January 2017


The Country Caller takes a close look at what the technical indicators say about Qualcomm and Ambarella

Both Qualcomm Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) and Ambarella Inc. (NASDAQ:AMBA) have been in the limelight in the recent times. Ambarella posted strong financial results in the recent quarter, due to which its share prices jumped and are rallying since then. Meanwhile, Qualcomm shares have been going down since last Thursday, and the possible reason appears to be how the iPhone 7 contract was awarded to Intel. The Country Caller takes a close look at the current standing of both companies with regards to technical indicators.

Qualcomm appears to be in the overbought region as per the technical indicators. The 14-Day RSI currently is 54.11, which is neutral and indicates that further buying is possible. However, the stochastic RSI and MACD suggest that the stock is currently in overbought and that bears may soon dominate. The important price level for Qualcomm’s stock is $53.77, if it breaks the level then it may further lead to $54.11 and $55.10 levels, respectively.

However, a break below $52.78 may further take it down to $52.13 and $51.14. The current indicators show that the bears are gaining momentum and may gain strength in today’s session.

Ambarella also appears to be in the overbought region as per the technical indicators. The 14-day RSI currently is 79.50, which highlights that the bulls have been strong for quite a while now. Other indicators, such as Stochastic RSI and oscillators, also confirm an overbought scenario. These points indicate that the bear would soon gain power. The important price level for Ambarella Inc.’s stock is $53.4, breaking which would further lead it towards $54.03 and $55.84 levels, respectively. However, a break below $51.59 may further take it down to $50.41 and $48.60 levels.

We recommend investors not to take fresh positions on both and wait as a correction seems due for both of them. Let’s see how these companies perform in today’s session.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos thinks that Amazon Prime Video doesn’t compete with Netflix, as consumers buy both the services

While the Street considers, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) Prime Videos to be the closest competitor to Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX), founder and CEO of the ecommerce giant, Jeff Bezos, says that the two platform are not each other’s rivals. On day 1 of the Recode Code Conference, Mr. Bezos said that the consumers pay for both the popular services, therefore, both of them do not compete against each other.

Recode quotes the CEO: “We don’t compete with Netflix. I think people are going to subscribe to both.” The statement came merely a month after Amazon made its Prime Videos a standalone over-the-top (OTT) subscription service, allowing non-Prime members to buy its packages starting at $8.99. The move would help its subscription video on demand (SVOD) platform to directly compete against the world’s largest online TV network and possibly establish a medium to tap other international markets.

Newton, MA-based Strategic Analytics research shows that Netflix leads the market with a 53% share, way ahead of Amazon Prime Video and Hulu which have 25% and 13% shares, respectively. Interestingly, the research firm found that about 40% of American households who use SVOD services have subscribed to at least two of them, backing Mr. Bezos’ statement.

The CEO also revealed that Amazon Prime, which provides free 2-day delivery at, assists in driving the economies of its video division. “From a business [point of view] for us, we get to monetize that content in an unusual way,” he added.

Additionally, Amazon stopped selling Apple TV and Google Chromecast last fall as they compete with its Fire TV platform. The company is also working on smart home products, as it has “more than 1,000 people dedicated just to the Alexa and Echo ecosystem.” Since Prime Video is linked to the Prime retail platform, Mr. Bezos said that he can trim the SVOD business costs, which consist of increasing library of the original TV series.

A lot is going on in the world of the Division

Ubisoft Entertainment SA’s (OTCMKTS:UBSFY) the Division has recently received a major update which amends many of the game’s glitches, as well as fixing a popular elite boss farming technique. There has also been a slight change brought for the game’s map, which you might not even have noticed.

If you scroll to the bottom-right of the map, you will discover that the name of the upcoming incursion, Falcon Lost, has been changed to “Last Stronghold.” Additionally, the activity is now called an Operation instead of an Incursion. This change has been done rather silently with no fanfare and announcement whatsoever. What is even more interesting that the latest patch notes do not mention the change and the developers still refer to this end-game activity as an incursion in the latest update. The reason behind this change has not been mentioned by Ubisoft and we can assume that the change was done to make the activity sound more like a group activity.

