Apple and Amazon are starting to feel the weight of China’s data restrictions. Apple was forced to remove VPN software from the Chinese app store. AWS customers are being told they can no long bypass China’s data restrictions with software and VPN services.
Both companies know that China is critical to their long term growth, so for now, they have to play nice.
Amazon is also starting to get the US government’s attention regarding competition. Can Jeff Bezos avoid President Trump’s attacks over Amazon’s market position?
- Sprint could sell pieces to Comcast and Charter before attempting T-Mobile merger
Details are scarce, but the deal isn’t likely to be a full-on merger, according to a Reuters source. Instead, Sprint would likely be selling a minority stake to the ISPs in exchange for providing access to its network infrastructure. Think hotspots, last mile service, non-compete agreements, that sort of thing.
The cash from the deal would allow a still SoftBank-controlled Sprint to invest a bit more, and possibly give it some leverage in its merger negotiations with T-Mobile.
Update: Charter Says It Isn’t Interested in Acquiring Sprint
On Sunday, Charter rejected the merger idea and indicated it would stick with an existing wireless reseller agreement with Verizon Communications Inc. —known as an MVNO pact—rather than switch to one with Sprint.
“We understand why a deal is attractive for SoftBank, but Charter has no interest in acquiring Sprint,” Charter spokesman Alex Dudley said in an emailed statement. “We have a very good MVNO relationship with Verizon and intend to launch wireless services to cable customers next year.”
- SoftBank Bets $250 Million on Small-Business Lender Kabbage
SoftBank Group has invested $250 million to take a stake in online small-business lending startup Kabbage Inc.
Kabbage was previously valued at $1 billion in a 2015 equity round, according to reporting by The Wall Street Journal. Robert Frohwein, the Atlanta-based company’s chief executive, said the new deal, a strategic-growth investment, marks “a material increase in the share price,” without giving specifics.
- Amazon Cloud Customers Are Told: Don’t Bypass China’s Internet Gates
Customers of Amazon, along with those of Apple Inc., AAPL 4.73% are facing pressure in China to comply with the Chinese government’s desire to further tighten the screws on its already heavily policed internet.
On Saturday, Apple removed software from its app store in China that allowed users to circumvent the country’s web filters. The Cupertino, Calif., technology company cited new rules that require providers of VPNs, which are often used to get around Chinese internet firewalls, to obtain licenses from regulators.
Complaints of disruptions affecting users of overseas VPNs in China have multiplied recently. Facebook Inc.’s encrypted WhatsApp messaging service has also been affected, with users finding it difficult or extremely slow to send messages.
- What is Motley Fool’s Accuracy on SAP Overtaking Oracle in Cloud?
SAP and Oracle have fiscal calendars which end at different times of the year, but taking the latest 12 months of results for each company shows that SAP is growing at a much faster rate than Oracle. As a German company, SAP also reports its results in euros. Converting those figures to U.S. dollars results in annual cloud revenue of over $2.5 billion.
- Oracle delivers bevy of updates to its cloud suite
The latest version certainly has a more modern look and feel, and that was the idea, says Steve Miranda, executive vice president of applications development at Oracle. Miranda says it’s a brand new experience compared to the previous version of the software. The company not only overhauled the design, it also wanted to improve workflows, working to take out unnecessary steps when possible.
What’s more, Oracle has turned to a responsive design approach, where the interface adjusts depending on screen size. It’s a marked improvement over the previous mobile experience, Miranda says, which used different colors and visualizations and a different navigation paradigm. He says previously they had some apps designed specifically for mobile, but some simply were presented in the browser, and didn’t always translate well to a smaller screen. Today’s update is designed to address that.
- Could Amazon’s cloudy appetite crush your startup dreams?
Not only does AWS (and Amazon) have a voracious appetite for new markets, but once it enters a market, it is both content with and adept at running at razor-thin margins. AWS margins have buoyed up the company’s overall profitability lately, but make no mistake: If Bezos sees a long-term opportunity to own a valuable market, he’s going to cut prices (and costs) relentlessly to do so.
Competing with AWS, in short, is brutal.
- Amazon’s stock falters after missing profit target by $1 a share
Revenue at the online retailer rose 24.8 percent to $37.6 billion, while net income declined to 40 cents a share from $1.87 a share a year ago. Analysts were expecting Amazon to see revenue of $37.2 billion and net income of $1.42 a share in the quarter. The company also forecast an operating income of $300 million to a loss of $400 million for the current quarter.
Amazon has been expanding into countries like India, which has been taking its toll on margins. The operating loss of its international operations rose more than fivefold to $742 million, while international revenue rose by only 17 percent. Revenue in North America, by contrast, rose by a more robust 27 percent.
- After Meg Whitman’s exit, Uber’s CEO search is down to only male candidates — as its board struggles and Travis Kalanick meddles
But once he returned from the South Seas, his ardor for meddling in the company did not end. According to numerous insiders, the pugnacious entrepreneur has continued to try to involve himself in daily operating decisions, so much so that top execs have been mulling how to get help from the board to rein him in.
“It’s not stopped,” said one top exec about Kalanick up in the grill of the operating group that is running Uber. “None of us know what to do since it is Travis.”
In addition, to cut off Kalanick’s access, the Uber board has reinforced a policy that all directors get the same limited access to information about Uber’s ongoing operations. “We have had to put guardrails on him,” said one person involved. “Even if he keeps trying to break through them.”
Photo: Liming Huang