AT&T Lives Up To Expectations Of Analysts For 4QFY15

AT&T shares, telecommunication fourth quarter, telecom company, wireless service

The telecommunication company is currently being traded at a share price of $35.49.

AT&T reported the financial results for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2015 on Tuesday. During the after hour trading, the shares of the telecommunication dipped slightly after the announcement, and were traded at a share price of $35.18 down by 0.62%. The revenue for the quarter was $4.01 billion, while during the same quarter in the previous year it witnessed a loss.

The telecommunication organization managed to meet analysts’ estimations of earnings per share of $0.63 but fell short on the revenue estimation. For the latest quarter, analysts had predicted revenue generation of $42.75 billion whereas the wireless telecommunication company reported revenue of $42.1 billion.

Additionally, there was a year-over-year decline in the number of postpaid subscribers as well as the total subscribers by as much as 1.18% and 1.5% respectively. During the quarter, the company reported that it added 526,000 postpaid subscribers and over 2.2 million wireless additions.

Since the beginning of the New Year, AT&T shares have increased by 3% — during the trading session on Tuesday, the shares saw an increase of 7%. In July 2015, the telecom company acquired DirecTV for $49 billion. Since this acquisition, the organization has been actively focusing on offering services across all platforms especially video streaming, according to CNBC.

The key revenue drivers of the business are the wireless service, internet access and pay-television – all these revenue drivers managed to perform quite well in all the three quarter of FY15. A decline in the fourth quarter would have made sense as the rival company, T-Mobile, decreased its cost – but it still succeeded to keep the growth steady. There was a drop of 4.9% in wireless revenue due to lower equipment sales, as reported by Re/Code.

Subsequently, wireless business division of AT&T is likely to face a lot of competition from its rival ‘T-Mobile’ as there is hardly any difference in the network quality. Unless the telecom company cuts prices, its competitor is predicted to capture its audience.

For the current fiscal year, the business is likely to report a growth of 4 to 6% in earnings per share, as they were $2.71 in fiscal year 2015. The consensus for FY16 is $2.81, while the carrier is expecting to report EPS somewhere in between $2.82 and $2.87.

In an effort to improve its net margin, AT&T tried its best to reduce its operational costs throughout 2015. Operational expense for the year was reported to be $34.6 billion for the quarter, which indicated a decrease from an initial expense of $39.9 million. It reported total operating revenue of $146.8 billion for the year. The analysts had estimated the total operating revenue to be $147.3 billion. In sales, a year-over-year growth of 10.8% was reported.

Apple Inc’s iPhone Sales Dying Down

apple stock, apple shares, technology company,

The technology giant need to up its game as people are not interested in buying and upgrading their iPhones anymore.

Apple Inc. has released its first quarter of fiscal year 2016 financial report. For the longest time, the iPhone has been the reason why the technology company has always been able to report profits. Presently, according to the earning’s report, even for the latest quarter; profits have been reported due to the iPhone but it can be observed that the love for the flagship device is now dying down amongst the once regulars.

According to the earnings report, the company has managed to beat the last year’s profits of $18 billion as it reports profits of $18.4 billion. However, it managed to underperform the expectations of the analysts at Wall Street as it posts iPhone sales units of 74.8 million while in the same quarter in the previous year it sold over 74.5 million units of the device. In financial terms, this shows a year over year growth of just 1%.

IPhone accounts for as much as two thirds of the company’s revenue but at this point the management of the Silicon Valley giant has admitted that in the future this slow growth is likely to happen. The 1% year over year growth in unit sales is a first ever for the company. The chief executive officer, Tim Cook of the giant blames the slow growth on the ‘strength of the dollar’ and ‘global recession’, according to Bidness Etc. He said during the earnings conference call that the company has been seeing extreme conditions all around; something that they have never witnessed before.

We believe that the this low growth is mainly due to in the slow growth and the economy crisis in China and secondly iPhone users had a different perspective of iPhone 6 and 6S in mind – which was released back in September 2015. He thought that the device will have massive changes in features but unfortunately it seemed to be quite similar to the iPhone 5 and hence was not convincing enough for the users to upgrade their smartphones.

It is against the norms of the company to reveal the iPhone sales estimates of the subsequent quarter but this time Tim Cook did just that on Tuesday. He still believes that there is massive growth potential as there are emerging markets that the tech organization needs to tap. Additionally, to tackle the question on the saturation of the company’s smartphone market; the CEO stated that most of the Chinese consumer who bought the product were first time smartphone buyers. On this he added that because of this reason he believes that there are still a huge number of people who will be the first to buy smartphones and that is the market share the company will work on getting.

