Category - Investor
Editor's Note: there are many examples of our MacNN Podcast that we are proud of, but this one we picked as an example of "the best of MacNN" because it is so representative of what the podcast was about: comraderie, laughs, news, insight. Even though the podcast focused on stories that had already been reported on the site, it gave listeners both our analysis of those events as well as a look at the people behind the reporting. The good news is that the podcast will continue after MacNN's shutdown under a new name, so we hope previous listeners and new ones will join us for more banter, bad jokes, and ballyhoo starting the week of July 11. To our previous listeners, thank you again for your support. We loved doing this, and we think this episode shows that well.
BlackBerry is continuing to hemorrhage money, after its latest financial results show it endured a net loss of $670 million for the most recent quarter. Revenue for the Canadian smartphone producer is also poor, pulling in just $400 million over the three-month period ending in May, a year-on-year drop of 39 percent, with the balance sheet hammered by a list of adjustments and a hefty asset impairment charge pushing it into the red.
We spend a fair amount of time in this space belittling the predictions and pontifications of pundits around here (one in particular -- though we would like to stress that it is the sites that unfairly balloon his above-average-but-imperfect record into gospel-like status that we actually don't care for, not the man himself). We love deconstructing rumors (where needed), rooting out the source, watching it evolve and refine (or be walked back and forgotten), and let's not forget: even if it's clearly nonsense, rumors can be fun and entertaining. We feed on them.
Microsoft and LinkedIn today announced they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Microsoft will acquire LinkedIn for $196 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at $26.2 billion, inclusive of LinkedIn's cash on hand. The transaction has been unanimously approved by the Boards of Directors of both LinkedIn and Microsoft.
Let's cut to the chase on this one -- we're putting up our 66th episode a day early because this one may have a short shelf life. We tried, heaven knows, to limit our "predictions" to things that are incredibly likely to happen, or if not incredibly likely, then we just indicated if we liked the idea or not. That said, you know part of our "it's complicated" relationship with Apple is that every time we think they're going to zig instead of zag, they in fact zagnut (yes, that candy bar is still being made). So here goes the road to WWDC, littered with speculation that's going to make us look (smart? dumb?) come Monday. Show notes after the player.
Citigroup is suing AT&T in response to the telecommunication company's "thanks" program it rolled out earlier this month. In a court filing made earlier this week, the banking giant claims that the program is too close to its "thankyou" program thematically and linguistically, and will cause market confusion if AT&T is allowed to continue the program's branding.
Activist investor Carl Icahn still believes Apple has potential and is worth investing in, but China continues to hold him back. In an interview discussing his sale of all Apple stock in April, among other topics, Icahn continued to praise Apple and its leadership, believing CEO Tim Cook is "doing a good job," but the company's prospects in China is preventing him from reinvesting in the iPhone producer in the near future.
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE