Amazon Indian eCommerce + Video/Music Content attract Investments

amazon-india-investmentsAmazon is accelerating its investment in its retail operations in India. For one, two years after committing $2bn, this Mr. Bezos announced that he was committing an additional $3bn in India. We believe this was likely due not only to the success that Amazon has been seeing and the significant opportunity that it still sees ahead, but may also have been due to the need to continue to investment its logistics in order to address infrastructure issues in India, to take advantage of potential challenges at local competitor Flipkart, and to address new regulations taking hold in India.

The Executive Management’s commentary on the 2Q16 earnings call that it plans to double video content investment in 2H16 likely points to acceleration in spend this year vs. 2015. Moreover, (more…)

New Microsoft Surface Studio leading the Bleeding Edge of Innovation

windows-10-creator-updateMicrosoft demonstrated an improved Surface Book as well as an all in one desktop (Surface Studio) running Windows 10 Creators update. Windows 10 Creators edition update to be released this spring, with the focus across 3 areas – 1) 3D creation for everyone; 2) an improved gamer experience; and 3) easier connection and content sharing. Updates ranged from being able to record a 3D image on a phone and then interacting with and editing it in 3D paint or powerpoint to improvements in game broadcasting and hosting a player created gaming tournament. While these changes were certainly interesting, may not be termed (more…)

Why 3.5mm jack in the iPhone 7 was Removed ?

why-iphone7-jack-removedThe inbox earpods with the newly launched iPhone7 come with a lightning port and an adaptor to the 3.5mm jack. Key benefits include: 1) saving space in the phone: The 3.5mm jack is over 50 years old and doesn’t do much besides carrying an audio signal. It needs its own power amplifier and digital audio converter, which can be built into headphones, so removing the jack makes room for other things, such as a second speaker. iPhone7 has included a lightning-to-3.5mm adapter for a transition period. However, as the 3.5mm jack itself already suffers from some audio degradation and an adapter would make this worse, we think consumers may opt to purchase headphones that use (more…)

Amazon Music to give Google / Apple / Spotify / Pandora Run for Money

amazon-musicAmazon announced Amazon Music Unlimited, an on-demand streaming music service with a library of “tens of millions of songs.” The service costs $7.99/month (or $79/year) for Prime members and $9.99/month for non-Prime members. The company is also launching an “Echo plan” for $3.99/month, with music available on a single Echo device. This compares to $10/month for competitor plans, including Spotify and Apple Music. We note that this is separate from Amazon’s existing Prime Music offering, an ad-free streaming service which is included in a Prime membership, but includes only 2mn songs. Amazon’s new offering adds to the already intense competition in the streaming music space.

Amazon Music Unlimited will be appealing to current Prime subscribers as the offering is comparable to other streaming options, (more…)

Mobile Consumers Satisfied with Incumbents; Jio Pressure Likely

jio-pressure-on-airtel-vodafone-ideaA survey was conducted by Telecom Research wing of Merrill Lynch after Jio launched its free voice / data offering on Sept 5. In the sample, 75% of these consumers who participated in the survey have monthly bills of Rs 250 or more. The main results of the survey are as follows,

  • Call drops are not a major issue, with only 15% complaining about it; bigger issues are slow data speeds (as per 25%) and a no value for money proposition.
  •  39% of consumers we surveyed have tried Jio’s free offering, with 27% happy with the service (which translates into 70% of actual Jio users) and rating the service better than their existing operator and the remainder believing Jio is at par or inferior to (more…)

How Amazon’s Competitors Rank on Last Mile Delivery ?

ecommerce-delivery-modelsAmazon’s strategy, with ever-shorter delivery options, has allowed a pure eCommerce player to gain a foothold in Local commerce and an increasingly bigger share of consumers’ wallets. But while Amazon has always been and will remain retailers’ top competitor in many product categories – especially in consumer products – some of these retailers could actually benefit from the company’s growing fulfillment capabilities. Today, Amazon remains the clear leader in fulfillment, based on number of offerings, global fulfillment center footprint, and ability to manage demand elasticity through its digital assets.

Today, however, services such as Google Express, Postmates, or Instacart and new fulfillment models based on real-time driver networks such as Uber, Lyft, and (more…)

Google sets New Trend: Voice Control, Mobile Virtual Reality

google-virtual-realityGoogle launched new products overnight, notably two flagship smartphones under new brand Pixel, a mobile VR called Daydream View, and a voice controlled smart speaker Google Home (although the product was introduced back in May, and details weren’t available till now). Keys to note: We remain conservative on “Pixel” actual sell-through; the phone seems to be aimed at competing with iPhone (same price as iPhone7), but the iPhone was launched a month earlier.

We note that Google is abandoning “Nexus” brand and no longer co-branding with OEMs; the value-add for OEMs further decreases (HTC is the OEM for “Pixel”). The launch of Google’s mobile VR could accelerate the trend of supporting (more…)

Facebook at Work to Compete Slack’s Growth

facebook-work-competes-slackTechnologies and applications first developed for the consumer Internet space have had an important impact on enterprise environments, and consumer Internet companies, such as Google and Amazon, have benefited from their enterprise efforts in areas like productivity apps and cloud services. Leveraging its strengths in app development, messaging, and social networking, Facebook is expected to launch its Facebook at Work solution for general availability as early as next month.

Slack the network for (more…)

Ambani’s RoI speak Decoded – More Jio4G Plan, Apps Subscriptions

jio-4g-more-plansImmediately after the launch of Reliance Jio’s Plans, we justified on how these plans are to just test the waters of incumbents A-Vo-Id Telecom Lobby led by Airtel. We listened to Reliance Chief Mukesh Ambani’s AGM statement again where he mentions Jio is targeted to achieve high-teen returns (only generated by Airtel today). We thought for a while on how this can be achieved and it looks reasonably doable over the next 24 months.

Telecom Analysis today is all about Network Capacity Framework the findings of which seem to have been confirmed by Idea cellular the just in time execution master with (more…)

Reliance Jio – Not just a 4G Carrier, A Complete Digital / Infotainment / Commerce Platform

jio-digital-platformMukesh Ambani made a mark for himself in India in the early 90s when he persuaded his father Dhirubhai Ambani to go for backward integration in the booming petrochemicals and further took the dream ahead into Oil & Gas business. He was also the brain behind the erstwhile Reliance Infocomm now Reliance Communications managed by his brother Anil Ambani in a bitter separation during 2005.

Mukesh Ambani had the vision about Digital India and thus began his unraveling of the complete Telecom, Content, Infotainment, eCommerce and digital blueprint from his brains on to the strategists’ drawing board at Reliance. Jio’s entry in the telecom space is a vehicle to deliver content and services riding the world class (more…)

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