Posts Tagged loss

Windows Phone users to get their broken Google Maps web experience back

collectors item

Yesterday it seems that every single Windows Phone user was over at WPCentral lamenting the loss of the Google Maps web app for Windows Phone. It seems that Google made a change that redirected users with a Windows Phone browser UA string to Google search page instead of the Google Maps page they were expecting.

Google later chimed in and said that Google Maps on the mobile site was designed for webkit browsers, which IE on Windows Phone is not. Questions were raised about why it used to work, why it stopped working, and why Google was the devil. Turns out that a big fuss was made over a relatively minor (minor to Google anyways) product change. Google has reverted things back the way they were, and delivered this statement to The Next Web.

We periodically test Google Maps compatibility with mobile browsers to make sure we deliver the best experience for those users.

In our last test, IE mobile still did not offer a good maps experience with no ability to pan or zoom and perform basic map functionality. As a result, we chose to continue to redirect IE mobile users to where they could at least make local searches. The Firefox mobile browser did offer a somewhat better user experience and that’s why there is no redirect for those users.

Recent improvements to IE mobile and Google Maps now deliver a better experience and we are currently working to remove the redirect. We will continue to test Google Maps compatibility with other mobile browsers to ensure the best possible experience for users.

A lot of Windows Phone fans are going to cry foul, and claim that their voices changed the world and moved the mountain that is Google, but even a few admitted Windows fans came to the very same conclusion that it was done because the experience, well, it sucked. 

The simple fact is that smart companies are going to build web apps that work well for Android and iOS because that's the vast majority of the mobile market. If that means building for webkit based browsers, then people on the fringe of the market won't be part of it. Google has decided to give Windows Phone users back the poor experience they want, but if future updates incorporate webkit-only features, you can bet Google will stop supporting IE once again. It's a decision about money, not about hate for Microsoft. 

Source: The Next Web

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Six Alternative Android Markets to Google’s Play Store

Unlike Apple users who have to get their applications only from iTunes, users of Android have the choice of getting their applications, tools and utilities from other markets other than Google App Store.  If you want an alternative to the official app store for Android devices, here are some top 6 alternatives to consider.

The Android Market is not available world wide though and developers thus can reach wider through alternative stores.  Users may be wary of quality, reliability and sustainability. These are considerations  before choosing a source.

The various sources have unique features distinguishing them and users would be at a loss to pick one or some and remain loyal. Having been authorized to serve users by Google is the first indicator that they are worth trying.

 Android Market


GetJar rates itself the runners-up to Apple App store, presently boasting over a billion downloads.

Users can filter Android app by setting their phone type. It also supports other platforms including BlackBerry and Windows Mobile.  Games’ developers cite its global coverage as a major reason to choose it for their works.GetJar now even pays developers before hand and then gives them freely to their customers.



AppBrain is an alternative Android Market browser, itself not selling applications directly.  As a browser to Android Market, it bridges the gap in Google since it lacks  a thorough  way of searching and is vital for tracing interesting applications.

On liking an application, clicking install on the website aided by AppBrain installs it. Payments can also be made here, if any.  AppBrain however serves applications onparticular versions, starting from  Android 1.6, in the US only, and with devices meeting certain screen size specifications. Effectively therefore some applications on AppBrain might  not be installable outside the US.



With SlideMe , Android users can use its application called SAM to browse its applications catalogue online.  Developers can scout talent early since it focuses on small upcoming developers. Free direct downloads of its applications are found on its website. Charged applications are available on SlideMe applications.



MobiHand OnlyAndroid has been in applications store business for long. Android users here benefit from discounted applications on offer 24hours. Users look out for what is on offer at a discount as shall be announced by the store.  Besides applications’ sales, it also sells accessories such as cases and chargers and is available on mobile phones.



AppsFire does not offer applications of its own.  It only supplements the main /official markets. It’s accessible  on the web and comes on its own on Android handsets. It offers smart application recommendations for use on the basis of existing applications, what is in use on the handsets. Recommendations can be shared with other users via an accompanying social feature.

Users can know popular and discounted applications.  Popularity is shown as rated by chosen experts while discounts are on offer at the market.



Aproov is newly launched store with an exclusive focus on Android applications.  Said to be the ‘ideal likeness’ of an app store, it displays categories that expand showing applications direct from developers.  It supports customer feed back, reviews and video uploads by developers, features that are envisaged for the official future Android Market.  Additionally, it shows Android Market official search results. Being relatively new, users need to keep watch of how it grows.

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RIM admits user base decrease as shares drops

sc001Following a report that the number of its subscribers had decreased, Research in Motion announced on Thursday that it will be amending its charges plan for its BlackBerry services, which also caused its stock in the U.S. to dive 10 percent.

Prior to the announcement, RIM’s stock rose 8 percent to $15.25 that stretches beyond the regular trading hours after RIM revealed lesser quarterly loss than previously expected. The company also said that it has raised enough money for the upcoming release of its new BlackBerry 10 smartphone next year.

However, things turned to sour during Chief Executive Thorsten Heins’ conference call with analysts. In the conference, he announced that RIM is thinking of offering more flexible pricing of its BlackBerry services, once vaunted for providing robust security features but has come under attack by competitors.

The conference call also saw the growing concerns of analysts about the potential negative effects of such changes, which could mean a decrease of RIM’s profitable services revenue stream. RIM’s U.S.-traded stock fell about 10 percent to $12.74 by 6.20 in the afternoon Eastern Standard Time.

Investors have also started to show concerns about the decreasing subscriber base. Although RIM had seen the numbers of its customers shrink in North America in recent years, it was able to successfully market its products and services in emerging markets.

“The early reaction was probably just ‘Hey, numbers looked OK, better loss, the cash flow was good’ but if you know the company, you’re looking at the subscriber base falling off,” a San Francisco-based analysts from Evercore Partners Mark McKechnie said.

One of the reasons for the increase in RIM’s shares earlier was because it was able to secure more cash–$$2.9 billion– from a $2.3 billion mark during the previous quarter.

Analysts saw the need for RIM to raise more cash for manufacturing its new BlackBerry 10 smartphone and promote it in a very competitive market. RIM hopes to regain the market shares it has lost to rivals like the popular Apple Inc’s iPhone and other devices running versions of Google Inc’s Android software.

