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   Technology StocksSmartphones: Symbian, Microsoft, RIM, Apple, and Others


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From: Eric L10/3/2013 11:00:12 PM
   of 1647
 
HTC's Q3 2013 Loss ...

>> HTC posts first-ever quarterly losses as troubles multiply

Michael Gold and Faith Hung
Reuters (Taipei)
October 4, 2013

uk.reuters.com

Taiwan's HTC Corp slid into the red for the first time in the third quarter, with sales hit hard by fierce competition in the smartphone market, supply chain constraints and internal turmoil.

Underscoring a dramatic decline for a company which boasts award-winning smartphones but has failed to develop a durable brand of handsets, it posted an operating loss of T$3.5 billion as sales for the quarter tumbled by a third from the same period a year earlier.

At a net level, it booked a loss of T$2.97 billion ($100 million), bigger than an expected loss of T$1.8 billion, according to Thomson Reuters SmartEstimates. That compares with a net profit of T$3.9 billion in the same quarter last year.

Its shares were down 2.3 percent in early trade.

HTC lacks the scale of bigger rivals Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and its troubles this year have only multiplied.

In addition to internal feuding and executive exits, sources have said that it is facing casing shortages for its HTC One Mini. It has also lost some patent cases and media have reported that three of its design executives have been arrested on suspicion of leaking trade secrets.

HTC's share of the global smartphone market has plummeted from a peak of 9.1 percent in 2011 to 2.6 percent in the most recent quarter, according to research firm Gartner and analysts have said it needs a wholesale reevaluation of its strategy in order to survive. ###

>> HTC Posts Wider-Than-Estimated Quarterly Loss as Sales Slump

Lulu Yilun Chen (Hong Kong) & Adela Lin (Taipei)
Bloomberg
October 3, 2013

bloomberg.com

HTC Corp. (2498), Taiwan’s biggest smartphone maker, posted a third-quarter loss wider than analyst estimates as its handsets lost market share to devices from Apple Inc. (AAPL) and Samsung Electronics Co.

The company had a net loss of NT$2.97 billion ($101 million) in the three months ended September, Taoyuan City, Taiwan-based HTC said in an e-mailed statement today. That compares with the NT$1.71 billion average loss of 16 analyst estimates and is the first on a consolidated basis since at least 2008, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

HTC’s flagship One has failed to arrest sliding sales amid product delays and changes to strategy as it faces intensifying competition from Chinese producers including Huawei Technologies Co. The company, which wasn’t among the top five producers in the second quarter, plans to boost promotion with actor Robert Downey Jr. and add cheaper devices to revive growth.

“HTC needs to figure out if it just wants to focus on the high-end market or the mid- to low-end segment, and right now it is missing out on both,” said Wang Wanli, a Taipei-based analyst at CIMB Securities Ltd. “In the fourth quarter many new products are in the pipeline, including iPhone, Samsung and Huawei, HTC only has one new model so they won’t see a strong pick up.”

Shares of HTC fell 0.8 percent to NT$132 as of 9:51 a.m. in Taipei. The stock has lost more than 80 percent of its value in the past two years.

Slumping Sales

The operating loss in the third quarter was NT$3.5 billion and sales were NT$47 billion, the company said today. Analysts had projected an operating loss of NT$2.2 billion on sales of NT$ 54 billion.

HTC, the first maker of phones using Google Inc. software, in July forecast an eighth straight drop in quarterly sales as it struggles to compete with Apple and Samsung.

The company was ranked ninth in the global smartphone market during the second quarter, with 2.8 percent share compared with 5.8 percent a year earlier, according to data from Bloomberg Industries and IDC. That compares with 31.7 percent for Samsung, 13.2 percent for Apple and 4.8 percent for Lenovo Group Ltd. (992)

HTC was a contract manufacturer before it began promoting its own brand in 2006. The company had a short-lived reign at the top of the U.S. market in the third quarter of 2011, when it accounted for 24 percent of smartphone shipments, according to researcher Canalys.

The company in February 2012 said it had “dropped the ball” on products, pointing to weaknesses in design and engineering. The HTC One, which was supposed to herald a reversal of fortune, has so far failed to stop a slide in the company’s sales since the phone’s introduction was delayed to the same timeframe as Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S4.

HTC lost the early momentum of unveiling its HTC One in February prior to Samsung’s Galaxy S4 as a shortage of camera components forced it to delay shipments. ###

- Eric -

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From: Eric L10/8/2013 10:54:57 AM
   of 1647
 
The Commercialization of IT in the Enterprise: A Bob Egan Interview ...

... titled "The Future of Enterprise Mobility" conducted by Kevin Benedict the Head Analyst of SMAC (Social, MOBILE, Analytics and Cloud) at Cognizant Technology Solutions.

The 1st 10 minutes of this 29 minute interview focuses on the demise of Blackberry. Kevin then discusses some initial issues with iOS 7 he has experienced with his iPhones and the conversation moves on to cloud computing. It's definitely worth a listen.



