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Google

Smartphone Margin Decreases versus Beats by Dr. Dre

August 16, 2012

Recently I touched upon some of the differences between the automobile and tech spaces and in the past I have mentioned how Apple’s ability to price its products without discounting implies a stronger brand and moreover helps it sell in its retail stores which offer the same prices as online.

This doesn’t mean that Apple can sit still because we can expect an almost infinite supply of focused competitors.

Sure, many of them like RIM and Nokia are in decline and are retooling their product lines almost perpetually to become competitive. But beyond these examples we also have a slew of Japanese consumer electronics companies who have seen the golden age of TV come and go… Now they are focusing on exporting mobile devices to make a living.

In Order to Compete with Apple, You Need to BE Apple

July 30, 2012

The idea that Google, a company with an incredible business model, allowing them to potentially profit off every query they process on the web had to go out and buy a hardware company to get into manufacturing would have been unthinkable before the launch of the iPhone and iTunes App Store.

Consider the facts - since the launch of the iPhone in January of 2007, Apple stock has increased by just under 600% while Google has increased by about a paltry 20% in comparison. Click on the chart below to see the details for yourself. 



But lo and behold, we are now comfortable with Google in the hardware market and Microsoft has even launched its own Surface tablet.

Apple in NYC Makes Offers You Can't Refuse

July 30, 2012

Is it better to have an Apple store in your mall which doesn’t share revenue or not have them at all?

This seems to be the important question the MTA had to contend with in the months leading up to Apple becoming the winning bidder for a prime location in Grand Central Station.

Apple under Steve Jobs and Tim Cook, the company had a reputation for being great negotiators. And this won’t change after the details of Apple’s Grand Central Station store in New York emerge.

Can Discounted Hardware Compete with Apple?

July 10, 2012

Microsoft Store in Danbury, CT


Global Apple stores are brimming with traffic with municipalities tripping over each other to get Apple to open stores in their areas. At the same time, the Microsoft Store in the Danbury Fair Mall in Connecticut had a fraction of the foot traffic of the nearby Apple Store this past weekend according to fellow TMC blogger Tom Keating. The good news for Steve Ballmer is Tom likes the layout of the Microsoft store better. These are his exact thoughts:


My next thought was, "It's better." The Apple Store has this clean simplistic design with lots of white and clear plastic, but it lacks the fun factor and has this almost cold, hospital, sterile-like atmosphere.

It's Time for Apple to Allow Default iOS Browser Choice

June 29, 2012

Google’s Chrome browser was released for iOS today and it is getting good reviews. After becoming the leading desktop browser it has also become the number one free app on the iTunes App Store. But there are two big problems for Chrome running on Apple’s mobile devices. First of all the browser is slower than Safari because Apple doesn’t allow other developers access to its Nitro Java engine.

Nexus Q: Google's Lateral Move into the Home Entertainment Ecosystem

June 28, 2012

There has been massive speculation regarding Google’s decision to purchase Motorola Mobility. Many, including the author believed this move was primarily driven by patents but it is becoming clear that even if this was the case, the search leader has looked to Cupertino as a guide and decided it too needs to be a hardware company building out ecosystems. Yes, Google, a company which makes most of its revenue via auctioning ads - having no brick and mortar stores, is getting beaten in terms of market cap and sales growth by Apple, a company which relies on malls and physical stores for a good part of its revenue.

Google obviously thinks it can take Apple on and while most of the tech sphere is focusing on the company’s Nexus 7 tablet, I find it only mildly interesting.

Surface Tablet: Microsoft's Desktop Hail Mary

June 19, 2012

If you are Steve Ballmer, going to the mall and walking by an Apple Store loaded with people buying tablets, music players and phones which don’t run his software has to be as pleasurable as preparing for a colonoscopy. He further has to hate the fact this once left-for-dead enterprise not only has a larger market cap than Microsoft, it has helped usher in what many people call the post-PC era. That one’s really gotta hurt.

Even Google is doing hardware

US Content Removals to Google Increase by 103%

June 18, 2012

Google's senior policy analyst, Dorothy Chou recently warned us about internet censorship coming from Western democracies. Sure, we are used to hearing about censorship in parts of the world where there is an authoritarian regime in but this news is a new concern which should be taken seriously in democratic societies.

Of note, the US content removal requests increased by 103% including alleged defamatory comments aimed at law enforcement officials in a personal capacity. Google for its part complies with some of these requests based on local laws and its own policies against things like hate speech.

Analysts: Windows 8 Confusing to use

June 7, 2012

In the late nineties I was fortunate enough to meet tech veteran John Dvorak and a while later he was good enough to be a keynote speaker for a TMC event CTI Expo in San Jose. In case you aren’t aware I was the conference chairman of the show and ITEXPO spun out of this event a few years later. John was a compelling speaker, passionate and much of his content revolved around problems at Microsoft. The audience ate it up. Of course Microsoft execs were in the audience so there was some awkwardness between me and them when the keynote concluded.

Attention Social, App and Search users, YOU are the Product

May 30, 2012

Original image from Shutterstock

A little understood notion is that for those people using free services and apps, you are the product and generally speaking the advertiser is the customer. The exception is when no ads are shown and confidential information isn’t disclosed to third parties but instead the provider of the service gives away a free version in the hopes of getting users to upgrade to a paid one.

Recently the Wall Street Journal ran an opinion piece where they suggested that the EU lay off of its antitrust investigation into Google because the search service used by 90% of Europeans is helping consumers.

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