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Apple Beat Fiscal Q3 Earnings Estimates On Strong iPhone Sales

By | Tuesday July 22, 2014 @ 1:36pm PDT

Apple Beat Fiscal Q3 Earnings Estimates On Strong iPhone SalesThe results should keep investors busy until Apple holds its quarterly conference call where it might drop a hint about its new product plans. Apple appears to have done well in the three months ending in June with net income of $7.75B, + 12.3% vs the period last year, on revenues of $37.43B, +6%. The top line was a tad shy of the $37.99B that analysts expected. But earnings at $1.28 a share beat forecasts for $1.23.

The company sold 35.2M iPhones in the quarter, +12.7% from last year. BGC analyst Colin Gillis anticipated just 31.8M. But iPads were down 9.2% to 13.3M. The number of Mac sales increased 17.6% to 4.4M. iPod sales fell nearly 36% to 2.9M.

“Our record June quarter revenue was fueled by strong sales of iPhone and Mac and the continued growth of revenue from the Apple ecosystem, driving our highest EPS growth rate in seven quarters,” CEO Tim Cooks says. “We are incredibly excited about the upcoming releases of iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, as well as other new products and services that we can’t wait to introduce.”

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Apple Could Sell More Than 40M iWatches At $300 Apiece: Analyst

By | Monday July 14, 2014 @ 1:10pm PDT

Apple Could Sell More Than 40M iWatches At $300 Apiece: AnalystI know, Apple hasn’t even confirmed that it will introduce an iWatch. Yet Wall Street is all about expectations, and Morgan Stanley’s Katy Huberty is so confident that the iWatch will be a hit that she raised her target stock price for the company today — helping it to touch a 52-week high of $96.89 before closing at $96.33, +1.2%. “We view the Apple ‘halo effect’ rather than the current watch market as the more accurate predictor of iWatch sales,” she says. In her first forecast for the product, she figures Apple could sell as many as 60M iWatches in its first 12 months in the market at an average of $300 apiece — as much as half the price going straight to Apple’s bottom line. Consumers would wear a watch “with more sensors, and better form factor and aesthetics than competing devices in the market priced at $100-$250,” she says.
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DeadlineNow: No Big Apple News At Developers Conference (Video)

By | Monday June 2, 2014 @ 3:12pm PDT
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Apple Mum On New Products

Apple unveiled lots of small tweaks and improvements to its mobile and computer operating systems during the World Wide Developers Conference but none of the big game-changing news some had expected. David Lieberman reports.

Related: Apple Leaves Company Watchers Still Waiting For Next Big Thing

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UPDATE: Apple Leaves Company Watchers Still Waiting For Next Big Thing After World Wide Developers Conference

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Apple Mum On New Products

Apple unveiled lots of small tweaks and improvements to its mobile and computer operating systems during the World Wide Developers Conference but none of the big game-changing news some had expected. David Lieberman reports.

apple__121030091136Apple‘s software updates and new services presented at today’s World Wide Developers Conference may excite its fans. But they didn’t impress company watchers hoping to hear something that will reinvigorate the company as its main profit drivers — the iPhone and iPad — lose market share to competitors. For example, the company offered nothing new about its acquisition of Beats Audio, or about Apple TV. Shares were down about 1% shortly after the event ended.

CEO Tim Cook said that the goal was to offer a seamless experience to people who access services and data from different Apple devices. He announced iOS 8, which he calls “a giant release.” An update to Apple’s Safari web browser will  handle HTML5 video, giving users the capability to watch streaming services including Netflix without a separate plug-in. This could be important to Hollywood, because it should take away another barrier to a TV-like experience on consumer tablets, phones and computers. Read More »

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DeadlineNow: Apple Closes $3B Deal For Beats (Video)

By | Thursday May 29, 2014 @ 1:44pm PDT
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What The Beats Acquisition Means For Apple

Deadline's David Lieberman explains what Apple is getting for its $3B buy of Beats.

Related: Apple Buys Beats: Iovine, Cue And The $3 Billion Deal

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DeadlineNow Morning Report: Box Office Preview, Apple’s Big Buy, ‘Community’ On Hulu? (Video)

By | Thursday May 29, 2014 @ 10:57am PDT
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Morning Report, Thursday May 29

'Maleficent', 'A Million Ways To Die', set to bow at weekend box office, Apple buys Beats in $3B deal, 'Community' may see a comeback on Hulu. Dominic Patten reports.

