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🚀 1 Phone To Rule Them All

PLUS: Tech M&A: From Drought To Deluge?

Hi Everyone. This is Take Off. We're like a hidden Easter egg in your favorite video game - surprising, delightful, and adding an extra layer of fun to your tech news consumption.

Here's what we're serving up today:

  • 1 Phone To Rule Them All 📱

  • Tech M&A: From Drought To Deluge? 💧

  • Asteroids ☄️

1 Phone To Rule Them All

The 2023 smartphone market was like a race where everyone's tripping over, but one racer just zooms ahead.

That one racer? Apple!

They’ve successfully snatched the crown from Samsung and closed out 2023 with a record-high smartphone market share.

And it’s not just any small victory. It’s the first time any company other than Samsung has topped the list since 2010. 

That’s a lot of trophies for Samsung.

Even though global smartphone shipments declined 3.2% YoY to 1.17 billion units in 2023, Apple still shipped an estimated 234.6 million iPhones in 2023, enjoying a 20.1% market share. 

Samsung, on the other hand, shipped an estimated 222.6 million smartphones, and their market share dropped to 19.4%.

And folks, these aren’t just numbers. They’re a narrative of changing fortunes.

Apple’s strategy

It seems that Apple’s secret sauce is to focus on the premium end of the market. Think shiny, high-spec iPhones that make tech enthusiasts' hearts flutter. And oh boy is it working!

Apple's been luring customers with aggressive trade-in offers and interest-free financing plans. 

In a world where premium devices now represent over 20% of the market, Apple's bet on the high-end is winning big time.

Diversifying Android Space

The 2nd half of 2023 saw some significant growth from low-end Android players like Transsion and Xiaomi. 

Huawei’s also making a grand comeback and is taking over markets like China. 

The Android stage is getting crowded with stars like OnePlus, Google, and Honor, all launching phones that are not just good but also easy on the wallet.

Samsung’s not the only big player in the foldable market anymore. The android space has become a bit too crowded and has started nibbling away at Samsung’s market share. 

What does it mean?

This shift could signal a new era in smartphone competition, with Apple's strategy emphasizing high-end, premium devices proving successful. 

It also reflects changing consumer behaviors and the increasing importance of brand and product quality in purchasing decisions.

Additionally, it may lead to intensified competition and innovation among other smartphone manufacturers, particularly in emerging markets and the premium segment​.

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Tech M&A: From Drought To Deluge? 📉

As painful as the post-pandemic tech M&A slump has been, the market has definitely found the bottom and is set to rebound sharply in 2024. 

It’s a bust-to-boom reversal that - if it comes to pass - could see hundreds of billions of dollars worth of deal spending flowing back to an otherwise parched market.

Let’s talk shop for a second. Last year was tough, kinda like trying to row a boat in a storm - without any oars. 2023 saw the sharpest YoY contraction in tech M&A spending.

But forecasts predict that the dark days are behind us. 

Corporate acquirers are expected to lead the charge back. And it seems like they are already charging ahead. 

  • Hewlett Packard Enterprises (NYSE: HPE) announced the $12.8B purchase of Juniper Networks Inc., the serial acquirer's largest-ever transaction.

  • Synopsis (NASDAQ: SNPS) announced the acquisition of Ansys for $35B, making it the biggest deal in 2024 till now.

The MVP that’s expected to drive all the frenzy? 

No points for guessing - Generative AI. As expected, it is expected to easily outpace the forecasts for all other emerging tech trends. 

Credits: The Verge

Many CEOs are taking advantage as some target companies are under pressure, given the difficulty of raising follow-on capital at an affordable rate and the challenging prospects for going public. 

Companies that raised capital in 2020-2021 and are still struggling to become profitable could find the prospect of a sale more attractive than they might have just a few years ago.

What are your predictions for the M&A market?

☄️ Asteroids ☄️

IBM's stock rockets 7% post-stellar Q4 results, fueled by AI triumphs and upbeat 2024 revenue forecasts, dazzling Wall Street with revenue and AI growth, outshining estimates. 🚀💼🤖

Tesla's stock tumbles 11%, shedding $73B in value amid slowing growth and fierce Chinese competition, facing earnings woes and margin crunch. 📉🚗🇨🇳💥

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