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Author Horace Dediu

Asymcar #28 Meaningful

We await the Lamborghini SUV.

Source: Asymcar #28

The Critical Path #166: Glance

Horace and special guest Ben Bajarin of Creative Strategies discuss the Glance conference. They investigate the job of the Watch and touch on the changing responsibilities amongst the upper ranks at Apple.

Source: The Critical Path #166

The Critical Path #165: Audio Port

Horace and Anders discuss the iPhone analog audio port, the lightning port’s use by Apple Pencil and Apple’s viewpoint on privacy and the environment. Horace rounds the episode out with a definition of disruption.

Source: 5by5 | The Critical Path #165: Audio Port

Significant Contribution

In my quoting of the “Cook Doctrine” I cited the primary criteria for Apple to enter a new market:

We believe that we need to own and control the primary technologies behind the products we make, and participate only in markets where we can make a significant contribution.

These criteria, often repeated, were certainly in force when Apple chose to enter the watch market. Apple has sought and achieved a significant market share and did so while owning and controlling the primary technologies behind the product.

I now turn to the significant contribution criterion to study the possibility of Apple’s entry into the car industry.[1]

The significance test shifts the speculation from whether Apple would build a car, to how many cars is could build. Making a few cars is easy (see first commandment of The Entrant’s Guide to the Automotive Industry). Making lots of cars is hard and hence significance in the automotive market (as in watches and phones) means achieving some degree of adoption, a higher degree of usage and a very high degree of profitability.

So what does being significant in the car business mean? Does it mean becoming the next Tesla? The next BYD or the next VW? How quickly?

Fortunately, we have something to compare an Apple entry to. Apple has made a “significant” market entry in phones and others have made entries in cars. If we contrast the rate of growth of Tesla, EVs, and Hybrids[2] to the rate of growth of iPhones in their respective US markets, we obtain a test of significance:

Screen Shot 2016-01-04 at 12.38.39 PM

The graph shows the percent of sales for the alternative car technologies (and Tesla) vs. the percent of US phone users using iPhones (comScore). Here are the conclusions:

Notes:
  1. Control of the primary technologies behind the product is a topic for another post. []
  2. Of which Toyota has 70% to 80% share []

Asymcar #27

 

We consider the landscape that Apple’s purported Titan project will address in a few years time.

Horace discusses the pattern of disruption powered by Moore’s law. We turn to the transportation sector and consider the “reimagining” of the car. We further consider scenarios, from sustaining where the current players grow, to new entrant opportunities.

The conversation diverts a bit into the regulatory and taxation regime, specifically US road funding is largely tied to fuel taxes. We note the odd situation where an entry level car driver pays fuel taxes while a luxury Tesla driver does not.

We speculate on Apple’s possible “meaningful contribution” to transportation and the required product, customer experience, sales channel, price and financing options.

Source: Asymcar #27

The Critical Path #164: Rocky II

Horace and Anders discuss viewing Apple’s business as a recurring revenue model, then touch on the iPad Pro somewhat unsuccessfully and host a very special guest.

The Critical Path #164

See also:

Rocky II video
Full episode of the show with video where available. Main segment begins at 39:39

Source: The Critical Path #164

My Favorite Apple Watch Myths 

Apple Watch was released April 10th 2015. Eight months later we are holding the first Apple Watch conference. To kick off the discussion, here are my favorite myths about this new product:

Source: My Favorite Apple Watch Myths | Horace Dediu | LinkedIn

Apple Watch Keeps Top Gift Spot Ahead Of Black Friday

The Apple Watch continues to hold the top spot among products that will be hot this holiday season, as predicted by the IBM Trend app.

Source: Apple Watch Keeps Top Gift Spot Ahead Of Black Friday

The Apple Watch scored 100 out of 100 on the “IBM Watson Trend Scale”. According to various surveys, about 100 million people will shop this Thanksgiving weekend in the US. One wonders how many purchases by 100 million shoppers merit a score of 100/100.

My estimate for units shipped has been 20 million in the first calendar year. About 7 million have been sold in the first two quarters. That leaves 13 for the holiday and Q1 (which includes Chinese New Year.) I still like these odds.

To learn more about the reasoning around this estimate and hear additional supporting data, join us at Glance conference.

My review of the Apple Pencil

Apple Pencil Review thumb

Glance: A Deep Look at Apple Watch

Bernard Desarnauts had a great idea a few weeks ago: the world needs an event to discuss Apple Watch. After recovering from the shock of not thinking of it first and then from the shock that nobody else had either, I immediately agreed and along with Ben Bajarin and Farshad Nayeri, we quickly rallied to organize and anchor this event: Glance: A Deep Look at Apple Watch.

We had some big questions to answer:

  • What is the strategy for Apple Watch? Is it an object of beauty and desire, placing Apple in the “luxury sector” or is it a computer infiltrating what is otherwise a technology-free zone with utility in an asymmetric attack?
  • How can developers discover the killer jobs to be done? Beyond tentpoles what will the primary reasons people will use the watch? What does the data tell us so far? What can be observed from interviews?
  • Given the sales performance to date, what can we expect from the product? What is the addressable market? What will be the installed base? How quickly will it grow?
  • What is the platform strategy, especially with the cadence of OS releases? Is Apple treating this as a separate platform? Will it eventually become independent of the iPhone as the iPhone cast off its dependence on the Mac/PC?
  • What is the hardware strategy? What are the constraints from manufacturing, materials, battery life and screen space? What will be the replacement schedule? What is the role of modular internal designs?

We realized that we did not have the answers. So we recruited a great cast of participants to help us:

  • Bob Moesta, the founder and developer of the theory of jobs-to-be-done marketing agreed to do a live interview to understand what jobs watches, and in particular Apple Watches, are hired to do.
  • Josh Clark, the premier UX designer who wrote Designing for Touch will explore the question of user experience in glanceable space.
  • Liza Kindred is considered the top expert on fashion tech–she’s writing the book on the future of commerce–brings keen understanding of wearables.
  • Abdel Ibrahim the most prominent blogger and writer on the topic of Apple Watch. Has forgotten more about the Apple Watch than you will ever learn.
  • Carolina Milanesi one of the most respected technology market analysts, now at Kantar and often quoted on all things Apple.
  • Greg Koenig, product designer at Atomic Delights will educate us on the atoms that make up the Watch.

Investors who will participate in panel conversations:

Special guest: Jean-Louis Gassée, former head of Apple Engineering, current VC and everything in-between will have a fireside chat with Tim Bajarin Legendary technology analyst who has been around long enough to see furthest ahead.

We will explore Apple Watch as a very curious interaction between form and function, luxury and utility, exclusivity and ubiquity, tiny screens and big audiences, short attention spans, big data.

We have developers, designers, investors, marketers and analysts contributing to what could be the biggest leap in computing since the smartphone.

If you are interesting in becoming one of the innovators on this newest of platforms or planning a strategy to invest, or even (actually especially) if you are a skeptic, you can’t miss this conference.

Join us for Glance, a deep look at Apple Watch, downtown San Francisco, December 10, 2015.

Early bird pricing is $495.

If you miss early bird, and you’re an Asymco reader, there is still a 30% discount.