Apple seems to be preparing to announce a web version of its MapKit framework, allowing anyone to embed an Apple Map view into a web page. On the WWDC microsite, Apple has embedded its own map object in the page to show attendees how to get between Moscone West and the Bill Civic auditorium, where the Monday keynote will be held. Looking at the code, it appears Apple wants to make this embeddable map a public API in the (near?) future so anyone could add an Apple Map to their website.
The map allows user interaction like you might expect with panning, zooming and such. Behind the scenes, the Apple map uses a HTML5 <canvas> element to render the custom cartography. Right now, MapKit is exclusive to iOS and Mac apps, ostensibly funded by the revenue Apple brings in from the sale of App Store apps.
From a business perspective, it is unclear why Apple would want to open up its API to web developers. Today, most developers use embedded Google Maps to display maps on their websites due to its ubiquity. Although other mapping options exist, a high-profile entrance of Apple into the space would provide strong competition to Google’s offering.
Who will buy the iPhone SE? Data shows that over 35% of iPhone users are still using a 4-inch device…
IDC just released its latest numbers on the top smartphones by operating system showing iOS and Android continue to collectively dominate the market with both experiencing growth during 2014. Together, iOS and Android grabbed 96.3% of all smartphone shipments, which IDC points out is up from 95.6% in 4Q13 and from 93.8% in calendar year 2013.
Update 2/11: After passing $700 billion in market capitalization yesterday, Apple has been trading up as high as $124.43 a share raising market cap over $720 billion.
Apple’s stock price closed up 2.3 points today to close at 122.02 giving the Cupertino company that was on the verge of bankruptcy less than 2 decades ago, the highest market cap of all time. The closing market cap of $710B reflects significant growth since it hit a recent low of a split-adjusted 56 in mid-2013.
To put it into perspective, Apple is now valued at $100 for every man, woman and child on the face of the earth.
Speaking of AAPL, Tim Cook is at Goldman Sachs today discussing Apple’s recent success and announcing a industry first Solar farm that will offset all of Apple’s California electricity use including its Campus 2, offices and 40 retail stores.
And on that note, First Solar, the company that is partnering with Apple on the Solar Farm is up almost 10% on the news.
Update: 2/5 closed above at $119.94.
Apple stock closed at an all-time high today ending trading at $119.56 per share after climbing past its previous trading high of $120 per share to 120.51 per share during morning trading. The price also exceeds Apple’s previous opening record high of $119.27 per share setting that record up to be broken as well.
Apple’s stock soared the day after the company reported its record breaking quarter with over $74 billion in revenue and more than 74 million iPhones sold, and now Apple’s stock has reached a new all-time high during trading. The company briefly touched on $120/share during trading this morning and is on track to break its previous record closing high soon.
Apple broke many records with its latest quarter reporting $74.6 billion in revenue and $18 billion in profit with 74.4 million iPhones sold, numbers which greatly surpassed both Apple’s guidance and the even higher consensus analysts predicted, and Wall Street is taking notice.
Following a dismal day for the market yesterday which saw Apple down a few points ahead of its earnings report—it was soon back on the rise in after hours trading—both Apple and the Dow are climbing this morning largely due to those record numbers yesterday. Hovering around 7.5% higher since opening this morning and occasionally crossing 8%, Apple is positioned to cross its previous record high shortly.
RadioShack announces plan to close 1,100 stores nationwide as smartphone sales fail to carry company
ABC News reports that RadioShack will close 1,100 stores following a disappointing holiday season and generally unsuccessful attempt to rebrand the chain as the go-to retailer for smartphones and accessories. The number represents about 20% of the electronics shop’s locations. The company previously announced plans to close only 400-700 stores.
That doesn’t mean RadioShack will be disappearing completely, though. Around 4,000 stores are still expected to remain open. While the cell phone business hasn’t been able to keep the entire company afloat, it has apparently provided enough fuel to keep the majority of the stores functional… for now, at least.
IDC has announced preliminary PC shipment numbers for the fourth quarter of 2013, with Apple dropping from third to fourth place on the list. Apple shipped about 438,000 fewer machines than the same quarter in the previous year, allowing Lenovo to catch up and overtake them, despite Lenovo’s gain of only 163,000 shipped units.
HP, Dell, and Toshiba maintained the same positions as the previous year. While most companies lost a portion of their market share this year, Lenovo and Dell managed to claim most of the free space in the market. Overall the market saw a 1.6% drop over last year’s sales—about 285,000 shipments.
