The Talk Show

108: ‘Malaprops’ With Guest Ben Thompson


00:00:00   What time you got? What do you got? What are you 11 o'clock?

00:00:02   12 21 a.m. Oh my God.

00:00:04   Are you serious? Is this going to be all right?

00:00:06   Yeah. No, I I have it down to science.

00:00:09   I took a shower, then I weighed down for a 20 minute nap,

00:00:12   and then I drink up coffee and then I will calm myself down

00:00:15   with a couple of beers during the conversation. Sounds good.

00:00:18   No, I'm good. Don't worry about it.

00:00:24   OK. Although although we had we had we had a nice like home Korean barbecue

00:00:29   We over at the the in-laws place, of course, and she's like my mother-in-law is like a huge whiskey fan

00:00:37   So she always has really good stuff, but I limited myself to to us to a single a single serving

00:00:43   So you owe me one. I

00:00:46   Do that's that's a steep price to pay to be a guest on the show. I forgot I have you set up

00:00:53   I have Taipei set up in my today view I could I didn't need to ask you what time it was. I could have just

00:00:58   Open today my world clock. Well, I guess that that says enough about today

00:01:04   You know what? I I think the problem is that I usually I really only open that thing up for

00:01:10   It's it's kind of weird to have that bead today and notifications

00:01:13   like I understand why they grouped it together that way, but I think in practice it's weird because it's

00:01:18   One or the other is always two steps away instead of one step away

00:01:22   Yeah

00:01:25   Yeah, I agree. I don't know I never click on today either

00:01:28   I'm looking at like it actually took me a couple seconds to remember what you were talking about when he said today

00:01:32   It's I use it for notifications only and I don't know I guess that's kind of true on both OSes

00:01:39   although I was talking about the Mac not iOS, but

00:01:42   Kind of true on both of us is where I've always got it on

00:01:46   notifications not

00:01:49   Today, yeah

00:01:51   No, it's well, it's interesting because um, I

00:01:54   Don't know you you could almost see that as being being a shift right like I mean almost with

00:01:59   Everything is is more almost responsive in real time. Whereas today that's like that's like a plan and I don't maybe it's

00:02:07   we're hardly authorities to talk about having a set schedule and

00:02:12   Marching through the day. So we're probably outliers. Yeah, I've seen some people who wanted who've requested

00:02:18   They wish that there was a way to make at least on the Mac

00:02:21   I think only on the Mac, it wouldn't make sense on iOS,

00:02:23   but on the Mac that they could make that persistent

00:02:26   and just say, take those two inches

00:02:28   on the right side of my screen

00:02:29   and just always make it today.

00:02:31   And I've got a big 30-inch iMac here or something,

00:02:34   big Thunderbolt display.

00:02:37   I don't need the whole screen for this.

00:02:38   Just treat my screen as what's left

00:02:40   and give me that today view over there

00:02:42   so I've got a permanent agenda.

00:02:45   - Oh no, totally.

00:02:45   I did something similar to that

00:02:46   when I was at Microsoft and Windows 8

00:02:50   and you can mix like the regular desktop

00:02:53   and then like Windows 8 apps

00:02:55   and like a sliver on the side of the screen.

00:02:58   And so I put my calendar there for that exact reason.

00:03:01   It worked out perfectly

00:03:04   and then I just had a quick view of what was going on.

00:03:07   - And people have done that virtually

00:03:09   or in a mismatch of digital and analog

00:03:12   for as long as they've been using computers in their office

00:03:15   if you think about like sticky notes

00:03:16   on the side of a monitor.

00:03:19   Oh no, totally, totally.

00:03:21   I think that's something that's like,

00:03:24   what was the, were you talking, linked to this?

00:03:26   Like there's like that new accessory for like an iPad

00:03:28   where you can actually like have it

00:03:29   as a secondary display or whatever.

00:03:32   To me, the compiling case, if you have an iPad in your desk

00:03:36   is just, yeah, just have it there for your calendar

00:03:39   and stuff like that, I mean, it's.

00:03:41   - Yeah, I didn't link to that.

00:03:42   I know which one, I forget the name

00:03:43   of the thing you're talking about,

00:03:44   but I know exactly what you're talking about.

00:03:46   And I've been looking at,

00:03:47   I've been thinking about trying that out,

00:03:48   But I wouldn't use it again.

00:03:50   I would not use it as a--

00:03:53   I wouldn't put an app over there, any app.

00:03:56   But I would think about using it exactly like you said,

00:03:58   as a sort of a pace board.

00:04:01   I don't know, like a bulletin board.

00:04:04   Yeah.

00:04:06   I'm a screen maven.

00:04:07   So I have three screens on my desk.

00:04:10   So I don't know if I even have room for an iPad.

00:04:14   Yeah.

00:04:14   What's the name of that thing?

00:04:15   Is it Reflector?

00:04:16   or is that a different thing?

00:04:18   - No, I think I wanna say sort of an L,

00:04:20   but I might be totally making that up.

00:04:23   But yeah, the idea is I think it was built

00:04:25   by a former Apple guy or something.

00:04:26   So like, and apparently it actually works quite well.

00:04:30   - See, Air Display, Duet?

00:04:34   - No, Duet, Duet, I think that's it.

00:04:37   - Duet Display, yeah, there we go.

00:04:40   I will put it in the show notes.

00:04:43   We'll look at it for next week.

00:04:46   Yeah, first school response,

00:04:48   duet display, X Apple engineers turn your iPad

00:04:50   into an extra screen.

00:04:51   So they, and that's their,

00:04:53   that's actually their page title for Google.

00:04:57   So they're definitely playing up

00:04:58   the X Apple engineer angle.

00:05:00   So, and effectively, 'cause that's what I remembered.

00:05:03   - That's interesting.

00:05:04   I wonder how that plays at the company.

00:05:07   Because the other thing too, is that,

00:05:11   Part of the reason that very few former Apple engineers

00:05:16   or people who've had any kind of involvement,

00:05:21   managers too, they don't talk about their experience

00:05:23   at Apple even when they leave is because so many

00:05:26   of them go back and they know that some of them go back.

00:05:29   - It's like a revolving door.

00:05:31   - It's like Steve Jobs, one of the things Steve Jobs did

00:05:34   when he came back to the company is get rid

00:05:37   of the sabbatical program.

00:05:40   There used to be, I forget how many years,

00:05:41   but every five years you got like a couple months sabbatical

00:05:45   and he got rid of that.

00:05:48   'Cause he, you know, I forget various reasons.

00:05:51   But one of them was that an awful lot of the time

00:05:53   people would take a sabbatical

00:05:54   and then at the end of the sabbatical they'd quit.

00:05:57   But there's sort of a de facto sabbatical

00:05:59   where if you feel burned out, you just quit, you can leave.

00:06:03   And you know, as long as you're on good terms,

00:06:05   it's like the easiest way to get a job at Apple

00:06:07   is to have been a successful Apple employee before.

00:06:10   I can't tell you how many people I know

00:06:12   who've left and come back within sometimes a year,

00:06:15   sometimes it's actually pretty quick,

00:06:16   sometimes three, four years, but they do.

00:06:18   But one of the things you could do that would ruin that

00:06:20   would be to blab about the company in the interim.

00:06:25   - Yeah, no, totally.

00:06:27   No, it's a very, at this point,

00:06:30   everyone kind of knows about it.

00:06:31   And I think even Apple internally,

00:06:36   It's like it's totally accepted and kind of the assumption, yeah, you get burned out.

00:06:41   Yeah, only at Apple do you get burned out and go work at a startup to relax and then you come back.

00:06:47   Right.

00:06:49   Gives you an idea of what the pace and expectations are.

00:06:54   Yeah, but it is, you know, it's a better, I think it's, you know, it's an interesting way to do sabbaticals.

00:06:59   Quit, come back.

00:07:04   Yeah, I mean it works for them. I'm not sure that it's something that other companies want to adopt as a policy.

00:07:10   Did Microsoft have a sabbatical policy?

00:07:13   I don't think so. Not that I remember. I mean I wasn't really there long enough to have it matter for me.

00:07:21   But I've heard of people taking sabbaticals, but I don't think it was like a formal thing.

00:07:27   I think it was those things where if you're in good standing and...

00:07:30   The other thing with Microsoft is, in part because of where they're located,

00:07:35   I mean, there are more and more, you know, tech jobs in Seattle and the startups and stuff.

00:07:40   But in general, it's more of a big company talent with Microsoft and Amazon.

00:07:44   And no one from Microsoft wants to work at Amazon for the most part.

00:07:47   Because, you know, everyone thinks that, you know, they work insane hours and don't get paid anything.

00:07:52   So it's kind of a plus in Microsoft.

00:07:57   It's a plus in that, like, there's still a lot of really good employees.

00:08:00   Whereas if they had been the valley like you take them like HP or Yahoo especially before Marissa

00:08:04   America came back and they just lost they lost so many people you know in there. It's just like how do you come back from that?

00:08:10   Whereas Microsoft I think one of the advantage of being there is that they there's still a lot of like really strong people there

00:08:17   It's a disadvantage though because you get people that are just kind of there

00:08:20   And they're not particularly pleased about being there, and they're kind of a drag

00:08:23   so it cuts both ways but um

00:08:26   I think I do recall people, you know, taking some time off and you know

00:08:31   it being okay because they're valuable employees and you know, and

00:08:35   People appreciate that. Sometimes you need to unplug for a bit

00:08:39   It used to be I mean, this is ancient history, but it was you know when I was getting out of college in

00:08:46   96 I mean Microsoft was

00:08:49   Notorious infamous

00:08:53   famous for being like the hardest place in the world to get hired.

00:08:57   It was, you know, that it was the play.

00:08:59   I think they practically invented the sort of gimmicky, you know,

00:09:03   you know, off the top of your head, how many marbles would fit in a,

00:09:07   you know, beer barrel or a Volkswagen bug type of interview question?

00:09:12   Why is a manhole cover around?

00:09:15   And yeah, and and also but tough,

00:09:19   like whiteboarding questions to fertile programmers.

00:09:22   Yeah, I think that that's probably, I mean, any company that's on top, it shifted to Google, right?

00:09:31   And it's, you know, some people have the nature or they want to like get on the next big thing.

00:09:37   But for a lot of people, the idea of being at the market leader and knowing, you know, that that's attracted a lot of people.

00:09:43   And those people are valuable, too, because you need those are the kind of folks that kind of provide long term stability.

00:09:48   stability because you know what's once they're set their set.

00:09:51   I mean, you do need the people that are willing to take risks and push forward.

00:09:55   But it's always a balance and it can create a certain arrogance, though,

00:09:59   like an institutional arrogance, because the gist of it is then it creates this.

00:10:03   It created a culture, I think, where the assumption was any

00:10:06   you have to be really smart to work at Microsoft and.

00:10:09   And therefore, everybody here is like the smartest people in the world.

00:10:13   And at the time, Microsoft had this extraordinary success

00:10:18   that seemed to back up the idea that the company was staffed with all of the best programmers

00:10:22   in the world.

00:10:23   Absolutely.

00:10:24   No, it's definitely a problem.

00:10:26   And it's a problem on a few levels.

00:10:30   One, you definitely get arrogance or arrogant.

00:10:33   Two, it also kind of breeds a little bit of a bad culture in that everyone is all, it's

00:10:40   like the first time a lot of these people have gotten to a place where they're not for

00:10:43   sure the smartest person in the room.

00:10:46   And so everyone's very eager to show that they are the smartest person in the room.

00:10:50   And like people trying to show that they're smart is not conducive to, you know, collaborative

00:10:56   work or, you know, it is conducive to having a very dog eat dog sort of culture, which

00:11:02   Microsoft is very famous for.

00:11:05   And I think that probably plays into it.

00:11:09   Yeah, and I think Google is the inheritor of that.

00:11:13   I do think.

00:11:14   - Google is so much like Microsoft.

00:11:15   I mean, it just, in so many respects.

00:11:18   I mean, I've written from, just from a big picture,

00:11:21   like strategic perspective, I think that they're,

00:11:24   right now in a place similar to Microsoft,

00:11:25   you know, around 2000,

00:11:27   obviously that's somewhat controversial,

00:11:29   but not even that, but just the way they hire,

00:11:31   the way they treat employees, their status in the Valley,

00:11:34   the way people look at them.

00:11:36   I mean, for sure, they're the inheritor.

00:11:38   Even the, and I think you can agree with that,

00:11:42   even if you like Google and hate Microsoft

00:11:44   vice versa. And it's just a function of being kind of the big dog. And like, of course,

00:11:49   Apple is the biggest quote unquote from market perspective, but they've always, Apple's always

00:11:53   been very, it's Apple's of the Valley, but they're separate from the Valley. Like all

00:11:58   the startups and all the people like all look towards Google and people bottoms after that

00:12:03   just as they previously did Microsoft and Apple's always been kind of a bit of an aberration

00:12:08   from a cultural perspective, from a product development perspective. And obviously, you

00:12:12   you know, there's something to that.

00:12:14   - I think it's also, and from a personality perspective,

00:12:17   I think that the, I mean, and I know,

00:12:20   I think I've talked about this before in the show.

00:12:21   I know people who have gone between Google and Apple,

00:12:25   but not very few, fewer than any similar companies

00:12:30   that I know of.

00:12:30   Like, they just, the two companies tend to draw

00:12:33   very, very different personalities.

00:12:36   - No, for sure, and I think you can see this

00:12:38   from a social perspective.

00:12:40   I think Apple people tend to hang out with Apple people, whereas Google and this whole

00:12:47   startup culture is much more of a group and goes back and forth. You see tons of people

00:12:54   from Google going into startups and coming back and stuff like that. You do see it at

00:12:59   Apple, but I think to a much lower degree, I think you have more long-term employees

00:13:04   at Apple, I mean, it's hard to say.

00:13:07   I mean, we're probably both going off anecdote a bit,

00:13:10   but I definitely have always felt that,

00:13:12   the Valley company is Google,

00:13:15   even though Apple's the biggest.

00:13:16   Just Apple is kind of in its own world

00:13:18   and kind of always has been.

00:13:19   - Yeah, I also, personality-wise,

00:13:21   I think a lot of the people who I've gotten to know at Apple

00:13:25   who are very smart though,

00:13:27   but they're not the type of smart person

00:13:28   who wants to assert that they're the smartest person

00:13:30   in the world or in the room.

00:13:33   And they'd be happy not to be because they think cool now

00:13:36   I've got these other smarter people and almost like if you want to bring some sports ball into it. It's you know

00:13:42   What do you do if you've always been the star basketball player, but now you're only the third or fourth best

00:13:49   Are you happy because holy holy shit now?

00:13:52   I've got three guys on the team who are even better than me and I'll settle into a smaller role and we're gonna win or

00:14:00   Are you you know, are you upset and gonna complain about how many shots you're getting and stuff like that? No, totally

00:14:06   I and I mean, I I'm I think of I'm very vociferous in my you know, I love the NBA

00:14:13   I love basketball and one of the reasons I love it is because I think it's it's a sport that

00:14:17   It's one of the hardest sports to kind of figure out right?

00:14:21   I mean, I think we did might have talked to this last time what you know

00:14:23   Like baseball's at the end kind of a one-on-one game. Where is basketball the interaction?

00:14:29   Both on offense and especially on defense is is so important to it and it's and it's not

00:14:35   It's not you can't distill it to a spreadsheet

00:14:37   It's just one of those there's a lot of feel to it if that makes sense, right?

00:14:40   And with only five players on the court at any time one new player is a significant difference

00:14:46   I mean, I think maybe the canonical example would be when

00:14:49   when King James went to the Heat and they already had a

00:14:54   lineup of all-star players and they added

00:14:57   you know almost inarguably the best player in the league. That's not necessary, that wasn't

00:15:04   necessarily going to work out. There wasn't you know it was certainly a talent injection but it

00:15:11   it isn't necessarily it wasn't it wasn't fate that it was going to lead to success. Right it was so

00:15:17   fascinating we're seeing a replay now right and it's arguably going going worse than it did that

00:15:22   time. So no, with the Cavaliers? Yeah, yeah. Oh, totally. So the other thing that's interesting

00:15:30   about Apple that I've always found very fascinating is if you look at kind of the executive board of

00:15:36   most big companies, it's like Stanford, Stanford, MIT, Stanford, Stanford. But that's never been

00:15:42   the case for Apple. I mean, you look at it right now, I mean, you have, you know, Tim Cook went to

00:15:47   Auburn and Angela Aarons went to went to Ball State.

00:15:51   Eddie Q went to Eddie Q went to Duke, which is obviously, you

00:15:56   know that that's a prestigious school, but yeah, but it's not a

00:15:59   Valley school, right? It's not it's not a Valley school.

00:16:01   Schiller was Boston College, right?

00:16:03   Yeah, I think so. And at least

00:16:06   well, if he's not, he's for whatever reason, he's a huge fan

00:16:09   of their sports. Yeah, I think he is. I just quit. I just opened

00:16:14   a couple of them here. Um, the University of Massachusetts

00:16:16   Amherst, Dan Riccio, Phil Schiller is Boston College.

00:16:20   And I think that's

00:16:24   Jeff Williams, North Carolina State.

00:16:27   I mean, like state schools, right?

00:16:29   I mean, good schools, solid schools, but not very different than the

00:16:35   then than a lot of the valley.

00:16:37   And I think I think it's a big deal.

00:16:39   I think it matters.

00:16:40   And I'm biased in this regard.

00:16:42   I went to a state school.

00:16:44   I mean, it was no Drexel University, but Drexel is like Drexel is like the public school for

00:16:51   people who are otherwise going to end up in a state school. But yeah, I think it's I don't know,

00:16:59   I'm not objective in the slightest in this because when I was when I was getting my MBA,

00:17:06   I had a very hard time getting a job. And because I had this very kind of non-traditional background,

00:17:14   I had been living abroad, I'd been teaching English, traveling the world, stuff like that.

00:17:18   And lots of companies were like, people tell me, "Oh, it's very interesting, but I would never make

00:17:24   the cut for an interview. If I got a first interview, I'd never make it to a second one,

00:17:27   even if I thought the interview went very well." And kind of the one exception was Apple, where

00:17:33   everything went fantastically, got in, you know, relatively, you know, quite easily. And the

00:17:41   interviewer told me right off the bat or and I was fortunate because the like the interviewer

00:17:44   was sick so I interviewed with the hiring director like my first interview so that probably accelerated

00:17:48   things but she's like um like I wanted to hire you since I had your resume because it was so

00:17:55   off the wall like that's that's the sort of person that we're looking for and you go there and you

00:18:00   meet lots of people and I believe it because most of the people I met yeah there were some

00:18:04   Stanford people and there were some you know MIT people and stuff like that but uh a lot of people

00:18:10   had really weird backgrounds and did lots of strange stuff and they were super smart but they

00:18:14   were the weird weird people smart and I think that's I don't think that's an accident. Yeah

00:18:21   I know a lot of engineers at Apple or at least a couple I shouldn't say a lot I know a couple

00:18:25   at least who don't have any degree at all and I would say I know a lot who have degrees in things

00:18:32   other than computer science you know yeah physics a lot of physics I mean I don't know how many

00:18:38   both Indy and people at Apple. You know, people who went to school for physics and were programming

00:18:44   on the side, and then just got sucked into it. And it just was irrelevant to their job prospects

00:18:50   at Apple that they didn't have a computer science degree or, you know, whatever school wasn't their

00:18:56   thing in Nick Carlson's new book on on Marissa Meyer where she was. I forget who she was

00:19:04   dismissive of because she didn't have a college degree.

00:19:07   I don't remember. I haven't read it yet. I've only read the excerpts.

00:19:11   There was something though where she was, you know, she sort of just turned her nose

00:19:15   up at somebody else just because the person had didn't have a college degree.

00:19:20   Yeah, well, I mean, I mean, by all by all, you know, Google is kind of notorious for

00:19:27   having a very strong bias towards, you know, towards your degree in your GPA,

00:19:32   in particular if you're from Stanford and I think a lot of the Valley is and it's one of those things

00:19:37   where I think the problem with it is it raises the floor for who you hire. Like you're going to get

00:19:42   someone that's smart and capable but anytime you raise the floor you're also lowering the ceiling

00:19:47   because you're kind of constraining your options and if someone fits in a box like you're not going

00:19:54   to get out of the box thinking. I mean it's and I think Apple at least in my personal experience and

00:20:00   from people that I saw there and from what I talked to, and this is something that we did

00:20:04   talk about at Apple University, like the way Apple thinks about hiring, putting much more value on

00:20:10   non-school stuff. And if they're smart and if they're kind of weird and they've done interesting

00:20:17   things, then that's someone that we're interested in. And if they spent their whole day going to

00:20:24   schools and having a high GPA.

00:20:26   It might be useful, but

00:20:27   it's almost more of a

00:20:30   more of a challenge in some respects.

00:20:32   Yeah.

00:20:32   The other thing too, and

00:20:35   you like that whole like asserting

00:20:37   who's the smartest person in the room

00:20:39   like I've heard this

00:20:40   from other people too, but this is

00:20:41   like even personal experience

00:20:42   like way back when

00:20:44   probably close to 10 years ago,

00:20:45   I give up like 8 years ago

00:20:47   when I was at joint.

00:20:48   We had a meeting with Apple.

00:20:50   Just hey, we you know

00:20:52   we're interested in what you guys

00:20:53   are working on. This is when joint was not a hosting company when we were doing like a

00:20:58   web-based email calendar contacts notes syncing type thing.

00:21:05   And it was a you know it was a pleasant meeting it was you know maybe like 30 40 minutes but it

00:21:13   was like the opposite of anybody trying to assert who was the smartest all they wanted to do was

00:21:18   listen. That's it. They had they had questions, but there was absolutely no, it was the opposite.

00:21:23   It was almost like creepy how much they were just observing and listening to us and revealing

00:21:29   nothing about themselves. Yeah, well, if you want, I mean, if you want to get into like,

00:21:34   read way too much into this, like we probably already are, but if you want to take it

00:21:38   full speed ahead, one of the best things about being an intern at Apple is they have this like

00:21:43   this intern lecture series where basically the executive team, different members of the

00:21:48   executive team for lunch they come in for an hour and they talk. Some just talk the

00:21:53   whole time, some give presentations, others just do Q&A. So you got an hour with Steve

00:21:57   Jobs, an hour with Tim Cook, an hour with Phil Schiller, with Ron Johnson. It was an

00:22:04   incredible experience, worth the internship alone. But there was one that was really interesting

00:22:11   because this person came in and he was obviously the smartest person in the room and he was

00:22:21   also determined to make sure that everyone knew he was the smartest person in the room.

00:22:24   Is this person no longer at the company?

00:22:29   I'll give you one guess as to who this person was.

00:22:31   I'm guessing it was Scott Forstall.

00:22:33   I walked out of the meeting and I told a friend of mine and we talked to this like after he left

00:22:39   Apple like we because we talked about right afterwards like it was so it was jarring.

00:22:43   I mean he was so clearly brilliant but it like his it was just such a turn-off to listen to him

00:22:51   talk especially relative to to some of the other executives and and if you want to get you know

00:22:58   we're gonna really piss off all the Stanford listeners but yeah there's your Stanford guy

00:23:03   And and I don't know, like I wasn't it was one of those things where when he left,

00:23:09   I was shocked, but I was not surprised

00:23:12   because of that that lecture that I heard from him.

00:23:16   Well, I mean, there wasn't just that. There was I mean, I'd heard stuff.

00:23:19   I knew that it was I mean, I knew that he was a difficult person

00:23:23   to work with just to the grapevine. But

00:23:26   I the truth is, I think Apple misses him, to be honest.

00:23:29   But I also was not was not surprised.

00:23:33   I agree with that. I do, too.

00:23:35   And I think it's easy.

00:23:36   Like I laughed and said I knew who it was and I did know.

