2016 Apple Watch Shipments to Drop Sharply, Analyst Estimates

Today's topics include predictions that sales for the Apple Watch will decrease in 2016, Broadcom's introduction of a 5G-HD dual channel WiFi access platform, the launch of IBM’s new Health Corps corporate program, and Dell's announcement that it's taking its cyber-security business public.

Apple Watch shipments will drop by as much as 25 percent in 2016, due to shortcomings in the smartwatches app ecosystem, its reliance on an accompanying iPhone and the still-fledgling nature of the wearable device market, according to a report by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

His report estimates that Apple sold about 10.6 million Apple Watches in eight months of sales in 2015 and predicts shipments of only 7.5 million devices in the full 12 months of 2016, according to an April 11 story by 9to5mac, which saw a copy of the investment note.

In his report, Kuo says his expectation of a drop in Apple Watch shipments is based on several factors, including a lack of killer apps for users, as well as limited battery life and the watch's need to work alongside an iPhone,.

Broadcom is introducing a new dual-channel WiFi access platform that is designed to give mobile devices the fastest connectivity speeds possible.

The company's 5G-HD wireless access point platform, which uses Broadcom's new BCM49408 quad-core chip, essentially gives devices that are 5GHz 802.11ac-capable a clear fast lane on which to operate that is not impacted by slower clients sharing the channel.

With most traditional single-channel access points, the 5GHz-capable devices have to share the channel with slower devices, which can degrade WiFi performance, according to Broadcom officials.

IBM has launched a new health initiative, the IBM Health Corps, patterned after the company’s Corporate Service Corps, which is often called the private sector version of the Peace Corps.

IBM Chairman, President and CEO Ginny Rometty announced the new program today at the 13th Annual World Health Care Congress, along with a new IBM collaboration with the American Cancer Society to bring the power of IBM’s Watson cognitive computing system to cancer patients, survivors and caregivers.

Like the IBM Corporate Service Corps, the new IBM Health Corps will tap IBM’s top talent and cognitive technologies to support its mission.

Dell is spinning out its SecureWorks cyber-security business in the first tech industry IPO of the 2016. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission April 11, SecureWorks officials said they expect to raise $134.3 million to $154.9 million, with the per-share price ranging between $15.50 and $17.50.

The company could be valued at as much as $1.4 billion after the initial public offering, the officials said. The new company will trade on the Nasdaq exchange under the symbol SCWX. The decision for SecureWorks to become public comes as Dell prepares to buy data storage vendor EMC for $67 billion, by far the largest acquisition in the tech industry.

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