“They’ve done a great job at generating cash,”  analyst Tavis McCourt from Raymond James  in Nashville said. “They’re certainly in a much better position than they were three or four quarters ago.”

RIM also announced that it is now doing tests of its BlackBerry 10 devices with more than 150 carriers–an increase in figure of about 50 last October. BB10 devices will be released on January 30.

Heins assured everyone during the conference call that more things can be expected leading to the launch.

RIM posted a lower-than-expected $114 million or 22 cents per share operating loss this quarter. Wall Street expected that the company would be losing 35  cents per share previously.

Additionally, RIM disclosed  a surprising net profit of $9 million net profit for the third fiscal quarter that ended on December 1,  a positive note on the restructuring done on the company’s international operations. During the same period last year, the company posted a net profit of $265 million.

RIM’s subscriber base fell to 79 million during the quarter from an 80 million mark during the period that ended in September 1. the company’s user base has seen growth for the past few years even if it was losing ground in the United States and Canada as it reached out to markets from emerging economies.

“We’re encouraged that the subscriber base only declined slightly during a very public transition, and BlackBerry sales were about what we expected,” Morningstar analyst Brian Colello said.

source: reuters

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RIM’s Q3 2013 earnings: $2.7 billion revenue, $114 million adjusted net loss, CIO to retire

RIM has just announced its earnings for Q3 2013 (the three months ending December 1, 2012 in non-RIM terms), including a five percent drop in revenue to $2.7 billion and an adjusted net loss of $114 million. GAAP net income from “continuing operations” was $14 million, though, or $9 million when taking into account the loss from discontinued operations, and it’s also reporting a cash increase of about $600 million to $2.9 billion. In terms of devices, RIM says it shipped 6.9 million smartphones and 255,000 PlayBooks during the quarter, although it’s again only talking in terms of devices “shipped,” not actual sales to consumers. Along with the earnings, the company has also announced that its CIO, Robin Bienfait, has decided to retire, although RIM says she will stay on in an “advisory capacity to enable a smooth launch and seamless transition.”

As for BlackBerry 10, CEO Thorsten Heins unsurprisingly reiterated that the company is all set for the January 30th launch date, and noted that more than 150 now completing technical acceptance programs for the first BlackBerry 10 products. The company also says it will be “significantly increasing its marketing spending this quarter” to support the launch of BB10, which it warns will contribute to a loss for the fourth quarter, as will the likely slowdown of BlackBerry 7 product sales as consumers hold off for BB10.

Continue reading RIM’s Q3 2013 earnings: $2.7 billion revenue, $114 million adjusted net loss, CIO to retire

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Source: RIM

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Panasonic preparing 1080p smartphone for Japan

What do we have here? Another smartphone manufacturer looking to get into the truly HD world of 1080p smartphones. Ever since the DROID DNA blasted onto the scene we’ve been hearing reports and rumors from just about everyone. Today we have one more to add to the growing list. Panasonic has their own 1920 x 1080p phone in the works.


We haven’t seen or heard much from Panasonic lately, not to mention they’ve been focusing their smartphone efforts only in Japan to limit the potential for financial loss. But now there’s a new device roaming the streets from Panasonic complete with a 5-inch 1920 x 1080p full HD display, as well as Android 4.1 Jelly Bean for the operating system.

Rumors from PhoneArena have the Panasonic P-02E clearing showing up on a few reports as of late although there isn’t any other details at this point. The image below clearly mentions the HD screen and Jelly Bean, but we’ll have to wait for more details.


Most likely this will indeed be a member of the flagship Panasonic Eluga series. Which is known for thin chassis, water-proof elements, and a sleek design. If it does end up being a flagship phone maybe we could see Panasonic add in a 13 megapixel camera like we’ve been hearing from other smartphone manufacturers of late. Stay tuned for more details as CES rolls around.

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Nexus 4 can pick up on AT&T 4G LTE via very limited Band 4

Chalk another loss up for the “Nexus 4 will never, ever gain LTE access” folks — yet another group of people have proven that notion to be utterly false. It appears that the Nexus 4′s Band 4 LTE radios are actually compatible with a very, VERY small amount of spectrum on AT&T’s network.

It appears AT&T owns the bands in a few select markets — including Phoenix, Las Vegas, Raleigh, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles and more — and uses it to fill coverage in spots where needed. The coverage area for their share of the Band 4 spectrum is so small that the amount of Nexus 4 owners that might be able to access the LTE network would likely come out to 1% or less.

It’s not the wide-spread coverage we’d want, of course, but there it is. It’s likely AT&T won’t gain much more of that spectrum in the near future as T-Mobile is said to be eyeing it for deployment of its own LTE services. If that were to happen then the Nexus 4 certainly could be up and running on a major LTE network in some official capacity by 2013′s end.

AT&T users can try their luck and see if they can pick up an LTE signal just for giggles, but as it stands the coverage is so minuscule that it won’t be a practical solution for anyone at all. Have a look around XDA to see how you can go about enabling your device’s 4G LTE radios to see if your area has a sliver of 4G coverage over Band 4.

[XDA via Android Police]

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Google shuttering Motorola’s Korean branch, 500 jobs to be cut

As part of continued efforts to trim down the operations of Motorola Mobility after acquiring the company last year, Google has confirmed it plans to cease the majority of the division’s operations in South Korea in 2013.  The move, which Google described as “difficult but necessary,” will see the end of Moto’s R&D and mobile device marketing departments and result in the loss of around 500 jobs.

The news comes just months removed from a proposed restructuring that would cut some 4,000 jobs as efforts shifted toward refocusing Motorola Mobility’s product offerings. There has also been talk that Google is shopping Motorola’s Home division to potential buyers in hopes to further lighten the $12.5 billion load.

Google points towards slimming margins as reason for the closures. The tech giant hopes cutting expenses will lead to greater profit, but warns investors to expect “significant revenue variability” in the meantime.

Motorola’s wide patent portfolio was a driving force behind what many analysts have called a knee-jerk reaction on Google’s part. The deal hasn’t paid off for the two companies just yet. As evidenced by these downsizing efforts, Google may have bit off a bit more than they could chew.

[via AllThingsD]

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Motorola Mobility to leave South Korea in 2013

Motorola is going to be leaving South Korea next year as part of the reorganization that has been happening within the company since Google purchased them. Only about 10% of Motorola’s employees from the local research and development department will remain with the company. Those that do will be offered relocation packages.