In other news, players have taken mourning to the next level after the recent update. One of the users on Reddit actually went to the real life point where players used to kill Bullet-King over and over again to farm for drops and put up a backpack against a pole with a memorial message in memory of the enemy. The note reads, “Spires of light, Purple and Gold; Twice every minute, it never got old.” What is more is that Ubisoft also mentioned Bullet-King in a Tweet before deploying the latest patch which goes to show that they were definitely aware of the farming trick that players were using.

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All of this shows how serious Ubisoft is about their game and if they manage to keep this up and maintain content quality, they might end up beating Activision Blizzard Inc.’s (NASDAQ:ATVI) Destiny as a game overall.

Tesla’s Elon Musk and JB Straubel explain why the battery cell format is being changed for the Model 3

Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) expects to start its lithium-ion battery production for its vehicles with Panasonic Corporation at the Gigafactory by the end of this year. The batteries that will roll out of the factory will not be the same as currently used in the Model S and Model X.

Like other battery-maker, Panasonic that is the strategic and sole battery supplier for Tesla vehicles current uses the ‘18650’ cell format, which implies 18 mm diameter and 65 mm length. While Tesla Roadster’s battery packs are supplied by LG Chem, Samsung SD supplies batteries for Tesla Energy.

However, Tesla plans to use a new ‘20700’ cell format, meaning 21 mm diameter and 70 mm length, for battery packs that will be used in the Model 3. The 20700 cell formats are wider and longer and capable of holding more raw materials insider compared to 18650 format. Tesla CEO Elon Musk confirmed this last month:

During a recent special media event at the Gigafactory, Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Tesla CTO JB Straubel explained that the company plans to optimize costs via the change in the cell format. They also got rid the extra ‘0’ from the ‘20700’ and renamed the cell format ’21-70.’

Mr. Straubel sad that the automaker has spent a lot of time regarding the cell format and questioned why the ‘18650’ format was standard in the industry, referring it as “an accident of history. The 21-70 format, which will likely be the new standard, was developed without preconceived notions and later optimized for size, output, and efficiency.

The 50 mm increase in length for the vehicle packs would offset with more efficient battery packaging, making that thickness of the packs the same or less compared to current packs with higher energy density. Mr. Musk said that once mass production is achieved at the battery factory, the new cells could be used to power the Model S/X, including Tesla Energy products. If all of the batteries product at the Gigafactory will be eventually used in all the Tesla products, then Panasonic will become the exclusive battery supplier.

With economies of scale and efficiently produced batteries, the automaker plans to reduce the Model 3 costs which would help in selling the vehicle at the planned price points and achieving the 25% gross margin target. The tens of billions of dollars expected from the Model 3 and help in financing the development cost of Model Y (compact SUV) and Tesla Semi.

Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan has now addressed the issue, blaming a pesky firmware bug

The 2016 Capcom Pro Tour Season saw its first premier event for Street Fighter V take place at Final Round 19 in Atlanta, Georgia this weekend. The event saw a number of high-tier professional players take part, including three Razer-sponsored Street Fighter veterans: Ai “Fuudo” Keita (Japan), Kun “Xian” Ho (Singapore) and Lee “Infiltration” Seon-Woo (Korea). Unfortunately, for the popular gaming peripherals manufacturer, Final Round 19 ended as a PR nightmare when its arcade sticks malfunctioned multiple times during key matches.

In accordance with (traditional) sponsorship rules, the players are required to use Razer peripherals in order to market the company’s products. On the final day of the event, Sunday, all three Razer-sponsored players suffered various issues with their Razer Arcade Sticks. According to reports, the sticks for both Fuudo and Xian completely shut down; whereas, Infiltration’s stick had verification troubles with Sony Corp’s (NYSE: SNE) PlayStation 4.

It’s unknown as to how many of these issues actually cost the players their matches. Rummaging through various Twitter feeds, some have claimed that Xian was actually knocked into the losers’ bracket because his stick stopped working during a match. Meanwhile, Fuudo is said to have been completely eliminated from the tournament because of his faulty Razer Arcade Stick.

