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iPod-chipmaker faces uncertain future with IPO

updated 12:05 pm EDT, Wed October 20, 2004

iPod-chipmaker IPO?

iPod-chip maker PortalPlayer as it recently filed for an IPO in August based on the soaring sales of Apple's iPod. BusinessWeek says that it has no profits, lacks a contract with Apple, and may face competition: " Should investors dive into this one? Not so fast, analysts say. No one doubts that PortalPlayer's technology is innovative, but the business of designing semiconductor chips is dicey. What's more, the concern may have trouble protecting its intellectual property, and competition is building. And then there is the fact that, despite iPod's runaway success, PortalPlayer still hasn't managed to turn a profit. Buying in at any price could carry a high risk, since the outfit relies on Apple for the vast majority of its sales."




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. slipperfrog

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    So...um...

    If Apple's their #1 customer, why doesn't Apple just buy PortalPlayer and be done with it?

  1. eddd

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    um...maybe...

    for the very reasons mentioned in the article? Apple doesn't need to own this supplier. Let the market bring them competition and lower prices.

    Apple already lost their focus once and nearly died. I don't see them making that mistake again.

  1. Armas

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    article has wrong facts..

    Portal Player doesn't actually make anything! This BW article speculates based on zero fact.....what a waste!
    Wolfson makes the MP3 CODEC chip, Texas Inst makes the ARM based CPU....etc. etc. etc. Pixo (www.pixo.com ) makes the iPod OS....

    All Portal Player does is offer a prepackaged "Drawing" of a few possible part combinations which will work ( without lazy companies doing any research! ) which John Rubenstein & Apple certainly can design themselves.... It so happened the fastest, tested combo was to use a suggestion combo from these guys.......but if it wants to charge much for the priviledge....Apple can talk to suppliers themselves and design as good, or better product.
    So, Portal Player has some MP3 reference designs based on chipsets & software it does not own (and anyone can order parts - or have a Taiwan co design another).......Apple should not buy a company which does nothing......and it's their problem with an IPO - but no worries about defending patents -it has none!!! hehehe

    silly...

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Stuff

    for the very reasons mentioned in the article? Apple doesn't need to own this supplier. Let the market bring them competition and lower prices.

    Apple already lost their focus once and nearly died. I don't see them making that mistake again.


    I do. Companies lose their focus ALL the time. Its cyclical. For example, AT&T focuses on phones. Then gets involved in Cable systems, internet, etc., to spread thier wings in other areas. Then they feel they need to re-focus, so they sell all the other stuff. After a while, they'll change their mind and start spreading their wings again, looking for areas to get in.

    Why do you think companies are always 'restructuring' (besides a good tax break). Its because they keep changing their minds on whether they want to focus on one product or many. And they do it over and over again.

    Companies also get into a cycle of bringing things in-house, and then contracting/out-sourcing them out.

    Wolfson makes the MP3 CODEC chip, Texas Inst makes the ARM based CPU....etc. etc. etc. Pixo (www.pixo.com ) makes the iPod OS....

    Actually, shouldn't that be pixo MADE the OS. I thought they weren't doing that anymore, Apple was doing it in-house.

  1. koolkid1976

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Re: Stuff

    "I do. Companies lose their focus ALL the time. Its cyclical."
    Oh, you mean like Gateway? 'We are into consumer electronics. We are focusing on the PC. We are into consumer electronics.'

  1. mkbhatia

    Administrator

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    testing

    agasgas

  1. Go Bells

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    U2

    Apple just needs to buy U2 and be done with it..

  1. Eriamjh

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Geezus!

    Talk about shitting on Portal Players future!

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