Unfortunately, this restructuring will claim over 500 jobs in South Korea. In all, about 4000 people have been laid off since Google purchased Motorola, and it looks like this situation is going to add to that total. Only Motorola Mobility is leaving South Korea, as the Home Business and iDEN go-to-market will remain and presumably, those jobs will not be affected, at least for now.

Motorola Mobility began notifying employees today that it will cease operating in South Korea. While we know the job loss will be somewhere over 500, Motorola declined to provide an exact number of people who would lose their jobs. Motorola did note that the 10% that will remain active is only R&D staff, but that does not tell us much, as most of the staff consists of R&D.

Motorola Mobility says that closing operations in South Korea are a part of its ongoing effort to consolidate its research and development operations. Motorola is also hoping the move will help it compete in markets where it can be most effective. It’s just unfortunate that this move comes at the cost of many individual jobs.

[via Slashgear]

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Apple hit by biggest loss in 4 years

Last Wednesday saw the biggest single-day loss for Apple in 4 years following the a dive of  company’s shares to 6 percent in the midst of the ever increasing competition in the lucrative mobile market.

Both analysts and investors point to a few factors as reasons for the sell-off including a forecast by an influential research company that says Apple is losing ground to its main rival, the Android operating system of Google Inc. There are also rumors that one major stock-clearing house was trying to raise margin requirements for Apple stock trades.

Another reason cited by analysts are fears among investors about a possible hike in the capital gain tax in 2013 if Washington fails to resolve the fiscal cliff, and the news that Nokia outbid Apple to sell its Lumia smartphones through China Mobile, China’s largest wireless carrier.

More than 37 million shares changed hands, translating to a shedding of about $35 billion in market value. The stock was the one of the biggest losses in terms of percentage on the S&P 500 on that day.

Apple shares were once considered the most desirable of portfolio holdings. However, the company’s shares have since then plummeted as Apple struggled to curb the growing competition from rivals since September. Microsoft Corp’s entry into the mobile market as well as strong sales of’s Kindle Fire have significantly threatened Apple’s dominance of the mobile sphere.

Samsung Electronics is also continuing to take away Apple’s dominance with its innovative Galaxy flagship.

Apple CEO Tim Cook, who replaced the charismatic Steve Jobs following his death, is charged with defending its consumer-electronics dominance. Apple is world’s largest technology company.

Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners said that Apple’s current downward spiral is not temporary as it is a long-term management test now that Steve Jobs is out of the picture. He said that Apple needs “another home run” to be able to reach the $700/ share mark again, while referring to the iPad mini, which is simply a smaller version of the current iPad.

“They need another new product that hits it out of the park. Without that, they could get a gradual grind-down in confidence,” Battle said.

International Data Corp said on Wednesday that Apple will most likely lose ground in tablet computer market this year. The research firm forecast that Apple’s total market share for tablets will decrease to 53.8 percent from 56.3 in 2011. it predicted that Android products will increase their share from 39.8 percent to 42.7 percent over the same period.

The looming fiscal cliff that could significantly affect dividends and capital gains is another concern that pushed investors to shed their shares before  2013. The uncertainty over the hotly debated fiscal cliff issue and the resulting higher tax rates on dividends and capital gains next year are more than enough reasons for investors to sell off their shares.

The massive value of the stock was responsible for single-handedly forcing last Wednesday’s 1.1 percent drop in the Nasdaq 100 Index.

Apple enjoys a 33 percent rise this year, but has since then fallen 24 percent from its record high $705.07 mark on September 21. Apple’s stock plummeted to more than 6.4 percent, closing at %538.7923 last Wednesday.


Surprising drop


A few analysts were wondering why Apple stock, which has been one of the most desirable in most of all growth portfolios, has fallen dramatically. Despite the drop, it is expected that Apple will continue to give strong revenue and earnings expansion in the coming years. At this time, one in every two tablets sold everywhere in the world is an iPad.

Apple is busy preparing to launch its flagship iPhone 5 as well as the iPad mini around the world this coming December, including in China and South Korea.

Hudson Square Research analyst Daniel Ernst said: “Apple stock is significantly more volatile than its earnings and innovation stream. And yet the wind blows slightly from the south instead of the east one particular morning, and the stock is down 6 percent.”

“It makes no sense. There are lines around the block for their products all around the world. No other company has that,” he added.

On a separate note, Nokia said it aims to partner with China Mobile in selling its Lumia smartphones to grab back Chinese market share from Apple’s iPhone.

However, some analysts predict that the biggest cellular market in the world will eventually switch to the iPhone.

“China Mobile already carries multiple smartphones from multiple vendors. We continue to expect China Mobile to add the iPhone in the back half of 2013,” said Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster in a research note.

source: reuters

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Netflix Signs Deal With Disney To Get First-Run Movies In 2016, Huge Library Right Now, US Streaming Exclusivity

netflixlogoIn times past, there have been concerns about Netflix’ ability to continue acquiring rights for streaming video content. The more users the company gets, the more pressure there is to get high-profile content. After the loss of the Starz deal, there was some doubt, but today there is a renewed hope for fans of Netflix and Disney at least: the two just inked a deal that will bring first-run movies from Disney, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar, Marvel, and Disneynature to the streaming service in 2016. This deal will also make Netflix Disney’s exclusive streaming subscription partner. Not bad!

dumboposter pocahontasposter aliceinwonderlandposter

The new movies will be coming to Netflix in what sounds like an extremely early window.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

Netflix Signs Deal With Disney To Get First-Run Movies In 2016, Huge Library Right Now, US Streaming Exclusivity was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Court tosses Verizon claims that the FCC can’t require data roaming deals

Court tosses Verizon claims FCC couldn't require data roaming deals

Verizon hasn’t been fond of the FCC requiring data roaming agreements; it sued the agency last May on claims that the requirement overstepped the FCC’s legal bounds. The DC Circuit Court of Appeals isn’t quite so worried, as three judges at the court have unanimously ruled that the FCC was within the authority of the Communication Act to make data roaming deals mandatory. Regulators have been measured in developing the rule and aren’t treating cellular networks like Verizon’s as common carriers, the court says. Verizon hasn’t yet commented on the court loss, although FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski is more than pleased — he sees the roaming rule encouraging competition and keeping more of our mobile gear online. We’re sure smaller carriers would tend to agree now that they won’t always have to build out wide-reaching (and expensive) cellular coverage of their own just to offer more than voice and texting for travelers.

