Finance

Nokia has published its financial results for Q3 2012, which shows the interesting position the company has found itself in. Smartphone sales have fallen drastically, as well as net sales from the division. Likely down to the imminent Windows Phone 8 release and new Lumia family of smartphones, Nokia experienced a 56 percent drop in net sales. In Q2 the company shipped 4 million Lumia devices, a steep decrease indeed.

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Account Tracker from Graham Haley and Response Ltd. is now live in the Windows Phone Store.  Account Tracker is a personal finance app that has had a bit of success over on the iPhone and based on our first impressions it should do well on the Windows Phone platform.

Account Tracker is laid out nicely taking advantage of the panorama and tile design of the Windows Phone's Modern UI. The main pages of Account Tracker will display an account summary of all your financial accounts, a transaction entry screen with tiles to add spending, income, refund and transfer activities, a budgets page and pages that will chart cash flow and spending.

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HTC continues on its downward spiral

HTC has published its financial results for Q3 2012, showing a continuous fall in revenues that we've witnessed through previous reports. The company braced itself for a tough Q3 and revenues were expected to be in the region of NT$70-80 billion for this quarter. Hitting the nail on the head in the estimation, HTC's net revenue was $2.397 (NT$70.2 billion) for the months July through September, down from $3 billion (NT$91.04 billion) in Q2.

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Good news for Chase banking customers. The Chase Mobile app is heading to the Windows Phone Store to join other banking apps such as the Bank of America app, and the National Australian Bank app.

With Chase Mobile you will be able to monitor your accounts, transfer funds between accounts, make deposits using Chase's QuickDeposit (where you take the picture of your check to deposit it), send wire transfers, pay bills, and search for a local Chase Bank or ATM location. You can even monitor account alerts for payments and set balance levels.

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As Bruce Forsyth would say - higher or lower?

Bernardo Zamora has published an insightful blog post on the Windows Phone Developer Blog, which goes into detail on how developers should configure individual market pricing - if at all. It's an interesting part of marketing one's work. Building and submitting the app is one thing. Effectively pricing your app(s) is another.

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Account Tracker from Graham Haley and Response Ltd. is a personal finance app that has experienced a respectable amount of success over on the iPhone and iOS.  Account Tracker was recently submitted for certification in the Windows Phone Store. The developers are hoping that Account Tracker will have similar success in the Windows Phone Store.

We were given a sneak peak at the app and based on our first impressions, we don't see why Account Tracker won't be a popular choice for tracking your personal finances from your Windows Phone.

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The official BoA app gets feature parity with Android and iOS

The official Bank of America app for our Windows Phone has been available for some time now over at the Marketplace. The free banking app already had a healthy list of features including the ability to pay bills, transfer funds, review balances and find ATM/branch locations.

Bank of America has recently updated the app's features.  Now you can add Mobile Check Deposit and a few more features to the banking app.

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According to Seeking Alpha who have managed to calculate an estimation as to just how much Microsoft has made from Windows Phone in the last fiscal year, the software giant is estimated to be looking at $736 million from the mobile division. While we're still on the steady growth path Microsoft will continue to shield revenue performance of the platform until there's something to frame on the office wall.

Seeking Alpha worked out that by removing each non-Windows Phone layer from Microsoft's EDD (Entertainment and Devices Division), they found Windows Phone revenues has been fairly steady over the past few years, since its launch in 2010.

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The developer of Markets & Me has released its premium version to the Marketplace. Markets & Me + is to compliment the recent app update that rolled out last week. This premium version of the app will not sport advertisements and will feature a few exclusive features that users will have to upgrade to should they wish to make use of extra functionality...

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HTC has released its audited Q2 2012 earnings report today, which keep in line with unaudited results we touched on last month. According to the report, HTC generated revenues of NT$91.04 billion (~$3.04 billion), while net income sat at NT$7.4 billion (~$247 million) between March and June this year. The company's gross margin was 27.01% with an operating margin of 9%. 

HTC expects a tough Q3 and we will be looking out for further decreases in revenue, profit and operating margins in the next financial report. Revenues are expected to be in the region of NT$70-80 billion, with a gross margin and operating margin of 25% and 7% respectively. Should the handset maker continue to dwindle slowly south in the third quarter of this year, it'll paint a rather bleak picture compared to the height of success back in Q3 2011, with reported revenues of NT$135.82 billion (~$4.53 billion).

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It was only last week we covered the news of Rabobank releasing a Windows Phone app for customers who use the platform. Now we've caught wind of SNS Bank also launching a Windows Phone app. Much like the app from Rabobank, this app enables users to check their account balances, manage funds between accounts, and contact the bank via phone and email.

Some highlighted features of SNS Bank:

  • Login with your SNS Bank digital code, providing extra security.
  • Balance your check payment, savings and investment accounts.
  • All credits and debits are displayed.
  • Transfer between your owned accounts with the digital code.
  • Transfer to external accounts with your digipass.
  • Use a provided Address Book.
  • Convenient access to contact SNS Bank by phone or email.