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Apple Buys Beats: Iovine, Cue And The $3 Billion Deal

By | Wednesday May 28, 2014 @ 10:11pm PDT
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What The Beats Acquisition Means For Apple

Deadline's David Lieberman explains what Apple is getting for its $3B buy of Beats.

Just hours afterEddy Cue and Jimmy Iovine the biggest deal in Apple’s history, two of the key players in the $3 billion acquisition of Beats Electronics and Beats Music took to a conference stage to say the deal took a decade to happen, and then virtually no time at all. “I asked them every day for 10 years,” said Jimmy Iovine, the long-time Universal Records executive who co-founded Beats with rap super-producer Dr. Dre. “These guys are not easy to get to. They make deals like they make products,” as he made a wringing motion with his hands.

Iovine and Apple Sr. Vice President of Internet Software and Services were on stage at the Code Conference in Palos Verdes, CA, this evening just hours after the much-rumored deal was finally announced, bringing the maker of hugely popular (and frequently-criticized) headphones and portable speakers and a budding but still small music streaming service to the tech giant for $3 billion.
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Apple (Finally) Agrees To Pay $3B For Beats

By | Wednesday May 28, 2014 @ 1:52pm PDT

Apple music headphoneThe announcement, coming 20 days after word of the negotiations leaked, is designed to boost Apple‘s subscription streaming music business and broaden its array of headphones and other audio equipment. Beats co-founders Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre will join Apple, the company said without specifying what role they’ll play. The purchase consists of $2.6B with an additional $400M in Apple equity to vest over an unspecified period. “Music is such an important part of all of our lives and holds a special place within our hearts at Apple,” CEO Tim Cook says. “That’s why we have kept investing in music and are bringing together these extraordinary teams so we can continue to create the most innovative music products and services in the world.” This is Apple’s largest acquisition — and a shift for the company that, under Steve Jobs, was determined to build its own brands instead of buying existing ones. Apple plans to continue offering Beats products under its own brand. Read More »

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Deadline Big Media 84 – The All3 Apple Alibaba Podcast

Deadline Big Media ep 84In this edition of the podcast, Deadline’s executive editor David Lieberman and host David Bloom recap Deadline’s annual report on the most out-of-whack paydays for CEOs in media. Who got paid the most compared to their own top colleagues this past year? We’ll also jump on the news carousel with big deal-related stories affecting All3Media, Apple and Alibaba; and decide what to make of Liberty’s John Maffei statement that Charter is still looking for more cable buys after its $20 billion deal with Comcast.

Deadline Big Media podcast 84 (.MP3 version)
Deadline Big Media podcast 84 (.M4A version)

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Is Apple Preparing To Spend $3.2B For Beats’ Music Electronics And Streaming?

By | Thursday May 8, 2014 @ 3:17pm PDT

Apple music headphoneThe Financial Times says it is, in what the paper calls “a radical departure” for Apple, which has eschewed splashy acquisitions. The deal still isn’t done, but talks are far enough along to have determined that the company founded by music exec Jimmy Iovine and performer-producer Dr. Dre will report directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook, FT says. Less than two years ago, private equity firm the Carlyle Group invested $500M in Beats for a minority stake that valued the company at more than $1B and took two of the six board seats. Last month, Billboard reported that Beats’ streaming service, which launched in January, “has been a disappointment” with paid subscriptions in the low-six figures and “soon will face competition on the mobile platform when Sprint begins bundling Spotify with its ‘Framily’ plans.”

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Deadline Big Media 82: The FCC Aereo HBO Amazon Podcast

By and | Friday April 25, 2014 @ 5:38pm PDT

Deadline Big Media ep 82In this week’s podcast, Deadline Executive Editor David Lieberman and host David Bloom catch up on several big developments in the fast-changing business of video delivery. The two Davids talk everything from the controversy over the FCC’s latest net-neutrality proposals to what the Supreme Court oral arguments on Aereo suggest about a coming decision and a potentially very big content deal between HBO and Amazon that Apple downplayed. They also check in on the latest in Time Warner Cable’s efforts to push its Los Angeles Dodgers channel, and Netflix’s possible price hike for newcomers after another big quarter.