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Via: The Hill

Source: DC Circuit Court of Appeals (PDF)

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HTC brings in new marketing executive in preparation for ‘Marketing 2.0′ project

Taiwanese manufacturer HTC has announced plans today to bring in a new marketing executive in an effort to help get the company get back on track. The new marketing lead, Benhamin Ho, who has served as CMO of Motorola and VP of business strategy and marketing at Far EasTone Telecommunications Co. will join the company in January. Current marketing and sales executive Jason Mackenzie will be shifted to focus solely on the company’s sales strategy, while CMO John Wang has opted to leave the company entirely.

HTC has struggled to match the competition in recent months, losing valuable market share to manufacturers like Samsung and LG. Ho plans to rebuild the company’s current marketing and business strategies, with his first project being titled “Marketing 2.0.” Mr. Ho will report directly to Chief Executive Peter Chou, who has been taking a bit of heat himself for the recent undoings of the company.

HTC went on to admit that it expects next quarter’s revenues to drop another 14.5 percent in the final quarter, equating to a total loss of 23 percent over the previous year.

Source: WSJ


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Damian Dinning abandons Nokia to join Jaguar Land Rover

Nokia’s Imaging Experience program manager, Damian Dinning, confirmed his desire to leave the Finnish phone manufacturer to join Jaguar Land Rover. While it is undisputedly a great boost to Dinning’s career, it would be a great loss for Nokia to lose another executive amidst all the difficulties in keeping the entire company intact and driving it to become profitable again.

Having been able to work for Nokia for duration of 9 years, Dinning said leaving the company was one of his most difficult decisions to make. But since the company is headquartered in Finland and he is from the UK, he was left no choice but to tender his resignation because relocating his family in out of question. Sources said Nokia UK required him to move to Finland where his expertise was needed.

“My family and I are based in the UK at a stage in our lives where relocation is unfortunately not an option. I have therefore made the tremendously difficult decision after nearly 9 years with Nokia to leave the company. I am hugely proud of the work I have been involved with during my time at Nokia and feel privileged to have worked with some of the smartest people I’ve ever been fortunate enough to meet,” Dinning said in a statement.

Two of Dinning’s interests were photography and cars. He was able to enjoy his stay with Nokia because his job was mainly to supervise new sensor technologies that would be used for the Finnish company’s new devices. Since 2004, he never failed to deliver what was expected of him. Among the biggest achievements Dinning had seen in his tenure were the Full Focus technology in 2010 and the PureView technology that made the company the first ever manufacturer to sport 41-megapixel sensor.

Pursuing his other passion, Jaguar Land Rover will put Dinning on a new field of Connected Cars, although there are no further information about his appointment at the new company. Apparently, he did make a good decision to finding a new company that wanted him the most. Analysts believe Nokia is on the brink of a fall down and in a few years’ time, the company itself might be dissolved.


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Rating agency Fitch cast negative outlook for Sony compared to Panasonic

Credit rating firm Fitch thinks Sony is at a greater risk of losing more compared to its rival Panasonic Corp in the continuing electronics slump of Japanese companies.

Fitch gave Panasonic a two-notch-above-BB rating on Thursday. The rating firm cut Sony’s rating to three notches to BB minus on the same day. It is the first time that one of the biggest rating firms trashed the creditworthiness of the two companies to junk-bond level.

Other rival rating agencies S&P and Moody’s also gave both companies the same credit rating, which is barely above junk status. Panasonic received Moody’s most recent cut last Tuesday.

Matt Jamieson, Fitch Asia-Pacific office head,  commented that Panasonic “has the advantage of a relatively stable consumer appliance business that is still generating positive margins”. On the other hand, he said that for Sony, “most of their electronic business are loss making, they appear to be overstretched.”

Almost all of Japan’s TV industry, which had seen better days in the past, is struggling to remain in business as the cheaper and more innovative South Korean Samsung Electronics as well as other foreign rivals are taking over. Tablets and smartphones from Apple Inc have become the current bestsellers in the consumer electronics industry.

Both Sony and Panasonic have become the focus of investors following another rival’s request for bailout as Sharp Corp managed to get help in the form of a $4.6 billion aid from banks like the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group and Mizuho Financial Group.

To survive, both Sony and Panasonic decided to look for different ways. Panasonic hopes to grow its business in solar panels, appliances, automotive components, and lithium batteries. Its appliances unit composed of only 6 percent of the total company sales, but was able to provide margins above 6 percent, as well as made up a big slice in the overall operating profit.

On the other hand, Sony, the creator of the vaunted Walkman, is focusing on consumer gadgets to hopefully take the initiative in its fight against Samsung and Apple in the mpbile business, while at the same time doubling down on gaming and digital cameras.

The consequence of the lowered credit ratings for both companies is the difficulty in raising capital in credit markets to help turn their fate around.

At the moment though, the effects are hardly significant as both companies have the full confidence of their banks.

Panasonic previously forecast an operating loss of $10 billion until March 31 2013, but managed to secure a financial bailout from banks like Mitsubishi UFJ and Sumitomo Mitsui an amount of around $7.6 billion. The move, according to Panasonic, was a good financing backstop to prevent the company from looking for money in credit markets.

Sony is trying to save itself by selling off non-core businesses including the sale of its chemicals business to a Japanese bank, and announced that it should be able to make arouind  $1.9 billion through a convertible bond.

Another market analyst firm, Thomson Reuter’s Starmine, through its structural model system that evaluates debt levels, changes in asset values and credit risks, gave both Sony and Panasonic an implied rating of BB minus. Sharp got an implied rating of B minus, three notches lower.

Panasonic and Sony both received a rating of BBB from Standard & Poor. Moody’s Investors Service cut both companies at Baa3, the lowest of the firm’s high-grade category. Moody’s forecast a negative performance for both companies while S&P sees Sony as struggling and a stable outlook for Panasonic.

source: reuters

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Anonymous hacking costs PayPal £3.5 million as its website was crippled


A 22-year-old British student, who is believed to be a member of a global hacktivist group, Anonymous, stands trial over a series of attacks directed at PayPal. The company revealed it suffered £3.5 million of loss from those attacks.