To be able to login on the app, you'll need your SNS Bank digital code. Expect to see more updates released later this year from the bank, including mobile PIN. They are listening to customers for future feature requests, so be sure to let your voice be heard on anything you'd like to see implemented. You can download SNS Bank from the Marketplace for free.

via: wp7.nl; Thanks, Mark, for the tip!

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Rabobank, one of the largest banks in the Netherlands, has released a mobile banking app for Windows Phone. Like its counterparts for Android, Blackberry and iOS, the Rabo Banking App lets users take care of their banking needs, be it checking their balance, viewing account history or making transfers, wherever they may be.

In order to use the app, you must already have a Rabobank account and have your Random Reader and debit card handy. You can click here for more information about the Rabo Banking App, or here to download the mobile banking app from the Windows Phone Marketplace.

Thanks for the tip, Lobbie 1978!

 

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Chase app for Windows Phone in the works?

There has been a discussion going on over in the WPCentral Forums for some time about the hopes of a Chase banking app would find it's way to the Windows Phone platform.  A recent email response one of our readers received from Chase gives us hope that a Chase Bank App is in the works for Windows Phone. Currently Chase only offers an app for the iPhone and Android devices but in an email response to one of our readers, that may change.

According to the email a Chase Internet Service Center Rep, states:

As of right now, the Chase application is only applicable with the Android and iOS platforms. We have consulted our Online Management Team and they will be implementing an application for Windows phones this July 2012.

Several European banks already have apps available over in the Windows Phone Marketplace but for the U.S. Market, Bank of America and USAA seem to be the only two currently available. Hopefully with Chase jumping on board, other banking and financial institutions will follow suit.

You can chime in on the WPCentral Forums discussion here or sound off in the comment section below if the thought of a Chase (or any other bank for that matter) app is something you'd like to see.

Thanks Sed for the tip!

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Nokia has released a press statement commenting on the recent credit rating downgrade carried out by Fitch Ratings. The rating agency cut Nokia Oyj to 'junk' and announced that the outlook for the manufacturer is bleak. This negative move follows Moody's credit rating cut to the lowest investment level, as well as Nokia's recent Q1 2012 finance report detailing a heavy €590 million loss.

Timo Ihamuotila, Nokia's Executive Vice President and CFO, commented the following:

"We are quickly taking action to position Nokia for future growth and success. Nokia will continue to increase its focus on lowering the company's cost structure, improving cash flow and maintaining a strong financial position. Nokia's financial position remains strong. As of March 31 2012, Nokia had gross cash balances of EUR 9.8 billion, and a net cash position of EUR 4.9 billion. Nokia reported its first quarter 2012 results on April 19, 2012."

Windows Phone enthusiasts know first-hand that Nokia's pockets are extraordinarily deep for a company in such a financial (and market share) hole. The marketing expenditure alone has been huge, it was only last year that we reported the manufacturer tripled expenses on promoting Lumia Windows Phones.

Ihamuotila highlighted in his comment that the company is still in its 'transition' stage by getting to grips with the Windows Phone adoption. As well as focusing on the mobile platform and partnership with Microsoft, Nokia will look to continue to lower the company's cost structure, while improving cash flow and maintain a strong financial position. A few figures were thrown into the statement for good measure - gross cash balance of €9.8 billion and a net cash position of €4.9 billion

Both Nokia and Microsoft has had Windows Phone in mind as a marathon and not a sprint. The companies (as well as other OEMs supporting the platform) do not expect marketshare and sales to suddenly skyrocket, but it's positive to see Nokia able to hold its own for a while longer. Let's keep our eyes peeled for the Q2 finance report from the company which should take into account the Lumia 900 push in the states.

Source: Nokia, via: Reuters, MyNokiaBlog

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Nokia released its Q1 2012 interim financial and operating report today, highlighting a €590 million loss. The data is the result of the slow and painful transition from Symbian to Windows Phone, as well as more affordable competition from Android. Ironically the only region to illustrate positive results with regards to volume numbers is North America with a 20% increase (compared to Q4 2011). 

Stephen Elop explained in the report the Lumia handset reception and how some markets, including the UK, are proving more difficult to penetrate. 

"We have launched four Lumia devices ahead of schedule to encouraging awards and popular acclaim. The actual sales results have been mixed. We exceeded expectations in markets including the United States, but establishing momentum in certain markets including the UK has been more challenging."

According to Elop, the manufacturer exceeded expectations in terms of sales with the Lumia 900 launch in the U.S., though no figures were provided. The issue with markets such as the UK is how competitors have secured loyal support, whether it be RIM, Android or the iPhone.

