The Unsinkable brian cork™

Brian Patrick Cork is living the Authentic Life

Apples are good for you Androids not so much

October13

last week I saw the new Samsung handset that is running the latest Google Android Operating System: “Ice Cream Sandwich”.

it’s a good device.

…seriously.

solid. and, the OS feels vibrant.

here is some recent press that adds some relevant perspective:

“Google is also helped by its expansion into mobile phones with its popular Android software. The company’s mobile revenue is now running at about $625 million per quarter, a crowing [Larry] Page said Thursday. He sounded confident that mobile will become an even bigger moneymaker with next week’s scheduled release of updated Nexus phone from Samsung and Google’s proposed $12.5 billion acquisition of cell phone maker Motorola Mobility Inc.”

but,  all that said, there’s been some media “stuff” around Samsung and Google holding-off from announcing the Samsung device running the newest Android Operating System out of respect for Steve Job’s recent passing.

that’s rubbish.

and, it’s “reverse marketing” with them trying to come-off like nice guys. the reality is Steve would have RELISHED the competition, and APPRECIATED any announcement coming out, even at his service, because he believed with all his heart that ANY innovation was great for us all. he was confident in his own vision-driven road-map to stand before all-comers.

see a pending Blog post for more. but, of miner consequence, here is a recent article from the The Milton Herald that includes a few quotes from me around Jobs.

now we have even more perspective as to why Apple stuck to it’s standard product roll-out strategy in rolling with the “4S” and not appeasing some people with a preemptive “5” (well… other than the fact that Apple always sticks to it’s, collective, guns). ha! once people see the iPhone 5 (the iPhone 4S is really is already quite a remarkable upgrade), Android will have to stop trying to compete.

and, for the record, the following press offers additional, and relevant, perspective…

Apple has claimed that pre-orders of the iPhone 4S are breaking prior records.

NEW YORK (AP) — Apple says first-day pre-orders of the iPhone 4S topped 1 million, breaking the record set by last year’s model.

Apple Inc. and various phone companies started taking orders for the phone only last Friday. the new iPhone hits stores today. it looks the same as the base “4”. but, in truth, it’s a significant upgrade – but barely heralds the great promise of the iPhone 5.

so… first-day orders for the iPhone 4 were 600,000 when it launched last year (that puts the numbers above around Google in it’s place. “crowing”, indeed.). and, as most of you know, it was then sold in the U.S. only by AT&T Inc. now, the iPhone 4S is also sold by Verizon Wireless and Sprint Nextel Corp.

keep watching Sprint. as I predicted several weeks ago, it’s offering unlimited DATA for Apple’s iPhone users, something AT&T and Verizon can’t and won’t do, [yet]. I’m planning on making the jump to Sprint, myself. and, Sprint has something up their sleeve. look at China as part of the plan. any Android device strategy is going to be kicked-in-the-teeth.

it’s now no secret that Sprint has made what appears to the unwashed unknowing, a Risky $20 billion bet on the iPhone: http://mashable.com/2011/10/03/sprint-20-billion-iphone/?utm_source=iphoneapp.

twenty billion is a debatable figure. or, maybe it’s relatable. but, to be clear, Sprint has reportedly agreed to purchase 30.5 million iPhones, regardless of whether it can find customers that will buy them. in fact, for the moment, Sprint does not, currently, have anything near that size in terms of smartphone customer-base.

but, that public information is a bit misleading.

my take?

watch what happens with Sprints indirect “partners” in China. this way you (as defined by those that do the research) won’t be surprised by the nationalization of the cellular industry and where the supply of iPhones comes from.

the demand for iPhone (and, NOT Android devices) coming from that region is going to be insatiable.

consider this for additional perspective (I know I’m probably over-using the word: perspective. but, it’s working, today)…

Sprint did not commit to buying $1 billion dollars worth of Android devices.

the companies CEO is betting the house, and his reputation on Steve Jobs’ (and, that of new CEO Tim Cook) go-forward thinking. I’ll be covering this in a great amount of detail in just a few weeks. first, I’ve got some meetings on the West Coast, and some intelligence gathering  work afoot outside of Shenzen, China to work through. but, just be ready. do it!

Larry Page may be crowing today. that’s fine. but, Steve Jobs is likely beaming. and, more of us are with him every day.

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

 

Apple always bites back

October5

Sprint did not fall over itself committing to buy Android devices, did they?

