New Apple Watch May Have Cellular Connection

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The new Apple Watch may have the ability to connect to cellular networks. An analyst from research firm Susquehanna Financial Group took a trip through Asia in recently. The results of the trip were reported in Barron’s.

Analyst Christopher Rolland wrote that the Apple Watch will have a new chip to give it cellular capability:

We understand a model of the next Apple watch will include a SIM card, and therefore is likely to support LTE. We understand some issues remain, including battery life and form factor size, but significant progress has been made. Apple may be employing VOIP and data across a CAT-M1 connection for superior battery life. Apple will tout interoperability with the company’s AirPods (now on back order till May) to make and receive phone calls (perhaps a small win for Maxim with amps in each ear bud). Positive QCOM, MXIM.

Research firm Canalys reported Apple Watch sales were modest last year despite its large global market share:

Apple set a new quarterly shipment record in Q4 2016, contributing to total smartwatch shipments exceeding 9 million units. This global market figure was largely driven by Apple’s 6 million shipments, representing year-on-year growth of 12%. It was the Apple Watch’s best quarter despite being significantly handicapped by supply constraints, even though Apple simultaneously expanded its supply chain. … the Apple Watch generated more than US$2.6 billion in revenue for Apple in Q4 2016, making up nearly 80% of total smartwatch revenue.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) revenue in the most recent quarter was $74.8 billion.