Kindle Fire takes a bite out of Apple
Amazon's new tablet could pose a serious challenge to the iPad. And that’s just the beginning, with other competitors waiting in the wings.
Reviewers like "Captain Gadget" of the Huffington Post have dubbed Amazon’s (AMZN) new Kindle Fire a "tablet for dummies" compared to Apple's (AAPL) iPad. After all, you get less battery life, less connectivity, no camera and a smaller screen and hard drive, to name but a few subtractions.
But at $199, it also costs $300 less than the cheapest Apple iPad. And there seem to be plenty of folks out there willing to make the tradeoff -- enough for Canaccord Genuity analyst Michael Walkley to scale back his estimated iPad sales in the current quarter to 13 million from 14 million.
Post continues below.
That's still in line with the expectations of other analysts, and means that Apple's iPad remains the market leader, well ahead of any challengers. Still, the Kindle Fire poses a serious long-term risk to Apple: Forrester Research calculates that as many as 5 million could be in the hands of new buyers by the end of January, three months after the product's launch. And there are plenty of additional competitors to the iPad waiting in the wings.
For some companies, dominating the tablet market is less important than its rapid expansion overall. Take Qualcomm (QCOM), which has developed a new technology for higher-quality color screen displays that also consume less power. (While a standard Kindle with e-Ink technology can go for weeks without needing to be recharged, a Kindle Fire, with its color screen, can run out of juice within a day.)
The mirasol displays aren't yet ready for mass production on a commercial scale. However, such innovations will convert more consumers to the idea of tablets, perhaps making even the extravagant growth in demand forecast by the likes of the Gartner Group (from about 70,000 this year to 294,093 by 2015) look like an underestimate.
Investors may want to take a look: Qualcomm already also offers solid growth and a reasonable valuation of about 22 times trailing 12-month earnings. Analysts are calling for its stock price to jump to $66.87 or so, with the highest price target on record being $75, both figures well above its current price of $54.46.
Back at Apple, any concerns about the Fire may be offset by booming iPhone sales. Canaccord Genuity's Walkley has boosted his sales forecast for this quarter to 30.5 million from a previous forecast of 29 million.
The Apple economy: an insanely great year
Kindle Fire: hot evidence of Amazon’s ambitions
8 iconic Apple products
Reviewers like "Captain Gadget" of the Huffington Post have dubbed Amazon’s (AMZN +1.73%) new Kindle Fire a "tablet for dummies"
Isn't the Iphone a dumbed down smart phone? Isn't the Ipad a dumbed down PC?
Dumbing down seems to be a winning strategy. So why hate on Amazon for playing Apple at its own game?
They way Apple has brainwashed an army of drones that swear allegiance to all things Apple and to hate all things that are not is in a word, troubling.
The issue with Apple is not only that they made inovative products and had a cult following as the reasons for their core success.
They also had limited to no competition as they released and made these products. As other companies start actually competting with Apple in their bread and butter markets with their 'inferior' but cheaper products, Apple market share is going to take a huge hit.
And everyone knows it.
The competition doesn't have to 'beat' Apple's products. They just have to be 'good enough' and reliable along with a whole lot cheaper.
People are not spending more with cash. They are still using credit. There is no way with unemployment at the rate it is people have that much money unless yes we're talking about the ones who have the money. He's stating 74% are going to pay off their Christmas debt right after the holidays. No just the people who have money are buying gifts. Their are millions who have no money. Saying that people are not paying their mortgage and using that money to buy things.. How stupid can you be!! The sources that they are discussing is rediculous! Also what state is adding 140,000 jobs per month!!!! Credit card Percentage rates are not lower" Depends on what CC you have and how long you have had the card? I don't know where this guy is getting his information. Such ****. Work at the mall for nothing, 7 dollars an hour. just part-time. Try feeding a family on that salary. Retail isn't easy. These people know nothing about working in this type of industry. It's all about how much the retail industry can make each Christmas. After the holiday season is over the people who were hired will loose their jobs. What are you going to say about that????????
MORE ON MSN MONEY
Copyright © 2013 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Quotes are real-time for NASDAQ, NYSE and AMEX. See delay times for other exchanges.
The tech giant should step out of a politically charged debate on taxation and into growth mode.
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.
Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.