Gartner, on the other hand, reports that Apple actually gained quite a bit of market share. How these two numbers are so far apart is a mystery, but it’s possible that IDC included Surface-style tablets in its numbers, potentially skewing the results in comparison to Gartner’s numbers.
Research firm IDC is out today with preliminary data from its quarterly study tracking worldwide tablet market share putting Apple at 40% market share compared to Android’s 56.5% of the market in Q1 2013. In the year ago quarter, Apple held 58.1% of the market surpassing Android’s 39.4%. IDC says Android shipments were increased thanks to strong growth of Samsung’s smaller sized tablets, while ASUS moved into the number 3 spot with 350.0% year over year growth due to strong demand for the Nexus 7:
ASUS managed to move into the number 3 vendor spot as it continued to see decent tablet shipment demand from the highly marketed Nexus 7 device. But, with Google’s I/O conference right around the corner and expectations of an imminent device refresh, the company will need to find a way to sustain its momentum. Amazon fell to the number 4 position, once again the victim of a highly seasonal product cycle.
Despite Apple taking number two behind Android for tablet shipments by operating system, it remains the top vendor by OEM taking a 39.6% share of the market vs Samsung’s 17.9% and 5.5% for ASUS. IDC notes that Apple actually exceeded expectations for Q1, where it typically experiences a drop off in shipments, by selling 19.5 million units compared to a forecast of 18.7 million:
An insightful Reuters blog by financial journalist Felix Salmon suggests that Apple’s surprisingly low share price may be due to the evolving nature of the company leaving it between two sets of investors.
Conservative investors, who like slow-growing stocks with high dividends, are constitutionally uncomfortable with the volatility inherent in the tech world. And technology investors, who are happy taking that kind of risk, want to see substantial growth. Apple, notwithstanding the fact that it’s one of the most valuable companies in the world, is falling through the capital-markets cracks.
Apple always used to be the company which surprised and delighted investors and customers alike. Its guidance to investors was deliberately pessimistic, blowing through those figures when it reported actual revenue and earnings. It was notoriously secretive about new products, launching new ones in a playful manner with Steve Jobs’ famous ‘One more thing‘ moments…
At 4.30pm Eastern, Apple will report its Q2 results (and we’ll be covering it live). It’s the day when the last three months of analyst predictions and forecasts come home to roost.
Apple’s newly-realistic guidance revenue is $41b to $43b, with margins of 37.5 – 38.5 percent. These numbers would suggest earnings per share of just over $10 …
Henry McCracken over at Time has done us all a favor by collecting various data sets that illustrate the state of iOS versus Android.
The data ranges from device marketshare to revenue from app downloads, which presents some stark differences between the two platforms.
We unpack the results below.
Leaked document apparently shows AppGratis enticed developers with potential high App Store rankings
Business Insider has obtained a leaked document that seems to show that AppGratis enticed developers with potential high iTunes App Store rankings. According to the document, AppGratis said that if a developer invests $100,000 with them, an app will likely reach the top 5 spots on the App Store top charts.
Of course, reaching the top of the App Store rankings is highly lucrative as hundreds of millions of iOS devices are given a prominent view to the top of the App Store charts.
AppGratis was reportedly originally pulled from the App Store for mimicking Apple’s App Store and for sending its users ad-like push notifications. Of course, the aforementioned apparent move by AppGratis to inflate rankings is a serious concern for Apple and it is something that Apple, of course, wants to keep out of its App Store. Interestingly, AppGratis, yesterday, seems to have denied participating in inflating App Store rankings.
Since the App Store algorithm has been based on download velocity only for so long, advertisers know exactly what they are doing.Reaching the the top of any App Store is a simple and logical equation. But we’re not in this business.
Apple will announce its replacement for the company’s Mac Pro lineup this month, a source who has been correct about Apple product matters in the past has just informed us. We cannot independently corroborate this information, so this item has been categorized as a rumor.
MacDailyNews says its source for this information has provided accurate information in the past, but the site still classifies the information as a “rumor” because it could not corroborate the details. The site previously reported accurate information regarding iCloud pricing and the iOS name.
The site is not sure if this will be a revamp to the existing Mac Pro or a new computer that will be deemed as a Mac Pro replacement.
Apple CEO Tim Cook previously told an Apple customer that Apple is working on something “really great” in the Pro space for “later” in 2013.
Research firm comScore is out with its usual monthly report that ranks the top smartphone OEMs and platforms for the three-month period ending in February. Apple continues to grow its lead this month as top OEM in the U.S., jumping 3.9-percent from November to 38.9-percent of the market and increasing its lead on the second biggest OEM by subscribers, Samsung:
Samsung ranked second with 21.3 percent market share (up 1 percentage point), followed by HTC with 9.3 percent share, Motorola with 8.4 percent and LG with 6.8 percent.