Somehow, Infiltration was able to go past his PlayStation 4 verification errors to win the whole event in the end, but the professional Street Fighter player was not too pleased with the state of his sponsored peripheral. Community members have come forward to explain that Razer Arcade Sticks have to authenticate themselves with PlayStation 4 after every eight minutes. The failure to do so is what caused Infiltration’s stick to stop working so frequently.    

Today, Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan posted on Facebook to congratulate RZR|Infiltration for winning the first premier Street Fighter V tournament. Moving past that, he also addressed the situation, which since Sunday, has turned out to be a bad product showcase for the company. 

According to Tan, all three players were using PlayStation 4 prototypes of Razer Arcade Sticks. He explained that the company has a notion of field-testing its products in actual tournaments by its sponsored players, rather than in controlled environments.

Usually known for its focus on Microsoft Corporation’s (NASDAQ: MSFT) Xbox and PC platforms, Razer’s boss confirmed that it has been working on PlayStation 4 products. He blamed a “firmware bug” for the severe malfunctions at Final Round 19, and pledged to resolve the issues before bringing the sticks out for consumers.   

In light of the situation, Razer has also decided to withdraw its sponsorship deals with FGC until the new Razer Arcade Sticks for PlayStation 4 are cleaned out of bugs.

Interestingly, Infiltration is said to have admitted on a Korean talk show that he only uses the shells of Razer, modding the insides to suit his purpose. This means that he may very well be using a stick that is entirely different from what Razer is offering, but one that looks Razer from the outside. Tan, however, has clarified today that he has personally confirmed from Infiltration and the rumor has no legitimacy.

This isn’t the first time that Razer has been struck as such. During the Grand Final of Ultra Street Fighter IV at EVO 2015, Yusuke “Momochi” Momochi’s Razer Arcade Stick paused itself during a crucial point in the match. In accordance with the rules, he had to give the round over to his adversary, Bruce “Gamerbee” Hsiang. Momochi ultimately went on to win EVO 2015, but by using a replacement stick from Razer’s direct rival, Mad Catz. 

Final Round 19 featured a number of fighting games besides Street Fighter V; including Ultra Street Fighter IV, Mortal Kombat X, Killer Instinct, Tekken 7, Dead or Alive 5: Last Round, Soulcalibur V, to name a few. 



It seem as though Apple did not think it through before releasing the iPhone 5SE

After yesterday’s event, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) may have done more harm than good. The new iPhone 5SE revealed along with the 9.7-inch iPad Pro seemed to have caught everyone off guard. Even though rumors about the iPhone 5SE in particular were mostly true, people were still expecting a lot more from the device. However, they were left disappointed.

It seems as though the iPhone manufacturer did not think its decision through before releasing the iPhone 5SE. There are many factors that could, in turn, not only affect sales but the company’s credibility as well.

For starters, Apple has ran out of ideas, reselling the same products all over again. Taking latest headlines into account, which explain how ‘Apple has released a new 4-inch iPhone’, most would think back to the time when the iPhone 5 was released in 2012.  Even though the iPhone 5SE has better specs, it still does not have anything new to offer.

On the other hand, Apple has released a phone that is much smaller in comparison to the iPhone 6 and 6S. After releasing larger phones, the company for the first time showed a fall in iPhone sales during the first quarter this year. Seeing how the company’s existing strategies just aren’t working out, it could be assumed that it went back to the original design that was unveiled during Steve Jobs’ leadership.

That being said, it is also important to note that the iPhone 5SE comes equipped with the same hardware as the iPhone 6S. Additionally, the base model costs no more than $399 in comparison to the iPhone 6S, which starts at $649. Even though the phone has a smaller form factor, it has the same hardware as the last iPhone. It is only logical for buyers to purchase the newer and smaller iPhone 5SE, as it is not only cheaper but is as powerful as the iPhone 6S. This will in turn affect iPhone 5,5S, 6 and 6S sales, which might affect overall sales for the next quarter.

In conclusion, even though the iPhone 5SE is not the next big iPhone, which will be released this September, it will considerably impact Apple’s sales and credibility. The company has for now been unable to deliver, let alone meet expectations, but then again nothing can be said for certain until the main event which will be held in a couple of months; as it will, according to rumors, feature the iPhone 7.