Chip Ship Blip

So Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) is going better than it thought with its silicon business (see Q'Com Ups Chips Outlook). Now it reckons it's going to ship about 28 million mobile phone chips during the first quarter of the fiscal year (October to December), instead of 25 million to 27 million, and between 24 million and 27 million in the second quarter (ends March) instead of 20 million. That's great news. So great that the company couldn't find one single executive to come to a phone and talk about it. And that sucks. Boy, that company blows hot and cold. One minute they're sitting you down with three senior executives (see Qualcomm Hints at China Trial), and the next they can't even get the janitor to comment on positive news for itself and the industry. Anyhow, it looks like demand is up, especially with 2G and 1xRTT products. Analysts at Lehman Brothers, in a research note, state they believe that the "longevity of the IS-95 [2G] platform [accounting for about 20 percent of shipments in March] suggests that shipments into the Chinese market remains strong. We note that China Unicom Ltd. has recently suggested that it is preparing to introduce prepaid CDMA service plans. We also believe that shipments for the Indian market may be gaining momentum as Reliance Telecom's launch date, December 28, approaches." The analysts also believe that extra demand from Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT) might be further boosting Qualcomm's shipment forecasts. Qualcomm's share price was up 5.1 percent to $41.6 as this article was published. No updates on financial guidance are expected until January 22. — Ray Le Maistre, European Editor, Unstrung
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