How Low Will the iPhone’s Price Go? (WSJ) Come September, there will likely be two new iPhone models battling for attention: the latest version of the high-end smartphone, plus Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)'s +1.07% new offering for the low-cost phone market. But cheap is relative: the price of that new low-cost iPhone could fall well within the middle range, analysts say. With competition nipping at its heels, Apple has been forced to break with tradition, asking assembler Hon Hai Precision Industry Co.2317.TW +0.88% to ship both a low-end and high-end iPhone. Catering to a wider market has worked well for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s staunch rival Samsung Electronics Co.005930.SE -1.32%, which has moved to tap fast-growing emerging markets such as China and India. Samsung has introduced a bunch of low-end smartphones with price tags below US$100, helping to offset slowing sales in developed markets. Other major Chinese smartphone brands including Xiaomi and Coolpad have also succeeded in gaining market share in China with sub-US$100 phones.
Apple Choses Coexistence To Survive in a Windows World (Forbes) From the very beginning, Apple AAPL +1.1% and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) -1.28% focused their sales efforts on very different markets, establishing paths that have kept them apart every since. Apple looked to the consumer and creative markets for its customers, while Microsoft was all about business. And while Apple’s retail stores have taken various stabs at serving business customers, their efforts has generally been unfocused. Now, Apple may have decided to simply coexist instead of seeking domination, with the help of Parallels virtualization software.
With balloons and fiber, Google experiments in Web access (StabroekNews) From sending solar-powered balloons into the stratosphere to offering free Wi-Fi in parks, Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) is quietly spending hundreds of millions of dollars on nascent Internet services that may one day challenge the telecom and cable companies. In recent months, Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has announced plans to bring free wireless Internet access to 7,000 Starbucks cafes across America, eventually displacing AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T); it has asked U.S. regulators for broader access to wireless airwaves; and it has launched 30 solar-powered balloons over the South Pacific ocean, designed to beam the Internet to remote regions.
Apple shares dumped by institutional investors over second quarter (MarketWatch) Institutional ownership of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) -0.30% shares declined by about 4% in the second quarter, the third such quarterly decline in a row, according to Michael Amenta, research analyst at FactSet. But with a recent rebound in the tech giant’s share price, that trend may not hold. In the second quarter, Apple ownership declined by 3.5% among institutional shareholders, with Fidelity Management & Research — Apple’s largest holder as recently as the third quarter of 2012 — the largest seller during the period. Over one year, Fidelity’s stake in Apple has declined to 3.2% from 4.8%, according to FactSet.
Microsoft, AOL patent conspiracy dismissed (BusinessTech) A federal judge on Monday dismissed a lawsuit accusing AOL, Inc. (NYSE:AOL) and some of its executives of fraud for repurchasing 14.8 million shares in 2011 without disclosing that the company would sell a $1 billion portfolio of patents to Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) months later. Plaintiffs in the case said they suffered significant losses when they sold their shares ahead of the patent deal, after which AOL’s stock surged 43 percent in a single day. Knowing the deal with Microsoft was imminent allowed AOL, Inc. (NYSE:AOL), its CEO Tim Armstrong and former CFO Arthur Minson to effectively buy their company’s stock at a discount price, plaintiffs said.