Mr. Cook informed on the conference call that most of the huge sales were being generated from the Chinese regions but the future growth of these regions seems a little uncertain. For the upcoming month of March, the smartphone maker is estimating revenue of $50 to $53 billion – these figures show a drop in the revenue in comparison to the same quarter in the previous year. Everyone had hoped that the other products in the Apple product line might be able to revive the declining sales, but unfortunately they failed to do so but the Apple Watch has shown promising results for the quarter.


Facebook Inc. To Launch Data Center In Ireland

facebook stock, facebook headquarters,

The social media network is expanding its data center reach and next stop is Ireland.

Facebook’s next stop seems to be a small village in Ireland.

The social media giant announced over the weekend that it will be opening a new data center in a small village in Ireland. This data center will be built on a 227 acre area which will entirely be run on wind energy.

In a blog post, the Vice President of Site Operations Tom Furlong stated that by the year 2018 the site will be all set to handle web traffic. These data centers that the company has been opening all around the global clearly show that it handles way too much data. Currently there are data centers in Sweden, North Carolina, Iowa and Texas that manage all this data this crosses its network day in and day out. As of 3QFY15, the networking website had reported over 1.54 monthly active users. This will be the sixth location in which the social media network opens yet another data storage outlet.

This data center will be the second for the social media in Europe. The construction is expected to begin in the next few months and according to Facebook Inc. it will have top of the line technology making it the most efficient and sustainable place in the world. Since 2009 the social media has had its headquarters in Ireland which is led by Gareth Lambe who stated that he is quite exited for this investment. Additionally, he stated that with the investment of thousands of dollars put into the data center; it will be generating hundreds of jobs for the local community along with thousands of euros for the economy.

Presently, the cost of the project has not been revealed by the Site Operation’s president but according to VentureBeat, the data center in Fort Worth, Texas cost as much as $1 billion – so this project must be along those lines as well. Ever since the world moved towards the cloud computing technology; Facebook though it best to make its own location where it could store its websites data.

Despite of the fact that dealing with cloud storage is a tricky job but the social media is working on building reliable centers as it the website with a billion users cannot afford for the website to crash even once hence the major investment globally on these data centers. The website is following in the steps of Google – relying on its own cloud infrastructure for better productivity and increased efficiency.

A number of rumors have been circling around of Facebook opening a data center in Asia – according to the latest rumor, people were quite confident that the networking website will be opening one in Taiwan but after the weekend it was confirmed that Europe was the lucky continent.

On the other hand, the networking site has expected to report its earnings for the fourth quarter FY15 on January 27, 2016. Analysts remain quite optimistic about Facebook stock and are expecting that it will reveal improved results from the previous quarter. It is on its way to take over the virtual reality world as well with its Oculus Rift which, according to a number of people will release on March 28, 2016 – this launch is likely to up the game for Mark Zuckerberg’s creation.

Apple iPhone China Sales Exceed U.S. Sales Amidst Economic Slowdown

China economy, Apple iPhone, used phone market

How will the U.S. biggest high-tech giant stand strong amidst China’s slow economic growth?

Apple emerged in China’s market in 2015. World’s most populated country proved to be the great stop for Apple store. Many customers waited outside the store on the launch of its prestigious iPhone 6. Chinese market represents 25% of the high-tech giant’s global sales. It has generated $58.7 billion – an increase of 84% – revenue for the company in the last fiscal year ended September 2015.

Also, three months around lunar New Year in 2015, the sales of iPhone in the world’s largest smartphone market exceeded the sales in U.S. However, the provocative question is whether the U.S. based company will be able to yield high returns from China amidst China’s slowing economic growth.

The most popular Apple’s product is an iPhone, which is also called “a street phone” describing how it could be spotted in so many hands on a street in large cities. The product often receives criticism over its hefty price. In China, the middle-class community is great and many budget conscious consumers have termed the product “not worth the high money.” For example, for a consumer whose annual income remains around thousand USD, the affordability of the luxurious phone is quite low.

To continue its growth in one of the Asian super powers, this $562 billion company has to carry out strategies that could boost the sales in the middle-class sector as well. Contrary to America, where customers opt for different payment plans to buy an iPhone, Chinese buy a product by paying upfront. Naturally, for such customers, high price of the phone is a deterrent.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016, Apple is scheduled to declare its quarterly earnings. Investors and analysts are intrigued to find out what the organization has to say about its growth in China and what changes it would bring to ensure a boost in sales.