It’s important to point out that the shipped vs. sold argument doesn’t apply to comScore’s results, as its data comes from surveys tracking smartphone subscribers and usage and not sales or units shipped. Google grabs the spot as top smartphone platform at the end of February, but Apple continues to close the gap capturing 38.9-percent of the market (up from 35 percent) compared to Google’s 51.7-percent (down from 53.7-percent):
Two new reports today provide some intel on Apple’s future retail store plans. First, a report from SocketSite (via sfist.com), citing a “plugged-in tipster,” claimed Apple is eyeing an old Bank of America building at 400 Castro Street and the corner of Market for a new San Francisco retail store:
The word on the street is a 50% jump in rent was to blame for effectively chasing Diesel from their 400 Castro Street location at the corner of Market. And if a plugged-in tipster is correct, Apple has their sights set on the space with plans to develop the old Bank of America building into an iconic Apple Store which would be the fourth in San Francisco.
Apple also plans to open its first retail store in Berlin in the capital’s upscale shopping district known as Ku’Damm, according to a report from Bloomberg that cited “a person with knowledge of the plan.” We had first heard reports about Apple acquiring the location over a year ago, while job listings for the new location appeared in March.
Bloomberg confirmed previous rumors today that the new Berlin store will indeed be located in a former movie theatre at Ku’damm 26:
Last time we checked with research firm IDC, they listed Apple at 68.3-percent of the worldwide tablet market with approximately 9.3 million units of the iPad 2 shipped in quarter two of 2011. While the firm’s estimates for Q3 saw a drop to 61.5-percent of the market, Apple still leads the market and increased shipments from the 9.3 million in Q2 to approximately 11.1 million units in Q3.
To put that in perspective, Apple’s closest competitor, Samsung, is over 10 times behind with just 5.6-percent of the market. The overall tablet market increased 23.9-percent to approximately 18.1 million units, representing a 264.5-percent increase from the year-ago quarter.
As for where Apple stands in comparison to the overall Android tablet market, IDC expects Android tablet market share to increase rapidly in Q4 from just 33.2-percent in Q3 to 40.3-percent. It’s important to note that IDC recently included “media tablets,” such as Amazon’s Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble’s Nook Tablet, in their worldwide tablet market estimates. These additions will more than likely account for much of the increase.
This morning, Morgan Stanley significantly raised its forecasts for 2012, predicting Apple could possibly sell 90 million iPads during the year (in addition to 190 million iPhones). The analysts apparently have high hopes for Android 4.0’s ability to offer a competitive alternative to iPad going forward:
Top U.S. Brands via Brand Finance
According to Brand Finance, a London-based research firm, Apple is now second to Google in brand value after a 33% increase to overtake IBM, Microsoft, Wal-Mart, and GE for the first time. The firm attributes Apple’s success to “innovative design, loyal consumer base and well-executed marketing activities.”
Google, sitting in the top spot with a brand value of almost $48.3 billion was up 9% among the top 30 U.S. brands analyzed by the Brand Finance. Other top companies other than Apple and Google all seen a significant drop including Microsoft down 9% to $39 billion, and IBM and AT&T both experiencing decreases from the year previous.
The eye-popping chart above (via Fortune) shows Apple is on course to take control of global market share for portable computers (laptops, notebooks, and tablets) in the second quarter of 2011 – but that’s only as some analysts switch to accounting iPads as computers. Deutshe Bank’s Chris Whitmore, author of the chart, describes his findings:
Within the computing market, we see significant opportunity for Apple to take meaningful share in the second half as the Microsoft / PC ecosystem is relatively stagnant, lacking meaningful new offerings.
Many will be quick to point out the spike is due to taking iPad sales into consideration, a device that many analysts debate shouldn’t be considered as a competitor to notebooks and other portable PCs. However, Apple is steadily gaining ground on Dell, Hewlett-Packard, and Microsoft even without the iPad. Whitmore explains:
On the other hand, Apple will be competing with an upgraded Mac OS, new MacBook Airs (and other forthcoming Macs) and a new iPad iOS. Within the Tablet market, the iPad remains the Gold Standard as competitors struggle for mindshare and traction (note HP’s price cuts on the TouchPad). Meanwhile, competing PC manufacturers have suggested Ultrabooks won’t ramp in material volumes until 2012 due to challenges driving price points meaningfully below Apple’s Air. As such, Apple appears particularly well positioned for more share gains heading into the back-to- school and holiday selling season.