Christopher Weatherhead was a student at Northampton University. He allegedly took part in a campaign that would serve as Anonymous’ revenge for PayPal for refusing to process Wikileaks payments. Wau Holland Foundation is an organization involved in raising funds for Wikileaks. When PayPal refused to processed payments, both incoming and outgoing, the attacks happened and Anonymous was quick to acknowledge it was their campaign.

Prosecutor Sandip Patel said the cyber-attacks have caused so much disruption to the services offered by the payment processor. While the hackers did not attack the site for financial loot, PayPal had to defend its property and invested in various software that would help deflect attacks as well as safeguard its databases and customer’s information knowing it stores millions, if not billions, of credit card numbers with corresponding names and addresses in its databases.

Anonymous, with the participation of Weatherhead, used distributed denial of service, DDoS, to send millions of requests to servers all at once. It would result to the crippling of the website disallowing users to login, or conduct online transactions simply because the website is unusable during such time. Reports suggested that some users were somehow redirected to a different page with the following message: “You’ve tried to bite the Anonymous hand. You angered the hive and now you are being stung.”

Weatherhead, who goes by the name of “Nerdo” on an Internet Relay Chat (IRC) channel posted messages that encouraged attack on PayPal.

“It is the prosecution case that Christopher Weatherhead, the defendant, is a cyber-attacker and that he, and others like him, waged a sophisticated and orchestrated campaign of online attacks that paralysed a series of targeted computer systems belonging to companies to which they took issue with, for whatever reason, and those attacks caused unprecedented harm,” Mr Patel said.

For now, no one knows if a conviction against Weatherhead could be achieved but majority of the evidences gathered by the authorities and the prosecution point to Weatherhead’s involvement with Anonymous as well as their practices.

[source: Telegraph]

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NTSB chooses Apple’s iPhone over RIM’s BlackBerry

BlackBerrry’s continued downward spiral is yet again punctuated by another customer loss as the National Transportation Safety Board announced it is switching to Apple Inc’s iPhone.

NTSB provided some not-so-pleasant rationale behind the move by saying Research In Motion “have been failing both at inopportune times and at an unacceptable rate.”

NTSB spokesperson Eric Weiss said the agency cannot provide any specific problems due to procurement rules, but it is known that RIM had encountered some high-profile service failures, including a global 3-day outage last year.

The agency wrote: “The NTSB requires effective, reliable and stable communication capabilities to carry-out its primary investigative mission and to ensure employee safety in remote locations. Due to performance issues with the blackberry [sic] devices, the NTSB desires to transition to a different device.”

RIM did not comment on NTSB statement.

“We have 1 million government customers in North America alone who depend on BlackBerry, and more than 400,000 government customers worldwide upgraded their devices in the past year,”  an official statement from RIM said. “We are committed to the mobility needs of government agencies around the world and will continue to meet these needs with BlackBerry 10.”

RIM is set to release the new BlackBerry 10 devices early next year but the NTSB is not waiting for them anymore. The agency has decided to use Apple’s iPhone 5 on Verizon network. NTSB says that the iPhone 5 is the only choice now that’s available in existing wireless vendor and is “currently supportable by existing staff resources.”

While the agency will hardly make a dent in the overall sales of BlackBerry 10 next year, as it only has 400 staff members, NTSB is just but one of the many government agencies that are moving away from RIM’s services. BlackBerrys once dominated the corporate world with their high-end, high security offerings.

The United States Immigration and Customers Enforcement recently switched to Apple after declaring RIM’s mobile technology “can no longer meet” its needs. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration as well as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives already moved to Apple Inc earlier in the year.

The biggest government agency that expressed its discontent with RIM’s BlackBerrys so far is the United States Department of Defense. The procurement order it posted last month logged a minimum of 162,500 Android and Apple units. The department hopes to add the new devices to its existing network of devices.

source: cnn

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Samsung granted review of loss by U.S. ITC

The legal battle between the two biggest mobile makers in the world goes to higher court as the United States International Trade Commission decides to review a previous ruling that Apple did not infringe on Samsung patents.

Last September, a preliminary ruling by an administrative law judge said that Apple Inc did not infringe on Samsung patents. The ITC had the option to simply the initial ruling, but decided to take a second look at the matter. It is expected that a final decision will be given on January.

The appellate court’s decision against Apple could mean a ban on all Apple decision in the United States.

Apple won a landmark case against Samsung last August when a jury ruled against Samsung, declaring that the South Korean company imitated key features of Apple’s iPhone. Samsung was told to pay $1.05 billion in damages but it filed an appeal against the ruling.

The ITC announced that it would ask for briefings how it will view standard essential patents.  Such patents, essential for interoperability of devices, are expected to be licensed reasonably and fairly.

A number of antitrust advocates believe that it is not lawful for companies that own standard essential patents to demand banning of infringing devices from being sold in the country except in some extreme situations.

The ITC will review the findings of ITC Judge James Gildea in September, who ruled Apple was innocent in violating the four patents presented by Samsung in the middle of 2011.

Samsung complained in 2011 that Apple violated some of its 3G wireless technology and the format of data packets in transmitting high-speed data.

Apple countered by filing its own complaint accusing Samsung of copying some important features of its iPads and iPhones. Another ITC judge ruled in favor of Apple by declaring Samsung had violated four of Apple patents. ITC will give a final decision in February 2013.

Apple has been fighting around the world to uphold its patents against the onslaught of the fast growing Android operating system. Apple’s international patent war has involved many mobile makers including Samsung, HTC, and other firms running Google’s Android.

Steve Jobs has called Android, the currently number one mobile operating system in the world, as a “stolen product”.

Samsung is currently the number 1 mobile maker in the world in terms of sales and Apple is the third.

Experts consider Samsung’s Galaxy touchscreen tablets as the biggest rival to Apple’s more popular iPad.

Other than its biggest rival, Samsung is also a supplier to Apple’s need of micro processors, memory chips, and flat screens for its iPod, iPhone, and iPad. Apple has recently reduced its orders from Samsung especially for both AND memory chips and dynamic random access memory (DRAM), as well as screens.

Both Samsung and Apple are fighting for dominance for the $219 billion smartphone market. The South Korean company needs a victory against Apple to help in its strategy in dragging its litigation while at the same time avoiding copying Apple gadget’s key features, said Erin-Michael Gill, current managing director of MDB Capital Group LLC.