The video above is part 2 of 2 interviews with Bob from Kevin's 'Mobile Expert Video Series' and part 1 was posted to the Nokia board here along with an excellent article on the challenges Microsoft faces with the integration of Nokia Devices and Services once it clears regulatory approvals. That original post is here: Message 29099528

Anout Bob Egan: Bob is a Mobile Industry Analyst, Executive Advisor and Wi-Fi Pioneer. He is the CEO and Founder of the The Sepharim Group, a mobile industry research and enterprise consulting firm. He was formerly a CEB Research Head and Advanced Technology Director at DEC and then VP of Mobile at Gartner. The origins of The Sepharim Group date back to 2002 when Bob Egan built the successful consulting boutique and industry analyst firm – The Sepharim GroupMobile Competency. With the acquisition of Mobile Competency in 2005 by TowerGroup, Bob spent the next six years as the CRO for their MasterCard division (now owned by CEB). In 2010 Bob formally founded The Sepharim Group to renew his commitment as a leading expert and trusted executive advisor for all things mobile: sepharim.com

In re the demise of BlackBerry which Bob discusses with Kevin in the video above, Bob recently wrote an article titled "Requiem For BlackBerry" for Forbes and I've posted it on our Blackberry board here:

- Eric -

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From: Eric L10/10/2013 9:09:47 AM
   of 1647
 
October 22nd: A Busy Day ...

Retail Sales of Microsoft's Surface 2 Begin in the USA



Apple refreshes its high-end desktop and tablet ranges



Nokia Devices and Services hosts the Nokia World event



- Eric -

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From: Eric L10/14/2013 10:51:59 AM
   of 1647
 
GSMArena's Best of the Best 3 Way Shootout: Nokia Lumia 1020 v. LG G2 v. Apple iPhone 5s (Part 1) ...

GSM Arena just published a rather comprehensive 12 section comparison of what they consider to be the best Model that Android, iOS, and Windows Phone have to offer. It makes for interesting reading. In the introduction they state:

One thing's certain, the Apple iPhone 5s, the LG G2 and the Nokia Lumia 1020 just don't mix. The three platforms are usually targeting a completely different set of users. But each of these gadgets is the best of its species and that's the cross section of everything the industry has to offer at this point. ... It's not like each of those phones is only as good as its weakest spot, but it's not as straightforward either as simply praise this one's camera, that one's app store or the other one's full-HD screen. This can easily get out of control and into a three-ring circus, but we're gonna give it a try anyway.

>> Apple iPhone 5s vs. LG G2 vs. Nokia Lumia 1020: War of the worlds

GSMArena Team
GSMArena
8 October 2013

gsmarena.com

Introduction (page 1): You know what they say - three is a crowd. On a second thought though, no one here's got romance on their mind. The three-horse race has had its highs and lows, but it's the playoffs and we got a front-row seat. It's not about heroes and villains anymore, everyone's a bit of both. Each phone here will look at the other two and see the worst of both worlds. Now, can we keep a cool head and try and see the whole picture?

... < Very BIG Snip ... see text at link above > ...

Final Words (page 12):

Are these the top three phones you can get? Well they certainly are in the running, but that's not the point here. It was a panorama instead of the best the three smartphone platforms have to offer. Luckily for the three - Apple iPhone 5s, LG G2 and Nokia Lumia 1020 - they are so different that they are not really in direct competition for the same buyers. We probably don't need this disclaimer, but it was worth pointing it out. ... < Big Snip > ... Each of these three smartphones has their strengths and weaknesses, and while the best always lies ahead, these three are like a snapshot of how far the three competing OS have come and they will surely stay at the top for a while. Shame such an impressive combination of features has to be split three ways. On a second thought, thank goodness the smartphone future is multiplied by three. ###

Winners, Runners Up, and 3rd Place Summary Matrix

In the articles text the GSMArena Team compares the 3 smartphones in 13 categories and in each category picks a Winner, a Runner Up, and a 3rd Place contender. I've summarized each contender in the matrix below awarding 3 points to the Winner, 2 points to the Runner Up, and 1 point to the 3rd place contender, then totaled the points awarded. A different result would, of course be obtained if each category was weighted to suit personal preferences.

                              Nokia                 Apple
Lumia 1020 LG G2 iPhone 5S
========== ===== =========
Exterior and Build 2 1 3
-----------------------------------------------------------
Display 2 3 1
-----------------------------------------------------------
Battery Life 2 3 1
-----------------------------------------------------------
Software 1 3 2
-----------------------------------------------------------
Benchmarks 1 2 3
-----------------------------------------------------------
Image Galleries 2 1 1
-----------------------------------------------------------
Video Players 2 3 1
-----------------------------------------------------------
Music Players and Radio 2 3 1
-----------------------------------------------------------
Loudspeaker 3 1 2
-----------------------------------------------------------
Camera Features 3 2 1
-----------------------------------------------------------
Still Photos: good light 3 2 1
-----------------------------------------------------------
Still Photos: low-light 3 1 2
-----------------------------------------------------------
Video Recording 2 1 3
========== ===== =========
Total Points 28/39 26/39 20/39

In a follow up post I'll clip the text of each category's summary of GSMArena's justification for ranking the contenders but there is a lot of meat for each summary that I have not included and its worth a review in the original text.