00:23:38   I instantly guessed it was it was for stall.

00:23:41   But I think he's an extremely complicated figure.

00:23:45   And I think explaining his role in Apple's success

00:23:48   over the last 15 years is extremely complicated.

00:23:51   And there's absolutely no way to paint it in either black or white

00:23:57   and say he is Miss, they suck without him or it was an easy no brainer to get rid of them.

00:24:04   Good riddance to bad rubbish. It is so so many different and I wouldn't even say gray. It's just

00:24:10   so many interweaved streaks of black and white. Absolutely. Good, bad part, good part, bad part,

00:24:16   good part, bad part. No, he's I mean, he is he's on the top five list of people most responsible

00:24:23   for Apple being where it is today.

00:24:24   - I think part of it was that I think he always had,

00:24:27   and I don't, you know, again, I met him once, you know,

00:24:30   after a keynote and we had like a half hour discussion

00:24:32   and it was great and he was, it was just me and him

00:24:34   shooting the shit in the hands-on area.

00:24:36   And he was, you know, clearly a reader of my site,

00:24:40   very complimentary to my work.

00:24:42   And we just talked about some cool stuff.

00:24:44   And, you know, it was no showy offy stuff at all.

00:24:48   It was just, you know, but he was very, very brilliant.

00:24:50   It was actually around the time of, what's it, 2010?

00:24:55   Might have been like WWDC 2010.

00:24:58   - iPhone 4.

00:25:00   - Yeah, iPhone 4, yes, iPhone 4,

00:25:03   and the iPad was like four months old.

00:25:07   - Yep.

00:25:08   - And a lot of this stuff where, I was gonna say kids,

00:25:13   but it's actually just about everybody,

00:25:14   but especially kids with autism and problems like that

00:25:19   were found to be doing sensational stuff

00:25:22   communication-wise with iPhones,

00:25:26   and now with the big iPad,

00:25:27   which really helps with fine motor control

00:25:29   'cause there were bigger targets,

00:25:30   that it was a huge thing.

00:25:32   He was so amazingly engaged on that.

00:25:35   And this, you know, that is not like a,

00:25:37   hey, how to make the company another $10 billion.

00:25:40   It's clearly a small segment of the overall market

00:25:45   for iPads and iPhones,

00:25:47   but he was super, super engaged on it

00:25:49   and thought that we had this cool discussion about how

00:25:52   that a lot of the things that they designed,

00:25:54   not think they'd, you know,

00:25:56   all these things fell out of things that they just thought

00:25:58   were cool for regular people,

00:25:59   but it ends up being, you know,

00:26:02   super great for people with autism.

00:26:05   But it's this whole that, you know, his conclusion,

00:26:09   he said that they were looking into it to try to prove it,

00:26:11   to, you know, not just do it as a hunch,

00:26:13   but that it's just about a leave, you know,

00:26:16   eliminating a layer of abstraction,

00:26:18   that that whole thing where you move a mouse

00:26:20   which moves an arrow on the screen

00:26:22   and you do it, once you get used to using computers,

00:26:26   you just forget about it,

00:26:27   but that people with autism can never get past it,

00:26:29   that it's this abstraction

00:26:31   that just their brains don't make the connection.

00:26:34   And when they can put their finger

00:26:36   right on that button on screen and tap it,

00:26:39   it's not just like a little bit easier,

00:26:43   it's the difference between unable to make the connection

00:26:46   and completely able to make the connection.

00:26:49   And that other people who can use a mouse

00:26:51   and don't have any sort of impairment like that,

00:26:53   they might, they don't really think about the fact

00:26:57   that the iPad's a lot easier or the iPhone's a lot easier,

00:27:00   but that it ends up that subconsciously,

00:27:03   without thinking about it, it is,

00:27:05   and it actually is why they prefer using it.

00:27:08   - No, I think--

00:27:10   - It was a great conversation.

00:27:11   And the gist of it was just, he just was talking.

00:27:13   It was just me and him talking and it was great.

00:27:16   and I thought he was great.

00:27:17   And I also know, also know, I'll just add the other thing,

00:27:20   is that there are a ton of people,

00:27:22   ton of people who worked under him at Apple who loved him,

00:27:26   and loved working under him.

00:27:27   He was demanding, but that he was absolutely not,

00:27:32   he was, his problem's there. - He was fair.

00:27:37   - Well, and the other thing too that I heard

00:27:38   time and time again was that people who worked under him

00:27:40   always had the sense that he had their back.

00:27:43   - Right, right, that's what I was getting at, yeah.

00:27:45   No, totally. The other thing is that I actually think, I'm not sure, but I think in that talk,

00:27:50   I think he actually did talk a lot. It was the same summer, 2010, that I was there. And

00:27:54   so maybe it was on his mind. But I think he talked a lot about the accessibility stuff.

00:27:58   And I think, I'm not sure, but I think I've heard that he was really the driving force

00:28:02   for iOS being so advanced when it came to accessibility, like for the blind and stuff

00:28:07   like that.

00:28:08   Well, he certainly was a complete advocate for it, like a total advocate. He may not

00:28:13   would have been the sole driving force,

00:28:15   but he put his full advocacy behind it.

00:28:17   - Just in general, I really think,

00:28:20   well, I think Apple misses him in two parts.

00:28:23   I think one is his ability to,

00:28:28   I do think that iOS was incredibly,

00:28:33   given what it was, was not buggy at all

00:28:38   and was really good.

00:28:41   I think there's a discussion we had about some of the quality stuff, but two, I think he had a real passion and

00:28:48   push for usability and accessibility

00:28:52   not not just for like

00:28:55   disabled but for normal people and like and so much of the original iPhone OS that was so natural and so obvious

00:29:03   And that obviousness it's obvious when you use it, but it's not obvious when you design it, right?

00:29:09   It requires tons of iteration and tons of pushback and doing it again and again and certainly jobs was

00:29:14   Was the head of this and the and pushed for this but this was where this was where in particular

00:29:21   I think forced all really channel jobs and

00:29:23   Certainly iOS and I would say, you know, especially now once we're used to them look much better than the old iPhone OS

00:29:30   But I still think there's lots of areas where they're more difficult to use and more difficult in a not in that they're less obvious

00:29:38   And that's something that I think is missing still.

00:29:41   - I think a way that you get there is not so much

00:29:44   being able to find the truly simple,

00:29:49   seemingly obvious way to do it.

00:29:52   It's more of the refusal to accept the complicated,

00:29:57   the complex, it isn't clear how you do it.

00:30:02   But you start, you think, hey, here's how we'll lay out

00:30:06   the new calendar app for iOS 8.

00:30:08   And we'll do this and this and it sounds good

00:30:09   and you build it and then you use it

00:30:11   and it's like, but I'm kind of confused,

00:30:13   like how do I just show a list of events?

00:30:15   And eventually though, you kind of get used to it

00:30:17   and you can just say, well, you can do everything.

00:30:20   Now I've been testing it long enough,

00:30:22   I know it, good enough, let's ship it.

00:30:24   Whereas I think forestall, and again, like you said,

00:30:26   channeling jobs had an ability to say,

00:30:29   this isn't good enough, this is shit,

00:30:31   we've got to start over.

00:30:32   This can't be tweaked, we can't just move a button here,

00:30:35   we've got to throw this out because the whole thing is just not brain dead clear.

00:30:40   Yeah. It's so hard. Oh, sorry. Well, it's just, you can get,

00:30:45   you can just talk yourself into accepting something that's not quite clear.

00:30:48   Well, it's so hard. It's so hard when you're immersed. Yeah.

00:30:50   When you're immersed in it,

00:30:51   it's so hard to look at something through the eyes of a new user or a novice

00:30:55   user. Like that's a,

00:30:56   that's a truly like a skill and a gift that very few people,

00:31:01   including myself, I think, you know,

00:31:04   have because you're just used to it. And so it becomes a blind spot.

00:31:08   Yeah.

00:31:09   I guess I take a break right here. Thank our first sponsor. And, um,

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00:34:15   Go get some pictures.

00:34:17   - So you mentioned the analog nature of photos.

00:34:23   Did you see that iPhone app

00:34:25   that basically it lets you take a picture,

00:34:29   but it doesn't show you the picture if you've taken it.

00:34:32   And once you've taken 24 pictures,

00:34:34   you can pay to have them mailed to you, like print it out.

00:34:37   - Oh no, I did see something about this.

00:34:39   This is like maybe a couple of weeks ago.

00:34:42   - Yeah, I think it's called White Album, I think.

00:34:44   I was just doing a quick search for it.

00:34:45   - White Album?

00:34:47   - I think so.

00:34:48   Yeah, whitealbumapp.com.

00:34:52   - Surprised the Beatles didn't have something to say

00:34:54   on an Apple device no less.

00:34:58   Wow that sounds terrible.

00:35:01   Yeah it was it's interesting because like I thought it was interesting because lots of people too are like

00:35:06   oh this is so great it's so wonderful and it's like yeah are you sure about that?

00:35:11   It's one of the things that it sounds great when you tweet it I'm not sure it'd be very great in actual real life.

00:35:16   - Right, and I also feel that

00:35:19   there's something about a digital viewfinder.

00:35:26   Even though the iPhone viewfinder is,

00:35:29   using your iPhone as a viewfinder

00:35:30   and holding it up and looking at it,

00:35:31   is so much bigger than what you'd see

00:35:34   with like an old analog film camera

00:35:36   when you'd look through the eyepiece.

00:35:38   But because it's a sensor, there's something about it

00:35:41   that makes it harder to frame exactly what you want.

00:35:45   I don't know. I feel like if I tried this, I would not take as good a pictures as I would

00:35:50   if I were using my old 35mm SLR looking through the viewfinder. No, I can't chimp and look

00:35:58   at the pictures as I take them, but I feel like I would get better pictures that way

00:36:02   because I'm looking through an actual analog viewfinder and there's no lag whatsoever.

00:36:06   No, I agree. Actually, I was just thinking about it. When I use my SLR, I don't look

00:36:13   at the photo I took most of the time unless I'm like worried about the exposure or something

00:36:17   right unless you notice something really weird like man this is there's such strong backlighting

00:36:21   like these people you know there's no way to get on the other side of them and the sun

00:36:24   is behind them you know I want to double check that this isn't just going to show up as a

00:36:28   silhouette right exactly exactly I just I take it and then I'll look at it whenever

00:36:32   I you know put them in a light room or whatever I used to get frustrated I don't even I can't

00:36:38   remember the last time I launched it I eat but I used to use hipstamatic a lot because

00:36:42   I thought they for a while I thought they had the best filters by far

00:36:45   But Hipstamatic had they were halfway in that regard where they they

00:36:51   Didn't let you apply filters to photos you'd already taken and they didn't let you change the filters on photos

00:36:57   you'd taken you had to set your

00:36:59   gimmicky fake lens and your gimmicky fake film and

00:37:04   Then whatever you took you got oh

00:37:07   Interesting. I never I never really used it

00:37:10   Yeah, it ended I it it's you know, and it was all in the name of this sort of well for lack of a better term

00:37:17   Skewamorphic pretending that you're that the hipstamatic app was a film camera

00:37:21   You know and that's different lens come, you know

00:37:24   You can might find a film you really like and then you put a different lens on and it gives it a slightly

00:37:28   I think the I think that the films always had the strongest effect on the filtering and the lens was a little secondary

00:37:34   but you could get different effects, but you couldn't see until after you took a photo and

00:37:38   And it was, you know, and if you took one and it was like,

00:37:41   it, you had it set up to look really good outside

00:37:45   on a sunny day and the pictures were nice and warm

00:37:47   and had a nice, you know, not gimmicky, filtery look,

00:37:50   but just, you know, an aesthetically pleasing look.

00:37:52   And then you went indoors and the same combination looked bad

00:37:55   you were like so many taps and turning the camera around

00:37:58   and switching the film.

00:37:59   It was crazy.

00:38:01   Like why not just let me do this

00:38:03   after I've taken the photos?

00:38:05   - It's interesting to think about that

00:38:06   with Instagram, right?

00:38:09   'Cause you got on like an initial pass,

00:38:12   you would think that they're gonna be,

00:38:14   oh, they're in the same category.

00:38:16   But I mean, Instagram is an amazing app and service

00:38:20   because it's really forward.

00:38:24   And what I mean by that is like Instagram,

00:38:26   it was kind of the first really pure,

00:38:29   we were built for a mobile phone.

00:38:33   And part of that's in the workflow.

00:38:35   Like you can just take a picture

00:38:36   and then you apply the filter.

00:38:38   And yeah, you may be applying

00:38:39   a Kishi skeuomorphic type filter,

00:38:42   but it fits with the way you actually

00:38:45   take pictures on a phone.

00:38:47   And then just beyond that, the actual service,

00:38:49   you know, only really working on a phone

00:38:51   and having a bare bones website at best

00:38:53   for a very long time, even today, it's pretty bare bones.

00:38:57   Like they've always been a mobile first company

00:39:00   that is built around the phone with the assumption

00:39:03   that you're gonna use your phone.

00:39:05   And I think that's a big part of why, you know, they've been so successful.

00:39:08   Yeah. On the aesthetic side, there's no doubt Instagram.

00:39:11   I wouldn't call it a rip off.

00:39:13   I would just say that that they ate Hipstamatic's lunch,

00:39:16   where there's so much that they that they just took from hipstamatic, the square.

00:39:22   The only side, the only the only size you can or ratio you can have is square.

00:39:25   Hipstamatic has has had, I don't know,

00:39:30   the fake borders to make, you know, some of the films,

00:39:34   depending on what film you had, had like

00:39:36   Polaroid style borders, which if you recall,

00:39:38   Instagram had for like the first couple of years

00:39:41   of its existence.

00:39:42   - Right.

00:39:43   - You know, the basic look, like not just, you know,

00:39:48   that the films tended to look like old analog instant films.

00:39:53   All of that, you know, Instagram just borrowed

00:39:58   from Hipstamatic or followed Hipstamatic's lead.

00:40:01   - Right.

00:40:02   - But they did that in a better way,

00:40:04   because they they took advantage of they did all the things aesthetically that made people

00:40:09   like that look they you know, that's all the you know, just the pleasure it gives you to

00:40:14   have photos from your camera that look like that. And that may you know, just look cool.

00:40:19   Or look better or whatever you want to say look, hipper. With none of the none of the

00:40:26   goofy restrictions that hipstamatic imposed in the name of just pure hipster ism, you

00:40:31   The whole once you've set a filth, you know, you have to take the filter the photo with the filter

00:40:36   And if you don't like it tough take another photo, whereas Instagram would let you pick camera images from your camera roll

00:40:42   They would let you change the filter if you'd already taken it in Instagram, etc

00:40:47   And then you know multiply that by a hundred fold by having the genius of turning it into a Twitter like social network

00:40:54   Right. I mean that's that's you know, but it's all part of it

00:40:57   I mean if I think that if they had launched without filters at all

00:41:00   It would have taken a lot long and may not have taken off. Well that that's what's so brilliant about about

00:41:06   Instagram as a social network is they there was a

00:41:10   reason to use Instagram from day one even if you didn't have any friends and that that's what's so hard about

00:41:16   Getting any social network off the ground is is just finding people or discovering people and even Twitter today has this problem where people get

00:41:23   On there and they don't really have many followers and now Twitter's cut off from the Facebook, you know kind of connection feed

00:41:29   And it's like so I'm just like farting in the wind here like who's listening to what I have to say

00:41:33   Whereas with Instagram like you're getting value you can get value from Instagram even if you have zero followers

00:41:40   Yeah, even even if your Instagram feed is more or less just your own photos for now

00:41:45   Nobody's looking at him there. You can send you know email them and keep them and you know, right?

00:41:50   It's because the filters I mean because they're cool and they look neat and and

00:41:54   No, I agree. The other thing is just in general I think you just said something along these lines is

00:41:59   appreciating a product is so much more than just like the actual like

00:42:05   like

00:42:07   Instagram is successful. Yeah, maybe they they borrowed the the filter concept and a lot of

00:42:12   Was very similar to Hipstamatic, but that's not an it's very easy

00:42:17   It's stuck on that in like comparing companies or comparing products and all this sort of stuff

00:42:21   But if you think about the whole,

00:42:23   like the whole thing is the product.

00:42:25   It's all of it.

00:42:26   And even with Instagram, you can argue like,

00:42:30   they have a, how they're gonna make money in the future.

00:42:32   In the long run, that's gonna be part of the product.

00:42:34   And like, it's much more,

00:42:36   there's all these different facets that go into it.

00:42:38   And sure, some companies are approximately similar

00:42:40   on one facet, but they may be very different other ones.

00:42:42   And maybe those different things

00:42:44   that end up making the difference.

00:42:46   - Do you have any insight on this?

00:42:47   A couple of weeks ago, Dan Fromer was on the show.

00:42:49   And he it's been so long that I have almost forgotten the complaint that

00:42:54   Instagram still doesn't have an iPad app.

00:42:57   I do actually. I think it's, I think it's okay. I mean, I understand,

00:43:03   I understand the, the objection, but I think it comes back to Instagram being,

00:43:08   um, being a phone first app like that. That's where like,

00:43:14   so just from a very kind of narrow perspective, uh,

00:43:17   I think Instagram still sees more benefit from working on improving their phone apps

00:43:22   than they do on building an iPad app.

00:43:25   One.

00:43:26   Two.

00:43:27   The problem, I mean, now that people use iPads as cameras, this isn't quite as strong an

00:43:33   idea, but I think what's compelling about Instagram is I think Instagram is more than

00:43:36   almost, Instagram is like Facebook in that there is a very solid balance between creating

00:43:42   content and consuming content.

00:43:45   Whereas Twitter, I think a lot of people might just consume it, but they don't really put

00:43:50   stuff out there.

00:43:52   Whereas Instagram, people use it to make stuff and they use it to get stuff.

00:43:56   Yeah, but I almost think it's an outdated view of the iPad though.

00:44:00   I think in a lot of ways, and especially when it comes to photography, the iPad is a lot

00:44:05   more big iPhone than tablet laptop.

00:44:12   I do think so, especially for a certain segment of the population.

00:44:17   I mean, it's my mom's primary camera.

00:44:18   I mean, you'd like to go an entire podcast without mentioning your mom, but literally

00:44:22   it's my mom's primary camera.

00:44:24   There's too many people like that.

00:44:26   Every time I go to...

00:44:27   I used to make a note and I used to even...

00:44:30   Like when we'd go to Disney World, like a year or two ago, I would just snap photos

00:44:34   of people using tablets as cameras, just as like a thing to do while walking around the

00:44:42   And I didn't publish them anywhere to make fun of them, but I just had them privately and see how many how many photos of people

00:44:47   Using a tablet as a camera. Could I rack up in a day?

00:44:49   And my son, you know, my son used to laugh that it was that's the stupidest hobby to have at Disney World ever

00:44:55   You know, but I could usually get like 20 in a day and then I would just delete them all

00:45:00   It's not you couldn't even do anymore. You'd never you wouldn't be able to get from point A to point B

00:45:05   It's it's as common as seeing somebody using a phone as a camera and there's too many people who you know

00:45:10   They just don't see the distinction like I don't even see people I and when I first

00:45:14   Tried to get off I tried to get off my own high horse about making fun of people using tablets as cameras

00:45:21   Maybe like a year ago or so

00:45:23   I'd still get pushback from my listeners of the show and they'd be like, oh, come on. It's stupid-looking now

00:45:29   I don't even get that everybody it's just sunk in and I feel like it's almost ridiculous for an app

00:45:34   That's photo centric like Instagram not to be native on

00:45:37   What is for a lot of people their primary camera and then for the consumption side?

00:45:42   Consuming photos. It's always better to be bigger. So it would you know to look at your friends photos?

00:45:47   It's always gonna look bigger are the bigger on the biggest device. You know, you can use no, that's very I like

00:45:53   I think your point is right that the that

00:45:56   That justification may have made sense, but it makes increasingly less sense. That's that said they they I mean they're a part of Facebook

00:46:03   they they have access to numbers and where what people are using and where they're using it. So

00:46:09   I would imagine it's a it's not a uninformed decision. And the third factor is that it's

00:46:16   different I think in the iOS 8 era with the two font with the new phones because the difference

00:46:22   between making an iPad app and an iPhone app is nowhere near as different as it used to be.

00:46:30   Like it's it's really more in with these if you're doing it the right way.

00:46:35   If you can support the multiple iPhone sizes, there's almost no reason you shouldn't be

00:46:43   supporting the iPad 2. Yeah, the same thing. It's no longer too big things. It's these different,

00:46:48   you know, what are they called scaling factors or whatever?

00:46:50   To the scaling, though, I think there is a resolution issue. I know some people have

00:46:54   raised that as a possible reason as well. Like the Instagram photos are just super low resolution.

00:46:59   and might look like crap on the iPad.

00:47:01   - Yeah, I don't think so.

00:47:03   - Then again, this is a company that got off the ground

00:47:05   by utilizing the iPhone 3G camera, so who knows?

00:47:09   - Right, yeah.

00:47:10   So my guess is it's coming, but it's almost,

00:47:13   it's almost like they're doing it on purpose at this point

00:47:17   because they do support the native iPhone 6 sizes and 6 Plus.

00:47:21   And I would suggest as an iPad app,

00:47:25   just, I think that's an app where you don't have to,

00:47:29   just a natively scaled version of the iPhone app

00:47:33   would be just fine.

00:47:34   You don't have to redesign it or relay it out

00:47:36   or do something different.

00:47:37   - Oh, I mean, their website is basically

00:47:39   a scaled up version of the iPhone app.

00:47:41   Like it's literally just like a column of photos

00:47:44   that might as well be the app put on a webpage.

00:47:47   - Yeah, I think the more, my guess is the explanation

00:47:50   is that I think that, you know,

00:47:52   they're a very conservative company.

00:47:54   Like this is a weird thing for a four year old,

00:47:58   what five-year-old startup that is part of Facebook and that has gone from 13 people

00:48:05   to a billion-dollar acquisition to a multi-billion-dollar asset in just a handful of years. Usually

00:48:14   you don't think of such companies as being conservative, but they are. They're very,

00:48:17   very conservative in my opinion, design-wise.

00:48:19   design-wise. You can arguably see the conservatism and the fact that they sold out so early.

00:48:24   Right. And, you know, yeah, I would say that's actually part of the conservatism. And I would

00:48:29   say the biggest sign of it is just how close what they have today is to what they shipped with the

00:48:35   first day. Like, it's, you know, they've definitely added a bunch of features and they've rewritten

00:48:40   the filters, but it's more or less the same thing. I mean, you would be... Somebody who got to, who,

00:48:47   like on the day that Instagram came out for iPhone

00:48:52   and just bought it, or you know, and you have to buy it,

00:48:55   just downloaded it, got into it and said, I love this.

00:48:58   I love this Instagram thing.

00:48:59   And just, you know, consumed the whole app,

00:49:02   understood the whole thing.

00:49:03   And if you took today's Instagram to that person

00:49:06   five years ago, four years ago, whatever it is,

00:49:08   they would be right at home.

00:49:10   They'd have like two or three new things to like,

00:49:13   oh, that's cool, but that's it.

00:49:16   No, it's a good point.

00:49:17   There's very few companies that you can say that about.

00:49:19   Yeah, well, I mean, it's just the genius of the genius of the of the whole entire concept to.

00:49:25   Right. Think about how different Twitter today is like logging into Twitter dot com and what you're exposed to compared to what you were five years ago.

00:49:33   It's very different. What else is in the news before we get to big picture stuff?

00:49:39   See, Box had their IPO today.

00:49:41   They did. And it popped very nicely.

00:49:45   Which is, I think, great for them. I kind of suspect that they underpriced a little

00:49:50   on purpose, just because there's been a bit of a cloud around the company for the last

00:49:55   year, which is not a good thing to have if you're trying to sell into very large enterprises

00:50:00   and assure them that you can hold onto all their data for the long run. Whereas now,

00:50:06   I think they're going to come out of this and there's going to be a ton of good news.