Adam Yates, a spokesman for Samsung said: “We remain confident that the commission will reach a final determination that affirms our position that Apple must be held accountable for free-riding on our technological innovations.”

Apple, for its part, did not comment on the pending case.

source: reuters | bloomberg

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AppRiver’s CipherPost Pro offers users secure, encrypted email

CipherPost Pro

Great, enterprise-grade encrypted e-mail is not a small thing to accomplish. In nearly every case, you're looking at special hardware, software and management to keep everyone's private email… well, private.  AppRiver is hoping to get around that by offering its own over-the-top secure encrypted email solution with an app its just released called CipherPost Pro.

Instead of running your own back-end security system, the idea of CipherPost Pro is that you can use any email provider you'd like, and simply pay a subscription fee to use this app's encryption system. Features you'd expect like mail tracking, data loss protection and MDM (Mobile Device Management) integration are all on board. CipherPost Pro is compliant with industry security standard such as HIPAA, PSQIA, PCI DSS, Sarbanes-Oxley and more.

You can take a look at CipherPost Pro in the Play Store at the link above.

Source: AppRiver (BusinessWIre)

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iPad Mini Won’t Canabilze IPad 4 Sales

iPad Mini’s strong debut in the tablet market does not suggest that it would eventually affect the sales of the fourth-generation iPad, a renowned financial services firm disclosed Wednesday.

Business analyst Cown and Co. claimed that Apple’s latest tablet, the iPad Mini, provides more opportunities rather than competition to its big brother, the iPad 4.

According to the survey conducted by the financial services firm, 12 percent of the 1,225 adult consumers said they would purchase an iPad Mini within the next 18 months. The survey also presented that 16.6 percent of the respondents answered they would want to buy a tablet to replace their old ones. Surprisingly, 29 percent of those regular tablet buyers said the tablet they were replacing was an iPad.

Cowen analyst Matthew Hoffman believes the presence of the iPad Mini bodes well for the fourth-generation iPad.

“iPad Mini creates more demand than it cannibalizes.” Hoffman said after releasing his survey.

Cowen and Co’s findings appear to be contradictory to an early report by Pipper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster, who claimed that the iPad Mini (20 percent cannibalization rate) is a real threat to the sales of the iPad 4.

Munster insisted that for every five million sales of the iPad Mini, there’s going to be a loss of one million fourth-generation iPads.

Nevertheless, the Pipper Jaffray analyst stated the iPad Mini will have a much lesser cannibilazation effect on Apple’s overall sales.

Cowen added the iPad Mini provides less competition to the fourth generation iPad because 42 percent of the respondents said they plan to replace their Windows PC with the Apple tablet while 13 percent of them said they will purchase it as a substitute to their Amazon Kindle Fire.

Moreover, Cowen found out that 52 percent of the iPad Mini Buyers currently don’t even have a tablet.

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In light of HTC settlement, Samsung’s JK Shin still sees no deal with Apple

When HTC and Apple came to an agreement on a 10-year cross-licensing deal, those of us sick of hearing about a new patent lawsuit every week were hopeful that similar settlements could be reached in other high-profile cases. This won’t be the case with Samsung, according to top dog JK Shin. The Samsung Mobile chief said, “Regardless of HTC’s settlement with Apple, we have no intention [to settle].”

Yes, Samsung plans to fight this out until the bitter end, and why wouldn’t they? Despite a recent loss in the US courts that, depending on how appeals play out, will see the Korean mobile maker forking over $1 billion in damages to Apple, their fortunes have been better elsewhere. A court in the UK ruled that Samsung did not infringe on Apple’s iPad design and ordered the Cupertino, Calif. company to post a notice on their site clarifying the matter for their customers (an order which was disobeyed and saw Apple fronting Samsung’s court costs).

That is not to mention speculation that the deal between HTC and Apple favors the latter company. Industry sources have come forward saying that Apple could be owed $6-$8 for every handset HTC ships. Samsung could afford such a settlement more easily than HTC, but it sounds like the company would much rather duke it out than come to a peaceful resolution outside the courtroom.

Apple and Samsung have both been stubborn throughout their numerous legal battles, with neither company ceding ground easily. A settlement would ultimately come down to one side buckling before the other, and it sounds like Samsung isn’t prepared to be the one to wave the white flag.

[via SammyHub]

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Sony Lowers Again Sales Forecast For Vita

Japanese technology giant Sony is again lowering its projected sales for its newest handheld video game console Vita for the second time this fiscal year, the company announced last week.

Sony originally forecasted to sell a combined 16 million units of the PlayStation Vita and its outgoing predecessor PlayStation Portable (PSP) systems. Despite the company’s decision not to disclose a separate sales results for both consoles, Sony still announced a weaker sales for both platforms.

After Sony sold 1.8 million units of Vitas in the first quarter, the sale trajectory continued to take a downward trend in the succeeding quarter as the company recorded a sale of 1.6 million units in the last three months.

It marked the second time Sony lowered their forecast for their handheld gaming platform following a lethargic sales result during the first quarter and the ongoing decline in the past months.  With this development, Sony is just expecting just 10 million units of Vitas sold at the end of the fiscal year, which translates to a loss of $16 million.

Sony, who racked up $88 million profit from the sale of PSP last year, insisted that’s too early to lower the price of the PlayStation Vita despite recording weak sales since the console’s launch last May.

However, other retailers are taking the matter into their own hands by selling a 3G/Wi-Fi PlayStation Vita launch bundle for only $179.99 – which $120 cheaper from its original retail price.

In a span of 10 months, retailers are starting to sell their pile of Vitas even though they gain nothing from its sale.

Nonetheless, Sony remains optimistic about Vita’s potential in the business aspect. With the release of big titles (Silent Hill: Book of Memories, Assassin Creed III: Liberations, Need for Speed: Most Wanted and others), Vita will surely find their mark in the gaming industry.

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T-Mobile posts Q3 2012 earnings, prepaid doing well


T-Mobile has finally posted its Q3 2012 earnings and they're looking pretty good. We'll start first with the carrier's postpaid contract earnings. On the postpaid side, T-Mobile posted total revenues of $4.9 billion, down 6.4-percent year-over-year. Contract ARPU (Average Revenue Per User) dropped slightly by 3.3-perecent to $56.59, mostly due to the move to Value Plans which make up a quarter of postpaid subscribers. T-Mobile in the end lost 492,000 postpaid customers for the quarter, which is an improvement from last quarter.