- Eric -

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To: Eric L who wrote (1612)10/14/2013 11:02:48 AM
From: Eric L
   of 1647
 
GSMArena's Best of the Best 3 Way Shootout (Part 2) ...

>> Apple iPhone 5s vs. LG G2 vs. Nokia Lumia 1020: War of the worlds

GSMArena Team
GSMArena
8 October 2013

gsmarena.com ###

Winners, Runners Up, and 3rd Place Contenders in 13 Categories

In the articles text the GSMArena Team compares the 3 smartphones in 13 categories and in each category picks a Winner, a Runner Up, and a 3rd Place contender. The summaries in each category are excerpted below. I've summarized each contender in the matrix below awarding 3 points to the Winner, 2 points to the Runner Up, and 1 point to the 3rd place contender, then totaled the points awarded. A different result would, of course be obtained if each category was weighted to suit personal preferences.

Exterior and Build

Winner: Apple iPhone 5s. To be clear, it's the handling and premium feel that we rate in this one. The iPhone's design may've been used on a few generations already, but it's still relevant, to say the least. Apple's flagship looks, as usual, more like an elegant accessory than a working tool. And it's not just the looks, the iPhone 5s is built to perfection, with great attention to detail. You can easily say the same about the other two as well but theirs is a classic example of looks being second to power and performance.

Runner-up: Nokia Lumia 1020. The polycarbonate unibody has enough of a premium feel and, while the handling might be awkward at first, the solid build and the fact that Nokia integrated such a vastly superior camera tech into a phone's body, help it clinch the second spot.

Third place: LG G2. Certainly not by a mile, though - the LG smartphone is probably the most practical of the three, delivering the highest screen estate to footprint ratio and an ample battery. The lack of any controls on the front to spoil the looks also means that while not as pretty as the other two, the G2 is certainly not a smartphone you'd mind being seen in public with.

Display Comparison

Winner: LG G2. LG G2 has the biggest, brightest display with the highest resolution. Quite expectedly the G2 screen is really sharp with the excellent 424ppi ratio and its color reproduction is more accurate than Lumia 1020's AMOLED. All those wins are enough to compensate for its unspectacular performance in direct sunlight.

Runner-up: Nokia Lumia 1020. The AMOLED screens are still among the best on the market and the extra punch they provide is preferred by many. It is bigger than the 4-inch Retina and with better contrast. This is, along with the larger size, is enough to easily overshadow the iPhone 5s victory on the sunlight test.

Third place: Apple iPhone 5s. The 4" Retina is a great screen with excellent image quality, but when you put it next to the much ampler displays of the other two, it just can't compete. It's no longer at top of the food chain when it comes to density either, so it only has the top-notch sunlight legibility going for it in this battle.

Battery Life: Talk time, Web browsing, Video playback

Winner: LG G2. Despite a very respectable performance by the Nokia Lumia 1020, the LG G2 is the clear winner here. It outscored the Lumia 1020 on the call test, beat it on the web browsing test by a mile, and it also remained on par with it when playing videos.

Runner-up: Nokia Lumia 1020. The Lumia 1020 overall battery endurance rating is just an hour less than the LG G2, however it's a long way behind when it comes to web browsing and calling endurance and only marginally better in video playback, which is what really matters to power users (and those are usually the ones shopping flagships). The Lumia 1020 has to be given credit for offering the most efficient stand-by of the trio, though.

Third place: Apple iPhone 5s. Posting the lowest endurance rating and showing that irritating stand-by drain bug, the Apple smartphone is some way off its competitors here. Its excellent web-browsing endurance that puts the Lumia 1020 will provide some consolation, though.

Software

Winner: LG G2. The Android OS is highly customizable and with functionality that the other two can't come close to. It has an open file system, file manager, best multi-tasking and huge developer community. Its last standing problem was the sub-par performance, but that stopped being an issue when the 4.1 Jelly Bean release came out.

Runner up: Apple iPhone 5s. The iOS 7 might have lots of restrictions, but it is very easy to use, looks great and gives you access to the world's top-grossing app and content stores. It's got excellent after-market support, too, with each iPhone getting timely updates for at least three years.

Third place: Nokia Lumia 1020. An awful long time has passed since the last major update of the Windows Phone 8 OS and for a platform this young this is pretty bad news. The app catalog also pales in comparison to the the other two platforms. Software-wise the two major selling points of the smartphone are the complete MS Office suite and the offline navigation, but those are just not enough to give the Lumia 1020 anything but third place here.

Performance Benchmarks

Winner: Apple iPhone 5s. The iPhone 5s topped most benchmarks and with iOS 7 designed around it, it provides the best experience for general use, gaming and web browsing.

