous models.  The price of $1,000 might not be enough to make up for the additional new costs and could lead to a lower margin compared to the 8 models.

However, this assumption could get muddled because more than half of the iPhone X consumers are gravitating towards the 256 GB model which costs $150 more than the base model.  That would add to its profitability.  For the iPhone 8, less than half of the customers are expected to buy the 256 GB model.

The iPhone 8  demand is seen as being subpar because consumers are waiting for the release of the iPhone X.  Obviously, Apple and its investors would want to sell more of its most profitable model.  Right now, that model is a mystery.  That being said, with higher prices all around, the iPhone average selling price (ASP) should see a noticeable jump.

In Other News

According to a survey reported to the Financial Times, less than 25% of Chinese consumers who plan to buy a new smartphone would buy an iPhone.  More than 30% would rather buy a Huawei smartphone.  The reasoning is that most of the market growth is going to the mid-market space, not the premium space where Apple operates.

The Trump administration’s proposed tax framework could have a significant effect on Apple.  The framework mentions “rules to protect the U.S. tax base by taxing at a reduced rate and on a global basis the foreign profits of multinational corporations.”  The rate and formula weren’t listed, but this one sentence can have multi-billion dollar implications for multinationals like Apple.  One positive takeaway from the framework is that it would allow Apple to repatriate many years’ worth of foreign earnings at a reduced tax rate which is expected to be in the 10-15% range.

Keep checking back for more news regarding AAPL. For Full AAPL forecasts and investment advice by our state-of-the-art algorithm click here.

Apple Stock News: TSMC tend to be sole supplier for A11/A12 chips

Apple Stock News

For the latest Apple Stock News, AAPL closed at $149.50 per share on, July 28th, 2017. It generated a loss of 1.06% from its previous close on July 27st, 2017, when it closed at $150.56 per share.

Apple stock news

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) is going to secure orders for the A12 processor, a 7-nanometer chip that will be produced for use in the 2018 iPhone generation. While reports earlier suggested Samsung had secured a deal to make the processors, it could be just rumours.

Wafer-level chip packaging created by TSMC will make the firm’s 7-nanometer FinFET technology more competitive than Samsung’s equivalent. The technology innovation will apparently cut Samsung’s chances of regaining application processor orders.

TSMC has reportedly begun mass production of 10nm chips in the third quarter by fulfilling orders for Apple’s A11 chips. TSMC still going to be the sole supplier of A11 chips for the upcoming iPhone refresh, which sales might start in October or November.

The schedule for production and delivery is about the same as for the iPhone 7. The company is going to deliver 100 million A11 chips before the end of 2017. It is slightly ahead of what was delivered by the end of 2017 for the A10 Fusion. The iPhone 7 family utilizes the A10 Fusion quad-core system on a 16nm chip.

While it is possible for Samsung to take on some of the orders for the A12 chip, it is unlikely for Apple to completely switch away from TSMC. Apple can split the order between the two firms while they embark on using the new 7-nanometer process. Apple has used both TSMC and Samsung as processor suppliers, with the A9 used in the iPhone 6s produced by both companies, but since then, Apple has solely used TSMC for its A-series chips.

A switch to a smaller chip size, such as the move from a 10-nanometer to a 7-nanometer process, typically introduces a number of benefits. Aside from a speed boost, this can also make the processors more power efficient than previous generations, in turn increasing battery life.

Keep checking back for more news regarding AAPL. For Full AAPL forecasts and investment advice by our state-of-the-art algorithm click here.

Apple Stock News: Change In Price For iPhone 8?

Apple Stock News

For the latest Apple Stock News, AAPL closed at $144.02 on Wednesday, April 5, 2017. It had a loss of 0.24% from its previous close of $143.68 per share.

Apple Stock News

 

Apple has enjoyed its customers paying premium prices for their products. However, in a change of strategy, it appears the iPhone 8 might not be as expensive as its ancestors.  According to Steven Milunovich, a company analyst at UBS, the pricing structure of its future products may dramatically decrease.

Although Apple consumers have been willing to pay a premium for Apple products, Apple may need to rethink their strategy.  Competitors, such as Samsung, has opted for a push strategy for its last two products. Thus, Apple may not release a $1,000 or more for their iPhone.  Instead, Apple will increase the price for the upgraded S version of the iPhone.

Perhaps pricing won’t be the main consideration for Apple customers, as long as the new iPhone 8 meets their expectations.  Apple’s newest phone will offer numerous upgrades, such as an “all glass” chassis or fingerprint sensor (Forbes).

Keep checking back for more news regarding AAPL. For Full AAPL forecasts and investment advice by our state of the art algorithm click here.

Apple Stock News: New IPhone Model with OLED Panels

Apple Stock News

For the latest Apple Stock News, AAPL closed at $139.34 on Monday, March 6, 2017. It had a loss of .31% from its previous close of $139.78 per share.

