Tag - Financial
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.
Apple Pay has expanded its reach yet again in the United States, adding another 44 financial institutions to the long list of those supporting the mobile payments platform. The new additions to the list of over 1,300 arrive just a few weeks after another update, with support for Apple Pay introduced by another 30 banks and credit unions earlier this month, as well as another 30 banks brought onboard in mid-May.
The probe by the European Commission into Apple's tax arrangements may come to an end soon, possibly next month, according to one official. Irish finance minister Michael Noonan believes the Commission could offer its ruling in July, one that will decide the legality of Apple's movements of funds through specific countries to avoid paying high amounts of tax, as well as other arrangements beneficial to the company provided by EU member states.
Following reports of greater international expansion on the horizon and some 30 banks and credit unions added in the middle of last month, Apple has again updated its list of partner financial institutions that are offering support for Apple Pay with another 30 banks and credit unions. The overall list of US institutions offering Apple Pay support now cracks 1,300, even though domestic merchants have been slow to adopt the technology that would enable Apple Pay -- and its NFC-using mobile wallet rivals -- to thrive in the US.
Apple has risen from fifth place to third in Fortune's rankings of the top 500 corporations in the US, ending a two-year run at fifth place, and now trailing only Walmart and Exxon Mobil. This year, Apple move pushed Chevron and financial firm Berkshire Hathaway down to fourth and fifth. While Apple was out-earned by both Walmart ($482.1 billion) and Exxon ($246.2 billion), it remains the most profitable publicly-traded company in the world, with profits of $53.4 billion -- more than Walmart and Exxon's annual profits combined.
Apple has raised A$1.425 billion (just over $1 billion in US dollars) through the sale of Australian bonds on Friday. This was the second such bond sale Apple has held in Australia, with a sale from last summer raising about $1.642 billion -- and setting a record for a non-financial sector bond sale in that country. Apple has taken to using bond sales as a way to raise money for its US-based investments and payouts, such as share buybacks and investor dividends, rather than "repatriating" some of its staggering $200 billion in foreign cash reserves.
Apple is preparing to issue bonds in the Asia Pacific region, in order to raise funds for a number of shareholder-related actions, according to a report. It is claimed Apple will be selling bonds in Taiwan and Australia so it can raise between $3 billion and $4 billion in debt, which it can then use to fund dividend payments and share buybacks, all without touching any of its large cash reserves it mostly holds outside of the United States.
As happens every two weeks, Apple has updated its Apple Pay partners page to add yet more US financial institutions that are now supporting adding their credit and debit cards to Apple's Wallet app on iOS devices and the Apple Watch, enabling Apple Pay after a verification check. In this round, another 30 banks and credit unions have jumped on board, bringing the total to at least 1,270 institutions now offering support for the mobile wallet technology. At this point, the remaining institutions to be added are generally small local or regional institutions.
On Tuesday, Apple updated its partner page for Apple Pay, adding another 26 US banks and credit unions to a list that now extends to at least 1,240 financial institutions (not including two "loyalty card" issuers, BJ's Wholesale and Kohl's). Along with the new banks, a new prepaid "digital MasterCard" program has launched in the UK with Apple Pay support from a company called Wirecard, with the service known as "boon." Users will be able to transfer money into a prepaid account, and then use the digital card with merchants who support various virtual wallet technologies.
CNBC Mad Money host Jim Cramer welcomed Apple CEO Tim Cook on for an in-person interview in which Cook highlighted the strong points of the company's most recent financial quarter. Despite headlines about the company seeing its first-ever year-over-year drop in iPhone sales, Cook has pointed out previously and again this evening that Apple is seeing increasing numbers of switchers, and that the company has actually performed well in the face of strong economic headwinds and a slowing worldwide PC and smartphone market.
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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