00:50:09   Wow, what a fantastic, the market loves them. And I think it's going to be really good for

00:50:14   them from a just a sales and

00:50:16   momentum perspective.

00:50:17   So I wouldn't be I wouldn't I

00:50:19   wouldn't be surprised if they

00:50:21   kind of knew they would probably

00:50:22   be leaving some money on the

00:50:23   table, but but that

00:50:25   they deemed kind of the the

00:50:26   shift in perception that this

00:50:28   will result in to

00:50:30   be to be worth it.

00:50:31   Yeah, the psychology of an IPO is

00:50:32   so weird because

00:50:34   it's like ideally in

00:50:36   some sense you want to price your

00:50:38   IPO at exactly

00:50:40   what the market is going to value

00:50:41   it at because otherwise you're

00:50:42   leaving money on the table. But then you're from your investors perspective, there's a

00:50:48   financial drive to underprice your IPO so that all of those investors shares, you know,

00:50:55   go up in value once the market prices it.

00:50:58   You know, I think it I think it I think it matters because the people you take like take

00:51:02   Facebook versus Twitter, like Facebook basically didn't pop at all. And then over time, it

00:51:07   actually went down. And and there's a lot of people who look at it from a narrow perspective

00:51:11   and say, well, Facebook did it just right.

00:51:13   They captured every available cent.

00:51:15   And then they'll look at Twitter,

00:51:17   and Twitter had a huge pop.

00:51:19   And they're like, oh, Twitter screwed up.

00:51:21   They left a lot of money on the table.

00:51:22   But I think if you actually look at it,

00:51:24   Facebook was under a ton of pressure right after their IPO.

00:51:28   And I think they were constrained strategically.

00:51:30   I suspect that Facebook should have bought Waze,

00:51:34   for example, the mapping app.

00:51:36   But I think that one reason they didn't is they couldn't really

00:51:40   justify spending over a billion dollars when they were under so much pressure from investors.

00:51:46   Because that was kind of the height of like Facebook is doomed mania,

00:51:50   where their stock had dipped to like a third of what it IPO'd at, or a half or whatever.

00:51:55   Whereas Twitter, Twitter arguably, Twitter has kind of been a disaster since they IPO'd.

00:52:00   Almost every earnings call has been worse than the last. Yet, yes, there's pressure and there's

00:52:06   There's been a lot of talk about Costello and stuff like that this year in particular,

00:52:10   but I don't think it's been nearly to the degree that Twitter probably deserves,

00:52:16   to be perfectly honest.

00:52:17   And I think part of that is because the stock is still up from the IPO.

00:52:20   Like that it like and so you look at it, yeah, the stock's down from its high,

00:52:24   but it's still higher than what it IPO'd at.

00:52:26   I think that that that that matters.

00:52:29   And if whereas if Twitter was down, like Facebook was down and had way worse

00:52:33   fundamentals than Facebook ever had, man, like this guy would be falling to a much

00:52:39   greater degree than it is right now. Yeah, and there's also some like the

00:52:43   incalculable part is the PR value of an IPO that pops as you say. Absolutely.

00:52:50   Like Netscape is, you know, maybe the canonical example? I don't know.

00:52:57   I mean, but that it gave the sense that Netscape was the future, you know, that

00:53:02   that however much money they left on the table

00:53:05   because the IPO popped on day one was worth, I don't know,

00:53:09   I think tens of millions of dollars in the perception of,

00:53:12   holy shit, there's a new tech industry titan in town.

00:53:17   - Absolutely, and it matters for hiring,

00:53:20   it matters for morale, and it matters for like,

00:53:23   the stock market, a lot of it is about perception and--

00:53:27   - Right, the popping is like, oh my God,

00:53:29   everybody else thinks this company is gonna kick ass.

00:53:31   Right, and that sticks with you.

00:53:33   And so it matters when, the bad news doesn't matter.

00:53:39   The way people perceive the bad news is what matters.

00:53:43   And if people come at it with the assumption that this is a valuable company that people are excited about,

00:53:48   then it's like, "Oh, that's okay. They'll get over it."

00:53:50   Whereas if it's a, "This company, man, everyone's down on it."

00:53:53   And then a piece of bad news comes out, it's like, "Oh man, this is terrible."

00:53:56   terrible. And like I said, I think you saw that with Facebook, which in retrospect, it

00:54:02   was ridiculous. Now the stock is well up from its IPO stage, but it took a lot longer than

00:54:12   it should have for the perception of Facebook to change. And arguably, I think even in the

00:54:17   I feel like Facebook is still serially underappreciated

00:54:22   for what a force it is, not just as a service and an app,

00:54:28   but as a financial, as a business.

00:54:32   - Yeah, I agree with that.

00:54:34   And I think it's funny, 'cause it's complicated

00:54:39   as Facebook itself as a product is, in my opinion.

00:54:44   It's a pretty simple story financially.

00:54:47   It's, you know, they sell a lot of ads into the feed

00:54:50   and they make people pay to get placement

00:54:52   and because everybody uses it, it's worth it

00:54:57   and therefore, you know, the money's growing.

00:55:00   You know, whereas Twitter is a much simpler product

00:55:03   and any kind of argument they try to make

00:55:06   as to how they're gonna make money is,

00:55:08   my eyes roll back in my head and I fall asleep

00:55:11   'cause I don't understand.

00:55:12   - Yeah, I mean, there is something to that.

00:55:15   I think the Facebook ad unit is like the best ad unit in tech.

00:55:19   I mean, it's like people are looking at that feed

00:55:22   multiple times a day, every day, more and more.

00:55:25   And a Facebook ad takes over your entire screen.

00:55:29   It might only be for a few seconds,

00:55:30   but for a few seconds, your entire screen

00:55:32   is filled with an ad, which on the web was never the case.

00:55:35   Like the ads were always off to the side.

00:55:37   They were accompanying stuff, and so they

00:55:40   were much easier to ignore.

00:55:42   And no, it's super compelling.

00:55:43   The other thing that's interesting though is you say Twitter is simple.

00:55:46   I almost wonder if this is a, like we talked about with, when we talk about Forstall,

00:55:51   like we're used to it and it feels simple and 140 characters seem simple,

00:55:55   but then you start trying to explain to people like, "Oh, don't start your Twitter with an @ mention

00:56:00   or some people still use RT or MT." Like there's all these kind of conventions that actually,

00:56:06   Twitter's pretty complicated and there's a lot of stuff. Like I think the last really smart thing

00:56:13   Twitter did from a product perspective was the native retweet because that did simplify

00:56:19   a convention. And there's so much other stuff that's cruft, that's risen up like these multi

00:56:24   tweets or the tweet storms and like all this and attaching photos to an image like that.

00:56:30   The company I find it's so frustrating because they're doing all this stuff and they're buying

00:56:36   these things and they're we're going to do developer tools and all this sort of crap when

00:56:39   And it's like there's so much low hanging fruit just from a product perspective and from an onboarding perspective, which is still a disaster

00:56:45   Yeah, I know what you mean. It's it comes. I think it can come across it comes across even to my eyes as very jargony

00:56:52   like computer jargony with all the RT's and MT's and

00:56:56   Honestly, even I think people get the at username and it's certainly one of them

00:57:01   I think it's the most powerful asset Twitter has I really do is the fact that when you turn on TV doesn't matter whether it's

00:57:07   politics or

00:57:09   Sports it's like the people who are on TV. They tell you their name and they tell you their Twitter handle

00:57:17   Yep, and people get that and that is super valuable

00:57:19   But I think and combine that with hashtags and to me the whole thing it comes across looking very jargony

00:57:28   Yeah, I mean I could we could do the whole rest of the show on my feelings on hashtags

00:57:32   But I know I realize they've taken off and I realized that people somewhat get them and that regular people do use them

00:57:38   But I do feel that it contributes to a visual

00:57:41   Jargon enos when you especially for new users where you're you know, you look at this stuff and they see all these weird punctuation characters

00:57:48   you know and starts to look like programming code and

00:57:50   The weird short hands like RT and MT and stuff like that. Yeah

00:57:54   No, I think um, I think we might have talked about Twitter my very first time this show

00:57:59   But I'm still I'm still like there now they're messing with the timeline like there's looked while you were gone and stuff

00:58:04   I honestly think like the timeline is such at this point as so much cruft associated with it

00:58:10   It's fantastic for all of us who are familiar with Twitter and used to it

00:58:15   but I it's pretty intimidating for a new user and I I wish they would re-embrace lists and like

00:58:22   Have channels and the idea that you could like a new user should be able to come under in the World Cup and dip into

00:58:28   the World Cup channel without having to like, you don't want to follow people in the World

00:58:34   Cup every day of the year. You just want to dip in and dip out. And there's no dip in

00:58:38   and dip out experience for a new user on Twitter right now.

00:58:41   Yeah, I think it kind of gets into some of the stuff that Evan Williams was writing about

00:58:47   and talking about in the last couple of weeks, with the whole, when Instagram passed Twitter

00:58:53   in terms of, I forget the metric, monthly average users.

00:58:58   - Monthly active users, yeah.

00:58:59   - Active users.

00:59:00   And he was like, I don't give a shit

00:59:01   how many monthly active users Instagram has.

00:59:04   And he has a great argument.

00:59:05   And the line can be taken out of context

00:59:07   and make it look like he's arrogant or whatever.

00:59:09   And you read his essay on it on Medium

00:59:12   and it's unsurprisingly for Evan Williams,

00:59:15   very, very thoughtful.

00:59:16   And he's right.

00:59:17   And it's when there's,

00:59:19   Twitter has important uses

00:59:22   that you just would never do on on Instagram, like when there were the the uprising in Egypt

00:59:28   and stuff like that. And people use hashtags to get the news out. And it, you know, breaking

00:59:34   news and stuff like that happens in a way on Twitter, that there's no equivalent on

00:59:39   any other service. The stuff in Ferguson, you know, the St. Louis demonstrations and

00:59:48   stuff like that all had a part on Twitter. I mean, I think that it's Twitter is central

00:59:54   to the way that the the protesters have organized for things like that. And there's, it's just

01:00:00   unique. But I feel like the thing that Twitter, Twitter, though, you know, Evan Williams doesn't

01:00:04   run Twitter anymore. And I feel like the problem is that Twitter has gotten at a leadership

01:00:09   level gotten caught up in that sort of Facebook ask monthly average users as an important

01:00:16   Metric, which has tied them up because I feel like what Twitter's natural place is for most people is far more about

01:00:24   consumption than about actually tweeting

01:00:26   No, right. Where?

01:00:27   Whereas Facebook is all about everybody sharing all of their stuff with their people, you know with their friends and family and stuff like that

01:00:34   Whereas I think the problem is well, what am I supposed to tweet? Maybe you're not supposed to tweet anything

01:00:38   maybe you're just supposed to you know, like you said get on a list or follow a hashtag for the World Cup or

01:00:43   for your favorite team

01:00:46   or for some sort of news event that you're interested in

01:00:51   and just follow along.

01:00:53   And maybe it's like a hobby that you wanna follow

01:00:55   all the time, or maybe it's just,

01:00:58   I just wanna follow the Super Bowl until next Sunday.

01:01:01   - Yep.

01:01:02   - But you don't wanna contribute anything.

01:01:04   You're not tweeting, you're just following along.

01:01:07   - No, what I said when that happened

01:01:09   in the Instagram thing, my take was,

01:01:10   I'm really sad that Twitter didn't buy Instagram,

01:01:13   mainly because if they had, Instagram would make

01:01:17   all the money and Twitter could just be Twitter.

01:01:19   - Yeah.

01:01:20   - Because I mean, Instagram is gonna make

01:01:21   billions of dollars.

01:01:22   I mean, it's like Facebook, but even better.

01:01:25   Like you're gonna scroll through your photos,

01:01:27   there's gonna be ads in there,

01:01:29   and you're gonna do it anyway

01:01:30   because you're addicted to it.

01:01:31   And it's so obvious and Twitter--

01:01:36   - I'm surprised we don't see more ads in Instagram.

01:01:40   I don't know if I've ever seen one.

01:01:42   And I know that they announced it,

01:01:43   and I know that they had some demo versions of it,

01:01:45   but I check it almost every day,

01:01:48   and I can't remember seeing an ad in Instagram.

01:01:50   - No, it's still like a very limited sort of trial.

01:01:53   It's one of those things where Facebook doesn't need to.

01:01:56   Like Facebook is making so much money right now

01:01:58   that they can spend billions of dollars

01:02:00   on whatever they want to and not monetize.

01:02:04   And I almost think it's smart,

01:02:07   not just from a they wanna do it the right way,

01:02:09   but it's smart from a they can always

01:02:11   turn that faucet on if they need to.

01:02:13   And like what's the rush?

01:02:16   The stock market loves them, they're flying high.

01:02:18   They have like pretty much, they're as independent

01:02:22   as an independent company can be for the most part.

01:02:25   I mean just from a one, the stock market loves them

01:02:27   and two, Zuckerberg controls everything anyway.

01:02:29   So from that perspective, what's the rush?

01:02:34   - Right, and the gist of it is I, you know,

01:02:36   I don't know, I agree with you.

01:02:37   I'm surprised we just haven't seen it yet.

01:02:40   or just, 'cause I feel like the way to do it

01:02:42   is the old slowly boiled frog.

01:02:47   Start 'em slow and then slowly dial it up

01:02:49   to where you want it to be.

01:02:51   But you gotta start at some point.

01:02:53   - Yeah.

01:02:54   Which they have, but I think they are going slower

01:02:58   than they need to just because they can.

01:03:01   - Right.

01:03:02   You see Tim Cook tweeted, congratulations on the box.

01:03:09   - Yeah, that was surprising.

01:03:11   - And I take note of that, you know,

01:03:14   in my, 'cause Tim Cook tweets,

01:03:16   and I'm almost dead certain

01:03:20   that it's actually him doing the tweeting,

01:03:22   but he doesn't tweet very often.

01:03:26   - Right.

01:03:26   - And so it's usually worth noting.

01:03:28   And I know he tweeted earlier in the week,

01:03:30   or I guess it's almost a week ago now,

01:03:32   for Martin Luther King Day, the holiday here in the US,

01:03:36   and he's repeatedly, his two heroes are Martin Luther King

01:03:41   and Robert Kennedy, so no surprise

01:03:44   that he would tweet something like that.

01:03:46   A nice thing for Apple's CEO to tweet,

01:03:50   but not necessarily newsworthy,

01:03:52   but him tweeting to box on an IPO

01:03:55   is, to me, a little interesting.

01:03:56   - Totally, I mean, from what I've seen on Twitter,

01:03:58   there's been a fair bit of speculation already,

01:04:01   and not speculation, just more like raised eyebrows.

01:04:05   - Yeah, I don't know.

01:04:06   I kind of feel like it's, you know,

01:04:08   an IPO, one thing about an IPO is it certainly,

01:04:12   it doesn't mean that Box is not gonna be

01:04:14   acquired by somebody else,

01:04:15   but it certainly makes it a lot less likely.

01:04:18   And, you know, I think Apple is happier

01:04:22   in a world where more companies like Box, IPO,

01:04:26   and stay independent satellites of the, you know,

01:04:31   the mammoth titans like Microsoft and Facebook and Google

01:04:35   than a world where every company that gets to that size

01:04:39   and stability gets acquired by somebody.

01:04:41   - Absolutely.

01:04:42   I think because Apple's not gonna do those acquisitions.

01:04:45   Apple's never gonna be the one

01:04:46   that acquires a lot of companies.

01:04:49   And therefore it means that most of those companies

01:04:52   would be going into companies that are more like

01:04:57   competitors to Apple, like Google or Microsoft or Facebook

01:05:00   or what have you.

01:05:03   - No, that's how I read it.

01:05:05   - That's a great, that's a really great,

01:05:06   I think that's exactly it.

01:05:08   - That's how I read it, because I feel like Apple can,

01:05:13   you know, happily and wholeheartedly partner with Box

01:05:16   on things like the, you know, the extent, you know,

01:05:18   the file sharing integration in Yosemite and iOS 8.

01:05:23   And would be a lot less likely to do that

01:05:27   if they thought Box was going to be acquired by Google.

01:05:30   Even though it's an open API that everybody can do.

01:05:34   So I guess who, you know, after Box, you know,

01:05:36   Dropbox would be next, right?

01:05:37   - Yeah, and I think Neil Seibert,

01:05:39   like formerly Sammy the Walrus,

01:05:40   like he was one of those that's kind of speckling about it.

01:05:43   And he's like, well, would Apple do the same for Dropbox?

01:05:45   And I think for the reason you said, yeah, absolutely.

01:05:48   And I think when they demoed extensions,

01:05:50   I think they had both Box and Dropbox there.

01:05:54   And I think that's, yeah, Apple,

01:05:57   and it's a good, it's the exact sort of relationship

01:06:00   Apple likes, where they need Apple more

01:06:03   Apple needs them. Yeah. Yeah

01:06:06   Yeah, I don't think you know Apple has any desire to crush Dropbox

01:06:12   I really don't I mean, I know some people read into it and they think you know that they would just like everybody to you

01:06:17   Know I they want people to use iCloud Drive no doubt about it

01:06:20   I mean they made it so people would use it but if people would rather use Dropbox instead use Dropbox instead, you know

01:06:25   There's no way that they would go through the work to make things like Dropbox official because you know up until Yosemite Dropbox was just a dirty

01:06:32   hack to integrate with the finder. That's right, they actually they did like things

01:06:36   for Dropbox in Yosemite to actually make it work. Yeah, it's all officially sanctioned

01:06:43   and on the up and up those green check boxes that show you, you know, like in the finder

01:06:46   view when you're looking at something in your Dropbox. Dropbox is the one I use. I don't

01:06:51   use Box. I don't use any of the other third party ones, but I use Dropbox. And now you

01:06:55   get these official green check marks that you never got before. Like when you used to

01:06:59   to get like the little badge on your finder icon

01:07:02   that would show you that a file was syncing to Dropbox

01:07:05   and then it would go green when it was there.

01:07:07   That was all using private APIs on Dropbox's part.

01:07:12   And to their credit, I've been using Dropbox

01:07:16   from very early days and I'm very loathe,

01:07:19   always have been loathe to install third party extensions

01:07:23   that are using private APIs on Mac OS X.

01:07:28   But Dropbox, the features were worth it.

01:07:32   But I've always been like one foot,

01:07:34   like, hey, if I ever see problems,

01:07:36   if the finder starts going wacky, you're out the door.

01:07:39   - But they've never really been a problem.

01:07:41   - No, they've always been.

01:07:42   They're very, very, very excellently engineered

01:07:44   for something that was using private APIs.

01:07:48   And I also think it's interesting.

01:07:50   I always, when they announced that at WWDC,

01:07:54   I specifically thought about Dropbox,

01:07:56   A, because I'm the most familiar with them

01:07:58   I use them and B because they had their own thing that was working and in my experience

01:08:04   And I think most people's experience. I've never heard of anybody say wow Dropbox, you know

01:08:08   It's crash makes my computer crash or anything like that or corrupts my file system

01:08:11   But they had their own thing

01:08:14   Would they be willing to dump their own thing that they'd spent all that work on to use Apple's thing and they did

01:08:20   They've done the right thing and I wonder how much of that is you know that they they considered a good allocation of engineering

01:08:26   resources to go with the official APIs in Yosemite and how much of it because they still

01:08:31   have the old stuff because you can still run Dropbox on Mac OS 9 and I don't think it runs

01:08:37   on OS 9 now 10.10.9 10.8 10.7 I don't know how far back they go so they've still got

01:08:44   to keep their their private API stuff going for their support of older versions of Mac

01:08:49   OS and so a lot of times I think in you know in my experience is watching the way the industry

01:08:54   because a lot of times, and then, you know,

01:08:56   a company isn't gonna go with the new thing

01:08:58   because they wanna go with the backwards compatible thing,

01:09:00   even though it's not using a public API.

01:09:03   But Dropbox did the right thing, which in my opinion,

01:09:06   the right thing, which is to go with the official API,

01:09:08   even though it sort of forks their code.

01:09:10   And I wonder how much of that was about engineering

01:09:13   and how much of it was about politics

01:09:15   and keeping a good relationship with Apple.

01:09:20   - Yeah, I mean, I wouldn't be surprised

01:09:22   Apple worked with them on it.

01:09:24   And there was a bit of a quid pro quo here.

01:09:27   Like, you know, you got not a quid pro quo, but like, like,

01:09:31   OK, we'll help you fix this.

01:09:32   But you I mean, you have to adopt on day one. Yeah.

01:09:35   And I and as a user, it was seamless.

01:09:37   I didn't even notice when they switched over.

01:09:40   I think at some point, because I you know, I've been running

01:09:42   Yosemite since the public beta is in summer.

01:09:45   And I'm pretty sure at the time originally,

01:09:48   I'm almost certain that Dropbox didn't already support it.

01:09:50   I didn't even notice.

01:09:51   I actually didn't notice when Dropbox started supporting it until one day.

01:09:54   I was like, oh, they obviously are because I've got the new style

01:09:59   checkmarks, not the ones that are superimposed on the icon.

01:10:02   Yeah, it's interesting.

01:10:06   The other thing, the other thing, too, is I think,

01:10:09   you know, Aaron Levy, I haven't really heard anyone say a bad word about him.

01:10:14   I think people are are just happy that like it's been such a torturous

01:10:18   journey for box that they finally made it.

01:10:22   It's I would be surprised there's just a bit of like, you know.

01:10:25   Cook's just genuinely happy for him.

01:10:29   Yeah, I'm going to take another sponsor break, but before I do,

01:10:33   that's a good reminder.

01:10:34   I have a correction to make, just a minor one.

01:10:36   But last on the last show with Marco, I forget what we were talking about,

01:10:39   but I said something about me running

01:10:42   iOS nine.

01:10:44   And what I meant, I doubt I am not running iOS nine.

01:10:47   I'm running iOS 8 but combine that with the things where like MacRumors has like an increase in the number of

01:10:52   hits of people running iOS 9

01:10:55   From Cupertino

01:10:58   And I got I don't know a dozen emails from people asking whether I'm running iOS 9. No, I'm not

01:11:05   And if I were I wouldn't be able to say anything about it. Anyway, it was just a stupid

01:11:10   What's the verbal typo, I don't know

01:11:15   misspeak

01:11:16   Yeah, there's gotta be better world. Yeah

01:11:18   Well, whatever a verbal typo is that's all it was in the same way that I just said that Dropbox still runs on Mac OS 9

01:11:25   Yes. Yeah, the 9 seems to be a bit of a kryptonite number for you

01:11:29   Yeah, I don't know what it is. I've I don't know something and I think

01:11:34   Mac OS going to

01:11:36   10.10 somehow set over my trip odometer as well

01:11:40   it's like

01:11:43   I don't know.

01:11:45   - Well, according to urban dictionary,

01:11:47   a verbal typo is a thing, so.

01:11:50   - Okay, I can just call it a verbal typo?

01:11:52   - It works for me.

01:11:54   - Yeah.

01:11:55   What about malaprop?

01:11:56   Is malaprop the right word?

01:11:57   - I don't think so, but I'm not confident to say it.

01:12:03   A malaprop or malapropism is the term for misspoken words.

01:12:06   Yep, there you go.

01:12:07   - Yeah, a malaprop.

01:12:08   The mistaken use of a word in place

01:12:10   of a similar sounding one, often with an attention.

01:12:12   Well, that's not quite right.

01:12:13   dancing of dance of flamingo instead of dance of flamenco.

01:12:17   Although I do make a lot of call prompts, so.

01:12:19   (laughing)

01:12:20   - I think that's a characteristic of someone

01:12:23   that read a lot and like,

01:12:25   I mean, neither of us I think go out that often.