Although, Apple offers a trade-in program at its retail stores where a customer can get credit for used iPhones, the local stores in the market, which deal with the buy and sell of used iPhones, have sprawled strongly. The used products offer better deals for the customers who can purchase it for around $450 or less depending on the model. Apple’s pink – commonly known as rose gold in China – iPhone is the hot favorite of the second-hand market.

Chinese consumers use handsets with utter caution and care. They use them differently for instance, many users preferred “Assistive Touch” feature over home screen button to protect its resale value. Almost all users use screen protector on their new handset to avoid any damage.

The Silicon Valley business has to come up with strategies that can attract the lower-end market of the Asian country. It also needs to rationalize the high pricing of the product to show the worth of each of their penny to the budget conscious consumers.

At the market close on Monday, Apple stock price stood at $99.44.



Cisco Systems Invest In Kumu For Breakthrough Wireless Tech

cisco investments, cisco tech

Cisco Systems led a strategic funding round of $25 million in Kumu Networks.

Cisco Systems, Inc. is all set to invest in the next breakthrough in wireless technology domain. Tech Crunch reported that a tech start up named ‘Kumu Networks’ is coming up with an innovation in wireless technology, which would surely change the use of this type of technology.

The startup is said to be working on a technology that can actually improve the utilization of wireless spectrum. Kumu says that its new technology will be reducing costs and capacity limitations for mobile carriers that can save ‘trillions of dollars’.

Kumu Networks announced that it has received $25 million in a strategic funding round from big name mobile carriers and operators who said that the wireless tech would come in use when it is commercially available. Cisco Systems led the funding round of Series C, along with Verizon Ventures, Deutsche Telekom, NEA, Khosla, and Third Point Ventures. This is not the startup’s first funding round. It has been involved in two round previously which helped it in raising $20.43 million altogether.

Some professors from the Stanford University founded the startup in 2011. The company is up and operational but has no revenues as of yet. Kumu Networks will generate revenues once it releases its first product commercially in the market, which will be available by the end of 2016, according to sources.

Kumu stated that its next ‘breakthrough’ technology would be known as Full Duplex, which would double the capacity of existing wireless spectrum. The startup further mentioned that this tech would help in improving the current LTE deployments as well as the 5G standards that will take over the world soon.

The CEO of Kumu Networks, David Cutrer, said, “We are honored to have such a broad coalition of investors participating in our Series C funding. The diverse group of investors highlights the broad reach and economic potential of our solution and its massive impact on multiple arenas within the wireless industry.”

The startup venture believes that it can easily address all the capacity restrictions faced by carriers with its new technology. It boasts to let a radio receive and transmit data simultaneously and on the same frequency.

Cisco’s investment in the firm will be beneficial for this new project and it will be specifically used to further improve and enhance the technology. Both can benefit from the advancement of technology together with such collaborations for innovations. Analysts view performances for future predictions.


Apple Inc. and Microsoft Corporation Earnings Battle

Earnings estimate, Apple stock price,

The coming week is set to observe the earnings of U.S.’s top companies

Analysts and investors are all set to witness the “earnings” battle between Apple Inc. and Microsoft Corporation. While, the Californian high tech giant manages being the analysts’ favorite. Tuesday, January 26, 2016, evening will reveal whether the company meets the Street’s expectations or not. Whereas, the world’s popular Tech Company will be joining the bandwagon of reporting the earnings a couple of days later; on January 28, 2016. Let’s take a look on what is expected from the two companies:

Apple Inc.

The U.S. largest and successful high tech company under the leadership of CEO Tim Cook is expected to churn out positive and solid results for its first quarter of fiscal year. Although lately, the company has faltered a bit however its devoted fans still expect good from the company. The organization’s innovative products amaze the consumers to a great extent. Its proposed plans and strategies have always attracted the investors to it.

Analysts hope that when the tech behemoth will put forward its financial results, it will declare an EPS of $3.27. In comparison with the last year’s same period’s EPS of $3.06, the forecasted earning is up by almost 7%. The Californian giant is also expected to report revenue of $77.04 billion for the three-months quarter ended on December. The price target is capped at $142.67. The 52 week range of the company is set from $92 to $134.54.

Microsoft Corporation

The hard work of Bill Gates’ genius mind, Microsoft Corporation is America’s most popular multinational company. Set on the streets of Washington, the multi-billion company, driven by the competitive leadership of CEO Satya Nadella is scheduled to share its quarterly result on coming Thursday. The U.S.’s multinational giant has received pessimist views in relation to its earnings.