I’ll be arguing, sooner than later, that Android devices are for losers. or, possibly simply for those that don’t mind losing. stand by for that. but, when I unleash that hell on Google you can be certain there will be yelling, fist-shaking, and a fair amount of pushing and shoving in many a hallway and Starbucks.

perhaps of more concern, in terms of the immediate, I’ll be discussing the new iPhone shortly, but consider only the recent news regarding Sprint Nextel Corporation. late Monday, the Wall Street Journal reported that as Apple Inc. prepared to release the new(ish) iPhone Tuesday, the terms it has squeezed from Sprint reveal the leverage it has over the telecom companies that once drove decision-making.

this is important information for both perspective and as a back-drop for future decision-making.

the Wall Street Journal reported (but, I already knew) that Sprint, the No. 3 U.S. wireless carrier behind ATA&T and Verizon, is making a multi-billion-dollar gamble on the Apple iPhone. Sprint has apparently committed to buying at least 30.5 million iPhones, in a deal the company will lose money on until 2014. but, just so we are clear, this is, in fact, a BILLION DOLLAR BET, on Apple.

prediction – and, you read it, here, first.

watch what happens with Sprints indirect “partners” in China. this way you (as defined by those that do the research) won’t be surprised by the nationalization of the cellular industry and where the supply of iPhones comes from. and, whom buys a lot of those phones committed to by Sprint. the demand for iPhone (and, NOT Android devices) coming from that region is going to be insatiable.

short Google, and buy Apple.

meanwhile…

looking at the new(ish) iPhone 4S… here is a valid line of thinking that I know analysts (and consumers) will pick-up on…

don’t look for a detailed technology overview from me. NOTE: I underutilize technology, but I understand and appreciate it. my role, here, is to add perspective.

so… the new(ish) iPhone 4S is evidently twice as fast as the original 4, and jammed with new features and upgraded hardware (most people will never buy an actual camera again – so, Apple has changed camera-use behavior, if not an entire and separate industry).

the voice recognition software called “SIRI” is stunning, and cool, and I’m already spoiled by it.

there is no bottom-line. the story will only get bigger and Apple technology more impactful to our lives, collectively. the simple fact is that the iPhone 4S is an almost entirely new and very much upgraded iPhone. but, in typical Apple fashion, they are down-playing that and sticking to their road-map strategy and simply calling it the (S), just like they did with the 3S.

the best news is Apple consumers expect miracles. The stock is a miracle. Apple continues to lead down more roads than most people could ever hope to travel.

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

 

the Microsoft curse

June1

it’s no secret I hold Microsoft in utter disdain. contempt is a good word, as well.

…utter contempt.

they have the simple audacity to exist. this in light of the simple fact that they pale in comparison to Apple, in terms of innovation and profitability. of course this is poetic given the fact that Bill Gates gave birth to Microsoft by stealing from Steve Jobs. to day, Apple’s marketcap eclipses Microsofts by an order-of-magnitude.

…whatever… that’s old news.

what is becoming more apparent, and every day is that Microsoft’s evil core carries with it something of a curse.

As it turns out, at least eight firms have recently cut ratings on Microsoft stock, including Goldman Sachs, Canaccord, WestLB and Citigroup. as bad as Tuesday was, Wednesday will be another rotten day for Nokia shareholders. and, it’s what they get for partnering with Microsoft.

in a fast changing market, Nokia is losing ground very rapidly. The profit warning for the second quarter provided evidence that the next couple of years will prove very challenging, with the gross margin and market share trends of the last four quarters continuing, if not accelerating even more. the collaboration with Microsoft now appears to us unlikely to be successful, as Nokia’s brand is losing ground too fast and the window of opportunity for an alternative ecosystem is vanishing rapidly. even modeling a scenario in which Nokia stabilizes next year leads us to believe that the stock will under-perform over the next twelve months.

you think I’m, biased, and possibly opinionated, eh?

Bernstein Research analyst Pierre Ferragu early Wednesday cut his rating on the stock to Underperform from Market Perform, chopping his price target on the shares to $4, from $7.33.

I called him myself. if he were standing in my Boardroom, right now, he will tell you that he’s come to the conclusion that Nokia is in deep trouble, which continue to get deeper. and, he does not think the deal to switch to phones based on the Microsoft Phone 7 OS will save the beleaguered, and former technology darling.

consider the harsh realities. I believe new guidance issued by the company is a strong indication that a worst case scenario is crystallizing. I have to believe Nokia’s Device business will experience operating losses in the third quarter of this year and in the first quarter of next year. I’m also convinced that the launch of Windows-based phones will be challenging, to say the least, given the likely loss of traction and visibility of the Nokia brand, as well as the speed at which the opportunity for a third ecosystem to emerge is vanishing.