Deadline Big Media podcast 82 (.MP3 version)
Deadline Big Media podcast 82 (.M4A version)

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Apple CEO Says HBO Gave Amazon “Older” Content, And Talks Up Apple TV

By | Wednesday April 23, 2014 @ 3:15pm PDT

Tim CookTim Cook hinted in his call with analysts today that Apple wants to become a bigger player in TV. He says that the company has already sold 20M of its Apple TV streaming boxes, which accounted for $1B  in sales last year. That helps to explain why, in February, he stopped calling the product a “hobby.” As it has grown, and become more sophisticated, “it didn’t feel right to me” to treat it so dismissively. He doesn’t appear to feel threatened by Amazon’s deal today to land several popular shows from HBO and add HBO GO to the Amazon Fire TV platform. “We  have HBO GO already on Apple TV,” the Apple CEO says. As for the programming: “They got some older content from HBO. I haven’t had a chance to evaluate exactly what it is.” While Apple fans eagerly wait to see what new products the company might unveil this year, Cook says “I’m feeling very good about that [TV] business and where it can go.”

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Apple Fiscal Q2 Earnings Blast Past Analyst Expectations As It Raises Dividend

By | Wednesday April 23, 2014 @ 1:32pm PDT

Apple shares are up more than 8% post market after it released a lot of news designed to please investors — including a 7-for-1 stock split, an increase in stock repurchases to $90B from $60B, and an 8% increase in the quarterly dividend.apple__121030091136 “We are confident in Apple’s future and see tremendous value in Apple’s stock,” CEO Tim Cook says. The announcements come as the consumer electronics company released earnings for the first three months of the year that trounced Wall Street forecasts.

Apple generated net income of $10.22B, +7.1% vs the period last year, on revenues of $45.6B, +4.7%. Analysts thought the top line would come in at $43.5B. Earnings at $11.62 a share far exceeded the consensus prediction of $10.18. Some of the upbeat news comes from higher-than-expected iPhone sales. Apple sold 43.7M units, up 17% vs the period last year. But iPad sales slipped 16% to 16.4M units while Mac computers were +5% to 4.1M and iPods fell 51% to 2.8M. Read More »

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Apple, Comcast In Talks For Streaming TV Deal: Report

By | Sunday March 23, 2014 @ 7:17pm PDT

apple Apple and Comcast are looking to team up on a deal for high quality streaming TV, “people familiar with the matter” tell WSJ. News of the early talks between the companies comes a month after Bloomberg reported that Apple was in negotiations with Time Warner Cable for a new Apple TV set-top box. The very next day Comcast and Time Warner announced their $45.2B merger sale. Comcast__120608213515 Apple’s potential pact with Comcast would ensure faster streaming to Apple users through the “last mile” channel of internet traffic separate from Comcast’s public web access, delivering high quality streams via Apple’s new cloud-based set-top box. Last week Netflix CEO Reed Hastings called out Comcast for the “arbitrary tax” charged to boost the quality of Netflix’s streaming transmissions via the cable provider’s network, despite Netflix’s part in what last month was announced as a “mutually beneficial interconnection agreement.”

Related: Netflix CEO Says Comcast Imposed An “Arbitrary Tax” In Deal
What A Merger Of Comcast & TWC Could Mean For Hollywood

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Google Unveils Android Wear Platform For Watches And Other Mobile Technologies

By | Tuesday March 18, 2014 @ 9:48am PDT

We’re still waiting for Apple to introduce its long-rumored iWatch. But Google today showed what it plans for mobile devices, beginning with watches including ones made by LG, HTC, Samsung and Motorola: The Android Wear software integrates voice commands and the kinds of location-based information that owners of Android smartphones and tablets access from their Google Now cards. “Just say ‘Ok Google’ to ask questions, like how many calories are in an avocado, what time your flight leaves, and the score of the game,” the company says in a blog post. “Or say “Ok Google” to get stuff done, like calling a taxi, sending a text, making a restaurant reservation or setting an alarm.” Android watches also will feed commands to smartphones and TVs. This company video illustrates what it has in mind.