The Washington based organization is anticipated to declare revenue of $25.26 billion –an estimate of around 4% lesser than the revenue generated in the previous year. The analysts project company’s fourth and last quarter’s EPS to be $0.71 –same as the EPS announced in the last year. Microsoft stock price target is unanimously set at $58 with a 52 week range of $39.72 to $56.85.

The end of the current week will show which company outperforms the analysts’ expectation and which turns out to be exactly how predicted.

When the Friday market closed, Apple Inc. stock price stood at $101.42 by undergoing an increase of 5.32% while Microsoft Corporation stock price was $52.20 having gone up by 3.59%.


Twitter Is Coming Up With New Ways To Combat Online Harassment

Online Social Harassment , Periscope, Automatic monitoring,

Twitter’s periscope is working on tools that in the future will be able to monitor and take actions when it comes to online harassment automatically

Twitter Incorporation is coming up with new ways to combat online harassment which is becoming widely common and harming the social media platform. Sometimes freedom of speech is not as good as one hopes it would be, the micro blogging company’s periscope is making efforts to construct a tool that will automatically monitor accounts for any content of harassment and take the necessary actions to erase the content and in some case, the account, not just tweets but live videos shared by accounts will also be given a check.

Twitter Inc. is battling with users who comments regarding religion, race, gender, ethnicity and other differences, negatively. Freedom of speech can sometimes lead to individuals saying what pleases them without caring about the feeling or impact it plays on the social media platform where millions of people can see the content.  The business’s periscope can be expected to come up with solution soon for this as it is working on an automatic tool to monitor such offensive content and take actions against it.

The social media network is widely popular, some users have made multiple accounts on the platform, and in case one gets blocked they use the other accounts and keep publishing offensive content. This is damaging for the business and even the people who use the social media service, hence the company is coming with a solution to combat harassment. The told will consist of an algorithm that will spot offensive posts and will inform the operators of the app in order to handle the matter with more confidentiality. The CEO of Periscope, Kavyon Beykpour informed the public.

The social media giant recently removed the check symbol off of an account of a user who is quite popular due to some of his posts being offensive, rather than banning the user entirely from the platform. The check symbol is verification of mostly accounts of people that have been verified telling other users that the account is legit, as celebrities would have multiple accounts but only one of them would actually be theirs, mainly the ones with the check symbol.

Periscope was introduced by Twitter only last, it is live video sharing service through an individual’s smartphone.  The CEO of the service said, “You will see a series of improvements from us that help address the problem, there will be a variety of consequences, including banning from commenting, depending on how severe the crime is.”  Periscope was bought by Jack Dorsey last year in order to increase user growth, and is now introducing a new option where users will be able to save the videos they watch.


Amazon Working On European Expansion Plans

amazon stock, amazon shares, amazon retail, amazon web services,

The retail giant is going towards the European continent in full swing.

On January 22, announced that it will be expanding its operations in the European region by creating more jobs this year. Previously, it had already created as many as 40,000 jobs out of which 10,000 were just added last year. Since 2010, the e-commerce giant has invested as much as $15 billion in the EU region.

The European region has proved to be quite lucrative mainly because during the holiday season many new subscribers joined Amazon Prime and online sales are on the roll too. According to the press release by the company, it will be turning its investment towards research and development in the continent. Additionally, service offering as well as the infrastructure for operations will also be improved in Europe.

The consumer demand for Amazon services and products has increased which has further provided a profitable business opportunity in the market; with the help of this the Amazon will be able to expand its workforce along with the network. Xavier Garambois, the European Union Retail Vice President said in the press release that last year, the retailer created over 10,000 jobs and wants to create thousands more in 2016 at all levels starting from scientists to digital media experts including customer service associates.

The European market headquarter has been constructed in London six months ago and during the year; it plans to add 2,500 employees in London and all across the continent. Apart from that, the online shopping company also launched its Amazon Pantry Service back in November 2015 in which it offered over 200 non-perishable grocery items. It is believed that for the year, the company will likely work on expanding its Pantry Service in the continent through grocery and food delivery services via Amazon Prime Now and Fresh.

Furthermore, Amazon Web Service is also likely to boost its services in the region. A year over year growth of 80% was seen in the division. It will be building its latest data center in the UK which will be the company’s third data center in the European region.

Presently, Amazon stock is being traded at a share price of $596.38 indicating an increase of 3.71%. It reported earnings per share of $0.69 with price to earnings ratio of $865.12. The current market capitalization stood at $269.55 billion.


