“Getting rid of Samsung as a processor supplier and, at the same time, capturing the crown jewel of the American semiconductor industry,” Jean-Louis Gassée writes for Monday Note. “How could Apple resist the temptation to solve its cash problem and make history again?”
“The problem of the day is, once again, what to do with Apple’s obscene pile of cash. By the end of December 2012, the company held about $137B in cash (or equivalents such as marketable securities), including $23B from operations for the quarter,” Gassée writes. “Apple needs to extract itself from the toxic relationship with Samsung, its ARM supplier. Intel is flailing. The traditional PC market – Intel’s lifeblood – continues to shrink, yet the company does nothing to break into the ARM-dominated mobile sector… Intel’s market cap is about $115B, eminently affordable.”
Gassée writes, “Oh, and one more thing: Wouldn’t it be fun to ‘partner’ more closely with Microsoft, HP and Dell, working on x86 developments, schedules and… pricing? … Imagine solving many of Apple’s problems with a single sweeping motion. This would really make Cupertino the center of the high-tech world… Some read the decision to return gobs of cash to shareholders as an admission of defeat. Apple has given up making big moves, as in one or more big acquisitions. I don’t agree: We ought to be glad that the Apple execs (and their wise advisers) didn’t allow themselves to succumb to transaction fever, to a mirage of ego aggrandizement held out by a potential ‘game changing’ acquisition.”
Much more in the full article – recommended – here.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Dan K.” for the heads up.]