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Consumers Spent More Than $1B For Apple TV In 2013

By | Friday February 28, 2014 @ 1:10pm PST

Apple CEO Tim Cook disclosed the number, which includes hardware and software sales for the streaming video device, at the company’s annual shareholder meeting today. AppleTVAnd at $1B in sales “it’s a little hard to call it a hobby anymore,” he says. He continued his Dance of the Seven Veils with his promise to introduce products that will excite consumers — and investors, who’ve grown anxious as the iPhone and iPad have lost market share to Android-powered rivals. “I’d like to unveil some new products today,” he told shareholders before adding: “I was just kidding about that last part.” He did say, though, that the company increased its spending on research and development by 32% and that will become evident in new products including ”some things that are extensions of things you can see and some that you can’t see.” Cook told an investor that he wanted to keep his plans secret because “you can see we’re getting ripped off left, right and sideways.” Activist investor Carl Icahn planned to use the meeting to lobby for a resolution urging Apple to repurchase $50B of its stock, but he abandoned the effort early this month saying that he was content with its current spending.

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Disney Movies Anywhere Launches On iTunes With 400 Disney, Pixar & Marvel Titles In The Cloud

By | Tuesday February 25, 2014 @ 5:00am PST

browseall-webThe same day that Disney launches its mega-hit Frozen in the digital realm, the company is announcing a cloud-based purchase and storage service for its films. In a new deal with Apple, Disney Movies Anywhere goes live today exclusively through iTunes, kicking off with more than 400 Disney, Pixar and Marvel titles such as Iron Man 3, Finding Nemo and Mary Poppins. The service allows users to browse, buy, manage and watch movies on PCs and iOS devices using an app or website. The move comes 15 months after the company announced it was pulling the plug on Disney Movies Online, its barely-known and costly Internet pic service.

Not that DMA is without precedent.

In many ways, DMA is Disney’s answer to UltraViolet. While the House of Mickey has not been a part of the UltraViolet gang, the cloud-based digital rights library has been backed by many of the other major studios as well as Lionsgate, DreamWorks Animation and HBO, among others. With two such systems now on the movie market, there undoubtedly will be concerns about consumer confusion over DMA and UltraViolet, which debuted in 2011. The latter’s backers want the service to be the industry standard and to provide consumers with a single digital locker for their movies. A desire the new DMA now challenges.

PrintAdditionally, the tie-up with Apple is key for Disney. Right now UltraViolet titles can be played on Apple devices, with the help of an app, but don’t show up in iTunes. DMA is powered by KeyChest, Disney’s adaptable technology that can integrate with any existing distribution partner as well as work with new ones to enable access to digital content. DMA bolsters the companies’ ties with Apple. Last year, the Disney Channel app was made available on Apple TV. Read More »

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Deadline Big Media 72 – The Mammoth Cable Merger Podcast

By and | Saturday February 15, 2014 @ 4:29pm PST

Deadline BIG MEDIA ep 72In this week’s podcast, Deadline Executive Editor David Lieberman and host David Bloom kick the tires from several perspectives on that $45 billion Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger that would remake the cable industry. What will it mean for the cable industry, Hollywood and consumers? And what are its prospects for winning regulatory approval?

The Davids also check in CBS’s red-hot quarter and continued optimism on retransmission fees despite the big cable merger; welcome the long-in-coming videogame industry revival; and engage in shameless speculation about the latest reports of an Apple set-top device, and whether it might survive the Time Warner-Comcast merger.

Listen to the podcast in your choice of audio formats here:
Deadline Big Media podcast 72 (.MP3 version)
Deadline Big Media podcast 72 (.M4A version)

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Carl Icahn Ends Apple Stock Buyback Campaign

By | Monday February 10, 2014 @ 7:27am PST

The activist investor declared victory today as he abandoned his campaign for a shareholder resolution that appeared headed for defeat. Carl IcahnHis proposal calling for a larger stock buyback – he put $50B as a good target for 2014 — isn’t necessary following “recent actions taken by the company to aggressively repurchase shares in the market,” he writes in an open letter to fellow Apple investors. The company recently bought $14B of stock in just two weeks, influential proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services observed in a new report urging Apple stockholders to oppose Icahn’s resolution at the company’s February 28 annual meeting. ISS noted that Apple’s on track to buy $32B of its stock this year which means Icahn “only asks the board to spend another $18 billion on repurchases in the current year.” New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer also said that he planned to vote the city-owned shares against the resolution. The billionaire says that while he’s “disappointed” with ISS’ recommendation, “we do not altogether disagree.” As a result, he says, “we see no reason to persist with our non-binding proposal, especially when the company is already so close to fulfilling our requested repurchase target.” Icahn praises Apple chief Tim Cook’s efforts to boost the stock price and says that the CEO and the company board appear to agree that Apple’s “extremely undervalued, Read More »

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