Runner up: LG G2. The LG G2 lost a few synthetic benchmarks, but works smoothly all the same. We did expect four 2.26GHz cores to stack up a little better against the two 1.3GHz custom Apple cores though.

3rd place: Nokia Lumia 1020. While the gap between iPhone 5s and LG G2 is almost negligible, the Nokia Lumia 1020 is tangibly behind both in terms of 3d and web performance. Yes, the UI and apps run smoothly, but the old chipset is limiting to developers.

Image Galleries

Winners: Apple iPhone 5s and LG G2. The iOS and G2 galleries share great looks, awesome sharing features, and great organization. Photo Stream is an awesome perk of the iPhone 5s, but it's balanced by the very enjoyable experience that is browsing photos on the 5.2" screen of the G2.

Third place: Nokia Lumia 1020. The Windows Phone gallery offers less sorting and viewing options and looks stale.

Video Players

Winner: LG G2. Quite obviously LG G2 has the most capable, feature-rich and powerful video player among the three.

Runner up: Lumia 1020. Windows Phone 8 offers USB mass storage and supports a lot more codecs than its iPhone rival. Even if you get a more versatile third-party player for iOS, the iTunes-dependency is still an issue, which the less than lightning-fast cloud transfer cannot quite make up for.

Third place: Apple iPhone 5s. The latest Apple flagship definitely has the worst video capabilities among all three smartphones. Its video player hasn't been improved in ages and should definitely be higher on the priority list for the iOS 8 development.

Music players and Radio

Winner: LG G2. The G2 music player might not be the best looking, but it offers customizable equalizer presets, handy search and sorting options. The G2 also comes with an integrated FM tuner.

Runner-up: Nokia Lumia 1020. Nokia Lumia 1020 comes with a free music streaming service, just like the iPhone 5s. It also comes with a skilled music player with equalizer presets. What it has over the iPhone though is a regular FM radio.

Third place: Apple iPhone 5s. The iPhone offers free music streaming, the music player is quite the looker with its simplistic design, but it lacks customizable equalizers or other value-added features and the 5s has no FM radio.

Loudspeaker

Winner: Nokia Lumia 1020. It's a simple game of numbers here and the Nokia smartphone wins it.

Runner up: Apple iPhone 5s. Three second places in the three tests secure the iPhone 5s the silver medal here.

Third place: LG G2. Consistently the quietest of the three.

Camera Features

Winner: Nokia Lumia 1020. The manual controls of the Nokia Lumia 1020 are of interest to photo enthusiasts, while the lossless digital zooming will benefit casual users. The audio is great too and Nokia has some of the best hardware OIS. The one major complaint is the slow shot-to-shot time.

Runner-up: LG G2. The LG G2 has goodies like dual-shot, VR Panorama, Time catch shot, face effects and audio zoom, not to mention the hardware OIS - even if you use only half of them, that's still more than what the iPhone offers.

Third place: Apple iPhone 5s. The iPhone 5s has a great camera but it's the embodiment of the point-and-shoot mentality. Apple still ignores things like selectable image resolution, let alone adjustable image properties like white balance or saturation.

Still Photos: Good Light

Winner: Nokia Lumia 1020. The Nokia Lumia 1020 produces amazing 5MP photos and that's that. The full resolution shots look good too, but 5MP is quite enough for virtually all displays. It still pays to shoot full res shots as they allow you to enjoy zooming, cropping and reframing on the phone later on.

Runner-up: LG G2. The LG G2 photos have accurate color rendering and the higher resolution allows it to capture more detail than the iPhone 5s.

Third place: Apple iPhone 5s. The iPhone 5s features an improved camera over the iPhone 5 and photos do look very pleasing to the eye, but having 40% fewer pixels than the G2 (and no supersampling to rely on), takes its toll.

Still Photos: Low-Light

Winner: Nokia Lumia 1020. The Nokia Lumia 1020 had the best shots with and without flash hands down. The OIS could have helped a bit more, but the 1020 is the clear winner here.

Runner up: Apple iPhone 5s. The iPhone 5s does very well for a 7.6mm thick smartphone that doesn't have the benefit of a huge sensor, a bulky xenon flash or optical image stabilization. Photos without flash were a bit underexposed, though.

Third place: LG G2. The LG G2 beats the iPhone 5s when the flash is off, but its single-LED flash proved too weak to be in any help in our test scene.

Video Recording

Winner: Apple iPhone 5s. The iPhone 5s videos look great and though they lose some field of view (due to the digital stabilization). Our only major complaint here is the audio, there's no excuse for mono sound.

Runner up: Nokia Lumia 1020. The Lumia 1020 has more detail in low-light and the best audio of the three by a mile, though the image processing and compression could use some work. It may be the runner up here, but it's a close call.

Third place: LG G2. The LG G2 video is good, but the focus hunts too much, the exposure is way off and it doesn't have as much detail as the other two. A firmware update or two with some fine tuning to the processing, along with the 60fps mode might help it climb higher, though.