01:12:30   So you encounter a lot of words,

01:12:32   but then when it actually comes to articulating them,

01:12:34   sometimes you, I swear to God,

01:12:36   we talked about this on a previous episode

01:12:38   about how we constantly mispronounce words.

01:12:41   - Yeah, yeah.

01:12:42   'cause there's a huge chunk of my vocabulary

01:12:45   or things that I read when I was growing up

01:12:48   and never heard anybody say

01:12:49   and so I just made up my own punctuation

01:12:51   or pronunciation in my head.

01:12:53   - Totally. - No idea of how it was

01:12:55   actually supposed to be pronounced.

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01:16:20   sort of secret other than the name.

01:16:22   So my thanks to them.

01:16:24   - It's weird, I feel over the last few weeks

01:16:28   I've encountered a few people that don't drink coffee

01:16:33   or they gave up coffee.

01:16:34   And I just don't understand,

01:16:37   I just don't understand what drives one to do such a thing.

01:16:40   They claim, "Oh, I feel great."

01:16:43   But that just reminds me of the Frank Sinatra quote.

01:16:47   What is it?

01:16:49   sorry for people that don't drink because when they wake up in the morning that's the

01:16:51   best they're going to feel all day.

01:16:54   Such a great line.

01:16:57   I think you and Merlin talked about the blogger drinking routine or something like that. Basically

01:17:06   you tell what time it is by what you're drinking. In the morning it's coffee, then it's like

01:17:11   SodaStream and then it's scotch or something along those lines. That's about how you know

01:17:16   what time it is, or martini in your case I suppose.

01:17:18   - Well, I don't drink martinis every day.

01:17:21   I am all over the place on alcohol.

01:17:24   I'm trying to expand my palette.

01:17:25   I just link to, I'm so proud of it.

01:17:27   I don't know, sometimes I really like to,

01:17:30   I like it when my linking to something blows it up.

01:17:35   A guy named, do you see this guy named Mark Bylock?

01:17:38   - I did, I put it in my Amazon cart.

01:17:40   The only problem is it's this big book

01:17:41   and they don't ship to Taiwan, I don't think.

01:17:44   The backstory on this is I don't remember where I saw it.

01:17:48   I don't remember.

01:17:49   And it's, do you ever pre-order stuff from Amazon?

01:17:51   I do it all the time.

01:17:52   It's like sending gifts to myself

01:17:54   because I always forget.

01:17:56   Always forget.

01:17:56   And so it was like at some point in December,

01:18:00   I got a thing from Amazon

01:18:02   and it was close to Christmas, really close.

01:18:04   It might've been like the 23rd or something like that.

01:18:06   And I had no pending gifts coming.

01:18:08   Everything I had ordered had already shown up.

01:18:10   I'd gotten everything done at a, you know, not last minute.

01:18:14   And a thing came and I assumed it was for my wife

01:18:16   and instead it was addressed to me.

01:18:18   It was from Amazon.

01:18:19   I thought, shit, I don't remember.

01:18:21   I have no idea what this is.

01:18:22   I opened it up and here it is, The Whiskey Cabinet,

01:18:24   this beautiful, beautiful book by Mark Bylock.

01:18:27   And then I remembered, oh, a couple months ago,

01:18:29   I pre-ordered this.

01:18:30   Oh, here it is.

01:18:31   And I thought, this book is beautiful.

01:18:35   It is beautiful photography, beautiful paper,

01:18:37   beautiful typography, and I couldn't wait to read it.

01:18:41   I was very excited.

01:18:43   I went up and it is so it's such a weird coincidence because you know I'm terrible.

01:18:47   I go days.

01:18:48   I literally go days without checking my email sometimes.

01:18:50   I don't.

01:18:51   It's I was just talking about this like I get less email than like when I worked at

01:18:55   Microsoft for example way less.

01:18:57   But it's so much more of a burden now because it's not my job.

01:19:00   Like it's pure additive whereas before like I lived in it.

01:19:04   So it was it was like almost more tolerable.

01:19:07   This was a day where I had gotten caught up on my inbox and I was you know down to the

01:19:10   inbox zero, at least for like, you know, this week. And I had

01:19:15   two new emails. One was junk and the other was from Mark bylock.

01:19:19   And I was like, What? That's crazy. The same guy's name is

01:19:22   what's on the book. And he's like, Hey, you know, no idea if

01:19:25   you're interested. I just wrote in a book on whiskey. You might

01:19:29   be interested. No, no, you know, I know no pressure to link it up

01:19:34   or anything. I just thought you might want a complimentary copy.

01:19:36   Tell me where to send it. I'll send one. I was like, literally

01:19:40   after right after I answered the ding dong of the UPS giving me the book that I'd paid

01:19:44   for so I quick snapped a photo with my phone and I was like too late I pre-ordered it months

01:19:49   ago.

01:19:50   That's awesome.

01:19:51   Which is like an amazing story.

01:19:52   Anyway long story short I read the book and I loved it so I linked it up on Daring Fireball

01:19:57   and it like sold out at Amazon.

01:20:00   So they have to like they had like order more from his publisher or something like that.

01:20:04   No I mean I can certainly relate.

01:20:06   I mean, I think, uh, I mean, back when I, back when I first, I mean, I started

01:20:11   Chitakari with the, I had a five-year plan.

01:20:14   Like I thought maybe in five years I could make, you know, make a living from it.

01:20:17   And then like move back to Taiwan and, you know, which is we wanted to do.

01:20:21   And, uh, and obviously it's taken off far more quickly than, than, than I anticipated.

01:20:27   I haven't, it's not even two years old yet.

01:20:29   Um, but, uh, but I mean, the big, kind of the, the real big jump was, I might have

01:20:35   told this story that talks about previously, but was you linking to it and saying, you

01:20:38   know, it's great new blog and stuff like that.

01:20:40   But what was funny about it, and sorry if I've told this one before, but I got an email

01:20:45   from you saying, "Oh, wow, you've been really prolific, really great stuff.

01:20:51   By the way, I noticed, and you went on this three-paragraph dissertation on a bad word

01:20:56   choice I had made."

01:20:57   And you're like, "Oh, I always make the same mistake as well, so I actually have a script

01:21:00   to fix it when I do it."

01:21:02   It was like with the etymology of the word and how it was used all sort of stuff and it was it was so classic

01:21:07   Like the John Gruber that you know, anyone might imagine and so right after that I can open up Google Analytics

01:21:13   I started like refreshing your page. I'm like, I bet he's gonna link to me soon

01:21:16   Like like 30 minutes later boom there it was

01:21:19   But I mean I I'll take the opportunity now being or so to thank you for that because it certainly was um, you know a good

01:21:29   No, I think I when you link to me I probably had like six hundred followers on Twitter and within you know

01:21:35   a couple days I had about fifteen hundred and

01:21:37   I mean, obviously I've gotten lots instant but that that was certainly kind of the the ignition or jumpstart. So thanks John

01:21:44   I do that

01:21:45   I if I see a typo or something like that and something I'm going to link to I do try to come and I know

01:21:50   If I know the person at all

01:21:52   Do try to tell them it before but I never say that I'm going to link to it because I I don't know

01:21:58   - You don't wanna lock yourself in.

01:22:01   - Well, partly I don't wanna lock myself in.

01:22:03   What if I change my mind?

01:22:05   What if I think, you know what, it's not worth linking to?

01:22:07   And the other part is it somehow

01:22:09   sounds a little presumptuous.

01:22:11   To me it's like, if I just say, hey, you have a typo here,

01:22:14   it's like I'm doing you a favor, I'm pointing it out.

01:22:16   If I say I'm about to link to you, but you have a typo,

01:22:19   it feels a little bit more like I'm not linking to you

01:22:22   until you fix this typo.

01:22:23   - Yeah. - Right?

01:22:24   And I don't wanna put that,

01:22:26   I don't wanna put any pressure on them.

01:22:28   - I should find out what the word was.

01:22:33   - Yeah, we could look up the email later, I'm sure.

01:22:35   But anyway, it made me think of that book by Mark Bylock

01:22:38   because the whole gist of the book is,

01:22:40   it's not comprehensive, it's not an encyclopedia,

01:22:43   it's just a sort of, I don't know,

01:22:47   I would guess maybe like 100 whiskeys from around the world.

01:22:51   Scotland, Ireland, United States, Canada, Japan.

01:22:55   and like his expert opinion and discussion

01:22:58   on what makes the different region,

01:23:02   what are the traditions and what makes them different

01:23:05   and what you should be looking for if you like one.

01:23:09   And I'm mostly a US bourbon rye drinker,

01:23:13   but I really like it.

01:23:16   And so I've been trying to expand my palette

01:23:19   to other things around the world.

01:23:20   - I think there's something about it not being comprehensive

01:23:23   Like, and that just makes it so much more accessible.

01:23:26   - Right, and I have from years and years ago,

01:23:29   and he has the unfortunately coincidental name,

01:23:32   Michael Jackson.

01:23:34   He's a famous, famous beer writer.

01:23:36   Like I drank beer a lot more

01:23:37   before I got into any kind of spirits.

01:23:39   And it's a useful, it's just a different type of book,

01:23:43   but Michael Jackson has like a beer book

01:23:47   that's encyclopedic.

01:23:48   It is, you know, no, I guess, you know, beer is,

01:23:51   there's so many microbrews,

01:23:52   I don't think anybody could cover them all,

01:23:54   but I think it's probably more like thousands of beers

01:23:56   than hundreds of beers.

01:23:58   - Yeah, no, exactly.

01:24:00   And I share the affinity for their beer.

01:24:02   By the way, I did find the email.

01:24:03   I wrote, "This jives with data showing little cyclicality

01:24:09   in Android purchases."

01:24:10   - Ah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

01:24:11   - Jive is a dance or an adjective for US black slang.

01:24:14   The word you want is jive.

01:24:16   And this is what killed me, is you had verb bracket,

01:24:20   no objective bracket informal,

01:24:22   be in a chord semicolon, agree.

01:24:24   Like it was like literally a dictionary definition.

01:24:27   It wasn't like a off hand, this is what it means.

01:24:30   It was like, they had the nomenclature

01:24:32   of a dictionary definition that like,

01:24:34   I note this because my habit was always to use jibe

01:24:36   with a G when I'm at J.

01:24:38   And you actually said you created a Texas spender snippet

01:24:40   to fix it automatically.

01:24:41   So yeah.

01:24:44   - Yeah, that's a common,

01:24:45   it still kicks in every time I try to use it.

01:24:47   I always use the wrong one.

01:24:48   - Well, as you note, confusingly enough,

01:24:49   Jibe as a verb means make insulting or mocking remarks

01:24:52   jeer, which is actually very close to one of the alternate

01:24:54   meanings of jive, which is taunt or sneer at.

01:24:56   - Right.

01:24:58   Yeah, it's very confusing.

01:25:00   Wait, so which is the one we want when we say

01:25:02   that it's in agreement with something?

01:25:03   - Jibe, J-I-B-E.

01:25:05   Your problem is you say G-I-B-E, and I said J-I-V-E,

01:25:08   which is like a dance.

01:25:09   - Right, right, right, right, right.

01:25:12   Yeah, actually, now that I think about it,

01:25:14   I think I've finally gotten that down,

01:25:15   and I do tend to type it right.

01:25:16   'Cause if I had to guess, I would have, right there,

01:25:18   I would have guessed JIB.

01:25:20   - Yep, so that's the word, jibe.

01:25:24   - Right, that's the type of thing that you get

01:25:26   when you're pals with me.

01:25:27   (laughing)

01:25:29   - And your ability to be a pal with you

01:25:32   determines whether you find that endearing

01:25:34   or just absolutely irritating.

01:25:37   - Yeah, also some sad news to report,

01:25:39   ends up Michael Jackson, the beer hunter, died in 2007.

01:25:42   So my condolences to his family.

01:25:47   But his World Guide to Beer,

01:25:51   I don't know how many beers are in there.

01:25:52   But anyway, it's not that type of book, The Whiskey Cabinet.

01:25:55   It's, you know, I think he's got like,

01:25:58   like I said, probably under 100, I don't know, in the book.

01:26:00   But it's, you know, just a couple

01:26:01   from each region in each style.

01:26:03   - It's too bad for Michael Jackson that he never,

01:26:05   like, he didn't even get a single year of his life

01:26:06   where he was the only Michael Jackson.

01:26:09   - Oh, that's right.

01:26:10   I guess he died first, wow.

01:26:13   That's really a shame.

01:26:17   I had a little bit of that with that Jonathan Gruber,

01:26:20   economist guy.

01:26:21   (laughs)

01:26:22   - So what percentage of those tweets did you retweet?

01:26:25   - Oh, only the, I would say maybe 10% of them.

01:26:29   - Wow.

01:26:30   - It was, and it was.

01:26:31   - You retweeted quite a few and they were all hilarious.

01:26:33   - Yeah, that was a real quick on and off.

01:26:37   It was like a week long firestorm.

01:26:40   I know, I do thank, I thank the maker

01:26:43   that the guy's name was Jonathan, not John.

01:26:46   I don't know if he goes by John or what,

01:26:47   And at first, when it first started breaking,

01:26:49   there were an awful lot more John groupers,

01:26:51   and because he's Jonathan, he's J-O-N.

01:26:54   So it is spelled differently.

01:26:56   But that's certainly, I mean, you know,

01:26:59   when you are named John,

01:27:00   you're very sensitive to the H, no H thing.

01:27:02   But let's face it, that's a very typical mistake.

01:27:07   Like half the, well, I'd say a third of the Valentines

01:27:10   I got in elementary school were spelled J-O-N.

01:27:13   A third were spelled correctly,

01:27:14   and a third were spelled J-O-N-H.

01:27:16   I can totally sympathize because I'm Benjamin Thompson and Thompson actually has like multiple

01:27:22   spellings like three or four.

01:27:24   Right, there's the P, no P.

01:27:25   And it's so unfair because I both have a boring name and I have to spell it all the time.

01:27:30   Like it should be one or the other.

01:27:32   Like if you have to spell all the time it should be because you have a really kick ass

01:27:34   name that no one's heard of before.

01:27:35   But no, I have to spell it all the time and I'm just Benjamin Thompson.

01:27:39   Right, so somebody who does something famous or infamous named Ben Thompson but with no

01:27:43   No P is not the same name as you, but you're going to get conflated in it.

01:27:47   Well, I do appreciate that my nemesis on Google when I was trying to be the top result for

01:27:51   Ben Thompson, which I am now, was Ben Thompson, law man.

01:27:56   And like the top article from his Badass of the Week.

01:27:59   I'm like, "Oh, if I'm going to get confused with someone, I'll get confused with the Badass

01:28:03   of the Week."

01:28:04   Wow.

01:28:05   I just noticed.

01:28:06   I just, I haven't done this in a while.

01:28:07   I don't know if it's true for you.

01:28:08   For years, I even gave up on it.

01:28:11   I was not the top search in Google for Gruber just Gruber. It was always

01:28:16   Gruber Industries the people but this might be because I'm not signed in

01:28:21   What do you get if you search Google for group? I hate during fireball

01:28:24   Huh? See I get different I get twitter.com slash if I'm not signed in I get Jonathan Gruber the economist

01:28:30   And then Derry fireballs next and then John Gruber Twitter, but the other thing is because I'm in Taiwan

01:28:36   So, oh, there's all that stuff that affects it

01:28:38   I have a VPN here, but I won't sign anything so probably mess up my connection. Um, yeah, I haven't searched for years

01:28:43   I because I honestly don't I don't know I'm vain in other ways, but I'm not super I'd realize I I've

01:28:49   good enough Google juice, but

01:28:52   Gruber.com used to come up first for years and years and years

01:28:55   It's some kind of industrial company down in Arizona who got the domain name like in 1993 much to my sugar in

01:29:02   Yeah

01:29:04   I can't help but think and but I've never really heard anything about them

01:29:07   I can't help but think that there was some kind of rearranging of Google's algorithm that they used to favor

01:29:12   Search term in the dot-com over anything else

01:29:18   Oh, but for years and years and years, but the Gruber calm doesn't even show up in my first page

01:29:22   Stupid Jonathan Gruber guy

01:29:26   But anyway the best thing that happened with that was that at some point during the week where he was really in the news

01:29:34   - Yeah, so people who don't know,

01:29:36   he said something about Obamacare passed by

01:29:40   because people were stupid or something,

01:29:41   like something like that.

01:29:43   - He is a world-renowned economist at MIT,

01:29:47   and his specialty is healthcare legislature,

01:29:49   and he wrote the Massachusetts law,

01:29:53   or helped write the Massachusetts healthcare law

01:29:55   that Mitt Romney, when it, it's this whole,

01:29:58   you know, I don't wanna get into the politics of it,

01:29:59   but this weird situation where it was a healthcare law

01:30:03   that gave everybody in Massachusetts

01:30:05   universal healthcare coverage in a Republican style

01:30:09   because they had a Republican governor

01:30:11   who eventually went on to run for president.

01:30:13   And the way that President Obama went about

01:30:17   trying to get healthcare was instead of pursuing

01:30:19   a traditionally Democratic style,

01:30:21   which is the single payer,

01:30:24   was like, look, I just want people to have healthcare,

01:30:26   let's go the Republican route

01:30:28   and follow the Massachusetts model

01:30:31   and ended up being, obviously it's a political hot button

01:30:35   thing, anyway, he was also a consultant

01:30:38   on the national version of this law.

01:30:41   And then years ago, the weird thing about it

01:30:44   is that it wasn't something he said recently,

01:30:46   but it was like years ago at some kind of

01:30:48   conference for other economists.

01:30:52   So he wasn't speaking to the public,

01:30:54   had no, was being videotaped obviously,

01:30:55   but it wasn't, he's not a politician,

01:30:58   it wasn't gonna go spread wide.

01:31:00   it was this discussion about how the word tax is just toxic in American political culture.

01:31:06   And so to pay for the new health care law, they couldn't call anything they did to raise

01:31:10   money for it attacks. And so they called it I don't know what a subsidy instead, there's

01:31:15   some kind of way that through the vagaries of the way that the US Congress budget department

01:31:23   classifies different types of legislature, it wouldn't be called a tax, it would be called

01:31:27   a subsidy, but it's a rose by any other name.

01:31:29   It's people paying more money to a collection

01:31:32   that would then be distributed to pay for

01:31:35   the mechanics of the law.

01:31:37   And his explanation was very, it was honest,

01:31:41   but it was more or less that the American voters

01:31:45   are too stupid to know the difference,

01:31:47   that calling it something else

01:31:48   doesn't make it something else.

01:31:50   - Right.

01:31:50   - Which is true in a sense, but I mean in a way,

01:31:55   but it was taken by Republicans as an insult that he was,

01:31:59   you know, that the law was passed under false pretenses

01:32:02   and he became, you know, the public enemy number one

01:32:05   of American Republicans and an awful lot of them thought--

01:32:10   - To be at that at Gruber.

01:32:13   - At Gruber was, 'cause they would like,

01:32:16   even if they went so far as to see what at Gruber was

01:32:20   and then saw it was in fact somebody named John Gruber,

01:32:23   whether it had an H or not,

01:32:24   and he had a bunch of followers,

01:32:25   they just assumed it was him.

01:32:28   And so for about a week, I was inundated with vitriolic.

01:32:32   And I think part of it is that you had to make a mistake

01:32:36   to do that, which increased the chance

01:32:39   that the people doing it weren't really

01:32:41   the sharpest pencils in the case.

01:32:44   And so I took to retreating some of them.

01:32:47   It was interesting.

01:32:49   It was, you know, if you think that like the vitriol

01:32:52   that I get from, let's say, Android fanatics

01:32:56   when I say something disparaging about Android

01:32:59   or something like that.

01:33:00   If you think that's harsh,

01:33:01   the way that the political stuff is just unbelievable.

01:33:04   - Oh, it's, yeah, it's incredible.

01:33:07   - Yeah, people, I mean, just seriously saying things like,

01:33:10   go kill yourself at Gruber.

01:33:12   I mean, no exaggeration.

01:33:14   And it just occurred to me,

01:33:17   and I would write back to some of them,

01:33:18   some of them I would retweet,

01:33:19   some of them I would tweak a little,

01:33:21   And then some of them, I would just write back totally honest.

01:33:23   It's like, did you, you know, what were you thinking, you know, were you thinking that

01:33:27   I would see this when you wrote it?

01:33:30   You know, like, what goes through your mind if you're doing that?

01:33:32   Do you do you assume?

01:33:33   Do you think that the Jonathan Gruber was going to read that and perhaps feel bad about

01:33:38   himself because here's somebody wishing you would kill him like kill himself?

01:33:42   Why Why would you write that?

01:33:43   Like what is going through your mind?

01:33:46   How can you go through your day with so much hate?

01:33:48   I it was interesting to me

01:33:50   It's like the extreme opposite of like we were talking about before like the ability to like see a product through someone's eyes

01:33:57   It's like just a complete and utter lack of empathy

01:34:00   Yeah, and I you know, I could you go through the rest of your life like that or does this only spew out on Twitter?

01:34:07   And then there were a few people who I tweaked

01:34:09   I told some people that we were I was we were gonna next the next step was we were gonna come take your guns

01:34:14   (laughing)

01:34:16   Wait until next year when we come take your guns,

01:34:21   it's a healthcare issue.

01:34:22   They're like, I'd like to see you try.

01:34:26   And it's like, we're on our way.

01:34:28   You tell some of these people you're coming

01:34:31   to take their guns and it really riles them up.

01:34:33   Those are the best.

01:34:34   Anyway, that's died off for the most part.

01:34:39   But it really elevated this guy

01:34:41   in the Twitter rankings for Gruber though.

01:34:43   Jeez.

01:34:45   Anyway, but it's the best thing to happen.

01:34:47   I know it was Fox in particular, which really helped,

01:34:51   but Fox News, it was very clear to me,

01:34:55   as like probably the second most interested observer

01:34:57   in the country, that they,

01:34:59   there must have been a memo that circulated with,

01:35:02   and I don't think it had anything to do with me.

01:35:04   I don't think it had anything to do with me,

01:35:06   but they clarified, they unified on Jonathan Gruber

01:35:10   instead of John Gruber, MIT economists.

01:35:13   They at first when when the whole thing first broke it was like half and half where they would spell it J

01:35:17   Oh N or spell out the whole Jonathan and about halfway through the week Fox

01:35:21   Started consistently calling him Jonathan Gruber and it it helped a lot. I think interesting

01:35:26   Well, maybe you know your friendship with Clayton Morrison helped out there

01:35:30   You know, I thought about I actually was like at the it's funny because I was thinking about it and I was halfway thinking

01:35:38   Maybe I should write to Clayton and and just say, you know, I know you can't do anything about this whole thing

01:35:42   But if you could just you know pass the word around to call the guy Jonathan instead of John I would appreciate it

01:35:48   But I never even had to do that. It seemed like Fox

01:35:50   It happened on its own

01:35:52   Much much to the decrease in entertainment for the rest of us. Yeah

01:35:57   only other thing I could see in the news this week was

01:36:00   Other than the big Microsoft stuff, which I do want to talk about but you see Mark Gurman's report on the Apple watch

01:36:07   Yeah, somebody at Apple. He sold him there

01:36:10   Yeah, which is a little weird

01:36:12   I thought the more interesting thing that he had was that according to Mark Gurman and it's unnamed source at Apple that they have

01:36:18   3,000 units

01:36:20   Already in use by Apple employees, although he doesn't say by Apple employees, but from what I understand

01:36:25   You know, I had heard a few weeks ago that there were a thousand in use. So German says 3,000

01:36:31   It could just be that they've expanded it, but it's all that they are all in

01:36:35   The hands of Apple employees. Well, I mean you you have to think it's a

01:36:40   relatively easy to pull off. I mean, more even more so than than a phone.

