It’s a Numbers Game….

….. for Microsoft & Apple .

UPDATE (2)  October 26

Roundup Q4 2012 results:

UPDATE (1) 9.15pm BST onwards Apple share price closed down about $7.03 at $609.80. In after hours trading at 10.30pm BST down $4.60 @ $604.90.

Headline:

Revenues $36.0  billion

Earnings per share $8.67

Unit product Sales (millions) iPhone 26.9, iPad 14.0, Mac 4.9, iPod 5.3.

Actual results schedule – off to listen to the conference call. Further comment/ information tomorrow

Pending Conference call transcript & audio availability. The WSJ have a fairly comprehensive live blog of its content – Tim Cook hasn’t personally tried the Surface yet but likens it, sort of, to a car that flies & floats!

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Amazon earnings – Loss 60 cents per share. Shares after hours down $18 ish at $210. We hesitate to say that his scenario for Amazon is not unusual. @10.30pm BST recovered to being $3.72 down @ $219.20.

Microsoft had their Windows 8 launch in New York at Pier 57 starting at 11am EDT (4pm BST) which included a Surface “reception”.

Live blogging will be provided by numerous attendees but we will give you CNET’s site for starters.

Live stream was OK! The presentation was short & to us concentrated unduly on a rather confusing array of devices. We shall see!

The Windows 8 section of the Microsoft site is worth a look

The above is a video of the Widows 8 event & the start of the Surface section. A full Surface replay is available on the Microsoft site or on YouTube

An impressive part of the Surface presentation (trivia time) was the dropping of the tablet on stage. Apparently you can do this at 72 different angles of impact – now there’s a challenge!
After the Surface webcast here’s one of the new, Windows 8 videos.

We have done some updates as the day unfolded – but we did not realistically expect any fireworks! It is though a hugely significant event.

Apple’s 4th Quarter earnings will be released some 30-45 minutes after the closing bell tonight barring any mishaps!

Subsequently at 2pm PDT (10pm BST) they will hold their Conference Call which you can listen to from their website.

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Now on to those results. We have as before included Phillip Elmer-DeWitt’s excellent abstract of the numerous (68 this time) analysts and their predictions. We have also (E & OE) calculated averages for the professionals and independents unit product sales numbers.

He updated his article after the Special event on Tuesday for the iPad mini launch with these rather important words:

“NOTE: When Tim Cook announced Tuesday that iPad unit sales hit 100 million about two weeks ago, many analysts revised their numbers downward. Those changes are not reflected in the data that follow.”

We have been banging on about this 100 million figure for some time & certainly expected Apple to achieve it in the quarter ending in September ….. but they didn’t. Taking Tim Cook’s statement literally they achieved it on 9th October. This means that the maximum unit sales of iPads in the quarter is less than 15.9mn and probably less than 14.9mn assuming an even run rate. Pre the event the Professionals average prediction was 17.49 mn and the Independents 19.15 mn. That’s quite a miss about 20% down on the overall average. It could translate into earnings reductions of up to 50 cents we guess. Phillip Elmer-DeWitt did a short note on it and reports maybe a 31 cent average reduction.

The good news Tim mentioned was 3 million new iPod sales had already been achieved. This though would have minimum effect on earnings we think.

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We’ve put up our schedule of the quarters forecast ranging from Apple’e guidance through our own guess and will return later on to update it, and you, with all the numbers.

Amazon also announce their results after the close today. A loss of circa 7 cents per share is envisaged we understand.

Notes. (1) Apples guidance figures for Income (before taxes and Net) have been calculated by ourselves from the Apple information given in their last quarters results and conference call. (2) The Average EPS figure included in our header graphic of $9.48 is a simple average of the Independents and Professionals estimates.

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