Summary Matrix of Winners, Runners Up, and 3rd Place Contenders in 13 Categories

I've summarized how the contenders placed in each of 13 categories in the matrix below awarding 3 points to the Winner, 2 points to the Runner Up, and 1 point to the 3rd place contender, then totaled the points awarded.

                              Nokia                 Apple
Lumia 1020 LG G2 iPhone 5S
========== ===== =========
Exterior and Build 2 1 3
Display 2 3 1
Battery Life 2 3 1
Software 1 3 2
Benchmarks 1 2 3
Image Galleries 2 1 1
Video Player 2 3 1
Music Players and Radio 2 3 1
Loudspeaker 3 1 2
Camera Features 3 2 1
Still Photos: good light 3 2 1
Still Photos: low-light 3 1 2
Video Recording 2 1 3
========== ===== =========
Total Points 28/39 26/39 20/39

# # #

- Eric -

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From: Eric L10/29/2013 9:43:50 AM
   of 1647
 
Samsung's Android: Fork Google ...

>> Samsung is pulling another Android, but this is even bigger

Kevin C. Tofel
GigaOm
October 28, 2013

gigaom.com

Summary: As Samsung built up a global audience for its Android phones and tablets, it pushed internal development on its own Galaxy features and functions. Now that third-party developers can code for them, Samsung is gaining more control over its flavor of Android.

As much as Google likes and touts that Android is open, that freedom may come with the cost of some control over the platform. Amazon may have started the first truly successful “fork” of Android, but Samsung is going after the whole place setting.

Samsung kicked off its first Developers Conference on Monday and based on the keynote message, I wouldn’t be too happy if I were Google. This is no small effort from Samsung, which sells the most Android devices by a large margin compared to its peers. An announced 1,300 event attendees are on site in San Francisco and heard that Samsung is releasing five new SDKs for various devices ranging from phones to tablets to televisions.

To give an idea of what Samsung is doing, just look at the new Mobile SDK: It supports Samsung’s pen, gestures, multiwindow and motion features with 800 APIs available to developers. If that number doesn’t grab you consider what Samsung said about opportunities for developers. Simply by adding the digital pen to a phone in the first and subsequent Galaxy Note handsets, more 1,800 pen-enabled apps were created. And the company sells two televisions every second. Clearly, Samsung is trying to entice developer attention for its platform.

Wait, isn’t Samsung’s platform Android? Absolutely! Samsung has effectively built an individual, closed environment of apps and features on top of the open Android. Amazon has done much the same with its Fire OS on Kindle Fire tablets but the approach was a little different.

Amazon didn’t start out with Google Android, but instead used the Android Open Source Project — software without core Google apps and services — for the Kindle Fire. In contrast, Samsung used the full Google Android software to build up a huge global audience and now it’s going to make sure it, not Google, owns those customers. I barely heard Android mentioned in the keynote, in fact.

Samsung’s approach doesn’t just end with its popular phones and tablets though.

As my colleague Janko Roettgers reported earlier, Samsung’s new Multiscreen SDK applies to another Samsung product — televisions:



The new SDK, once adopted by developers, will make it possible to press a button on your phone to launch an online video stream, or even a game, on your TV. Sound familiar? That’s not really a coincidence — but Samsung thinks that it can one-up its competition.

That last phrase is central to what I heard during the Samsung Developer Conference Keynote. Samsung has clearly become successful and profitable by pushing Android devices as well as adding its own add-on features and functions. That’s clearly not good enough for the company now because Android by itself can only take it so far and doesn’t give Samsung total control over its own destiny. In addition to the above mentioned SDK’s, Samsung also offered ones for Multiscreen Gaming, Smart TVs and KNOX, the company’s enterprise grade security software.

At this point, Samsung is taking advantage of its dominant position as the Android device leader to become the “de facto” Android phone and crush any remaining competition. And I’m not sure what Google can do about it save for pulling more and more key functions out of the Android software and instead make them standalone apps in the Google Play store. Even if it does, the damage is already done from where I stand: Samsung has built its mobile business on Android and can now push forward with less “help” from Google.

As long as Samsung remains a helpful partner in the Android ecosystem and properly licenses Google apps and services for devices, it’s not as if Google can wrest Android away from Samsung. And Google has zero control over the extra features that Samsung has added to devices such as digital inking with the S-Pen, S-Voice for text input, Samsung Wallet for payments and gesture-based navigation using sensors.

The overall strategy Samsung has employed so far is clever: Build up a massive global audience for products using someone else’s software while also creating your own apps to start taking the place of integral Android features across smartphones, tablets, televisions and even smartwatches. Thanks to Android, Samsung hasn’t needed to develop an operating system of its own. Why should it when it can slowly transition developers and users to create software for its own hardware? ###

- Eric -

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From: Eric L10/29/2013 10:33:08 AM
   of 1647
 
Strategy Analytics Smartphone Sales in Q3 2013 ...

