This week, Clearwire sent in their Q1 report and the numbers aren't good. For those that haven't been following the Clearwire saga, you can recap it all from the
first moment of glory here. Once you've discovered the basics, you can check out how Sprint is pretty much holding the company above water, why Google dropped its stake in the company and why the failed LightSquared deal could have been the best thing to happen to Clearwire.
While the potential of a Clearwire replacement for LightSquared didn't pan out, the news came after the first quarter ended. This potential expansion still didn't help Clearwire's numbers with numbers down across the board. The company reported its first loss in quarter-over-quarter total revenue this week. The good news is that the actual dollar amount of revenue beat what most analysts predicted, so I suppose that is a small uptick. The company was able to gain some dollars from Sprint selling the service directly to customers and Clearwire saw a rise in stock price over the past 12 weeks.
Sprint is still using Clearwire's 4G WiMAX network while other carriers skipped over that technology and moved right to 4G LTE. However, with the aforementioned potential LightSquared failure, Sprint has decided to basically fund the network provider to help them deploy a true 4G network in the next two years. This 4G is rumored to be true 4G LTE Advanced and will blow away the current data speeds we are seeing on other carriers today.
For Clearwire, Sprint paid them around $6 for every 4G subscriber on their service last year but has now reworked the agreement to a flat rate of $900 million for both years 2012 and 2013, no matter how many customers are actually on the network. They will also be utilizing Clearwire's towers to sell their Virgin Mobile and Boost Mobile services, which are both pre-paid options.
While revenue may be down, hopefully good things are to come with the new 4G roll-out we should see soon. Clearwire's stock price rose 5.4 percent, to $1.55 per share, after release of the results, which shows that shareholders see the value in the company long term, despite the losses for the quarter. Let's hope their 11 million subscribers agree and stick with Clear through the tough times and enjoy 100 Mb/s speeds in the near future.
Nintendo has long made it clear that it believed that downloadable games were something they did not think played into their strengths. In fact, they have continued to prove this belief by focusing on cartridges for the DS and discs for the Wii. They have certainly been left behind by the other two companies, with Microsoft offering many of its titles via download shortly after release, plus their download-only games available in the Xbox Live Marketplace, and Sony offering the PS Vita, the first platform to offer day one digital downloads.
Nintendo has made the decision to change their policy, as described during their financial results briefing. Satoru Iwata, president of Nintendo, announced that, starting with
New Super Mario Bros. 2 on the 3DS and later with titles on the WiiU, new titles will be available via both physical and digital distribution. There are positives and negatives to both options for everyone involved, of course. Developers, publishers and console manufacturers certainly like the idea of digital distribution. No packaging and no resale value means lower costs and higher sales, except for GameStop. Some gamers, however, prefer the physical media so they can share the game with their friends, or resell it to GameStop, Amazon, RadioShack and the like.
Will this help get Nintendo back to profitability or is this too little too late? Hit the break for our take.
Everyone loves Steve Wozniak, one of three co-founders of Apple Inc. Even if you hate Apple and their products, you can't hate this man. Every time he speaks, the technology world listens, because he is not afraid to say exactly what is on his mind, even when it goes against his former company, which it often does. Recently, in an interview with his autobiography's co-author Gina Smith, and Dan Patterson, Woz talked about his experiences with his newly acquired Nokia Lumia handset running Windows Phone.
He described the experience as being more like working "with a friend not a tool." Considering Apple's marketing is about the ease of use of their handset, this is a pretty big comment about the phone his former company is eating lunch off of. In fact, he said that it was "no contest" between Windows Phone and iOS. He added that iOS is "more awkward" that Windows Phone and that even Android beats it out in usability. He believes that the element that is holding back the platform is a smaller App Catalog. My favorite quote from him is,
I'm kind of shocked. Every screen is much more beautiful than the same apps on Android or iPhone.
Woz never mentioned the version of Lumia he is using, but he is not the type of man to have a lesser handset, so we can make the assumption it is the
flagship Lumia 900. He also made a comment on Twitter about wanting to get his hands on one. So, what does this mean for Windows Phone? I think the support of Woz will help the Lumia and ultimately the platform pick up steam for sure. Hopefully it will also help get some of the app developers to fill in the only hole he sees.
So, with Woz's endorsement, are you more inclined to pick up a Lumia yourself? Let us know in the comments.