Nokia’s stock isn’t even worth the effort to short it.

but, Google is.

later, I’ll discuss what I’m confident will happen to Facebook now that they’ve sold their soul and part of the company to Microsoft. Facebook has an evil element to begin with. but, now the rot can’t help but become evident. look for the story in or around June of 2013.

later, I said. Google now has three problems that you need to understand:

it underestimated Facebook. evil spreads like plague (just look at Android [AKA “dumb down kid machines”]) and over five hundred million people are on Facebook. this includes millions of kids that lie to open-up accounts, and people that create a statistic that says Facebook accounts for sixty-one percent of divorces in our country, alone.

Larry Page is now CEO. he’s not a leader. you don’t have to trust me on this one. he’ll prove it himself.

finally, but not really, there is so much more. but, neither employees or shareholders can build wealth owning Google stock. so, the company is easy to recruit from. the company built it’s collective employment foundation on greed and a sense of entitlement. if you understand my core business, you get how I know this. let’s be clear, I stand against such things. I fight them.

the best way to win and make money with Google is hope your enemies buy their products and you shorting their stock.

do it!

if you are wondering what Microsoft has to do with Google, just understand the lack of innovation, creativity and soul that permeates both organizations. how could purgatory, in it’s form, be any different?

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

how Verizon might spank Android

January11

As I predicted, forecast, warned, advised and flat-out told, you, all of you, collectively, months and months and months ago, Verizon today announced an iPhone 4 compatible with its own network, to be available early next month.

The Verizon iPhone includes the 5-Mpixel HD camera, A4 processor and ‘retina’ display of the existing iPhone 4, but runs only on Verizon’s CDMA network vs. the GSM networks of AT&T and other iPhone carriers outside the U.S. As readers know, I dropped my iPhone 4 for an HTC EVO 4G at Sprint because I was fed-up with AT&T’s lousy service in terms of customer, billing and network. I really do like the HTC EVO. But, I am mostly concerned about usability and productivity. So, I’ll be evaluating Verizon, to be certain.

verizon, iphone, brian cork, predictions, stockCurrent Verizon customers will be able to pre-order the new iPhone online “on or around” February 3 – first-come, first served – with availability on February 10 through Apple stores, Verizon stores and online. Pricing with a new two-year contract is $199 for a 16GB version or $299 with 32 GB. Verizon has not yet specified data plan pricing, but a data plan will be required. A 3G Mobile Hotspot app will provide WiFi for up to 5 devices through the Verizon iPhone. For a $35 restocking fee, Verizon customers can exchange a phone purchased within the last 30 days to buy an iPhone. [See also: Verizon iPhone FAQ.]

This changes several things. Maybe a lot of things. Especially in terms of market share. Google thinks they are competing with Apple for the cellular device proliferation. I’ve posted some interesting statistics with the valid forecasts. And, you’ve read Nicholas Johnson, who is now, according to his linkedIN profile an Solutions Ninja (he might be; we need to be open-minded. but, where do you get tested for something like that?) saying that Android devices rule the market (they are  awesome, but they don’t rule anything). Here about some of all that, here: being part of the solution evolution revolution. But, go to “search” on this blog, it’s over to the left, and punch-in: “Android”, for more.

Do it!

But, let’s just see how another service-provider in North America changes things. Verizon is the preferred choice for business and cellular devices. Big Blackberry country, that. But, let’s see how many Verizon users jump on the iPhone (that had an opportunity to go with an Android device, but didn’t, mind you).

NOTE: The iPhone’s reported customer loyalty levels were the highest in the survey, while Research in Motion was second at 35% (for its Blackberry OS), Google Android was third at 28%, Nokia was fourth at 24% and Microsoft was fifth at 21%.

Loyalty remains an important factor for a company looking to gain share in the highly competitive mobile phone market. Me? I believe strong customer stickiness and a brand image synonymous with innovation has enabled Apple to grab mobile phone market share despite heightened competitive pressure.

So… As I’ve already stated on this blog, and I’m right, Apple is going to hit $1000 inside the next ten years. Along the way, it’s going to hit $418, and fairly soon. That’s roughly 25% ahead of the current market price (today). As an aside… I estimate that iPhone operations constitute the majority of the company’s stock value (54%).

Peace be to my Brothers and sisters.

Brian patrick Cork

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Lots of stuff.

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photos by John Campbell

 

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