>> Samsung & Huawei Outperform as Global Smartphone Shipments Reach Quarter-Billion Units in Q3 2013

Neal Mawston
Strategy Analytics
October 28, 2013

blogs.strategyanalytics.com

According to the latest research from our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service, global smartphone shipments grew 45 percent annually to reach a record 251 million units in the third quarter of 2013. Samsung captured a record 35 percent share of all smartphone volumes worldwide, while Huawei jumped into third place in the rankings.

Global smartphone shipments grew 45 percent annually from 172.8 million units in Q3 2012 to 251.4 million in Q3 2013. This was the first time ever that smartphone shipments exceeded a quarter-billion units in a single quarter. Smartphones accounted for 6 in 10 of all mobile phones shipped worldwide. The smartphone industry’s robust growth is being driven by strong demand for LTE models in developed regions like the US and 3G devices in emerging markets such as China.

Samsung grew 55 percent annually and shipped a record 88.4 million smartphones worldwide, capturing a record 35 percent marketshare in Q3 2013. Samsung shipped over two times more smartphones than Apple during the quarter. While shipments of the flagship Galaxy S4 model softened, solid demand for the new Note 3 phablet and for mass-market devices like the Galaxy Y helped to lift Samsung’s volumes.

Apple shipped 33.8 million iPhones worldwide in Q3 2013, up from 26.9 million a year earlier. Apple grew just 26 percent annually during Q3 2013, which is around half the overall smartphone industry average of 45 percent. Apple’s global smartphone marketshare has dipped noticeably from 16 percent to 13 percent during the past year. Nonetheless, we expect Apple to rebound sharply and regain share in the upcoming fourth quarter of 2013 due to high demand for its new iPhone 5s model.

Huawei was a star performer as global shipments grew 67 percent annually to 12.7 million units in Q3 2013. Huawei captured 5 percent marketshare and became the world’s third largest smartphone vendor. The popular P6 and G610 models have been among the main drivers of Huawei’s success. Huawei remains very strong at home in China, but its position is less robust in other major markets like the US and Europe. Huawei will need to expand aggressively in the American and European markets if it wants to seriously challenge the big two of Samsung and Apple next year.

Other findings from our research include:

* LG shipped 12.0 million smartphones worldwide for 5 percent marketshare in Q3 2013. LG grew 71 percent annually, making it the fastest-growing vendor among the top five brands. LG has been expanding rapidly in Europe, but China and India remain weak spots;

* Lenovo shipped 10.8 million smartphones worldwide for 4 percent marketshare and fifth position in Q3 2013. Lenovo is popular among mass-market consumers in China and it is expanding internationally. Two of the world’s top five smartphone vendors came from China -- Lenovo and Huawei.





The full report, Huawei Reaches Third Place as Global Smartphone Shipments Reach Quarter-Billion Units in Q3 2013, is published by the Strategy Analytics Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service, details of which can be found here: tinyurl.com ###

- Eric -

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From: Eric L10/29/2013 2:07:47 PM
   of 1647
 
IDC Preliminary Estimated Handset and Smartphone Sell-In for Q3 2013 ...





>> Record Smartphone Shipments Grow the Market 38.8% in the Third Quarter of 2013, Making Way For A Strong Holiday Quarter, According to IDC

IDC
Framingham, Mass.
October 29, 2013

assets.fiercemarkets.net

The worldwide smartphone market grew 38.8% year over year in the third quarter of 2013 (3Q13), according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. Vendors shipped a total of 258.4 million smartphones in 3Q13, establishing a new record for units shipped in a single quarter by more than 9.0%. The previous high was 237.0 million units shipped in the second quarter of 2013.

In the worldwide mobile phone market (inclusive of smartphones), vendors shipped 467.9 million units in 3Q13 compared to the 442.7 million units shipped in 3Q12, representing 5.7% year-over-year growth. Third quarter shipments were up 7.0% when compared to the 437.4 million units shipped in 2Q13. "The third quarter was up substantially over the previous quarter, which was also a record quarter for shipments, showing the real momentum of the smartphone market," said Ryan Reith, Program Director with IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. "Price points have declined significantly, driven largely by low-cost Android solutions. This has helped China to become one of the fastest growing smartphone markets in the world, accounting for more than one third of all shipments last quarter. We expect this trend to continue going forward."

The Android smartphone platform has created vast opportunities for new vendors to get into the
smartphone space and, in turn, has produced new competitive pressures at the top of the market.
Smartphone shipments from vendors outside of the top 5 grew from 33.7% of the market in 3Q12 to
41.3% in 3Q13.

"Beyond Samsung and Apple at the top of the rankings is a tight race of vendors trying to break out from the pack," says Ramon Llamas, Research Manager with IDC's Mobile Phone team. "In 3Q13, Chinese vendors Huawei and Lenovo moved past LG, and not far behind are two more Chinese companies, Coolpad and ZTE. Any of these vendors could change position again next quarter. But in addition to having close shipment volumes, they all have one key ingredient in common: Android. This has been a huge factor in their success, but it also speaks to the challenges of differentiation on the world's most popular platform."

