Horace interviews Dan Benjamin on the motivation, basis of competition and trajectory of the 5by5 network. By studying where podcasting came from and where it’s going we provide proof of existence of disruption in “big media”.
via 5by5 | The Critical Path #16: The Existence Proof.
Turning the tables in more ways than one.
Tomi Ahonen has compiled a fascinating data set on 42 major countries’ smartphone penetration rates. The compilation is based on Netsize Guide, Informa, Google and Ipsos data. It is a complex sample with multiple possible sources of error (read the post for the caveats.) However, this is a breakthrough. It’s the first time I’ve seen this level of detail at a country level in the public domain.
I maintain visualizations of ITU data which shows overall mobile consumption and broadband consumption and penetration. In order to maintain a consistent basis of comparison, I prefer to use ITU’s measure of consumption which is “subscriptions” rather than “population”. The ITU derives this measure because mobile operators think of points of connection (subs) rather than people as the measure of consumption. This makes some sense because connections are what are monetized–not people.
So the first piece of analysis is to show this measure of penetration (smartphones as a percent of subscriptions) for the 42 sampled countries.
This view shows which countries “lead” adoption in terms of penetration. It shows that the US is quite high in the ranking and the most penetrated “large” country.
This is highlighted by the following chart which shows penetration of smartphones vs. total subscriptions with bubble size representing population size.
With this interview, we begin a journey into the world of entertainment and the forces that are re-shaping what most of the world hires daily for recreation. We will talk to actors, writers, producers, distributors, and media execs. We’ll get perspective on what I expect will be a big year for television in 2012 and prepare for the new era to follow.
In this episode I talk to actor Hoon Lee about the challenges of disruption in the creative arts, and theater in particular.
5by5 | The Critical Path #15: The Theater of Disruption.
- Soon to be the voice of Master Splinter on the to-be-re-released Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles TV series. More about Hoon here: IMDb.
- Read more here: Building identity – Hoon Lee: a black sheep because he was artistically inclined
Guessing the next Apple product has become the parlor game of choice for a whole generation of technology journalists and analysts. The premise of the game is that given a track record of breakthrough products, there is always another one just around the corner. Being the one to predict this next breakthrough product creates credibility and demonstrates the domain knowledge of the predictor. If the prediction fails to materialize there is consolation in dismissing the actual announced product as disappointing, unsophisticated or, worst of all, uninteresting.
Most often, these guesses are as much a reflection of the analyst as they are an analysis of the company. Too many predictions are designed to impress or demonstrate the imagination or knowledge of the predictor. They typically anticipate a giant leap of functionality, power or market re-structuring. They envision revolution not evolution; a cutting of the Gordian knot not a polishing of ugly rocks.
Yet nearly all of Apple’s launches have been sustaining improvements in existing products, technologies or platforms. To name just a few:
As the chart below shows, the last quarter (third calendar, fourth fiscal 2011) was slow with only 52% earnings growth. The discussion centered on the (surprisingly) disruptive effect of the iPhone transition. Surprising since most analysts, myself included, were lulled into thinking that the portfolio of iPhones and their wider distribution would create a smoother sales pattern vis-a-vis the more cyclical pattern seen in the first three years of production.
The second quarter was surprisingly strong and the third was surprisingly weak. So how do we estimate the fourth?