The company reported $2.95 billion in revenue, up 10 percent from the same period last year and 9 percent over the previous quarter. Earnings were 53 cents per share for the quarter, versus 48 cents per share the previous year and 47 cents the previous quarter. Qualcomm makes chips and software that power cell phones and licenses its technology to other makers of chips and handsets.
During a conference call, CEO Paul Jacobs said the growth was driven in part by the growth of demand for smartphones in developing markets such as China. He noted that there are some 40 new handset designs in China. Another source of strength was sales into the tablet market, which he said is also seeing robust growth. The building of 3G markets in countries such as India and China is also boosting smartphone sales, even as the developed markets switch to 4G networks.
The earnings numbers didn't quite beat analysts' expectations, which were as high as 59 cents per share, though it beat the Wall Street revenue estimates. The company had said in July that it expected to earn 55-59 cents per share.
Despite the growth, the future of tablets is difficult to predict. In emerging markets such as India, there are devices based on smartphone chips. "There's no laptop market for them to displace," said Steve Mollenkopf, executive vice president. That makes it more difficult to say what kind of electronics consumers in those countries will gravitate toward.
Shipments of company's CDMA-based mobile station modem chips, which give mobile handsets some of their advanced capabilities, were at the high end of the July estimates. At that point, Qualcomm estimated shipping 106-111 million MSM chipsets during the fourth quarter. The company sold 111 million in the quarter and reached 400 million for the year.
CFO William Keitel said the company also plans to restructure the FLO TV business, and eventually wind it down.
International Business Times, The Global Business News Leader
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