Nokia has announced plans to begin rolling out the Windows Phone "Tango" Lumia 610 in Asian markets at the end of April. Coupled with the Lumia 900 heading to the UK as well as a number of other international markets, Nokia will start to have a comfortable level of coverage.

Source: Nokia (PDF)

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Today, credit-rating agency Moody's, cut Nokia Oyj's debt rating to the lowest investment-grade level.  This comes on the heels of Nokia's announcement last week that they would be posting a 3 percent loss this quarter and would likely see a loss in Q2 as well.  Citing deteriorating sales of low-end phones, Moody's dropped Nokia's debt rating one step, to Baa3, with a negative outlook, which means that the rating could be lowered even further, if things don't pick up for the Finnish manufacturer.  Moody's decision affects an estimated $5.2 billion in debt and puts their rating more in line with those of Standard & Poor and Fitch, who were much quicker to lower their ratings.

“Moody’s believes that the structural change facing Nokia’s Mobile Phones segment may not be easy to address, such as the market share gains recorded by makers of very low-end phones or new promotions by Chinese carriers,” Moody’s analyst Wolfgang Draack said in the statement.

The change in Nokia's rating has obviously affected the company's stock.  Shares have been trading down 2.4% in Helsinki and credit-default swaps jumped to a record-high 516, up from 354 at the beginning of April.

In a press release that was put out soon after the Moody's announcement, Nokia Executive Vice President and CFO, Timo Ihamuotila, said that “Nokia is quickly taking action. Nokia will continue to increase its focus on lowering the company's cost structure, improving cash flow and maintaining a strong financial position.”  Nokia also tried to reassure people by noting that Nokia has approximately 4.9 billion Euros ($6.4 billion) in cash reserves.

Nokia's Lumia line of Windows Phone devices is selling well, especially the wildly popular Lumia 900, which has seen strong sales.  Stephen Elop, CEO of Nokia, has said that he and his mates continues "to increase the clock speed of the company."  Nokia is slated to break ground on a new factory in Vietnam, which is expected to start churning out low-end phones in 2013, a year behind schedule due to stalled negotiations with the Vietnamese government. 

Source: Moody's, Nokia; Via: Bloomberg

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Sweden's largest bank, Handelsbanken, has released its official app over on the Windows Phone Marketplace. The Handelsbanken app gives customers access to a wide range of banking services including:

  • Balance and transactions
  • Transfers between own and others' accounts
  • Open and close bank cards for internet purchases
  • Open and close bank cards for purchases and withdrawals abroad

You also have the ability to find branch office locations, view current mortgage rates, and access tv feeds from Handelsbanken TV. The ability to close bank cards to prevent them from being used is lost or stolen is a very nice feature.

Handelsbanken is a free app over at the Windows Phone Marketplace and you can grab it here.

source: wingadget thanks goes out to Peter for the tip!

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Metrowe - keeping track of moochers

We like ingenious apps around here and Metrowe fits the bill nicely. It's an app to keep track of how much money you owe or are owed. But it's not a bill manager for credit cards or businesses, but rather a tool for keeping track of personal expenses with friends and colleagues. For instance, say you lend someone $20 or pick up dinner one night, you can enter that info in Metrowe for easy record keeping. Vice versa, you can add in money you owe others, including noting what it was for.

The app has contact-integration, meaning you can really personalize entries with no effort. It also has a Live Tile that keeps track of your net value (owed vs owes) and flips over to show you your latest entries. On top of each entry, it records a history of transactions for individuals and allows you to 1-touch email them as a reminder--once again, very slick.

The app is very well designed (lots of Metro), slick and pretty darn useful. We love the Live Tile and contact-integration as it really makes it feel native. But if we're going this far, perhaps the dev can add camera integration too--so you can photograph that dinner or drinks that you bought everyone, why not? Shoot, even location info would be a good addition too. Regardless, as is the app is quite good and we highly recommend.

It fetches for $1.29 in the Marketplace and has a free trial.

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Microsoft has published their fourth-quarter and full-year revenues that break records despite Windows Phone 7 having a slower-than-hoped launch and Windows (and PCs) taking a slight hit. 

The fiscal year, which ended June 30th, were at record breaking high of $69.9 billion (up 12% from 2010). Q4 revenue was clocked at $17.4 billion, an 8% increase of the same quarter in 2010. Microsoft's net income for the quarter was $5.87 billion, a 30% increase, and for the year it was $23.2 billion, a 23% increase.

The revenue for Microsoft's Business division grew by 16% for the year while online services revenue jumped 15% (thanks to the growth of Bing). Entertainment & Devices sky-rocketed 45% for the year with Kinect, Windows Phone 7 and continued growth of Xbox Live (and Xbox 360).

Windows and Windows Live revenues fell 2% for the year (even with 400 million Windows 7 licenses sold). Mango is hoped to not only be a great ROI (return of investment), but a beacon of hope for Nokia who reported losses in the last quarter.

Source: Microsoft

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