Data Dive: Apple, Affirm And Bank RegulatorsJanuary 14, 2019
The month of January is considered a mixed bag for movie buffs. While a lot of award hopefuls appear on screens in January, the big push for the serious award contenders really happens the year before. January, on the other hand, is a month for releasing movies that studios hope are good enough to get people to the movies, but not so good as to score an invitation to the following year’s Oscars or Golden Globes.
But where Hollywood fails, payments and commerce succeeds, as last week had no shortage of new, potentially Oscar-worthy releases. A few examples:
The New iPhones Are Coming
Despite reports that indicate Apple’s iPhone XR has faced limited interest and weak sales, Apple will be giving its LCD phone at least one more ride. The XR was Apple’s only LCD model released this year; the iPhone X and XS both have OLED screens.
According to reports in The Wall Street Journal, three new phones will be hitting the market in fall of 2019, coming with new camera features like a triple rear camera for the top-of-the-line iPhone and double rear camera for the two lower-end models.
One of those lower-end models will reportedly include the LCD screen. According to sources, the new LCD handset has been planned for months now and changing it would be very difficult.
Still the future for the model seems uncertain, given the XR’s struggles in the market. Earlier this month Apple lowered its revenue target to $84 billion for the first quarter, lower than the $89 billion to $93 billion in revenue it had previously projected.
Slowing demand among Chinese consumers was the main explanation offered, but since the revenue prediction reset, investors and analysts have worried that there is more bad news to come from Cupertino. The Asian Nikkei Review reported this week that Apple could cut production by as much as 10 percent in the current first quarter.
The Journal also noted that Apple might be considering a move away from the LCD models entirely by 2020.
Affirm Offers High-Interest Savings Accounts
Affirm, an alternative credit company created by entrepreneur Max Levchin and best known for its POS credit product, is testing a new free saving account that offers a 2 percent annual interest rate.
“As part of making good on our mission to provide honest financial products that improve lives, Affirm is constantly exploring ways to test and pilot new features and offerings,” Levchin said. “Based on user feedback and strong consumer interest, we’re working on a pilot that gives existing Affirm users the ability to put money into a savings account via our app. We are taking a thoughtful approach and are excited to get user…