QUALCOMM IS ROLLING in cash, or at least revenue, as it has sold shedloads of chips for use in all manner of things, despite Apple refusing to cough-up on money owed.
The chip maker flogs SoCs and other components which find their way into flagship Android phones, cars, smart devices and some pretty dull stuff like modems.
Having fingers in so many pies and producing snappy Snapdragon chips has seen Qualcomm rake in $6.07bn in revenues for the first quarter of 2018. It's small hike of 1.7 per cent, but one that beat analyst estimates, according to Reuters.
Speaking of analysts, the folks that pour over spreadsheets and graphs noted that Qualcomm's forecast earnings for the current quarter missed estimates as it wasn't flogging enough mobile chips in China.
But hey, when you're still profitable and about to close a $38bn deal to buy NXP Semiconductors, who cares what analysts are estimating.
Yet not everything was so rosy for the chip maker. Apple did a number on its numbers by refusing to pay $1bn in rebates, as Cupertino reckons Qualcomm overcharged it for chips. We've seen a drunk Carly Page have the same debate with the local chippy but over pennies not billions.
"We remain open to finding a path to resolution," said Steve Mollenkopf, Qualcomm's chief executive in an analyst call.
The big boss also championed a bright future for Qualcomm in the mystery world of 5G, even though it's arguably not a thing yet.
"We recently detailed our roadmap for value creation, outlining the significant growth potential for Qualcomm as we enter the 5G world and our products and technologies expand into attractive new markets," he said. Just don't go expecting a Samsung Galaxy S9 to come rocking 5G connectivity.
Speaking of Samsung, Qualcomm also announced it has amended a long-term cross-license agreement with the South Korean tech giant which will see Sammy make use of Qualcomm chips in its mobile devices and infrastructure equipment.
And a stronger "strategic relationship" is also on the cards, which will see the two companies cosy-up on various tech areas and mobile devices, as well as make a transition to 5G at some point.
In the short term, this is all but confirmation that the Galaxy S9 will have the latest Snapdragon 845 chipset in it. Long-term, who knows? Most days we can barely see past lunchtime.
If the Galaxy S9 turns out to be as big a splash as the Galaxy S8, then we can expect Qualcomm will see a whole load more of its chips get shifted inside the handsets.
So while bean-counter types might agonise over estimates, Qualcomm is chugging along nicely. But we'd like to see something special come out of it this year, like say a dedicated augmented reality chip for phone. µ
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