01:36:45   I mean, I guess the kind of screen being black is a bit of a giveaway, but I mean, a watch,

01:36:52   I mean, a watch is a watch, especially now. I mean, I mean, California never gets particularly

01:36:55   cold, but people are more likely wearing long sleeves and jackets and stuff like that. It's

01:36:59   kind of an ideal time to do it. I've thought for weeks, like when I heard weeks ago that there were

01:37:04   a thousand of them in use, I was a little surprised we haven't seen more because I remember in the

01:37:09   the six month run up to the iPhone coming out, there were none of them leaked. It wasn't

01:37:14   like the time the iPhone four, you know, was found in a bar. But there were like a steady

01:37:18   stream of here's a here's a blurry shot of a guy on Bart who was using an iPhone until

01:37:24   I took out my, you know, camera phone to take a picture of him and then he put it back in

01:37:28   his pocket, you know, but they were always there were a steady stream of reports of people

01:37:31   who'd spotted Apple employees with iPhones before it came out at the end of June. And

01:37:36   I haven't seen a single peep of anybody saying,

01:37:39   you know, I saw a guy with an Apple Watch at such and such.

01:37:42   - Yeah, that's a good point.

01:37:44   - I think it's, you know, I think it's like what you said,

01:37:45   a watch is just too, you know,

01:37:48   especially if you're being even

01:37:49   just a little bit circumspect about when you take it out,

01:37:52   when you're not at work or at home,

01:37:54   it's really, really hard to notice

01:37:57   that somebody's got an Apple Watch.

01:37:59   - That said, I mean, I saw someone using a smartwatch

01:38:03   the other day and it was like,

01:38:04   It was super obvious he was using a smart watch.

01:38:07   So maybe they're just not using them in public.

01:38:10   Maybe that's part of the instruction.

01:38:12   - Yeah, well, my understanding is the instruction

01:38:14   is you're allowed to use it and take it.

01:38:16   And if anybody even asks, they are allowed to say,

01:38:18   "Yes, it's an Apple Watch, I work for Apple,"

01:38:20   but they're not allowed,

01:38:21   certainly not allowed to take it off

01:38:22   and they're not allowed to do any kind of demonstration.

01:38:24   - Yeah.

01:38:25   - And they are, but they're allowed to say,

01:38:26   "But I'm not allowed to do a demonstration."

01:38:28   - Well, that's one of the benefits

01:38:29   of having announced it already is there's nothing to hide.

01:38:33   - Right, there's nothing to hide.

01:38:34   And what you see when you're not using it

01:38:37   is all, you'll get a much better view of it on apple.com

01:38:39   than you will on somebody's wrist.

01:38:41   - It's interesting, I mean, I think the last time I was on,

01:38:43   we were talking about "All About the Watch."

01:38:45   And it was funny because I have a spidey sense

01:38:48   when you're gonna invite me on the talk show.

01:38:50   So I kind of had an idea that this week

01:38:53   was gonna be one of those weeks.

01:38:54   The same thing with the watch thing,

01:38:57   probably because I had a spastic result to that.

01:39:00   - To be clear, I asked you to be on about 30 seconds

01:39:02   before we started recording.

01:39:04   That's a little bit of exaggeration,

01:39:08   but it was funny.

01:39:08   I swear to God today.

01:39:10   I went to the gym.

01:39:10   I came back and I was I don't know why I was thinking about

01:39:13   I think I was listening to last week's episode while I was

01:39:16   working out and I was like, I think I was thinking like, oh,

01:39:20   I actually I thought John was gonna have me on this week,

01:39:22   but I guess not and then like 30 minutes later got a message

01:39:25   from you.

01:39:25   I know it's a little late, but do you have time today?

01:39:30   But no, I mean, one thing with the watch is,

01:39:35   another product I'm actually pretty intrigued about

01:39:39   is the Amazon Echo, like the box in your room.

01:39:43   And the reason I am, and I'm actually much more intrigued

01:39:45   by that than I ever was by the Fire Phone,

01:39:47   and I think people kind of just dismissed out of hand

01:39:49   because it came on the heels of the Fire Phone.

01:39:52   But like it sounds stupid, but the idea of just like

01:39:57   talking to something instead of like pulling something

01:39:59   of your pocket and then talking to it or with the watch just looking at your wrist instead

01:40:03   of pulling out your phone and looking at something.

01:40:06   It sounds so trivial, but convenience always wins.

01:40:12   We might have talked about this before, but little conveniences multiplied by all the

01:40:19   times that they matter end up being a big deal.

01:40:24   It's funny, I think that Echo's gotten mixed reviews, but a lot of people, there are people

01:40:29   who do really like it.

01:40:30   And I think it's because it's in a similar vein

01:40:33   to what I think the watch is gonna be,

01:40:35   where you don't kind of realize until you use it

01:40:38   like how it just makes life a little bit less,

01:40:42   a little more frictionless.

01:40:44   And the idea of it being the center is a long ways off

01:40:49   just for all the technical reasons more than anything.

01:40:53   But I think it's something-

01:40:54   - Convenience is always,

01:40:55   convenience is always are easier to see backwards

01:40:58   than forwards.

01:40:59   Yes, it's more easy to tell how much you appreciate it when it's taken away than

01:41:04   when you first get it always, you know, and it's the same way that like

01:41:08   When you go back to an older iPhone

01:41:13   It makes your current iPhone feel so much faster than it felt when you first got the new iPhone you get a new iPhone next

01:41:19   Your next generation a whatever chip like wow, this is great

01:41:22   It's a lot faster and if you put it down and take your year old one or your two-year-old one

01:41:27   especially like a two-year-old one, you're like, holy shit, this is so jaggy and

01:41:30   You know coming out of college and you get your first apartment and it has a dishwasher and you're like great, this is great

01:41:38   I love having the dishwasher. Well when your dishwasher breaks and you don't have a dishwasher anymore. You're like, holy shit

01:41:44   How do I live without a dishwasher? Right? Yep. No and I think I think you know that voice could be something like that

01:41:50   No

01:41:51   I I agree and I think it's one of those things where if you I mean

01:41:56   It's easy to look back and just like I but I really do think that people said like when the phone came out

01:42:01   It's like well I could do this I can do this on a computer

01:42:04   I can do this or especially the iPad think you probably saw this more than anything

01:42:07   like

01:42:10   Little little making it just a little bit easier

01:42:13   makes makes a really big difference and

01:42:16   And I I think that that's a good vector to look at any new product

01:42:23   Like does it doesn't make life just a little bit easier and if it does then that product probably has a chance

01:42:28   The thing I didn't understand about Amazon echo when they announced it and I you know

01:42:33   I announced it and I watched their their little video with the family, you know using it

01:42:37   I didn't understand that it was going to be invitation only for some period of time

01:42:43   Dave whiskers actually was just telling me he was thinking about getting one but it's like you don't buy one

01:42:48   You can't just buy one you go to the site and you request an invitation to buy. Yeah

01:42:51   So I actually just in the other thing is I just got my request just got granted and it said it's gonna ship in three

01:42:58   To four months or something like that. I

01:43:00   Suspect like they just got burned so badly by the phone that they weigh like they got way too conservative like they overcorrected and

01:43:07   It's really hard to ramp something and if you if you if you kind of started out with the assumption

01:43:13   We're gonna sell a hundred thousand units you get a million orders

01:43:17   Like it's not just that you're behind infinite million orders that but that that being behind kind of compounds

01:43:23   Yeah, so it's interesting though. I do think that you know

01:43:27   Like you said there is something and this is you know

01:43:30   Is this this is sort of closest to the how style interface of?

01:43:34   2001 right where what was the interface with how on the discovery it was you just talked to how

01:43:41   You know, there was no button to push there was nothing you didn't have to go over and push a button to start talking to

01:43:46   You just talk to him because he was always listening.

01:43:49   No, yeah, that's the thing.

01:43:51   When you look at any new product,

01:43:53   it's so easy to...

01:43:55   So I made a bingo card for my podcast, Exponent,

01:44:00   and a notorious word I say is over index,

01:44:02   so I'm going to use it.

01:44:03   It's so easy to over index on what the product is today,

01:44:08   but to evaluate, you have to think about

01:44:10   what's this product going to be after three or four iterations.

01:44:13   And like, for example, the original Kindle,

01:44:15   the original Kindle was a piece of crap and it looked terrible and it felt terrible but like it

01:44:19   was so obvious that this is how we're going to read books going forward right and once it's thin

01:44:24   and easy to hold and actually I think the version 2 Kindle was was very good they actually there's

01:44:30   a huge jump from one to two but I think that this that's something with you see with the iPhone and

01:44:36   I think that's something with something like the Echo and I think I think it will be the case with

01:44:40   the watch as well, where it's not just you have to look at it not just as what it can do right now

01:44:45   and what capability it has right now or what battery life it has right now, you have to think

01:44:48   about what is this going to be in five years and can you see a path from here to there. And if that

01:44:54   path is a path that's easily understandable as in like our chip is going to get more efficient,

01:45:00   yes, our screens are going to get more efficient, yes, our battery is going to improve, not as fast

01:45:04   as those are going to get more efficient, but yes, they're going to improve. Like there's and you,

01:45:09   It's just like you have to be able to put yourself in the shoes of a new user.

01:45:12   It's the same sort of thing.

01:45:12   When you look at a product, you have to you have to be able to assimilate

01:45:16   what you know about the way technology progresses.

01:45:18   And that's how you evaluate a product, not you can't evaluate it on version one.

01:45:22   Yeah, one of the interesting things about Echo is to me,

01:45:25   it's the first new product from any of these companies in my memory

01:45:29   where battery isn't an issue because it's not battery operated.

01:45:33   It's something to plug in.

01:45:34   Yeah, like when's the last time somebody's come out with something

01:45:37   That doesn't isn't battery operated.

01:45:39   It's you know that

01:45:42   that's fascinating to me

01:45:43   because it's it just hasn't happened

01:45:45   in so long.

01:45:45   No, it's a great point.

01:45:47   Yeah, I think people were like

01:45:50   joked about like Amazon actually sold

01:45:52   tried to sell that as a feature.

01:45:53   I can plug it in

01:45:54   and I totally got that like it.

01:45:55   It's it's it's like it's your home.

01:45:58   It's your home assistant.

01:46:00   A lot of ways.

01:46:00   I think the problem for Amazon

01:46:02   obviously is, you know, there

01:46:04   they don't have the entire like

01:46:06   They don't have the mobile companion really to go with it, which obviously the phone,

01:46:11   you know, their phone was intended to be, I would imagine.

01:46:14   But but still, I think I think the concept is at least compelling.

01:46:18   And if if Echo isn't it, I wouldn't be surprised if, you know, in five, 10 years,

01:46:23   we all have a similar sort of device in our houses that we just talked to.

01:46:27   Yeah, I wonder I wonder if it's already in the works, if the you know, whatever the next

01:46:33   generation Apple TV is, is always listening.

01:46:36   Xbox, you know, Microsoft's done it with Xbox for a while,

01:46:40   or I don't know, is it OK Xbox?

01:46:42   Something like that has been a trigger for,

01:46:45   you've been able to give vocal commands

01:46:46   to your Xbox for a while.

01:46:48   I think going back to the previous Xbox, the 360.

01:46:51   - No, I mean, it seems like an obvious thing

01:46:53   for the Apple TV.

01:46:54   I mean, man, talk about a product that's stagnated.

01:46:56   - Yeah, well, yeah, I think that's basically,

01:47:00   I don't know if they've missed a deadline, you know,

01:47:03   and something has slipped or what,

01:47:05   but there's clearly something that was coming.

01:47:06   I mean, at this point, I would say,

01:47:09   I probably would have bet on something,

01:47:11   you know, a year ago, if we had talked a year ago,

01:47:13   I probably would have bet on some kind of new Apple TV

01:47:14   at the end of 2014.

01:47:16   So at this point, I would call it overdue.

01:47:18   And I kind of expect to see more,

01:47:21   I wouldn't be shocked if we don't see it in 2015,

01:47:23   'cause I know maybe they've,

01:47:25   but if we're talking a year from now

01:47:27   and they still don't have a new,

01:47:29   like a truly new Apple TV,

01:47:31   then I would, a year from now,

01:47:33   I would think maybe they've written it off. Maybe they've you know abandoned. Yeah, cuz I I was I thought it was

01:47:38   2013 so like yeah, that's what I meant by stagnating like setting as in like the Mac Pro stagnated

01:47:45   Like so yeah, either it's dying or it's because there's a wholesale kind of like refresh coming their weight

01:47:54   Yeah, they're waiting on something either a piece some kind of hardware or and or software that they

01:48:00   Need to make the one they want to make and it's not ready

01:48:03   I don't think they're giving up on it though because I mean especially I'm I think that homekit is is

01:48:08   Important even though we haven't heard a ton about it and an Apple TV is pretty important homekit

01:48:13   So yeah, I don't think they would do that if it was something they were giving up on

01:48:17   Yeah, and at the very least even in it in an Apple TV list world you need something in your house always plugged in

01:48:25   to make homekit really sing and so

01:48:29   Why not just make it a thing you put in your TV since everybody has a TV. Yep. No, right

01:48:34   It like it doesn't have to be Apple TV. It could be anything but why not just make it Apple TV

01:48:39   Yeah, no

01:48:40   I've always thought I mean I've I've long thought like they're gonna unify like the router and the Apple TV and

01:48:46   You know that would take care of some leg issues for one for it for airplay

01:48:51   If you like if the app ecosystem ends up like running off an iPhone or whatever it might be

01:48:58   But now I love the idea that you before it of like there being an echo types type angle to it as well

01:49:04   I think it makes I mean obviously Siri would be involved in it

01:49:07   But having it be kind of a an assistant that you can just talk to I think is really compelling I

01:49:12   Thought about that two years ago that why why not combine Apple TV with?

01:49:17   The airport router so then there's only one thing to plug in and I didn't think latency is even it's just a plus

01:49:24   I'm just thinking hey just one thing plug this in

01:49:27   and put your cable thing in the back,

01:49:29   put the power plug in and you're done.

01:49:31   And then I kind of thought, ooh, maybe not

01:49:34   when I got the latest generation AirPort

01:49:36   which was so much bigger.

01:49:38   - Right, but I think, I mean, I think,

01:49:40   but that has, that has the, that's an actual router,

01:49:43   like it has multiple ports and stuff like that.

01:49:45   I think the AirPort Express is probably a fuller expression

01:49:50   of like Apple's ideal router in a lot of ways.

01:49:53   - Well, my understanding is that the reason

01:49:54   the new AirPort Extreme is so tall

01:49:56   is that it was, and who knows,

01:50:00   who knows how long it was in the works

01:50:02   with Steve Jobs being gone,

01:50:04   but it was just purely engineering

01:50:06   that having antennas that are up,

01:50:08   bigger antennas that are up,

01:50:10   just is a big part of why it gets

01:50:12   better reception through your house.

01:50:14   Whereas the older ones that were so much smaller

01:50:16   were always constrained in terms of the energy,

01:50:19   the power of their antennas.

01:50:20   - Right, 'cause the super long-range ones

01:50:22   have actual antennas that stick up.

01:50:25   So that makes sense.

01:50:27   - It's a little bit more of a practical design

01:50:29   than a, you know, it's function over form.

01:50:33   But I don't know, it might be a hard sell

01:50:35   when all the other boxes are so small

01:50:37   and the old Apple TV was so small to say,

01:50:39   your new Apple TV is, you know, now 10 times.

01:50:42   - Yeah, that's a good point.

01:50:44   - I don't know, but it, you know, but on the other hand,

01:50:46   hey, just plug this one thing in and you're done,

01:50:48   is compelling.

01:50:49   What was the other thing?

01:50:53   So, Germin's other thing was all about

01:50:54   how the battery sucks on the Apple Watch.

01:50:57   But I see to me, that's like no surprise.

01:50:59   Of course it does.

01:51:00   All right, of course that's the biggest thing

01:51:02   that that's holding them up.

01:51:03   I mean, you don't really need sources to tell you that.

01:51:06   - Yeah, I mean, it's gonna,

01:51:09   the thing I've always kind of maintained

01:51:12   about the watches,

01:51:16   it just has to get you through the day.

01:51:19   And the way to address battery life

01:51:23   is not to make like week long battery life or month long battery life.

01:51:26   It's to make battery life that it's to make the functionality so great

01:51:29   that you're willing to put up with charging it all the time.

01:51:32   And that like that's what they do with the phone, right?

01:51:34   The iPhones, iPhone battery life relative to our old phones

01:51:37   is still drastically worse than it was before.

01:51:40   But we don't care about that because the functionality is so superior

01:51:46   that we put up with charging it like it's assumed that we're going to carry it.

01:51:49   Like you go around like you can go to any shopping mall here

01:51:52   And there's lockers when you walk in the door

01:51:55   where you can pay to plug in your phone

01:51:57   and like, you can go shopping and come back at your phone

01:51:59   and it'll be charged.

01:52:01   Like that's, if you think about it, that's kind of crazy,

01:52:03   but it's not crazy anymore because that's, of course,

01:52:08   why wouldn't you, why wouldn't you,

01:52:09   no one's gonna give up functionality

01:52:11   to get better battery life today.

01:52:12   That's just the way it is.

01:52:13   - Right, every time an airport is,

01:52:16   a new terminal is added or a terminal is refurbished,

01:52:20   It's always, you know, a huge factor is, you know, getting power outlets to more people.

01:52:25   Yeah.

01:52:26   Yeah.

01:52:27   I, yeah.

01:52:28   I, I, it's so frustrating to go to an airport with no power outlets.

01:52:31   And then you have people that are cuddled around, like, whatever outlets are there.

01:52:35   It's it, you know, it is like, it's, nobody had the idea, but it's a, you know, a dystopian

01:52:40   science fiction future come to life where, you know, everybody waits around sucking up

01:52:44   power.

01:52:45   Yeah, there's like rows of seats and no one's sitting there, everyone's sitting on the floor

01:52:48   on like the one pillar that has like outlets with it.

01:52:51   - Right.

01:52:53   It's interesting 'cause eventually that'll happen though.

01:52:55   'Cause you remember,

01:52:56   and I know Jason Snell has written about this lately,

01:52:59   where clearly Apple has these target numbers in mind,

01:53:02   like X number of hours for an iPhone

01:53:05   and 10 hours of battery life for an iPad.

01:53:08   And they stick to them.

01:53:09   And with the iPad in particular,

01:53:10   like it's been dead solid every single iPad.

01:53:14   And they have that number in their head

01:53:17   and then they just keep making the devices as thin

01:53:20   as they possibly can while hitting that number.

01:53:22   You know, and it's every single year when iPhones come out

01:53:25   and they're, or every other year when a new generation

01:53:27   comes out and it's so much thinner,

01:53:29   there's a decent chunk of people who have, you know,

01:53:31   personally have different sets of priorities who say,

01:53:33   "Why couldn't they just make it as thick as the last one,

01:53:35   "which was plenty thin and just give me more battery life?"

01:53:39   But eventually that's going to happen

01:53:40   'cause it happened with laptops, laptops, MacBooks,

01:53:43   PowerBooks, whatever you wanna call 'em,

01:53:45   got like three to four hours of battery life.

01:53:47   year after year after year after year after year.

01:53:49   And then all of a sudden, boom,

01:53:51   it shot up to seven, eight, nine hours of battery life.

01:53:57   And eventually that'll happen with phones.

01:53:58   Like eventually we'll have an iPhone

01:54:00   that instead of getting thinner,

01:54:01   instead gives you like,

01:54:03   you go two or three days without plugging it.

01:54:05   - Yeah, well, I mean, obviously I'm not

01:54:08   the right person to measure this 'cause I work from home.

01:54:13   But the iPhone 6, my favorite feature,

01:54:16   even more than having a larger screen is

01:54:19   that I never worry about battery life anymore.

01:54:22   Again, I probably haven't plugged in more than most people,

01:54:26   and I've heard from people that,

01:54:26   "Yeah, it's still not good enough."

01:54:28   But for me anyway, it's crossed that line,

01:54:31   compared to the 5S, which I was always worried about it.

01:54:35   - Yeah, no, going to Disney World is a good test for me,

01:54:40   because it used to, I'd need my Mophie to get through a day,

01:54:44   and I don't anymore.

01:54:45   - Yep.

01:54:46   or any kind of travel day, any kind of day where I'm, you know, in an airport and going somewhere and doing all of my computing from the phone.

01:54:53   I always used to need a mofi and I don't generally anymore.

01:54:58   The other thing is, Gherman's reporting 2.5 to 4 hours of active application use. That seems pretty good to me.

01:55:07   I mean, I, yeah, I think that's all, it's interesting because I'm sure that those, you know, he's got great sources and I'm sure they're real numbers,

01:55:14   but I feel like it's hard to think about that as a user

01:55:19   because from a user's perspective,

01:55:20   you're not gonna think about stuff like that.

01:55:22   And in particular, the other one he called out,

01:55:23   I agree, I think that's actually pretty good

01:55:25   considering how I think we'll be using these things.

01:55:29   The other one was the time telling.

01:55:30   And the time telling, as I understand it,

01:55:32   and I've heard from people is,

01:55:34   so the watch is off most of the time,

01:55:37   or the face is off most of the time.

01:55:40   And it has to be because it's, you know,

01:55:43   We don't know yet whether it's OLED or LCD.

01:55:45   I think it might be some kind of OLED though,

01:55:47   because they're using black as the background

01:55:49   instead of white.

01:55:50   But regardless, any kind of color screen like that,

01:55:55   whatever the technology is,

01:55:57   the biggest power sync that you're gonna have on the device.

01:56:03   So it's off most of the time.

01:56:04   My understanding is that they've put inordinate,

01:56:09   like a huge chunk, the whole three year long effort,

01:56:12   there've been teams devoted to it,

01:56:15   or a team devoted to it,

01:56:17   is that when you twist your wrist to look at the time,

01:56:21   it is already, you know, it turns on.

01:56:23   Like, the detection of this is the type of motion

01:56:26   of a person checking the time

01:56:28   is like an A1 priority for the thing,

01:56:32   and that apparently it works,

01:56:33   it already works really, really well.

01:56:36   It's very, very smart about turning on

01:56:38   when you wanna look at it.

01:56:40   But then when you turn your wrist back,

01:56:42   it goes off again. So it's I forget how long it said it was like three hours like the watch

01:56:47   last three hours of continuous telling the time or something like that.

01:56:51   Yeah, the only thing with the only thing with that is I think this is the one thing that

01:56:55   really kind of detracts from the watch as fashion accessory thing. Because the the I

01:57:02   mean the face of a watch is is super important to it being a fashion accessory like they

01:57:09   can have beautiful bands, they can have a beautiful case, but if it's just a black box,

01:57:17   that is an area where, I mean, if they were ever to get to a point where they could actually

01:57:21   have those watch faces on all the time, I think that would be a big deal just from,

01:57:29   I mean, we're-

01:57:30   Yeah, if they could do it, they would, but they can't.

01:57:32   Yeah, we're vloggers in our pajamas podcasting, I don't think we're fashion experts, but I

01:57:36   I do think, yeah, that that will be,

01:57:38   when and if they can get to that point,

01:57:40   I think that will be a big deal.

01:57:43   - Right, but it's definitely in this,

01:57:45   Apple clearly is going way more as this is a watch watch

01:57:50   and we're going right up against any watch brand you want

01:57:53   than anybody else in the smartwatch game.

01:57:56   But clearly one of the areas where they just can't compete

01:57:59   is the fact, like you said, that the face is black.

01:58:02   And whatever choice you make in terms of which style

01:58:05   of the many that they offer from for your watch style

01:58:09   has no bearing on what other people see

01:58:11   when they see it on your wrist.

01:58:12   - Right.

01:58:13   - The guy across from you in the aisle on the train

01:58:17   who's not moving his wrist or checking the time,

01:58:19   all you see is that he has an Apple Watch.