"Looking ahead, we anticipate strong momentum going into the fourth quarter, and another record quarter and year in the worldwide smartphone market," added Llamas. "With already strong growth in 3Q13 and multiple vendors launching flagship models, the market will be poised to reach one billion units for the year. It's a significant milestone considering the market shipped just half a billion units in 2011. Moving forward, what remains to be seen is how the various companies and platforms will stay differentiated and relevant in the increasingly competitive market."

Smartphone Vendor Highlights

Samsung easily maintained its leadership position, shipping more units than the next four vendors combined. Samsung's flagship models received the lion's share of attention during 3Q13, with more carriers adding the Galaxy S4, continued demand for the Galaxy S III, and the introduction of the Galaxy Note 3. Despite the popularity of those models, it was the company's long line of mass-market smartphones that helped fuel volumes to reach a new record level.

Apple's total volumes speak to the early success of the iPhones 5S and 5C, and the softening demand of older devices prior to the new models launching. The iPhone 5S lived up to the hype of the gold case and the fingerprint sensor, and the iPhone 5C with an array of colors. At the same time, limited usability on the fingerprint sensor and higher-than-expected pricing on the iPhone 5C drew mixed reactions. Still, this did not prevent Apple from enjoying a record 9 million units shipped in their debut.

Huawei returned to the list of top five vendors after a one-quarter hiatus, narrowly beating out Lenovo and LG. In fact, less than a million units separate Huawei from the next two vendors, underscoring how tightly contested the market has become following Samsung and Apple. Huawei relied on Asia/Pacific for the bulk of its shipment volumes, but the company continued to make headway into Europe and the Americas with volumes exceeding one million units in each region.

Lenovo posted the largest year-over-year increase among the leading vendors, enough to push past LG to claim the number four position worldwide. The company relied on its stronghold in Asia/Pacific, and particularly China, where the overwhelming majority of its smartphones went. Lenovo has also made continued progress in other markets, pushing into Latin America and EMEA.

LG slipped to fifth place, but nevertheless posted strong double-digit year-over-year smartphone growth (72.2%). Although volumes were flat from the previous quarter (12.0 million units), LG's product portfolio shows continued maturity at the high-end of the market. Key to its success was the launch of the Optimus G2 and a continued strong reception for the Optimus G and the Optimus G Pro. In contrast was LG's performance in emerging markets, where 3G competition intensified.

About IDC Trackers: IDC Tracker products provide accurate and timely market size, vendor share, and forecasts for hundreds of technology markets from more than 100 countries around the globe. Using proprietary tools and research processes, IDC's Trackers are updated on a semiannual, quarterly, and monthly basis. Tracker results are delivered to clients in user-friendly excel deliverables and on-line query tools. The IDC Tracker Charts app allows users to view data charts from the most recent IDC Tracker products on their iPhone and iPad.

About IDC: IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries worldwide. For more than 49 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting idc.com

# # #

- Eric -

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From: Eric L10/29/2013 5:01:39 PM
   of 1647
 
LG: Mobile Sales in Q3 2013 ...

LG Electronics reported its first operating loss at its mobile unit in a year.

Android not so lucky for Lucky Goldstar.

• 12 million smartphones, down from 12.1 million QoQ.

• 18.3 million total handsets, up from 16.2 million total handsets QoQ.

• LG's mobile comm business up 24 percentYoY to ~$2.86 billion with a $75.3 million operating loss.

>> LG posts first loss in mobile unit in a year as competition intensifies

Phil Goldstein
Fierce Wireless
October 24, 2013

fiercewireless.com

LG Electronics reported its first operating loss at its mobile unit in a year. The loss is likely due to intense competition and higher marketing costs for the company's flagship G2 smartphone.

The company maintained its momentum in the smartphone market, selling 12 million smartphones in the period, only down slightly from the record 12.1 million it had in the second quarter. LG spokesman Ken Hong said the company sold 18.3 million total handsets (smartphones and feature phones) in the quarter, up from 16.2 million total handsets in the second quarter and 14 million handsets in the year-ago period.

Overall, sales in the company's mobile communications business jumped 24 percent year-over-year to around $2.86 billion. However, the unit reported a $75.3 million operating loss, its first since the third quarter of 2012.

LG said that its profitability and average selling price were affected by increased competition and higher marketing investments. The company said it improved LTE device sales by 31 percent from the second quarter due to the launching of the G2. However, 3G-only device sales declined due to intensified competition in developing markets.

"What worries me is that although its mobile unit saw increased sales in the third quarter, it registered a loss," Choi Nam Kon, a Seoul-based analyst at TongYang Securities, told Bloomberg. "That's a signal the market is becoming increasingly competitive and difficult. LG has to slash handset prices further in order to survive in this cutthroat battle."

Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ), AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T), Sprint (NYSE:S) and T-Mobile US (NYSE:TMUS) are supporting the G2, giving LG an opportunity to get broad carrier distribution for a single high-end smartphone model, something it has not previously been able to do, and that its competitors have. Verizon and AT&T started selling the phone in September for $199.99 with a two-year contract; T-Mobile is offering it for $0 down with monthly payments of $25 per month for 24 months, and Sprint has the phone online for pre-order for $99.99 with a two-year contract and after a $100 credit promotion.