The positive side of this quarter's earnings is in prepaid. T-Mobile added 365,000 prepaid subscribers on the quarter, and prepaid revenues were up 38-percent (year-over-year) to $450 million. ARPU was also up 12.5-percent to $27.35 for prepaid customers. Wholesale customers (that's M2M and MVNO) also increased by 287,000. These are pretty big growth numbers, and you can understand why T-Mobile has started to push towards prepaid more and more.

Overall, T-mobile's net income for the quarter was a loss to the tune of $7.8 billion. That sounds bad, but let us quickly explain why they made a loss this quarter. Because of the merger between T-Mobile and MetroPCS, the carrier had to take a non-cash "impairment charge" of $8.1 billion, and chose to write it all down in one quarter. This turned a quarter that would have been a $400 million profit into one with a considerable loss. Mergers aside, expenses for the quarter were down 0.4-percent year-over-year.

When looking at the root causes behind the numbers you can hardly call this a "loss" for the quarter, all things considered. Money was well spent on a merger that will improve T-Mobile's position in the U.S. market considerably, and prepaid growth is looking positive for the future.

Source: T-Mobile Newsroom; Extended Financial Summary (PDF)

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T-Mobile USA Q3 2012 earnings: Revenue drops 6 percent to $4.9 billion, profit down 15 percent


T-Mobile USA just announced its Q3 2012 financials, and its balance sheet is sagging over last year: the company collected $4.9 billion, 6.4 percent less than Q3 2011, and earned $1.2 billion, a decline of 15.2 percent. The mobile operator said while it earned more from equipment sales, it wasn’t enough to offset an 8.7 percent drop in service revenue caused by a loss of 492,000 lucrative postpaid clients. Despite the gloomy tidings, the telecom said it added 160,000 new users (net) over last quarter thanks in part to the iPhone 5 launch, including 365k branded prepaid customers — and improved “churn” (clients switching carriers) by 30 basis points to 2.3 percent. The company also feels its MetroPCS merger will also start to pay off soon, figuring it’ll soon have “LTE deployment in 90 percent of the top 25 US markets.” Whether the cheery talk will assuage investors remains to be seen — check the PR after the break to see for yourself.

[Image credit: Wikimedia Commons]

Continue reading T-Mobile USA Q3 2012 earnings: Revenue drops 6 percent to $4.9 billion, profit down 15 percent

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T-Mobile USA Q3 2012 earnings: Revenue drops 6 percent to $4.9 billion, profit down 15 percent originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 08 Nov 2012 01:41:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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HTC shows 60% loss in October, ouch!


Here at AndroidSPIN, we have reported in the past that HTC has been taking some “pretty hard hits”. Between Apple screwing them over and just average revenue loss, the Taiwanese-based manufacturer is getting beat on.

According to HTCSource, the company has seen a 60% loss in revenue just in October alone! That estimates to around $588 million. Not surprising from the lack of major components in recent devices, alongside the fierce competition from Samsung. Let’s just hope things get better with the upcoming season.

With the partnership with Windows 8 devices, HTC will likely sell more stocking-stuffers than ever. For the sake of all things “jolly”, release an 8-core phone with 4GB of RAM? Sounds like a deal! Stay strong HTC.

Source: HTCSource

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Impressive growth for Android tablet sales as Apple falters according to latest IDC report

Do you remember back in September when IDC predicted Android tablets would not see any significant growth in the share of the market that they command? IDC probably hopes you have forgotten that in light of their report today showing some significant changes in the tablet market during the third quarter of 2012. Perhaps the most stunning change was the worldwide market share for Apple devices, which slipped from a commanding 65.5% of the market in the second quarter to 50.4% in the third quarter. IDC attributes some of this to consumers holding off on purchases amidst rumors of the iPad mini. A bounce back is expected during the fourth quarter, but may be hampered by the iPad mini’s relatively high purchase price.

Apple’s loss was Android’s gain as Samsung, Amazon, Asus and Lenovo all saw their share grow compared to both the 2012 second quarter and year-over-year. Samsung saw shipments improve from 1.2 million units during the 2011 third quarter to 5.1 million units this year. Samsung now commands 18.4% of the tablet market.

Overall, the tablet market continues to grow, up 49.5% compared to a year ago and up 6.7% compared to last quarter.

The question now is whether the third quarter is just a blip and we see Apple return to controlling almost two-thirds of the market or will Android based devices continue their march to dominance?

source: IDC

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Samsung confirms 30 million Galaxy S III and 3m Note II sales

Samsung has been kind enough to always update the public with numbers showing the sheer amount of devices or smartphones they’ve sold. Today they have released some impressive numbers for their popular flagship Samsung Galaxy S III. We knew it would be a big hit, just like the Galaxy S II, but now they’ve announced 30 million strong in sales.

Just a few months ago in September Samsung announced 20 million GSIII sales. While the smartphone launched this summer to a massive audience and with tons of eager customers, it looks like things aren’t slowing down anytime soon. With sales increasing 10 million in just the past two months alone it’s safe to say Samsung’s doing quite well.

Surveys showed the loss to Apple in court actually helped the Galaxy S III sales all summer long, so that’s an interesting point worth noting. The real numbers according to Samsung is about 30 million units in the past 157 days, so just around 5 months on the market. This isn’t counting the fact that the Galaxy S III launched internationally first before hitting the US on 5 major carriers, which certainly helped sales.

That isn’t all either. Samsung also announced their Galaxy Note II has sold 3 million units too — even though T-Mobile is one of the few US carriers already offering the device. AT&T will start shipping the Note II this week, and Verizon in the coming weeks so those numbers should surely climb soon. Still, 3 million Galaxy Note II smartphones in just under 30 days is pretty impressive too. It’s safe to say their Note II is another instant success. Keep up the good work Samsung!

[via SamsungTomorrow]

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Apple UK updates Samsung statement, but makes sure people don’t see it

Apple did not take its loss against Samsung lightly, in the UK. The Cupertino Giant was forced to post a statement in their UK website, stating that Samsung did not infringe on Apple’s patents. Needless to say Apple still went for homerun and decided to highlight the competition’s shortcomings and Apple’s victories across the world.

