Google has just snapped up BufferBox, a Waterloo, Ontario-based startup that offers temporary lockers for online purchases much like the ones recently deployed by Amazon. Instead of 7-Elevens and RadioShacks however, the relatively young startup has only just started a deal to install parcel kiosks in Canada’s Metrolinx GO Transit stations. The Mountain View company hopes to keep BufferBox alive through the acquisition, with plans for 100 kiosks in Greater Toronto and Hamilton in the next year. Of course, we can’t help but think this could all be part of Google’s master plan for a rumored same-day delivery service that might make Amazon a touch nervous. Hopefully this means future Nexus deliveries will be a just little faster, eh?
Under Larry Page the stock is up 15%, which is somewhat surprising because Page is not exactly favorable to Wall Street, or investors.
In fact, Page’s actions as CEO have been somewhat hostile to investors. He split Google’s stock giving himself even more power. Google is releasing all sorts of new, weird products like Google Glass, and self-driving cars. Investors tend to frown on these odd ball products.
So, what’s working for Google? Well, it’s not Facebook. And it’s pretty evident Facebook’s ad sales aren’t coming at the expense of Google’s. Perhaps that’s helping propel the stock forward.
Square announced yesterday that it will handle all of Starbucks’s U.S. credit- and debit-card sales.
According to Yahoo Finance, analyst consensus for the calendar quarters ending September and December are $3.38 and $3.81 billion, respectively. This doesn’t quite align with Starbucks’ fiscal schedule, but we will assume revenue distribution is similar.
Historically, Starbucks generates about 75 percent of its revenue from the Americas. For the sake of simplicity, we’ll also assume Square is handling Starbucks’s Q3 sales even though the system probably won’t be rolled out for a while.
According to SAI’s Owen Thomas, 25 percent of its sales go through its prepaid Starbucks cards. His assumption of 50 percent credit card sales also seems fair to us.
Additionally, Square’s annualized run rate for transaction volume has organically been growing by $1 billion every other month. Square last announced they were handling transactions at a $6 billion-a-year rate in June. If this growth rate continues, Square will handle the annual equivalent of $7 billion this month, $8 billion in October, and $9 billion in December.
Combining the expected Starbucks sales and its organic growth, Square would be handling $28.6 million of payments a day at the end of the year at an annual run rate of $10.4 billion. With a 2.75% take of transactions, it would be generating revenues of $787,000 a day—for an annual revenue run rate of $287 million.
The iPhone turns five this week. One of the most impressive things about the iPhone’s five year run is that the average selling price of the phone has remained just about the same around $600, notes Horace Dediu of Asymco. Meanwhile, Apple’s rivals pull in less than $400 per device.
Think about that for a second. Apple defined the modern smartphone market with the iPhone. It then faced an onslaught of competition from Google, Microsoft, Palm, and Research In Motion. Despite their various efforts to dethrone the iPhone, Apple has managed to stay on top. This is evident by the fact that since 2008 Apple has never had to slash its prices.
With all the competition, and pressure from carriers, if Apple was losing the smartphone battle, you’d expect it to cut the price of the phone. Instead, it’s been steady.
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After an amazing two-year run, it looks like Android’s U.S. market share is beginning to flatten out, according to comScore’s April smartphone market share numbers. Android’s share dipped slightly from previous month, and has been losing momentum throughout 2012. Apple, meanwhile, has been the big winner so far this year.
As we argued in our special report on the platform wars, Apple has a developer network effect that gives them the edge in the mobile market share race. Consumers are ultimately drawn to phones with the most and best apps. Developers, in turn, follow the money, and currently make four times as much money on iOS.
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It was probably inevitable, but on Tuesday, it became official: the Encyclopaedia Britannica is finally going out of print. The news was confirmed yesterday by Jorge Cauz, president of Chicago-based Encyclopaedia Britannica Inc., who told the New York Times that his company has decided to completely abandon print operations, in favor of its online platform. The announcement marks the end of a remarkable 244-year run for Britannica and its leather-bound tomes, which at one point stood as a hallmark of middle class living rooms and libraries. In fact, it’s been barely two decades since the company reached its high water mark, when it sold some 120,000 sets back in 1990. Once the internet came into full bloom, however, Britannica’s sales soon plummeted. In 2010, the publisher sold just 8,000 sets, leaving an additional 4,000 unsold copies to gather dust in a warehouse.
Tuesday’s announcement may mark the end of an era, but Cauz seems to have come to terms with Britannica’s decision, calling it a “rite of passage.” He’s also eager to devote more time to his company’s website, which will look to chip away at Wikipedia‘s market hegemony. Cauz, however, believes the two platforms can (and must) co-exist, because they fill two different roles. “We cannot deal with every single cartoon character, we cannot deal with every love life of every celebrity,” he explained. “But we need to have an alternative where facts really matter. Britannica won’t be able to be as large, but it! will al ways be factually correct.”
The Encyclopaedia Britannica is going out of print originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 14 Mar 2012 01:58:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.
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