The smartphones has 5.2-inch 1080 IP IPS HD display and is powered by Qualcomm's (NASDAQ:QCOM) quad-core 2.26 GHz Snapdragon 800 processor. A key design feature of the phone is that its front and sides have no physical buttons, with the volume and power controls on the back of the phone, in what LG calls the "rear key." LG said this change gives users more control since the buttons are located where users' index fingers normally sit when holding the phone. Some reviewers have panned this feature.

Andy Kim, senior vice president of marketing at LG's mobile unit, told Bloomberg that marketing costs for the G2 were the biggest in company's history. Looking at the fourth quarter, LG said it will face intensified competition but plans to increase sales in the premium segment with the full-fledged global launch of the G2, while enhancing marketing for both mass market LTE and 3G smartphones "in order to maximize sales during the peak season and to improve brand power and market position." ###

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From: Eric L10/31/2013 9:06:58 AM
   of 1647
 
Q3 2012 Tablet Unit Sell-In and Share (IDC) ...



Table Note: Year-over-year growth calculations are based on preliminary shipment data and may vary from estimates based on rounded figures above.

“White box tablet shipments continue to constitute a fairly large percentage of the Android devices shipped into the market”

>> Android Growth Drives Another Strong Quarter for the Worldwide Tablet Market, According to IDC

IDC
San Mateo, Calif.
October 30, 2013

Worldwide tablet shipments grew to 47.6 million units in the third quarter of 2013 (3Q13) according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker. While slightly below the firm's forecast, the number still represents 7.0% growth over the previous quarter and 36.7% growth compared to the third quarter of 2012. Android products once again drove much of the shipment growth in the market as iOS growth stalled and Windows tablets continued to struggle to win over consumers.

With no new iPad product launches in the second or third quarter to drive volume, Apple experienced a quarter-over-quarter decline in shipments from 14.6 million in 2Q13 to 14.1 million in 3Q13. Year over year, iPad shipments grew less than one percent. Apple's slowing growth—caused in part by its decision in late 2012 to move its product launches from earlier in the year to the fourth quarter—has caused the company's tablet market share to slip to 29.6%, its lowest share to date. However, with the new iPad Air shipping November 1st and the refreshed iPad mini with Retina scheduled to roll out later in November, IDC expects Apple to enjoy robust shipment growth during the fourth quarter.

"With two 7.9-inch models starting at $299 and $399, and two 9.7-inch models starting at $399 and $499, Apple is taking steps to appeal to multiple segments," said Jitesh Ubrani, Research Analyst with IDC's Tablet Tracker. "While some undoubtedly hoped for more aggressive pricing from Apple, the current prices clearly reflect Apple's ongoing strategy to maintain its premium status. It's worth noting that Apple wasn't the only one to increase the price of its small-sized tablet during this product cycle: Both Google and Amazon increased the price of their newest 7-inch tablets from $199 to $229 to cover the higher costs associated with high resolution screens and better processors."

Samsung once again secured the second position with shipments of about 9.7 million units. The company, which owes a measure of its tablet success to its ability to bundle them with other successful Samsung products, such as smartphones and televisions, grabbed 20.4% of the worldwide market. ASUS, which makes the Nexus 7 for Google, shipped about 3.5 million total units during the quarter for a third place finish and 7.4% market share. PC powerhouse Lenovo moved into the number four tablet spot with shipments of 2.3 million units and a 4.8% share. Finally, Acer rounded out the top five with 1.2 million units shipped and a 2.5% share. Notably, vendors from outside the top five were responsible for over one third of the shipments in 3Q13. IDC tracks dozens of tablet vendors, and this quarter "Others" represents a combination of major vendors (such as Amazon, Microsoft, HP, and Dell) and lesser-known, so-called white box vendors that typically sell ultra-low cost Android devices at often unsustainably low margins.

"White box tablet shipments continue to constitute a fairly large percentage of the Android devices shipped into the market," said Tom Mainelli, Research Director, Tablets at IDC. "These low cost Android-based products make tablets available to a wider market of consumers, which is good. However, many use cheap parts and non Google-approved versions of Android that can result in an unsatisfactory customer experience, limited usage, and very little engagement with the ecosystem. Android's growth in tablets has been stunning to watch, but shipments alone won't guarantee long-term success. For that you need a sustainable hardware business model, a healthy ecosystem for developers, and happy end users."

About IDC Trackers: IDC Tracker products provide accurate and timely market size, vendor share, and forecasts for hundreds of technology markets from more than 100 countries around the globe. Using proprietary tools and research processes, IDC's Trackers are updated on a semiannual, quarterly, and monthly basis. Tracker results are delivered to clients in user-friendly excel deliverables and on-line query tools. The IDC Tracker Charts app allows users to view data charts from the most recent IDC Tracker products on their iPhone and iPad.

About IDC: International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. For more than 49 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting www.idc.com ###

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