01:58:20   You have no idea what face is on it.

01:58:24   And that's definitely a factor.

01:58:25   There's no getting around.

01:58:27   - What's interesting is at least for at the beginning,

01:58:31   before they are, you know,

01:58:33   obviously Apple would like them to be as widespread as phones.

01:58:36   But if you think back when the iPhone first came out,

01:58:39   like it was, it said something that you had an iPhone.

01:58:43   It was obvious that you had one.

01:58:45   And there weren't very many people that had one.

01:58:48   And so it's almost like it's not that big a deal

01:58:50   at the beginning because just seeing that black square

01:58:53   will be meaningful enough.

01:58:56   Whereas once, and ideally once they get to the point,

01:59:00   if they're successful and they become ubiquitous,

01:59:03   that by that point, their power management

01:59:05   will also be to the point where they can be fully customized

01:59:10   and on all the time and fully fulfill

01:59:12   that kind of like personalized fashion angle.

01:59:17   - Yeah, yeah, I read it so much as how much time,

01:59:21   how much you can tell the time,

01:59:23   but how long the screen can be on.

01:59:25   So if it can be on for three hours, that sounds pretty good.

01:59:29   'Cause it doesn't seem to me like you would,

01:59:31   it doesn't seem like, how could you spend more

01:59:33   than three hours looking at the little thing on your phone?

01:59:35   - Right, exactly.

01:59:37   I mean, if you're gonna be interacting with it that long,

01:59:39   you might as well take out your phone.

01:59:42   - Right.

01:59:43   3,000 users.

01:59:48   So I wonder how, I wonder if that's right.

01:59:50   Seems like a lot, but again, a lot for it not to have leaked

01:59:53   but on the other hand, maybe it's a lot easier to conceal.

01:59:58   It'll be interesting if it's soon.

02:00:02   Yeah, yeah, what do you think about that?

02:00:05   Germin said that that it's still on pace to ship at the end of March.

02:00:10   I it seems seems reasonable.

02:00:12   I like I suspect they were shooting for February.

02:00:15   You know, just maybe for the Chinese market, like Chinese New Year super late this year,

02:00:21   people get cash for Chinese New Year.

02:00:24   But so I it fits with a well, let's shoot for this.

02:00:28   Well, we didn't quite make it, but it's still it's still early in the year.

02:00:32   You know, I don't think I would I would, you know, of course, you know,

02:00:38   Mark Gurman is number one at pointing out that Tim Quok's products released

02:00:41   throughout 2014 and they didn't release anything till the second half of the year.

02:00:44   But that said, I think that he wouldn't drop a date lightly.

02:00:49   Right. Yeah, I don't know, I still think March is

02:00:53   I'll be impressed if it ships by March because I don't know my impression from the few people I

02:00:57   Secondhand all secondhand no first-hand information from everybody who's wearing one

02:01:01   But secondhand information who know people who are wearing them is that they're still buggy enough and have poor enough battery life

02:01:08   That March would be an achievement

02:01:10   Because they're out, you know, they if if it's too buggy and to the battery life is too bad

02:01:15   There's you know, it's not gonna come out in March, you know

02:01:18   They're they have the wiggle room to push it until April or May or even June

02:01:23   Like June will give you know people will roll their eyes because it's about as late as early 2015 can be

02:01:30   But they you know they have that wiggle right and in first impressions will matter

02:01:35   Right it would be better to have people complaining that June is pretty damn late for early

02:01:40   tweet that you know quote unquote early 2015 then to ship it in March just to hit the first quarter and

02:01:48   and have it be riddled with bugs.

02:01:51   - Yep.

02:01:51   - Or not make it through the day.

02:01:53   What was the other thing?

02:01:56   Just so, I can't, I made a note here

02:01:58   when you were talking about it.

02:01:59   Can't talk about the Fire Phone

02:02:01   without talking about Austin Carr's,

02:02:03   it's not new, I guess it was sometime in the last month,

02:02:05   his Fast Company piece on the making of the Fire Phone.

02:02:09   Surely you read it.

02:02:10   - I was quoted in it.

02:02:11   - Yeah, that's right, that's right, that's right.

02:02:14   I remember that.

02:02:15   That's actually one of the things that I was like,

02:02:17   I should I should get Ben on the show this week. I actually remember that it was it

02:02:21   I thought it was a tremendous piece of oh, yeah

02:02:23   I mean he talked to a lot of people and got you know

02:02:26   A lot of inside people at lab 126 that it was definitely very compelling and if you haven't read it you should

02:02:31   I'll link it in the show. So I actually want to link it on there

02:02:35   it'll be linked on during fireball in between us recording and

02:02:37   The show wearing but I'll put it in the show notes, too

02:02:41   But it's just a tremendous piece of reporting and rather scathing

02:02:45   it's interesting because

02:02:47   The the one

02:02:50   He talked about like Amazon not being focused

02:02:53   And that's a common critique that any Apple fan will have about Amazon. But actually when I told him this when I talked to him

02:03:01   Amazon's not that kind of company like Amazon is in many respects the

02:03:08   Apple or the Bizarro Apple. The way the company works internally is it's a lot of companies.

02:03:15   Some of them are mature companies that throw off cash and some of them are startups that

02:03:19   devour cash. And because they're all under one roof, that money can be funneled from

02:03:25   the ones throwing off money to the ones that need it. And so there are lots of groups that

02:03:30   kind of start. And so you go to amazon.com and it's like one website, but actually there's

02:03:34   the clothing section and there is the car section. And like all these are within Amazon completely

02:03:41   separate groups and they have their own procurement managers, they have their own marketing managers,

02:03:46   they have their own P&Ls. It's like it's the exact opposite structure from the way Apple is set up.

02:03:55   And it's meant to almost be like a self-incubator in a lot of ways. And so from that perspective,

02:04:03   to say that Amazon's doing this, like the phone can fit in that. And actually almost if you look

02:04:08   at it this way, if you accept that this is the way Amazon is and that's the way they're going

02:04:12   to operate, my critique of the phone and what I took away from that reporting is that Jeff Bezos

02:04:18   in particular was too focused on the phone. And like he got too obsessed with it and didn't let

02:04:26   let it kind of breathe and go through a natural sort of like startup process.

02:04:31   And that, more than anything, was a...

02:04:34   And he got a blind spot about like the viability of this product,

02:04:38   which I mean, everyone was kind of new.

02:04:41   A lot of us were saying there was no point to it before they even announced it.

02:04:45   And once they announced it, it was like, "What?

02:04:46   This makes no sense."

02:04:48   It's a cautionary tale, I think, in that you get so wrapped up in something,

02:04:54   you lose all perspective.

02:04:56   Well, that gets back to my argument earlier in the show with Forstall and the ability

02:05:02   to look at it like an interface and say, "You know what?

02:05:07   We put a lot of effort in this, but this is crap.

02:05:09   We need to scrap this."

02:05:10   You get too close to it and you lose...

02:05:12   Yeah, to me, it's the same type of thing.

02:05:14   I can see how it happened because I know that's just human nature.

02:05:19   But the big point of it is that all this emphasis, and it came from Bezos directly, was on this

02:05:25   3D, whatever they call it, you know, the camera sensors on the front to make a face

02:05:29   face that you don't need glasses for on the screen.

02:05:33   And the the on within the team,

02:05:39   there was some, you know, it's a neat trick, it's a neat idea, but what

02:05:43   in the world, how in the world is it a selling point? What is the actual purpose of this?

02:05:47   And yet Bezos got hung up on it and thought it would be the selling point.

02:05:53   And it certainly was the selling point in the initial marketing.

02:05:55   The marketing was all about this 3D effect.

02:05:58   And then in reality, it turned out exactly what the naysayers

02:06:02   on the team had thought, which is nobody sees the point of it.

02:06:05   Yeah, that's the differentiation.

02:06:06   It's not just having a unique feature.

02:06:09   It's actually making a difference in customers lives

02:06:12   in the way that another product cannot.

02:06:14   Right. It actually isn't.

02:06:15   It didn't make it a better device.

02:06:17   And that's the whole problem.

02:06:20   Yet it also made it something that was expensive because it was a high-end phone

02:06:26   It was a premium phone, you know that and I this is the part where I disagree with cars analysis

02:06:30   The reporting is interesting that there was that there were people within the team who said all along

02:06:34   I don't see the point of this. It's just you know, it's it's pure gimmickry and no utility

02:06:40   and

02:06:42   They were right and there and then without it

02:06:45   Then the fire phone was left with nothing

02:06:46   compelling because the other stuff that it has, none of it was best of breed.

02:06:49   Doesn't have the best apps, doesn't have the best ecosystem.

02:06:52   What you know, there was nothing else about the device that was

02:06:55   that was worth hanging your hat on.

02:06:57   The only thing that had to hang their hat on was the 3D effect

02:07:00   and the 3D effect was pointless.

02:07:02   But Bezos was all caught up in it for like well over a year.

02:07:05   You saw that in the keynote, too, like the keynote was so long

02:07:08   and it was so self-absorbed.

02:07:10   I actually wrote this at the time.

02:07:11   Like I thought I found the keynote very distressing,

02:07:15   not just, just because it was, it was,

02:07:18   it reeked of hubris and basically this article said,

02:07:23   yeah, that's basically exactly it.

02:07:26   - Yeah, and so there I agree, and I think it's spot on.

02:07:29   Where I disagree, and the article several times

02:07:31   touches on it, and I think you can kinda see

02:07:33   Carr goes along with it.

02:07:34   He has sources saying it too, so it's not just

02:07:36   Carr is the writer projecting it,

02:07:38   but it's the idea that, the whole idea

02:07:41   of a high-end phone from Amazon is contrary

02:07:43   to their brand and doomed from the start.

02:07:46   That this idea that they can make a phone

02:07:47   that competes with Apple was a terrible idea

02:07:49   'cause Apple competes on branding and design

02:07:52   and Amazon is just low-end prices.

02:07:54   And so if Amazon wanted to do a phone,

02:07:55   it should have been some piece of junk that was super cheap.

02:07:58   And I disagree with that.

02:08:00   I disagree with that entirely because,

02:08:02   I mean, what was the one quote there?

02:08:06   It was like, there is a branding issue,

02:08:08   is the quote from one of the sources that he had.

02:08:11   I really disagree with that.

02:08:13   And to me, it's a fundamental misunderstanding

02:08:17   of what branding and marketing are about.

02:08:18   To me, branding and marketing always come from,

02:08:21   eventually, from the actual quality of the products

02:08:24   or services, whatever it is themselves.

02:08:26   And so, sure, it is a little bit outside

02:08:30   of Amazon's expected brand to ship a high-end phone

02:08:34   that competes with the iPhone on quality.

02:08:36   And maybe some people wouldn't have gotten that right away.

02:08:40   But the problem isn't that the Fire Phone

02:08:42   was outside Amazon's brand.

02:08:44   The problem is the Fire Phone was a crappy phone.

02:08:46   And so therefore it's not, it's the product.

02:08:49   It all comes from the product.

02:08:50   The product was a piece of crap that no one wanted to buy

02:08:53   and that was poorly reviewed.

02:08:54   If it actually had been a really good phone,

02:08:57   if it had been something that was compelling,

02:08:59   it may not have been a smash hit right away,

02:09:01   but at least would have fit with the brand

02:09:03   they were trying to do,

02:09:04   and then they could iterate for two or three years

02:09:05   and eventually it might catch on.

02:09:07   But it all comes from the product itself.

02:09:09   It had to be a good thing.

02:09:11   No, I think that's right.

02:09:13   And the other thing too is if you step back and look at the e-commerce market,

02:09:17   Amazon is a high-end brand and they're a high-end brand because their number one

02:09:22   proposition is selection and convenience.

02:09:25   Yes, they've pushed price, but you see a brand like Jet.com is like the former

02:09:30   diapers.com CEO is like launching a new thing.

02:09:32   It's like a Costco model basically where you pay a membership fee and then they

02:09:38   will give you their margin effectively.

02:09:40   And there's all these rules, it's convoluted,

02:09:43   and it takes longer to get your stuff,

02:09:45   and there's all weird ways to get discounts.

02:09:47   If you use a debit card, it's cheaper.

02:09:48   It's a pain in the ass, and it sounds awful to me.

02:09:51   Like, I would not wanna use it.

02:09:53   But I am the sort of person that is willing to pay

02:09:56   for convenience, for a guaranteed two-day delivery,

02:09:59   for going to one place and getting what I wanted.

02:10:01   I don't wanna price compare.

02:10:02   I don't wanna like jump through hoops to get a lower price.

02:10:04   But there are people who do.

02:10:06   And I don't think Amazon ultimately, when push comes to shove,

02:10:11   I think they will prove out to be more of a high-end offer.

02:10:17   Another interesting e-commerce app is Wish.

02:10:19   Wish is a mobile app where you can basically buy stuff

02:10:22   from China, and it's really cheap, and sometimes it's crap,

02:10:27   and sometimes it takes like two weeks to arrive,

02:10:29   and sometimes it doesn't arrive, but it's super cheap,

02:10:32   and it's like interesting stuff, and it's exploding.

02:10:35   And it's a very different proposition than Amazon.

02:10:38   And I think we will look back at the e-commerce industry as a whole.

02:10:42   And Amazon's actually is going to be Amazon's primarily in rich countries and it's used, I think, primarily by relatively rich people.

02:10:49   And so not only are you right that the phone is crap and that was the biggest problem and if they made a good phone it would accrue to their brand.

02:10:56   But I actually think the characterization of their brand was wrong as well.

02:10:59   Yeah, I kind of do. I kind of agree with that too.

02:11:02   And I think especially when you're getting

02:11:05   into a new initiative, you've kind of got a blank slate

02:11:10   in terms of establishing the brand, right?

02:11:12   I mean, like think about the Kindle,

02:11:13   which you said was a hit right from the start.

02:11:17   Well, Amazon wasn't known for making their own products

02:11:19   at all, period.

02:11:20   They'd never done it before.

02:11:21   It was the first gadget they made.

02:11:23   And they defined the brand by the fact

02:11:28   that it was a product that made people

02:11:30   who were voracious readers very happy.

02:11:32   Right? It's the Kindle as at least as an e-reader. Yeah is I think a very well-perceived brand and is you know?

02:11:40   Sits atop the e-reader market. I mean I have all sorts of little niggling complaints complaints about the

02:11:45   Design of the devices. God almighty. I love I would love to see

02:11:49   App or Amazon poach some Apple engineers and let them have at the Kindle eating hardware for a year or two

02:11:59   but overall it's you know, it I admit them all my complaints are more or less niggling and that the basic gist of

02:12:06   It's this magic box that you can just read and read and read and read forever

02:12:10   And when you get to the end of the book, you're 15 seconds away from putting another book on it

02:12:14   It all just worked and it the brand for the Kindle it

02:12:20   Didn't really matter what Amazon's brand was before it the brand for Kindle was defined by the experience of using a Kindle, you know

02:12:26   And that's why it's a good brand and if the phone had actually been compelling in some kind of profound way

02:12:30   Then the fire phone would have had a good brand. Yeah, and again, it might take years for it to really catch on

02:12:36   Traction is a weird, you know is a weird thing, but I

02:12:42   really don't think that any you know that the

02:12:45   The brand is defined by the products. It's not the other way around

02:12:50   The thing is like the I mean the the era of differentiating on the OS layer

02:12:55   is over, like it's iOS and Android.

02:12:58   And the thing is, is like Amazon has lots of pieces

02:13:03   to do interesting stuff.

02:13:08   You know, like the most compelling thing

02:13:11   in the presentation was like the Firefly application

02:13:15   where it identifies stuff and you could put in your card,

02:13:17   you could buy it or whatever.

02:13:18   Like that fits Amazon.

02:13:21   Now I think Amazon, you know,

02:13:23   I think the whole endeavor was a bit misguided.

02:13:28   They would have been better off focusing on the Amazon app

02:13:33   on iOS and Android.

02:13:34   But if they felt that was the right way to go,

02:13:37   that should have been the central point.

02:13:39   And the reason it should have been the central point

02:13:40   is because that's where Amazon can actually bring

02:13:43   what they have to bear to create something truly unique.

02:13:46   That's really compelling.

02:13:47   - Yeah, so what do you think they're gonna do?

02:13:50   That's one thing I didn't really get out of the car article

02:13:52   What are they gonna do going forward?

02:13:54   Is this such a disaster that they're done making phones

02:13:56   or are they gonna stick with it and do a Fire Phone 2?

02:13:59   I honestly, I thought that was the most surprising thing

02:14:02   that he has so well sourced to get the story that he got,

02:14:05   but it doesn't have anything about

02:14:06   what their future plans are.

02:14:07   - I don't know, it's a really interesting question.

02:14:09   I mean,

02:14:09   - I mean, and it was a huge flop.

02:14:12   I mean, it was, what was the, I think it was,

02:14:16   they only sold like 10,000 phones or something like that,

02:14:18   at least until they'd radically cut the price

02:14:20   and were selling it on a wall.

02:14:21   - Like 800 million write off or something like that.

02:14:23   - Yeah, I mean a huge write off.

02:14:25   Was it 800 million?

02:14:27   I knew it was hundreds of millions.

02:14:29   - Oh no, 170 million.

02:14:30   Sorry, I was confusing with the surface.

02:14:33   - Yeah.

02:14:34   (laughing)

02:14:35   - Yeah, something in the water.

02:14:36   - But even so, that's an awful lot.

02:14:39   I mean it was, and clearly internally

02:14:41   they had projections that were a lot higher.

02:14:43   - Oh yeah, for sure, I mean, yeah.

02:14:44   - It wasn't a mild disappointment,

02:14:49   it was a profound disappointment.

02:14:51   So I don't know what do you think they're going to do?

02:14:52   I honestly can't guess.

02:14:54   'cause it's their their tenacious company.

02:14:57   And Bezos strikes me as somewhat stubborn.

02:15:01   But on the other hand, man, it was such a turd of a.

02:15:05   You know it market failure.

02:15:07   I think that they.

02:15:09   I like I said, I think that trying to.

02:15:14   Really build out a third platform.

02:15:19   is a bad idea.

02:15:22   And--

02:15:23   - And it's really a second and a half platform.

02:15:25   - Right.

02:15:26   - I don't know, it doesn't make it any easier, right?

02:15:28   It's like there's Windows Phone,

02:15:30   which is trying to be a third platform

02:15:31   and it's all new UI, all new APIs,

02:15:34   even in a different programming language.

02:15:36   And Amazon Phone is certainly, you know,

02:15:39   it's mostly Android, right?

02:15:42   It's the same language at least.

02:15:44   And you know, games and stuff like that,

02:15:45   I think you can pretty much just submit to their store

02:15:48   and they just run.

02:15:49   But still, it's--

02:15:50   Yeah, basically, anytime you make a location API call

02:15:53   or anything involving the store APIs,

02:15:56   anything that uses Google services,

02:15:58   you have to go in and change.

02:16:00   And it's, in the grand scheme of things, a simple change.

02:16:03   But it gets back to the convenience factor, right?

02:16:07   One, a developer has to actually do it,

02:16:10   which they have other stuff to do.

02:16:12   And two, they have to support it.

02:16:16   And it's one like that barrier.

02:16:20   And like I've done developer work,

02:16:22   like working with developers before,

02:16:22   like those little barriers that seem,

02:16:26   especially to someone trying to create a new platform,

02:16:27   oh, it's not that big a deal, you only have to do X.

02:16:30   It is a big deal.

02:16:32   And it's a lot bigger deal than you appreciate.

02:16:34   And it's a bigger deal, not just for the big guys

02:16:36   that you talk to, but for the long tail of developers

02:16:39   that are out there.

02:16:41   - Well, and the other thing too,

02:16:44   is that strategically that's exactly where Google

02:16:46   has sort of shored up and protected,

02:16:48   and not to get political, but closed Android,

02:16:52   is by putting more and more stuff in the Google services

02:16:55   library, and lessen, and actually taking stuff out

02:16:59   of the Android, and the part that's called Android is open,

02:17:03   and the part that's Google services is completely closed.

02:17:07   And even just little things like the way

02:17:09   that they've stopped development of the web browser

02:17:11   on the Android side, and they've only officially now develop Chrome, but that's part of Google

02:17:16   services.

02:17:17   Yep.

02:17:18   No, and rightly so, because that is the bulwark.

02:17:23   Like it is the app store that prevents like there being viable alternatives, you know,

02:17:30   with the exception of China, which has multiple app stores, but that's like that's now the

02:17:36   expectation for customers in China.

02:17:38   Like you just go get different app stores and people have multiple app stores on their

02:17:40   That's not the expectation anywhere else in the world. And it's an expectation that is so cemented

02:17:46   that I generally believe an alternative isn't a viable thing. And that's why what's more

02:17:54   compelling and interesting to me is what's going to be built on top of iOS or Android.

02:18:00   Right.

02:18:02   And that's where I think Amazon should be... That's where their efforts should be focused on. Again,

02:18:08   Again, this is balanced with,

02:18:10   like this is such a problem for companies,

02:18:12   is companies get so wrapped up in what,

02:18:17   like you can make a good argument strategically

02:18:21   why it's important for Amazon to own their phone.

02:18:23   And it's really easy to just kind of ignore the part

02:18:26   of like it actually happening.

02:18:27   It's like the, you know, like question mark, question mark,

02:18:30   question mark profit.

02:18:31   It's like question mark, question mark, question mark,

02:18:32   we have a platform.

02:18:33   Like, but, but, but I mean, with like Windows

02:18:37   Amazon, like we take this to Windows for phone in particular, like people are like, "Oh, Microsoft

02:18:42   just needs to get developers." The problem is Microsoft's not the one making that decision.

02:18:47   The developers are. Microsoft has zero control over what they do or don't do.

02:18:51   And if a key to your plan depends on independent third-party actors who are like wildly disparate

02:19:04   it and like you can't touch all of them.

02:19:06   Making a decision that's not a very good strategic plan,

02:19:10   even if from a big picture it seems obvious why you should do that.

02:19:14   And I use and you see this companies tripping up on this again and again,

02:19:17   just just like skipping over that one detail that actually will sink the whole thing.

02:19:24   Yep, totally agree.

02:19:26   Let me take one last break here and thank our third and final sponsor of this show

02:19:32   and it is our very good friends at Igloo.

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02:21:09   This past June last summer, Gartner

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02:21:21   This is-- you hear Gartner and your eyes start rolling over

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02:21:25   Well, and then,

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02:21:31   - Enterprise, see I'm so far out of it,

02:21:34   I couldn't even think of it.

02:21:35   In the enterprise market, Gartner's a big deal.

02:21:37   This is the thing that Gartner puts out for the enterprise,

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02:22:31   They also praised the responsiveness of igloo

02:22:34   as an organization.

02:22:36   In other words, translated to plain English,

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02:23:38   you're not happy with the way you guys are collaborating,

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02:23:44   My thanks to them.

02:23:45   So last but not least, big week for Microsoft.

02:23:50   - Yeah, definitely.

02:23:51   - So they had a big event up in Redmond.

02:23:55   I guess it was densably just for Windows 10,

02:23:58   but Windows 10 was really just part of it.

02:24:00   - Well, I think that's, I mean,

02:24:02   that's, it's a shame, I think,

02:24:04   because everyone is talking about this Project HoloLens,

02:24:09   and no one is talking about

02:24:11   what the event was supposed to be about,

02:24:13   which is one problematic and two it's particularly problematic because I thought the the

02:24:17   The part that the event was actually about was actually pretty compelling

02:24:20   Yeah, I thought so too. I watched live. I didn't catch the whole thing, but I watched most of it

02:24:25   I watched close to two hours of it. I forget I missed a little bit at the beginning of the windows 10

02:24:30   But I had the exact same thought I was like watching the windows 10 stuff and I was like i'm pretty impressed

02:24:36   This is pretty intriguing. I like where they're going with this

02:24:39   one operating system thing

02:24:42   And the demos were good.