Apple Smarton Iphone 7

 

This September, Apple is expected to release a new Iphone model with OLED display screens. Apple’s first model with organic light-emitting diode (OLED) display.

Apple is expected to implement OLED panels on 60 million units of the iPhone 8 this year, about 40 percent of its total manufacturing number. The following year, 80 percent of Iphones will adopt to OLED screening. By 2019, 100 percent of IPhone models will be using the OLED screens. The iPhone 8 or iPhone X with an OLED panel which could stretch across the entire front of the device. Therefore, iPhone might be priced at more than $1,000. Raymond Soneira, president of DisplayMate Technologies,has been a display consultant for all the largest smartphone makers. He says, anyone that’s shipping a smartphone display is using a Samsung display, which includes Apple, Google, and Samsung.

Samsung Display right now has over 95 percent market share for OLED Smartphone displays. This makes Samsung essentially a single source supplier for all manufacturers. This is very likely to continue for 2017 and possibly 2018 because it will be extremely difficult for any new OLED display manufacturers to deliver high quality OLED displays in time for Apple’s release. Apple is likely to sell around 250 million iPhones in 2019, so Samsung would need to triple their 2016 flexible OLED production to over 30 million per month in order to be able to meet Apple’s needs if all the new iPhones will have OLED displays. Samsung has invested equipment in to prepare for manufacturing the screens for Apple by expanding plants in Vietnam.

Keep checking back for more news regarding AAPL. For Full AAPL forecasts and investment advice by our state of the art algorithm click here.

The Apple-Samsung Tidal Wave and Apple’s Supreme New Brooklyn Store

Apple Stock News

For the latest Apple Stock News, AAPL closed at $104.21 on Friday July 29th, an decrease of 0.12% or $0.13 from Apple’s previous closing.

July 26th’s release of Apple’s third quarter fiscal earnings reports sent AAPL soaring with better than expected revenue and earnings per share. In the day following the report, Apple’s stock (AAPL) shot up experienced significant growth of 6.50%, but has since increased even more, bring Apple to its 3-month high. A massive Tidal wave just hit Apple. Apple has been rumored to be in talks with Jay Z to acquire his music streaming service, Tidal. This week, Tidal co-owner Kanye West sent out a slew of tweets calling for direct talks between the leadership of Apple and Tidal. He also called for Apple to just make an acceptable proposal and cut Tidal a check.

Apple Stock News

Apple to go to Supreme Court? Maybe! Apple and Samsung have been in and out of court for the last 5 years. The feud between the two smartphone competitors started when Apple sued Samsung for infringing on its patents and the court ruled in Apple’s favor, meaning that Samsung owed Apple $930 million. Samsung ultimately challenged the ruling and in May 2015, the price to pay was lowered to $548 million. Fast forward to March 2016. The Supreme Court decided to investigate “whether courts should award in damages the total profits from a product that infringes a design patent, if the patent applies only to a component of the product.”  Samsung wants to go to lower courts. Apple, on the other hand, wants to head to the highest level in the court system.

Apple customers line up the night before with lines outside the store winding around the block. Sounds familiar, right? This happens every time Apple launches a new product, right? True, but that’s not the case here. Apple’s loyal fan base lined up around the block for the opening of a new Apple Store in Brooklyn. This is the first Apple Store in Brooklyn to date. The Williamsburg store has a different vibe than the typical Apple store with its feel matching the typical Brooklyn style. The store’s decor includes exposed brick, concrete floors, and a timber ceiling.

Apple Stock News: Responsible For 93% Of Profits In Handset Industry

Apple Stock News

Apple is basically the only company making money from smartphones at this point. Every quarter, Canaccord Genuity analyst Michael Walkley takes a look at the state of profits of smartphone companies. Apple’s record-breaking holiday quarter, which brought in $18 billion in earnings, allowed the company to capture 93 percent of the profit in the handset industry. Besides Samsung, nobody else in the market is making any money, with BlackBerry, Lenovo, Sony, and HTC all lucky to break even.

apple stock news

The profit share in the market made by Apple is obviously impressive, but is made even more so by the fact that they had 20% of the global smartphone market last quarter. Samsung actually sold the same amount of phones, but the average selling price of the two companies was far apart. Apple sold 74.5 million iPhones at an average selling price of $698. Samsung, meanwhile, sold the same number of smartphones, plus another 20 million dumb phones, at an average price of $206.

Samsung is losing ground in its fight with Apple for smartphone dominance. It still sells more phones than any other company, but its profits are eroding because Apple is eating into its sales of high-end smartphones. This trend is likely to continue after the enormous success of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, which have larger screens. Both of these phones gave Apple a huge boost in China, an important market for Samsung..