Reuters has an exclusive report out this morning, but all I'm reading is an excitable line about nothing. They're reporting that the troubled Sharp Corp is having a production slowdown on Apple's 9.7 inch iPad displays. That in itself means nothing. According to Reuters, their "sources were unable to say how much of the slowdown was due to seasonal changes in demand or consumers opting for the smaller iPad mini and were unable to characterize Apple's overall tablet sales." Furthermore, Reuters quotes Macquarie Research who has estimated that "iPad shipments will tumble nearly 40 percent in the current quarter to about 8 million from about 13 million in the fourth quarter – although Apple's total tablet shipments will show a much smaller decrease due to strong iPad mini sales." In the balance, Reuters report is saying a lot about nothing. They can't even come to a conclusion as to what they're reporting on. The rest of their "exclusive" report just rambles on about nothing again. Of late, it just seems to be the "in thing" to find any scrap of nothing to hit Apple with while pumping up Samsung. Report Updated January 24, 2013
Another report out this morning by the Wall Street Journal pumps Samsung over Apple in a report titled "Hype Builds for Smartphone, but It Isn't an Apple Device." And yet another report out of India is all hyped up with their byline: "Leaked! Samsung's new iPad mini rival." Surprise, surprise, surprise, the guilty copycat called Samsung is following in Apple's footsteps again. For some, this appears to be big news. But the funny thing about copycats is that they find those that actually create original products a bore. Go figure.
Follow up January 24, 2013:
Side Note about One of Tim Cooks Comments during Apple's Conference Call
Yesterday's financial conference transcript recounts Tim Cook's statements about the 40% rumor that we pointed to in our report.
"Tim Cook: But Bill, let me make one additional point on this, I know there has been lots of rumors about order cuts and so forth and so let me just take a moment to make a comment on these, I don’t want to comment on any particular rumor because I would spend my life doing that but I would suggest it's good to question the accuracy of any kind of rumor about bill plans and also stress that even if a particular data point were factual it would be impossible to accurately interpret the data point as to what it meant for our overall business because the supply chain is very complex and we obviously have multiple sources for things yields might vary, supply performance can vary. The
beginning inventory positions can vary, I mean there is just a long list of things that would make any single data point not a great proxy for what’s going on."
I guess that Cook agreed with us. In the end, the rumor that was quoting a mystical 40% downturn in iPad sales really amountsedto fluffy nothing. Cook was careful to state the phrase in terms of "any single data point" rather than the specific number of 40%, because that would have given away one the main sources of that ongoing rumor (Reuters). It should be noted that this particular Reuters report estimated that Apple's fourth quarter iPad sales would be roughly 13 million units when in fact Apple clocked in yesterday with the real-world numbers of 22.9 million. Hmm, wouldn't that make Reuters source estimates to be out by about 40%?