02:24:44   And it was funny because Microsoft, I think,

02:24:46   is notorious for having demos fail during events.

02:24:49   And they promised, look, this stuff is all early.

02:24:52   There's going to be a lot of bugs in these demos.

02:24:54   And I thought every demo was seamless,

02:24:56   which was funny because they warned that they were going

02:24:58   to be buggy and they weren't.

02:25:00   And then I thought it was wrapped up.

02:25:01   I was like, that was a hell of an event.

02:25:03   And then it just kept going.

02:25:05   And I was like, wow, I can't believe they're

02:25:06   mixing these things together.

02:25:08   And on the other hand, I see how somebody else would say,

02:25:11   Doesn't Apple do the same thing where they announced these two phones and they're a big deal and you know

02:25:15   you know

02:25:17   flagship products of the company and

02:25:19   Then at the same event they did Apple pay an Apple watch, you know and released the preview of this device

02:25:25   Which isn't coming out yet, which is exactly you know, the HoloLens isn't coming out yet

02:25:29   But there's something about it that to me was it was less

02:25:34   Well proportioned in Microsoft's event where HoloLens distracted heavily from it

02:25:39   - Well, it's funny, last time I was on,

02:25:41   we talked about the fact that the iPhone

02:25:43   never kind of got its day in the sun.

02:25:45   - Yeah, well, I think, well, here's the,

02:25:49   in broad terms, I think one factor of that

02:25:50   is that the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus,

02:25:52   I think by all accounts, and it's next week

02:25:55   where we're gonna get Apple's quarterly finances,

02:25:57   and everybody's expecting to be gangbusters.

02:25:59   - And I think they're gonna exceed expectations.

02:26:03   - I think so too, all the evidence we can see

02:26:05   and the cues we can get is that,

02:26:08   everything everybody thought is true,

02:26:10   that they were selling well in the US,

02:26:11   they're selling particularly well in Asian markets

02:26:14   where larger size phones just in general--

02:26:16   - There's still weights for the large one.

02:26:20   And the other thing too is you're seeing,

02:26:22   especially in Asian markets,

02:26:24   like right at the back, people were talking about

02:26:26   like the proportion of the six to the six plus,

02:26:28   that proportion is changing as the six plus gets supply.

02:26:32   So I think, which means that the average selling price

02:26:36   to be higher like yeah it's it's gonna be a lot higher because it's a hundred

02:26:41   dollars higher at each pricing tier and it's a hundred dollars higher at the

02:26:44   starting price so anything about demand anything that shows positive demand for

02:26:49   the six plus in particular is huge for Apple in terms of average selling price

02:26:54   I honestly wouldn't be surprised if average selling price year over year is

02:27:02   significantly higher which I don't think it's ever happened before I think it's

02:27:05   always gone down. It always pops on the launch quarter because because.

02:27:09   Well, that's why I'm saying you're over.

02:27:11   Yeah, exactly. No, I agree. I agree.

02:27:13   Right. It's you know, and Apple has held average selling prices high compared to

02:27:19   the rest of the smartphone industry.

02:27:21   You know, obviously, you know, that's an extraordinary exception in that regard.

02:27:25   But it still has slowly trickled down since the original iPhone, you know, in a

02:27:30   way that's not worrisome for the company.

02:27:32   It's probably actually been a positive sign that they've kept them as high as they had and kept the trickle low

02:27:37   But I think there's a serious chance that the existence of the 6+ will actually raise the average selling price year over year

02:27:43   How only the launch I fully expect that to be the case. I agree

02:27:46   And like you said I do think I think that there's still supply constraint on them

02:27:50   I think that they're selling them there there they they you know, they can't make them fast enough to meet demand yet

02:27:55   But the story of the two phones again, they're super important

02:28:01   I think they're super successful, like profoundly successful. Maybe that maybe the most successful

02:28:06   launch year of iPhone to date, not just in fact of record breaking numbers, but just

02:28:12   exceeding expectations. But they weren't hard to explain. They were.

02:28:17   And it was like that thing that it's like the iPhone, but it's bigger.

02:28:20   Yeah. And what did Schiller demonstrate? Well, he talked about a lot of the photography stuff

02:28:28   that they've done that's new. You know, it's a better camera than it was before. Not really

02:28:31   that hard to explain. It's a better camera than ever, and they're bigger phones, and they're thin,

02:28:37   and they get amazing battery life. And that's it. I mean, it was not a hard thing to explain,

02:28:42   because it's truly just an iteration over what they've done before, and they made it bigger.

02:28:47   Whereas Windows 10, compared to everything else, is... it demanded a story. It's a new thing.

02:28:56   This whole strategy of one OS that runs on everything from phones to small tablets to

02:29:00   big tablets to hybrids to desktops is all new.

02:29:05   And the way that they're sort of have this one OS but different interfaces that are suited

02:29:11   to the different size devices demanded demos and attention and you know, is it store it's

02:29:20   the whole story of Microsoft for the rest of the year.

02:29:22   it's a lot to I think brush that aside

02:29:29   with the you know a prototype pie-in-the-

02:29:31   sky thing no matter how cool it is.

02:29:34   It's even more profound than

02:29:41   that like Microsoft like they

02:29:43   can't take for granted Windows on the

02:29:47   PC like it is under real

02:29:47   threat I believe, not just from the Mac which is growing remarkably, but also from Chromebooks.

02:29:54   Like the fact of the matter is, I'm on record as saying, and maybe not popular on an Apple

02:30:02   podcast, or you're not an Apple podcast, you're an all things excellent podcast.

02:30:08   But like-

02:30:09   Yeah, that's why Chromebook doesn't fit.

02:30:10   Or the Pixel does.

02:30:13   No, most people would be exceptionally well served by having an iPhone and a Chromebook and

02:30:17   and a

02:30:20   Lot of windows especially the consumer market is arguably due to inertia

02:30:25   But when it comes to the enterprise space like the enterprise and businesses, that's the core Microsoft. I

02:30:31   Mean you think that consumers hated Windows 8 or that reviewers hated Windows later that mg

02:30:37   Seigler hated Windows 8. Like the enterprise hated Windows 8 times 100 because it I mean there was

02:30:44   actually there under the surface there's a lot of good stuff on Windows 8 for for administering it

02:30:49   and security and all that sort of stuff but the last thing any sort of administrator wants to

02:30:53   deal with is having to teach people how to use their computer right like that that's that's that

02:30:58   that's awful and that's what Windows 8 kind of brought them and so Microsoft like there's nothing

02:31:05   more important to Windows.

02:31:07   I don't think it's more important

02:31:09   Microsoft because I don't think

02:31:10   Windows should be most important.

02:31:11   We need that later.

02:31:11   But there's nothing more important

02:31:13   to Windows than like laying

02:31:15   out like we've come

02:31:17   to our senses like this

02:31:18   is you can depend on us.

02:31:20   We're sorry about that.

02:31:22   This is something you can see and

02:31:23   believe in.

02:31:24   And that message needs to get out

02:31:26   and it needs to be pushed out.

02:31:27   Do you think it's do you think it's

02:31:28   fair? Do you think it's fair to

02:31:29   describe it as stop the bleeding?

02:31:31   Absolutely.

02:31:32   I mean, what I agree one

02:31:34   was stop the bleeding arguably, but that was more of a like a battlefield like

02:31:39   Like what's what's the thing where you wrap around your arm and like it it stanches the like the blood flow. Yeah. Yeah

02:31:46   Yeah, I know what you mean

02:31:48   Turquette turn it turn it turn it turn it turn it we're demonstrating our bad

02:31:54   Yeah, turn a kid. Yeah, I agree

02:31:58   And this is their way of saying look here's something that's new that we've been working on and that it's different and that we're proud

02:32:03   to say we think you're gonna like it. You know, here's us saying here's our vision for the future

02:32:07   and we think it goes along with what you want to hear from us. Now, I totally agree with that. I

02:32:13   even with the Chromebook front, my familiarity with Chromebooks is through my son and they have

02:32:17   a lot of them and it's most of the computing devices at a school that he gets to use their

02:32:21   Chromebooks. I mean, there's a mix. There's some MacBooks there too, but they don't get to touch

02:32:25   them much. And there's some iPads, but it's mostly when the kids do stuff on a computer, it's on

02:32:29   on Chromebooks. And it's interesting to me because he complains about them. And it's

02:32:33   not again, I've said this before many times, it's, if anything, he likes to tweak me not

02:32:38   please me. So he's not like, Pro Apple, because his dad writes about Apple, if anything, he

02:32:44   would love to complain about Apple. Just to get under my skin, he complains about the

02:32:48   Chromebooks because he just says they're pieces of junk. I think there's there's all Samsung's,

02:32:53   you know, just flimsy that he complains about the keys. And he says all his friends do too.

02:32:57   They all complain, they all want them replaced with Mac books.

02:33:00   And I thought it was interesting though, and then a couple weeks ago, he said they had

02:33:03   a big thing where they all got called together and like the lower school or middle school,

02:33:10   I guess he's in middle school now, the middle school principal called them together and

02:33:13   that one of the other fifth grade classes trashed a bunch of the Chromebooks.

02:33:17   Like you know, just way that fifth grade boys, probably the boys, let's face it.

02:33:23   And I was like, and I said to him, I said, you know what, that's why they make you guys

02:33:26   It's just a piece of crap Chromebooks instead of MacBooks

02:33:29   because you guys are rough with them.

02:33:30   You don't treat them like you would your own.

02:33:32   You treat them like school property.

02:33:34   But it made me think just in large sum,

02:33:37   there's a market for computers that an institution

02:33:42   chooses for you for other reasons,

02:33:44   and that may not be what you would wanna use yourself.

02:33:46   And that Microsoft owned that market, owned it 100%.

02:33:50   They had like 100% of that market,

02:33:52   of stuff that an institution of any kind,

02:33:54   whether it's a business, a corporation like a fortune 500 or a middle school or something like that and

02:34:00   Chromebooks are absolutely eating into that and it informs everything else because you know, what do they do on a Chromebook?

02:34:08   Well, they certainly don't use Microsoft Word, right? I mean, it's when they're typing stuff. It's in Google Docs

02:34:13   You know and so everything that falls out of that of them not buying

02:34:18   If they're gonna buy kids a bunch of piece of crap notebooks that can be used as beaters

02:34:24   Them being Chromebooks instead of being Windows machines

02:34:27   Has all sorts of repercussions other than just the licensing fee for Windows that they're not getting off the sale

02:34:33   Yeah, well, they don't they don't get used to office

02:34:35   I mean the reality is most people don't need office, but once you're used to it you're used to it and

02:34:40   That's super powerful. And yeah, it makes us shouldn't take it for granted

02:34:45   It's just one, you know schools is just one of them

02:34:50   I know but you know there's no doubt my mind knows two Chromebooks are a huge thing in education no no yeah

02:34:55   No, I mean the numbers reflect that um

02:34:57   Yeah, the Chromebook thing is frustrating because like I I actually genuinely like using it like if your stuff is a is actually all

02:35:05   In the cloud it's it's it's a delight to use in the way like an iPad is left full to use in that like there's just

02:35:11   No, there's no cruft right. There's no dealing with updates or like stuff popping up or like you know like

02:35:19   When you deal with OS X or Windows or anything there's just so much stuff that came before that's still hanging around for various reasons

02:35:26   Whereas with a Chromebook, it's it's just so it's it's an appliance

02:35:30   It's you turn it on and you type stuff in it, and then you put it away, and I that's why I like it

02:35:35   I don't like because it's cheap. I like it because it's so simple and

02:35:38   That's why I love the pixel because the pixel like I'm paying for

02:35:43   nominal hardware like the pixel is I can't I can't speak highly enough of it the

02:35:48   keyboard trackpad screen all

02:35:50   Apple quality if I put the keyboard above Apple actually

02:35:54   and

02:35:55   But the problem is is most people buy chroma because they're cheap. So there's no market for it

02:36:00   Which is which makes me very sad

02:36:03   Yeah, I wonder how many pixels probably not very money

02:36:06   I bet I bet that's another one that's old and I attempted to pull a

02:36:10   You and the Apple extended keyboard like I want to buy up a couple of them

02:36:13   I could keep I write like my daily updates where you know, which are more

02:36:18   Referential to current events and like I'm winking a lot

02:36:21   I'll do those I mostly write those on my Mac and multiple screens stuff like that

02:36:25   but like my big articles where they're more like

02:36:28   For lack of a better word like thought pieces or like like where I'm trying to articulate an argument

02:36:34   I almost always write that on those are almost all around the pixel and just because I love the environment, right?

02:36:39   There's nothing else going on and it's a great typing environment in the screen

02:36:43   gorgeous screen and like you just like get lost in your document and

02:36:48   So I still I still use it like at least weekly if not more

02:36:52   Yeah, I don't well

02:36:55   I don't think it's any coincidence that I mean there's that whole rise of you know

02:36:58   Like single window window user mode and text editors that are you know

02:37:02   Like by word and other ones that are meant to be distraction free and run, you know as a single window

02:37:09   But I think in general, no matter what app you use,

02:37:13   even if you don't use a single window user mode

02:37:15   or any kind of thing that's designed

02:37:20   to be distraction-free, writing on a laptop

02:37:24   is just inherently more distraction-free

02:37:27   than writing at a desktop with a big window,

02:37:29   where you can see much more.

02:37:30   - Yeah, not totally.

02:37:31   - It just feels more focused.

02:37:32   And there's no question.

02:37:34   You just hear it from people who write anything,

02:37:36   from novelists to journalists, you know, the biggest form to the quickest and shortest form,

02:37:43   you know, they just live and die by their...

02:37:46   Yeah, no, totally, totally. So the thing with Windows though is...

02:37:50   What I was most impressed by was actually at the very, very beginning, the part that you missed,

02:37:56   where they basically articulated the idea that Windows needed to be,

02:38:05   or you need to be personal.

02:38:07   And it wasn't about the device.

02:38:09   It was about the person.

02:38:10   The person should be able to go from device to device.

02:38:14   Like they're moving to where there's more devices than people.

02:38:16   And if you think about it, Microsoft has always been about the PC.

02:38:20   And that that's how their business model has been based on.

02:38:22   That's how their product development's been based on.

02:38:24   Like everything's been based on the device.

02:38:26   And but the world today is you have to focus on the person.

02:38:32   And so you have to have that.

02:38:34   And this was the Apple's doing too with continuity, all that sort of stuff is you need to have the seamless experience.

02:38:39   It's no longer enough to think about just OS X.

02:38:42   Like I love John Syracuse's conclusion to Yosemite.

02:38:46   He really articulated this well.

02:38:47   Like it's not that Apple is now developing disparate operating systems.

02:38:51   They're developing one system with various manifestations that need to work together and go across from wrist to laptop to desktop to phone to tablet.

02:39:04   And Microsoft articulated this as well.

02:39:05   And it's a bigger deal for Microsoft because Apple sells the actual hardware.

02:39:10   So this new world fits their business model.

02:39:13   It's actually even better for Apple because they can sell that many more devices.

02:39:16   For Microsoft, this is a big shift because it entails a change in everything that they do

02:39:23   and the way their companies put together and the way they make money.

02:39:25   And to hear them articulate it so clearly and succinctly was really encouraging.

02:39:31   And I guess my only complaint with the first part of the presentation,

02:39:39   the part that we both liked, was the only problem with it was that all the demos were

02:39:44   a PC and a Windows phone or a Windows tablet.

02:39:48   And that's just not the reality.

02:39:50   The reality is people, they needed to demo, I think, a Windows PC with an iPhone

02:39:55   or with an Android phone, because that's their customer.

02:39:57   And I just think they needed to double down on the PC.

02:40:00   And instead, they kind of distracted with this thing.

02:40:04   And then you had Nadella getting up and talking about,

02:40:06   we love Windows or we want people to love Windows.

02:40:09   It just kind of went off the rails.

02:40:11   - That's a hard sell though, to have them demo with iPhone.

02:40:15   And I know that part of it,

02:40:17   part of Microsoft certainly is more open to that.

02:40:19   I mean, you know, you could go back to last year

02:40:20   in the Build Conference where they had, you know,

02:40:22   me and Brent Simmons and Dave Whiskas come out

02:40:24   and featured in a product video for them

02:40:28   because Vesper uses the Windows Live Azure server stuff.

02:40:33   Azure.

02:40:35   And that's all very true,

02:40:38   but it's a hard sell in a Windows 10 focused event.

02:40:42   But it is interesting.

02:40:43   And I do think that in general sense that they,

02:40:46   it's just in an Apple like way

02:40:48   that they can only do so much year over year,

02:40:50   but that they're iterating.

02:40:51   And I feel like they're going in a very similar way

02:40:54   where like you said,

02:40:55   with Syracuse's conclusion of the Yosemite review,

02:40:57   that it's sort of one system with different interfaces

02:41:00   for the different devices.

02:41:02   And I kind of feel like they missed that with Windows 8,

02:41:06   where they kind of shipped everything

02:41:08   with this touch interface,

02:41:09   whether it was a touch device or not.

02:41:12   And it was really mostly, you know, I don't know,

02:41:15   just the overall tiled interface

02:41:17   just really did not work well, I think,

02:41:20   on laptops and certainly not on desktops.

02:41:23   And it was really just sort of a tablet/phone interface.

02:41:26   but now they've got, you know, it's more,

02:41:29   it's really, you know, really is the same Windows 10.

02:41:31   Like the whole thing with the apps, I think is fascinating.

02:41:34   And it shows how they're doing it

02:41:35   at like a higher level than Apple,

02:41:38   where there's not a desktop Windows app store

02:41:40   or not going to be for Windows 10 and a phone one.

02:41:43   Like if you get a Twitter app, it could be the same app

02:41:46   and it runs on your phone, it runs on your tablet,

02:41:49   it runs on your PC, but has very different interfaces.

02:41:52   Like when you're using it on your PC,

02:41:53   it won't be like you're running an iPhone app on your PC.

02:41:56   No, exactly it. I mean, I think I mean Marco had a had a kind of a discourse on on on

02:42:00   ATP a few weeks ago about what maybe always he gonna build overcast for the Mac and

02:42:05   In the Microsoft vision that wouldn't really be decision. He would already have it. He'd have to design a new interface. But like he

02:42:12   Right, right. It's a big step for him to write a Mac app. That wouldn't be the case

02:42:17   That wouldn't be the case for Windows

02:42:20   Yeah, and it's like I said earlier with Instagram where it in today's iOS world

02:42:25   If you do the stuff that's necessary to support the you know

02:42:29   the iPhone 5s size the iPhone 6 size F on 6 plus size going to the iPad is just a fourth size and

02:42:36   You know, that's sort of what they're doing with the window stuff and this isn't brand new

02:42:41   I mean that was a big part of the message that build last May was the way that you can build these

02:42:45   Universal apps that would run across a

02:42:48   Incredible, you know from TVs to phones

02:42:52   with

02:42:54   interfaces specific to those devices

02:42:56   You know that you could have the same app you could get it from the App Store and on the phone clearly

02:43:01   It's a touch space device where it's all based on touching the glass and on your TV

02:43:06   It's all based on using a remote control to go up down left, right?

02:43:10   The thing is though and this is the thing for for Microsoft and it's both like the the the problem and the opportunity is

02:43:16   the

02:43:17   this idea of moving from device to device

02:43:21   It's actually not it's not that much about the operating system

02:43:25   because all if you think about it like it's all it's all about the cloud like

02:43:31   And it's not it's not just about the cloud. It's about a whole bunch of clouds

02:43:36   So my Facebook is is the same everywhere because it's all in Facebook's cloud

02:43:41   My Twitter is the same everywhere my emails the same like a lot of the services

02:43:45   We already have are already in sync across devices because they're inherently kind of cloud based

02:43:51   And that's, I mean, that's, and so to, it's almost like to,

02:43:56   I'm gonna use the word, to over index

02:43:58   on the operating system being consistent is,

02:44:03   if you think about it, less important

02:44:05   than having that kind of service layer,

02:44:07   that that's the part that is actually consistent.

02:44:09   The cloud is consistent across all these devices.

02:44:11   And oh, by the way, that's,

02:44:13   Microsoft is doing really great stuff in the cloud.

02:44:16   And I do think that Nadela gets this.

02:44:20   it gets this there's a clear part of Microsoft that gets this and I think is still an opportunity to

02:44:25   the glue can still be better even on iOS on Android and and I think Microsoft is making

02:44:34   strong moves in that area and I don't know I mean yes it would have been a radical move

02:44:38   but I would have loved to like how powerful would have been to have Microsoft just fully

02:44:44   embrace the we are the best PC operating system screw the Mac screw the Chromebook I mean

02:44:50   obviously we can disagree or you can disagree, but like that's a fair position for them to take.

02:44:55   And we with our cloud, we work well with whatever device you bring, you know, along with it.

02:45:02   Right. Especially with Windows Phone, but whatever, you know, whatever you're using,

02:45:08   it'll work great with. Yeah. And I just I get Microsoft saying like, we like if you use all

02:45:14   Windows, it'll be the best because it is true. I mean, if you if you get everything from one

02:45:18   company you're likely to get a better experience but the problem is it's just not it's just not

02:45:23   reality and I just I don't know I'm a big fan of maybe it goes back to the Amazon thing like

02:45:29   you can live do you want to go with what's best for you or what is like the way that customers

02:45:35   actually live their lives yeah so I feel like the event should have I feel like the surface hub

02:45:41   Which is their big 84 inch 4k TV touchscreen?

02:45:45   Whiteboard

02:45:49   meeting

02:45:50   dingus, I

02:45:52   Feel like that that would have been a good way to end it

02:45:54   Right because that fits that and it wasn't distracting from the earlier message to me it emphasized the earlier message

02:46:00   Which is that Windows 10 runs on everything from this hold up a phone, right?

02:46:06   And even a big lumiophone even a big five and a half inch phone is tiny compared to a giant 84 inch TV

02:46:11   And I think it was a cool surprise because the TV had been right there showing slides the whole

02:46:17   Presentation, you know that this thing that they were announcing which was a surprise was right there in front of everybody

02:46:23   And it's not compelling to the enterprise but then it and like which is which is the part the market they really needed to

02:46:29   straight

02:46:31   Right, and it's you know, here's here's any you know, here's one thing where Microsoft can get out in front and you know

02:46:37   Apple doesn't sell anything like this. Google doesn't have anything like this. Nobody has anything like this, right? This is a product

02:46:42   that's not really like anything else and

02:46:45   Like you said there's a clear you can easily see how there's a lot of people that this week who are saying hey

02:46:51   We could use that

02:46:52   Right. We we could use that that would be good for us whether it's the whiteboard part or

02:46:58   the meeting part or both, you know, it's it's you could it's not like you have to jump through hoops to find a reason to

02:47:05   That you might want to buy it and then end it right there

02:47:09   Because I think that the HoloLens stuff not that they shouldn't have done it. I just save it for build, right?

02:47:14   Why not do that at build and have a cool fun thing?

02:47:17   You know, maybe they've got something else for a build too

02:47:19   But I don't know save that for build and let the Windows 10 event breathe for itself

02:47:24   I think it's a tricky it's a tricky comp

02:47:27   It's a tricky thing

02:47:29   Being one of those big companies where you've got a lot of stuff coming out throughout the year

02:47:32   How many events do you break them into you know, how much do you shoehorn into one keynote?

