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Fitbit Ace, MVIS, CTL, AES and Bitcoin notes +1
Fitbit has announced the global availability of its Ace tracker, for kids. To an even greater extent than the rest of its product line, I have trouble seeing this being a big hit outside the U.S. While it may give FIT shares a bit of a push, it doesn't change my outlook at all, since we've known this was coming all year.
A similarly unimportant amended S-1 was filed by MicroVision. It specifies that the company is seeking to sell 12.5M shares at $1.44 each, or 14.375M with over-allotment. That represents 16-18.5% dilution, but I will be a bit surprised if the company can get its targer price per share.
Of more interest to me is further cloud partnership for
time with Google. Increasing cloud access should also be of
minor benefit to Vodafone, which gets an upgrade
from Credit Suisse this morning. It's probably just coincidence
that this comes out on the very day that Net Neutrality will be repealed.
Elsewhere in the world, though, the systems we take for granted are being rethought to better effect. That's a segue to talk about two of the most interesting things I saw over the weekend. One is a proposal in Switzerland to digitize currency and do away with the intermediate, semi-private banking system. Subscribers question me about Bitcoin, which suffered yet another setback, almost as much as CenturyLink. They get consistently negative responses from me for two main reasons:
- Governments benefit from having a sovereign currency. Over the long-term, they simply can not allow a broadly usable replacement that they do control. Thus eventually, they will seek of offer similar in-house technologies.
- Like many things, Bitcoin has inherent scalability problems. Despite it being not nearly as broadly used as even niche sovereign currencies, the power requirements for each transaction are already becoming problematic, as are those for mining new coins.
Bitcoin gets so much interest because of its volatility, which
has been generally upward because finite digital currencies solve
the problem of fiat
currency that plagues
western economies. The Swiss proposal brings both points together
and can be thought of as a move back towards an asset-based
economy, rather than a debt-based one. It seems destined for
rejection, but I will be on the lookout for other similar
proposals, as the world really needs such a move.
An even more interesting find is a project to completely rethink
electric distribution. It's another thing the world needs, but
even less likely to see widespread use in any predictable time
frame. I note it merely because it is interesting, and if such a
movement ever did take hold it would be negative for utilities
like AES and NRG Yield, but positive for AMSC, which I've
continued to monitor and remain unwilling to buy despite many an
interesting twist and turn. Question are always welcome.