This week, financial markets tumbled as worries over global economic slowdown escalated. Several stocks touched their 52-weeks lows including two of the least loved tech stocks around Nokia ( NOK ) and Research in Motion's ( RIMM ). Apple ( AAPL ) on the other hand has held up relatively well. Below we look at some updates in the mobile sector from this past week.
The bad news doesn't seem to stop for Nokia. After receiving downgrades from a number of credit rating agencies, S&P downgraded Nokia this week to BBB, which is two levels away from junk territory.
Another report mentioned that Nokia has lost the top crown to Apple and Samsung in the global smartphone market. The weak near term outlook provided by the company coupled with the uncertainty around its transition from Symbian to Microsoft ( MSFT ) Windows Phone 7 operating system means that this pain could continue for some time.
This week RIM announced plans to launch 5 new smartphones based on BlackBerry 7 operating system in a bid to revive to stop the stock bleeding lower. In our previous note titled RIM's Turnaround Comes in 2012, New Phones Fall Short , we mentioned that although these smartphones have some advanced features, it may still not be enough for to turn the company's fortunes around as many customers will wait for the QNX phones next year.
RIM's stock continues to suffer as the latest Comscore report suggests that its U.S. smartphone subscriber share declined from 27% in March 2011 to 23% in June 2011.
There was some good news for Apple, as it went up to the number one ranking in the global smartphone market blowing past Nokia and RIM. But more importantly, its brand value among customers continue to remain strong. According to an entertaining survey of 216 mobile phone users conducted by Piper Jaffray, the pent-up demand for the iPhone 5 could be huge. We discussed about these prospects in our earlier note titled Survey Says iPhone 5 Demand is Sizzling.