General Motors Acquires Sidacar Technologies Inc. To Launch ‘Maven’

General Motors, General Motor Acquisition, GM stock,

The automaker is planning entering the car-hailing market to face the problem of traffic congestion and making commuting easier.

As reported by Bloomberg, General Motors will be acquiring a San-Francisco based startup, Sidecar Technologies Inc. through which the company will be able to offer car hailing service. Initially it had also invested over $500 million in a firm called Lyft, in a ride-sharing service. Sidecar Technologies has been unable to compete effectively against Uber and Lyft.

This start up car sharing service provided came into being back in 2012 and was the first in the market to introduce the ride-sharing concept but it failed to survive in the industry with major competitors like Uber and Lyft. Increased rivalry in the car hailing and ride sharing industry let it to put an offer of $39 million on the business, according to Bloomberg. However the details of the deals have not been disclosed by either of the companies as yet.

Last month, Sidecar shut down all of its outlets and moved towards making deliveries to a number of businesses, one of which includes Yelp’s food delivery service. Presently, the market leading in car hailing is Uber with a market valuation of probably more than $62.5 billion. General Motors, on the other hands, is trying its best to reach up to the level of major transportation network. With the current market valuation of Uber, it can absolutely take over and crush the traditional automobile organizations including GM and Ford Motors – as the market cap of these automaker is at $46.25 billion and $48.2 billion.

According to a report by Goldman Sachs and Barclays, automakers are now pointing their focus towards car-riding and hailing services as problems just as traffic congestion can easily be tackled by these services. They believe that these services can be the future of the automobile industry – additionally if autonomous self-driving cars are officially introduced it could make daily commuting quite easy. It is highly likely that the purchase of new cars can decrease by as much as 40% if these services along with self-driving cars are introduced.

Bloomberg stated that the transportation service that will be launched by the automobile giant will be called ‘Maven’. Through this service people will be take a ride from passengers who use the same routes to commute. A trademark for this name was filed back in November 2015.

Subsequently, an announcement by the CEO of Ford Motors has also come forward, according to which it will also be making its entry in the lucrative car sharing market soon – initially the automaker also launched a service by the name of Peer-2-Peer Car Sharing. Similarly another European company Daimler is also running a similar service in various places.

Jack Dorsey To Take The Biggest Hit of Declining Stock Prices

Jack Dorsey net worth, Twitter CEO, Sqaure CEO, Twitter rumor, News Corp rumor, social media website

The CEO of Twitter and Square is no longer a billionaire as the share price of the payment solutions company drops below IPO.

It has been a rough couple of month for Twitter Inc., the social network website and Square, a payment services company, both run by Jack Dorsey. It’s becoming clearer to the CEO and Co-founder of the micro-blogging site just how difficult it is to become the chief executive officer of a company and run it. The decline in the share price of both the public trading companies affected the wallet of Mr. Dorsey a bit too much than expected.

As the CEO’s wealth was largely tied up with Square’s stock, the payment services organization went below its initial public offering –IPO on Wednesday. Mr. Dorsey, who was once a billionaire has now officially added to the list of the multimillionaires of the world. The net worth of Jack back in September was at $2.2 billion, according to the calculations at Forbes 400 however how his worth has fallen to $944 million. Times have not always been dark for Mr. Dorsey; back in September, 2012 he was on the list of FORBERS Billionaires, according to which the CEO’s net worth back then was $1.1 billion. He has a stake of 3.2% in the networking organization, making him the sixth largest shareholder.

For the first time ever since the payment solutions organization went public in November, 2015 the shares dropped below $9 indicating a drop of 35% since it went public. Subsequently, the social media network also hit its all-time low at the start of 2016, and in a year’s time is down by 57%. After about an hour and a half into the trading session on Wednesday, Twitter stock fell by 6% at $17.39 and Square stock fell by 11% at $8.46.

Additionally, a fake rumor has also surfaced overnight, according to which News Corp, a media giant, was about to buy or had already bought stake in Twitter. Surprisingly, this rumor surfaced on the media company’s own Marketwatch Site. A representative for the company informed Fairfax that this news was in fact untrue and no such stake has been bought or will be bought by the media organization.

This news might not be implausible since the publication giant back in 2005 did invest $580 million on the then social media website, MySpace – which was sold for only $35 million in the year 2011. After this investment the media network claimed that it was a huge mistake on their part.

Jack Dorsey was appointed the CEO of the micro-blogging site on October 5, 2015 after being the interim CEO for four months. He took over from Dick Costolo hoping to work on the user base of the social media.