UK courts then asked Apple to correct the previously posted statement and publish a Samsung-friendly one. The link also had to be more noticeable, placed under Apple’s homepage at a font size no lower than 11 points. But of course, Apple found another way to make such statement less visible to the general public.

Apple UK went as far as re-coding the site so that people won’t be able to see the statement link without a bit of effort. Apple’s UK website resizes itself depending on screen size and resolution, making the statement harder to get to, regardless of what device you may be using. This is done mostly by resizing the image of the iPad Mini to accomodate the browser’s size.


var HeroResize=AC.Class({initialize:function(b){this._height=null;this._hero=$(b);
if(typeof window.ontouchstart===”undefined”){this.resizeHero();Event.observe(window,”resize”,this.__boundResizeHero)
}},setHeight:function(b){this._height=(b<0)?0:b;return this._height},resizeHero:function(){this.setHeight(parseInt(window.innerHeight||(window.document.documentElement.clientHeight||window.document.body.clientHeight),10)-310);
this.hero().style.height=this.height()+”px”}});Event.onDOMReady(function(){var b=new HeroResize(“billboard”)

The code you see above ensures that the bottom 310 pixels of the site stay out of view unless one makes an effort to scroll down. I have tested viewing both sites from multiple monitors and can attest to the fact that the bottom part stays out of view, with the UK site’s iPad Mini picture changing sizes (while the US version stays the same).

The only way I managed to keep the statement in view was to put my 23-inch monitor on portrait orientation and blasting the site full-screen. And this was only because the iPad Mini image couldn’t get any bigger without crossing the side edges.

Apple, you just really have to have the last word, don’t you? Is it that hard to accept a defeat and leave a statement until mid-November? We could not expect any less from Apple and its unfair tactics. Now let’s see if UK authorities will notice this and force Apple to once again make changes to its official site.

[via Reddit]

Thanks, Jake!

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Pentagon Drops Exclusive Contract With Blackberry Maker RIM

Research in Motion, the manufacturer of Blackberry, suffered another major loss in its business after Pentagon announced that it has already ended its exclusive contract with the company.

Pentagon stated that it’s now encouraging other software companies such Apple, Microsoft, and Google to apply for a government contract and provide them with software developed to supervise and manage U.S military security requirements.

In an interview with Reuters, the Pentagon spokesperson asserted they will continue to use a large number of blackberry smartphones but broadening its reach with other smartphone makers becomes as a priority in an attempt to increase the use of new and innovative applications in the military.

“DISA is managing an enterprise e-mail capability that continues to support large numbers of RIM devices while moving forward with the department’s planned mobile management capability that will support a variety of mobility devices,” the spokesperson told Reuters, according to

The spokesperson insisted that Pentagon isn’t completely ending their contract with Research In Motion, However, the development came as another bad beak for the company after the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency announced last week that it’s dropping contract with RIM for the supply of all of its BlackBerry devices.

Apple’s iPhone replaced Blackberry smartphones as the office asserted that RIM’s smartphone RIM’s smartphone could not cope up with their present needs.

“We are confident that BlackBerry is, and will continue to be, the best solution for government agencies. BlackBerry brings unparalleled real-time mobile access to police forces and the military to ensure public safety. It has proven time again to be the most available and reliable communications channel during natural disasters and for first-responders. More than 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies rely on BlackBerry security for secure, mobile transmission of confidential information,” said RIM vice president for government solutions Paul Lucie.


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Japanese firm Sharp forecast more losses this year

Japanese TV maker Sharp Corp  is anticipating a massive full-year net loss of $5.6 billion and warned that it could not survive for long if left on its own. The company’s share price fell by 3 percent following the announcement.

On the other hand, Sony’s shares increased 3.5 percent after posting a positive operating profit for the July-September quarter, while keeping its full-year profit target the same last Thursday.

Sharp was previously trading at 164 yen but after in-hours trading last Thursday, the Aquos TV maker warned that the company is expecting a “serious negative operating cash flow”.

The company almost doubled its estimated full-year loss to $5.62 billion after it took a $1.1 billion restructuring charge during third quarter. It forecasts an operating level loss of 155 billion yen.

“Sharp expects major earnings improvement in the second half as it posted greater inventory and capital write-downs in the first half than planned, and plans to cut personnel and other fixed costs,” said Goldman Sachs in a report.

“However, sales guidance for small/midsize LCDs and solar cells looks optimistic, and we think second half guidance looks difficult,” it added.

Sony’s fortune has changed after selling off its non-core chemicals division, prompting it to keep its full-year operating profit of 130 billion yen. However, the PlayStation gaming console maker said it anticipates lower sales figure for its portable Vita and PSP consoles. The same is true for sales of its compact digital cameras and TV sets although its PlayStation and smartphone sales figures remained unchanged.

Overall, Japan’s consumer electronics producers are reporting troubled times ahead. Panasonic Corp was the first to report a deteriorating situation last Wednesday by predicting that it  will lose 765 billion yen this year amidst ongoing plans for restructuring.

Sharp’s declaration of possible bankruptcy is the first time for 100-year old firm.

Japanese firms including Sharp are paying massive investments on semiconductors, capital-intensive products, and flat-panel televisions. They are burning cash to build massive manufacturing plants at home to keep pace with South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co and other rivals in the region.

Sharp’s focus right now is to raise the company’s stock price so that it can attract investors and raise more cash. The company’s shares have fallen down 75% this year.

Sharp announced last August of its planned workforce reduction by cutting 5000 jobs around the world. The layoff will be the first time since the 1950s. The company has already sold assets, cut salaries, and minimized on investments. As part of raising cash and to deal with overcapacity at its manufacturing plants, Sharp sold a 38% stake in its LCD-panel plant at home last July.

Sales of LCD TVs has fallen dramatically mainly due to decreased consumption in Japan and China caused by unstable Japan-China relations.

Both countries are wrangling over ownership of an island chain in East China Sea, sparking Chinese consumers anger.  Customers in China are reportedly boycotting Japanese products over the dispute.

Another reason for the losses of big Japanese electronics maker is the appreciation of yen against the dollar. A stronger yen makes Japanese products more expensive overseas and lowered the value of company’s repatriated income from abroad.

source: reuters

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