02:47:37   But I think they made a mistake by doing hollow

02:47:41   How about announcing how ends when it's Ellen's gonna ship in a month or it's a ship in two months

02:47:48   Yeah, I don't know and it also makes me a little skeptical like and and the people who got to play with it all raved

02:47:54   About the experience and so it doesn't seem like there's any kind of it's a real thing. Yeah

02:47:59   Yeah, it's it's you know

02:48:02   It's real technology and every I didn't see a single person who tried it who didn't give it a very positive response

02:48:08   But it's clearly prototype hardware

02:48:13   You know that the their promised shipping device is a thing with no cables

02:48:17   You just put its battery operated and you put it on your head and that's it. Whereas the thing that they let people try

02:48:23   Involved like a battery pack on your waist and a cable connecting the battery pack to the thing on your head

02:48:31   and they had to take

02:48:34   physical measurements of the distance between your pupils and then enter it by hand into the device whereas the

02:48:40   You know the shipping product is supposed to be you know

02:48:43   Like if you've got one and I try it on it's gonna the device itself will measure the pupil distance to calibrate itself

02:48:49   It's all very that's raises all sorts of reds offs hard I mine

02:48:56   Right. That's not a percent 100% it is that's the hard part and it's sort of

02:49:01   You know, of course, I'm gonna bring it back to Apple

02:49:05   But it's an interesting contrast with the watch where when they showed us the watch back in

02:49:11   October

02:49:14   Or I guess it was September right September was the watch

02:49:17   It was I mean they didn't say it's final hardware, but it was as close to final, you know

02:49:24   I'm sure there might be some tweaks or something like that

02:49:26   but it was you know, they were real the things they let us and they let us try them on our wrists and

02:49:31   You know, it's the same materials. There were stainless. They they were gold they were aluminum

02:49:37   All the bands were there. We got to play with the bands

02:49:40   And they just didn't let us see the software, you know, they just had the demo loop of the software

02:49:46   But the actual hardware was there. I mean, it's there's no

02:49:48   Trickery about it. That's interesting. Yeah, where it sounds like Microsoft had the software pretty nailed down, but not the hardware

02:49:56   Well, no, but they didn't really it wasn't it was the software was also a can't the software they took people through was yeah

02:50:02   It's all canned, you know, everybody got the same loop

02:50:04   Well, I mean and canned in a way where it wasn't just playing like with the watch

02:50:09   It really just played a loop and there was no interactivity at all

02:50:12   Whereas clearly this thing was actually I guess you moved your head was adjusting what you saw, you know

02:50:17   It was all but you know, the things that you did were very very limited

02:50:21   It was everybody got the same Minecraft game. Everybody got the same

02:50:25   You know a Skype call to how to hook up a little which I thought was the most compelling

02:50:31   Yeah, that's really cool. They did the demo they had it, you know in the in the product video

02:50:38   They showed somebody getting help doing some home plumbing repair in the thing that they gave to the journalists

02:50:44   It was a little bit of like it was like hooking up a light switch a little home electricity

02:50:47   and the idea is they had an expert electrician on the other end using Skype on a tablet who could see what you see through your

02:50:54   or HoloLens, and then he could annotate it

02:50:59   with his finger on the tablet by saying,

02:51:01   "Here, take this cable here,

02:51:02   "and then draw a little line on it,

02:51:05   "and hook this thing up to there, and do that."

02:51:08   Which is very compelling.

02:51:09   - It's not just compelling from a use perspective,

02:51:11   it's compelling from a product perspective,

02:51:13   'cause that's a platform.

02:51:15   You could see there being all kinds of services

02:51:17   being offered over this.

02:51:20   And it's an example of, I think,

02:51:22   in the long run, I'm more interested in augmented reality

02:51:26   than I'm in virtual reality.

02:51:27   Like I think, I mean, Oculus Rift looks amazing,

02:51:29   but to me, that's in the same vein as video games.

02:51:33   - It is video games.

02:51:35   I mean, I might not mean that to be dismissive

02:51:38   'cause I realize video games are an enormous industry.

02:51:41   You know, like Horace Dejude just posted a point

02:51:45   that the App Store is now paying developers more

02:51:50   than the box office receipts of Hollywood combined.

02:51:53   - In the US.

02:51:54   - And some people I linked, yeah,

02:51:56   and some people linked that and they're like, so what?

02:51:58   And I was like, well, it's not a huge,

02:51:59   it's not like a magic number.

02:52:00   It doesn't mean anything in particular.

02:52:02   It's just to just put it in context though.

02:52:04   Like we've all grown up knowing that Hollywood is Hollywood

02:52:07   and it's a big deal.

02:52:08   You know, the Apple App Store alone is now bigger than that.

02:52:11   - Yeah, but it's a destination.

02:52:14   It's a thing you go and do.

02:52:16   Whereas like what's so compelling about the smartphone

02:52:19   It's with you all the time in your actual real life and you can see like in like 10 years down the road

02:52:25   where the what Microsoft is doing is actually like a

02:52:29   normal pair of glasses like the thing with Google Glass is like the the the fundamental concept

02:52:35   I don't think was flawed just everything about the product execution was was horribly flawed

02:52:41   Right and and a lot of the the contrary feedback. I've gotten this week, you know

02:52:48   It's like well, how can you how can you say that this looks cool and you're you know?

02:52:52   Did nothing but shit all over Google Glass for two years and it's again

02:52:56   It's like I never I and I don't think anybody ever

02:52:59   Said that augmented reality is a goofy idea. That's never gonna take off

02:53:04   It was glass in particular everything about glass that the actual nature of how it was presented in their their proposal of how you'd use it

02:53:11   Right was it was wrong not the idea that augmented reality in general is bad. No

02:53:17   You know, I could see it I could see it multiple ways. I can see it where you know

02:53:21   obtrusive headsets like what you know hololens is going to be when it ships I

02:53:27   Mean, I you know, you look like Robocop looking on that's okay. Don't see I could see right, you know

02:53:33   There's all sorts of things you do at home that you wouldn't do in public that you look weird like being you know

02:53:40   Hunching your shoulders over a little video game controller is not something you would do while you know

02:53:47   you know, out in public. But, you know, while you're playing a game, it's fine.

02:53:50   If you think about something like what's the precursor to the iPhone? It's like it's like the iPod but from a

02:53:55   fundamental level they're very different products. The iPod was dependent on a PC.

02:54:00   The center of your existence was the PC, the digital hub, and the iPod lets you carry music with you.

02:54:05   Yet from a like a hardware perspective, the iPod very much led to the iPhone, you know,

02:54:11   the what Apple learned, miniaturization, battery technology, all that sort of stuff led to the iPhone.

02:54:16   And I think it's a similar thing here.

02:54:18   Right now it will start out as being something

02:54:20   you do at home.

02:54:21   You're not gonna wear this Robocop thing outside,

02:54:24   but Microsoft will develop the expertise

02:54:27   and like how to build this sort of stuff.

02:54:30   It'll get smaller.

02:54:31   And at some point they will be ready to make the shift,

02:54:35   to being something outside.

02:54:37   Whereas Google jumps straight to being outside

02:54:39   when the technology isn't even remotely close to being ready.

02:54:42   And that's why it was a mess.

02:54:46   - Yeah, and everything fell out of that.

02:54:47   Everything fell out of that,

02:54:48   because then by trying to make it small enough

02:54:50   that you'd even vaguely want to wear it

02:54:52   or be willing to wear it in public,

02:54:54   it was so technically limited that it wasn't compelling.

02:54:57   There was never anything about it

02:54:59   that was like a wow, holy crap.

02:55:02   Whereas also, you know,

02:55:03   that was more or less the response everybody had

02:55:05   who got to try on the HoloLens at the Microsoft event

02:55:08   was wow, holy crap.

02:55:08   - And this is what's so frustrating, right?

02:55:10   Like the HoloLens, it was genuinely compelling.

02:55:14   And it's compelling from a today perspective

02:55:17   and it's compelling from a 10 year from now perspective.

02:55:21   And it's just a shame that,

02:55:25   and so I guess they got the Halloween's benefit,

02:55:27   but I mean, why did it have to be at this event?

02:55:31   - That's exactly my point exactly.

02:55:35   I couldn't agree more.

02:55:36   And as the week has gone on

02:55:38   and I've seen what people have written about,

02:55:40   that was my initial reaction on day one.

02:55:42   And it's only been reaffirmed

02:55:44   because almost everything I've seen written since

02:55:47   has been about HoloLens, not about Windows 10.

02:55:48   - Yeah, and one, they needed to make points

02:55:52   about Windows 10 that like, this is Windows and chill out.

02:55:55   We've come to our senses.

02:55:56   And two, like the vision was compelling,

02:55:59   but no one's paying attention to it.

02:56:01   - Right, and it's a hard thing.

02:56:04   I know you're there.

02:56:04   I can see why they're excited about it,

02:56:06   and I can see why they might've been excited to announce it,

02:56:08   but I think you gotta hold that bullet for a little longer.

02:56:11   - Yeah.

02:56:12   And again, it's not that you have to wait

02:56:14   until it's ready to ship next week,

02:56:16   but it's just a little closer.

02:56:19   And they have an event coming up,

02:56:20   they have Build coming up in just a few months.

02:56:22   And I don't think there's anything that would have happened

02:56:24   in the next few months that would have made it

02:56:25   less of a cool thing to unveil there.

02:56:30   - Well, if anything, it'll be better.

02:56:32   - Right, I don't know, 'cause it would only be

02:56:34   further along.

02:56:35   Yeah, I can't help but think that they really wasted

02:56:39   an opportunity there and mistimed that.

02:56:41   distracted from what the cool

02:56:43   things they did have to announce

02:56:44   and, you know,

02:56:46   unveiled it too early.

02:56:48   It's kind of sad because it's

02:56:49   almost like a lack of confidence,

02:56:51   right? Like they weren't

02:56:52   confident in what they had to

02:56:54   announce or like their

02:56:56   status as a company.

02:56:58   I guess I can see where that comes

02:56:59   from, I guess. But like

02:57:00   they felt like they needed to juice

02:57:03   it up and...

02:57:04   They didn't need to.

02:57:05   Right. Yeah. Yeah. I kind of agree

02:57:07   with that. Yeah.

02:57:08   Otherwise, it was a pretty well run

02:57:11   event though. I do think that they're getting their act together on that front.

02:57:14   Yeah. I mean like, uh, like they started on like, it sounds stupid,

02:57:18   but they started on time. Uh, the presentations were tight,

02:57:21   the demos didn't fail. Um, like, and that's, that's,

02:57:25   that will, that stuff matters. And it wasn't the case even just a couple years.

02:57:31   Yeah. And it's, you know, I think that it's,

02:57:33   it's also a sign to me the whole event, even with them in my mind,

02:57:38   in your mind, the mistake of tossing HoloLens in two

02:57:42   as unnecessary icing on the cake

02:57:44   or distracting icing on the cake.

02:57:46   Even with it, it still felt like overall

02:57:49   like a new Microsoft, which I think they A, needed,

02:57:53   and B, that Nadella needed to assert in a public way

02:57:57   to make it feel like he is changing the course of this ship.

02:58:02   - Yeah, I love the frosting idea

02:58:05   'cause that's exactly what it was.

02:58:06   It's like, this is really good frosting,

02:58:08   It's a really good cake, but these they should go together. Yeah

02:58:10   you know and

02:58:13   What else I mean, I would say making Windows 10 free

02:58:17   I mean, they're calling it free a free upgrade for anybody running Windows 7 or 8 for the first year

02:58:22   I don't know why they tacked on that first year. Why not just say it's a free update for Windows 7 or 8 I

02:58:27   Guess the only thing I can think of is that they don't want people to wait they want people running Windows 7 and 8 to upgrade

02:58:33   within the first year, but

02:58:36   It just seems like a weird like asterisk to put on it

02:58:39   But the whole idea of it being free seems like post balmer Microsoft

02:58:43   well

02:58:45   Windows 8 was free for the first three months

02:58:47   If you had Windows 7, I believe

02:58:50   so they did do it before and the reality is is Microsoft makes the vast majority of the revenue either from enterprise licensing or

02:58:57   From new PC sold with Windows like only only like 10% of those revenue has ever come from people actually paying for upgrades

02:59:05   But that said it's still it still matters and it's meaningful and yeah the one year thing like

02:59:09   It's not just that but also they basically said anyone who buys a Windows 10 PC will get upgrades for the like

02:59:15   the life of the life of expected life of the PC and

02:59:19   It sounds like it's gonna be more of it's it really is more of a Apple sort of model like OS 10 today

02:59:26   Where you get it and you're gonna get upgrades and you're not gonna pay pay for those upgrades and that is a big deal

02:59:32   It's a shift. It's a shift to this the person being the center and

02:59:36   sort of sort of mindset that that that is a bigger shift for Microsoft than it is for Apple because it it requires changing how

02:59:43   They how they make money and and I kind of poo-pooed it on exponent this week

02:59:47   But I think you're right it is it is it is worth it is worth acknowledging

02:59:53   I think it's also it's even more worth acknowledging in a way that like the bugs in

02:59:57   Apple software that we've all been talking about this month are so much easier to complain about than the things that they

03:00:02   They do that are just work that are kind of amazing that they just work

03:00:06   and

03:00:09   You know, it's easy to take those things for granted. I think in Microsoft's case praise for hey, here's Windows 10

03:00:14   It's a free update for Windows 7 and 8 users is worth praising even more

03:00:18   So because of how complicated Windows pricing has been in the past, you know with the pro edition and pro enterprise edition

03:00:26   and you know eight different editions of the new version of Windows with you know,

03:00:32   just it boggled the mind and I feel like just saying well it's just Windows 10

03:00:37   and it's a free update for Windows 7 and 8 is such a you know it's it's deserving

03:00:41   of praise if it's as deserving of praise as their old strategy was deserving of

03:00:46   mockery yeah it's it's always the old strategy made a lot of money oh it

03:00:53   definitely did it in it was this but it was a salesperson strategy you know and

03:00:57   I feel like and it wasn't good for them in the long run it definitely made money

03:01:01   You know, there's, you know, bottom line, any discussion or complaints about Balmer's

03:01:06   leadership of Microsoft have to include the, "But it made a lot of money," and ever-increasing

03:01:12   amounts, you know.

03:01:14   But making your product line unnecessarily confusing, even if it's profitable, you know,

03:01:21   in the short term, I think it's detrimental to your branding in the long run.

03:01:26   Yeah.

03:01:27   What's fascinating for me to watch on Microsoft, though, and this is part of it, is it's we actually saw this with Adobe, like Adobe has fundamentally shifted how they make money from selling packaged software to selling like software as a service, basically.

03:01:43   And Microsoft is kind of going through the same transition.

03:01:46   And it's, and it's, I said this on the exponent this week,

03:01:50   like the thing about Microsoft

03:01:52   and you have to couch everything in this

03:01:54   is what you're witnessing with Microsoft

03:01:57   and all the criticism you wanna web against the company,

03:01:59   what they're going through

03:02:01   is the price of being so absurdly successful.

03:02:04   - Yeah.

03:02:04   - Like for every smidgen that Microsoft was less successful,

03:02:09   the easier their task would be today.

03:02:11   - Right.

03:02:12   - And so it's like,

03:02:14   It's a testament to how successful they were

03:02:17   that they're having to go through such wrenching changes now.

03:02:20   It's fascinating to watch.

03:02:26   Yeah, I was a little down on Adele's speech

03:02:28   and talk about Windows and stuff.

03:02:32   Now I think there might've been a political motive to it,

03:02:34   but it's pretty remarkable to see the shift in Microsoft

03:02:38   in just the last year.

03:02:40   - Yeah.

03:02:42   They needed to move fast.

03:02:44   They said they're gonna move fast,

03:02:46   but actions speak louder than words,

03:02:48   and I think their actions back it up.

03:02:49   So I think overall it was a very best event

03:02:53   I think Microsoft has had in a while,

03:02:55   even though I think it so could have easily been better

03:02:57   just by holding HoloLens.

03:03:00   - Yeah. - Just a little bit.

03:03:02   - Yeah.

03:03:04   It's gotta be frustrating for them

03:03:05   because it's not like it was bad.

03:03:09   It was just the wrong time and wrong place.

03:03:11   - All right, last question.

03:03:12   When do you think HoloLens is gonna ship, actually ship,

03:03:15   like a consumer, like something you can just go online

03:03:17   and buy and how much do you think it's gonna cost?

03:03:19   - I would guess late 2016 in limited supply

03:03:27   and it'll be hard to get.

03:03:28   And 'cause I think when they say Windows 10 timeframe,

03:03:32   that means like it's like when Windows 10

03:03:33   is like the product on the market,

03:03:35   it's not like when Windows 10 ships.

03:03:36   - Before Windows 11 ships, that's how I interpreted it.

03:03:40   - Right, exactly, exactly.

03:03:41   Although I do wonder if there will ever be a Windows 11.

03:03:44   Like are they one final borrowing from Apple.

03:03:50   The price, that's interesting.

03:03:53   $300, 299.

03:03:57   - Oh wow, I was thinking, I think 2016.

03:04:02   I think if I wanted to actually have to be honest,

03:04:06   I would have to say like you probably second half of 2016.

03:04:09   I was gonna say $1,000.

03:04:10   Yeah, that's possible. It was more a like are they going to like actually try to make

03:04:15   a like $1,000 would probably be the smart thing because I think it's important to nail

03:04:21   it. The 299 was more a like if they actually, I was thinking like connect, how much connect

03:04:27   cost?

03:04:28   I don't know though. I could be, I could see it being more, a lot more, I could see their

03:04:31   goal being making it a lot more consumer friendly, you know, three, $400. But I don't know. And

03:04:38   It's certainly, to me, and I know Apple only revealed

03:04:41   the starting price of Apple Watch,

03:04:43   but without releasing any suggestion of the price,

03:04:48   and I know, you know, part of it is that they don't know

03:04:50   because it's so far off,

03:04:51   but it opens themselves up to disappointment.

03:04:55   If you don't set any expectations at all,

03:04:57   it's very possible if it's above $500

03:05:01   that people are gonna be outraged.

03:05:02   - Yeah, that's true.

03:05:07   I wonder if Apple, once Apple Watch is really expensive

03:05:12   and if it is successful,

03:05:12   if that will kind of reset people's expectations.

03:05:17   Like there's so much, there's such a focus on being cheap

03:05:20   in the tech press in particular.

03:05:22   And I think it's misplaced.

03:05:25   I think that especially as you get

03:05:29   the more and more consumers that aren't,

03:05:33   that just want stuff to work.

03:05:34   Like there's a lot of people that are willing to pay

03:05:37   for not having a hassle.

03:05:40   And the reality is I think a lot of those people

03:05:43   who don't wanna have a hassle

03:05:45   have actually never really bought technology products

03:05:47   'cause they've only viewed technology products

03:05:49   as being a hassle.

03:05:50   But now they are buying,

03:05:52   they're buying smartphones anyway at a minimum.

03:05:55   And I think in this market of people who A, have money

03:06:00   and B, are not technical, Apple is particularly well placed.

03:06:04   and it'll be interesting to see if that ends up

03:06:07   being the case, not just for Apple,

03:06:10   but for other companies as well.

03:06:11   - Well, you know, I just think it's telling

03:06:15   that they gave away just the starting price, you know?

03:06:18   And okay, maybe, I'm sure, in fact, I guarantee it.

03:06:21   I don't care whether you pay attention to, you know,

03:06:23   like people like me and you

03:06:25   who've tried to set the expectation that,

03:06:27   hey, the gold one, the addition,

03:06:29   is probably gonna be several thousand dollars at least.

03:06:33   - Even if you've been paying attention,

03:06:36   there's a lot of people who I know who do not believe us.

03:06:39   And therefore, if we're correct,

03:06:41   are going to be disappointed

03:06:43   if they were hoping to buy the gold one.

03:06:45   And without question, there are millions of people

03:06:50   who've never heard of us

03:06:52   and have never read any sort of informed commentary on Apple

03:06:56   but who are aware of the Apple Watch

03:06:58   and who think, well, I like gold, I love my gold iPhone,

03:07:00   I'll get the gold watch.

03:07:02   and they're gonna be shocked as shit when they see the price.

03:07:05   But at the very least,

03:07:07   no matter how bad their reaction is on that,

03:07:09   there still is an Apple Watch that they can't afford

03:07:11   because it's at the $349 price

03:07:13   that Apple had already mentioned.

03:07:15   - Yeah.

03:07:16   It's gonna be interesting.

03:07:18   I remain very excited and intrigued

03:07:21   by the watch and how it goes down.

03:07:25   - Yeah. - Well, it's fun.

03:07:28   What are the reviews gonna be like?

03:07:29   What's it gonna be like to use it?

03:07:30   Like what are the sales?

03:07:31   Like there's just, new categories are always fun.

03:07:34   - If it's March, if it is March,

03:07:36   that'll be right around six months.

03:07:38   And that would be the second one,

03:07:39   the second major product that Apple's unveiled

03:07:41   with about six months of headway.

03:07:44   You know, the iPhone being the first back in 2007.

03:07:47   So if we're right, if you and I are right

03:07:49   about HoloLens being like over a year away

03:07:53   from coming to market, it'll be interesting to see

03:07:56   how that plays out.

03:07:57   You know, how much does,

03:08:00   Do other similar products come out in the meantime?

03:08:03   Do people lose interest?

03:08:05   Do people get angry when Christmas rolls around

03:08:07   and they still can't buy one

03:08:08   'cause everybody assumes 'cause they announced it

03:08:10   they're gonna be able to get one this year?

03:08:12   - I don't think anyone expects it this year,

03:08:15   which is kind of bailing. - Whoa, I don't know

03:08:17   about that.

03:08:18   I don't think anybody informed expects it.

03:08:20   I think that if you went out and polled a thousand people

03:08:24   who play Xbox games, you know,

03:08:27   do you think that, when do you think HoloLens is coming out?

03:08:29   I'll bet you'll get a lot of people who said this year

03:08:31   Because why else would they announce it? I think I don't think people think it through I think casual people just think well

03:08:36   They announced it it must be coming out later this year

03:08:38   Maybe I mean although the Xbox gamers probably I mean project Natal which I think was uh the Kinect I mean that that was demoed a

03:08:47   Long time before Kinect came out. Yeah people have short memories though. That's true. They're not very forgiving

03:08:54   Anyway, we can call it a show. Let's call it a show Ben Thompson

03:08:58   - Yeah, we just got started three hours,

03:09:01   and then minutes ago.

03:09:02   - My thanks to you, I super appreciate your time.

03:09:05   Anybody who wants to get more of your insight

03:09:07   can go to Stratechary.com.

03:09:11   - Stratechary, Stratechary.

03:09:12   - Stratechary.com.

03:09:14   - S-D-R-A-T-E-C-H-E-R-Y.com.

03:09:19   - Stratechary.

03:09:20   Tourniquet.com.

03:09:25   And anybody who enjoys hearing the dulcet tones of your voice

03:09:29   can also hear you on your regular podcast,

03:09:31   Exponent at exponent.fm with your co-host, James Allworth.

03:09:40   Good show.

03:09:41   Very good show.

03:09:44   You missed the obvious joke, though, that my pronunciation

03:09:46   is so bad that I couldn't even decide on the presentation

03:09:49   on my own site.

03:09:49   Yeah, well, we always mention that.

03:09:52   It looks good, especially when you see the tech in orange.

03:09:55   Yeah, I deserve it.

03:09:58   Yeah. We spent the whole show.

03:09:59   We didn't talk about my switch to all caps headlines on my link list items.

03:10:02   That's right. That's right.

03:10:04   You came out as a vocal proponent of even though everybody's-

03:10:07   Well, I'm a proponent of it because it's similar to my site,

03:10:11   like my non-main articles.

03:10:13   Well, actually all my articles are.

03:10:14   But I don't know.

03:10:15   For me, reading Daring Fireball,

03:10:20   I think I'm not sure I'm a fan.

03:10:22   I have to be totally honest.

03:10:23   Yeah. Well, we'll see.

03:10:25   We've got to give it a couple weeks to see.

03:10:27   >> Let her breathe.

03:10:28   >> Right. All right, I'm hitting stop.