Last week was busier than usual in the tech world – that says a lot.
Elon Musk was sued by Twitter for completing a deal he initially didn’t want; Some influential people are falsely accusing Qualcomm of Apple’s inability to implement 5G; And Netflix partnered with Microsoft instead of Google or Comcast for ad-generated content.
Let’s walk through some of this apparent madness and see what’s going on.
We’ll close with our product of the week, a new smartwatch for Android using Qualcomm technology that gives the market-leading Apple Watch a run for the money at a reasonable price.
Kasturi-Twitter: There will be another wedding from Hell
Elon Musk never made sense to acquire Twitter, no matter which side you’re on.
Musk already manages several tough companies, has little to no media experience, and Twitter is a fixer-upper, meaning anyone running it has to exclusively project the firm to turn it around. will need to focus. Musk can’t do that.
From Twitter’s perspective, Musk hated the current management team, policies, and critical staff prior to taking over the company, meaning that his tenure as CEO would not only cost a lot of people their jobs, but that He will try to bring back any past. compensation to top management
On top of that, Musk was reportedly abusive to some members of that staff, some of whom are part of protected groups, making him a potential HR nightmare. It has also recently been revealed that she had impregnated a subordinate which would normally be a termination-level offense at a company like Twitter.
Add to that the fact that Tesla buyers were jumping ship because of Musk’s Twitter acquisition effort, and the SEC was anything but happy, the acquisition seemed like a train wreck in slow motion. Much of the loss to Twitter, including its inability to retain or acquire significant staff, as well as a troubling reduction in revenue as advertisers begin to question the company’s future, is unprecedented.
Now that he has seriously damaged Twitter, Musk no longer wants to buy it. Given the shape Twitter is in now, I can’t blame it for going away. However, it appears he has done too much of that damage, nor can I blame the Twitter board for taking Musk to court.
Ultimately it highlights the need for better protection and control over CEOs to keep them off the rails and cripple companies that would have been viable otherwise – and to better protect employees and investors from avoidable disastrous consequences.
Qualcomm-Apple: Let’s Play ‘Who’s the Bully?’
I was on an analyst call last week, during which Apple was called again for threatening Qualcomm.
With resources of an magnitude greater than those of Qualcomm, Apple supporters keep trying to convince the courts and regulators to try and convince them that they are the victims and that Qualcomm is the bully.
This latest effort argues that two Qualcomm patents are preventing Apple from building a viable 5G modem, even though it is highly likely that it was caused by Intel’s process of acquiring a failed modem attempt and a subset of those employees who were running it unsuccessfully.
I equate it to getting a losing racing team and then screaming that the winners were taking an unfair advantage because you can’t win. Maybe if you had bought a winning team and then didn’t break it?
Oddly, not only do the two patents have nothing to do with the 5G effort, but Apple has a Qualcomm license, so it should be able to use them without penalty.
Typically, when you have a design that infringes another firm’s patent, you either obtain a license from the firm that has the patent, or you get a legal solution. Apple is licensing but claims the small price (usually under $10 per iPhone) is too high, even though it’s clear that their workarounds are even more expensive.
Situations like this prove that licensing is a good value because it’s a lot cheaper than reinventing the technology. Still, instead of acknowledging that Qualcomm gave Apple a pretty decent licensing deal, Apple supporters argue that Apple should be able to set Qualcomm’s prices. This is despite the fact that Apple’s own pricing model is considered premium and contributes to profits that drive Apple’s valuation far higher than Qualcomm’s.
Apple continues to lose this battle in court – but apparently it thinks bullying is something it deserves – so I really doubt it will be good for the company as a result.
Netflix-Microsoft: Why not Google or Comcast?
Netflix is in trouble because it didn’t anticipate that many, if not most, of its major content suppliers, notably Disney, would choose to move away from the platform and go it alone. This should come as no surprise as we have been talking about arbitration since the beginning of the Internet.
If Netflix had most of its content, it would have prevented those other providers from snatching Netflix from their customers, which is exactly what happened. To address the related revenue shortfall, Netflix is going after symptom of the problem (revenue shortfall) by partnering with Microsoft: a company that understands setting up a digital store for both products and services.
Both Google and Comcast, which have similar services, could have helped. But those “similar services” are Netflix’s competitors, so using one of them is advisable. In addition, Google and especially Comcast do not partner that well and Microsoft has made partnerships as a significant competitive advantage. This advantage only strengthened under the leadership of CEO Satya Nadella, a huge open source and partnership advocate.
While Netflix isn’t going straight because of its problem (lack of strong content ownership) just yet, this move, assuming it’s successful, should improve revenue and profits that will help it acquire and keep more content providers. Will eventually fix the underlying crisis.
However, to avoid history repeating itself, Netflix needs to understand its mistake, which is the firm needing to control what it sells. Otherwise, those who control it are likely to make the company redundant.
Musk’s bid to buy Twitter meant nothing to either side, and abuse of that company should come with penalties, as he nearly destroyed it in an effort that was likely to be disastrous for both parties. Was.
Apple keeps threatening Qualcomm. If it were me, I wouldn’t do business with that company because of abuse alone. But the courts continue to do the right thing by supporting the abusing party Qualcomm.
Ultimately, while Netflix doesn’t understand the problems associated with not owning more of its most popular content, it is selecting a partner to help fix the revenue side of the issue. It chose wisely by partnering with Microsoft which is a better partner than other potential alternatives and would not use the information gained from the deal to harm Netflix. Even so, Netflix will still need to fix the main problem: reassuring that no one can walk away with important content in the future.
Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra GPS
I keep looking for a smartwatch that is better than the Apple Watch and I keep missing. That’s because Apple does a great job of integrating its smartwatch and phone while Android doesn’t seem to compete on the side.
By far the top Apple Watch competitor is the new TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra GPS which is by far the best Android-based watch I’ve tested. Using Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon Wear 4100 platform and Google’s Wear OS for smartwatches, this watch is impressive.
What does it do better than the Apple Watch?
This list is short because I can only point to two things, but the first thing is big. The TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra GPS has two overlapping screens. One is a full-color OLED, but the other is a very low-power FSTN screen that potentially offers up to a week of battery life. That’s a lot longer than any Apple Watch I’ve seen so far.
It’s not that big, but important nonetheless, this watch is round like most watches on the market, not square to your wrist like the iPad mini. I like a watch that looks like a clock and not a small TV screen.
The software is now down-level. It should be Wear OS 3, but for now only uses version 2.36 (I understand there is an upgrade coming in a few months). The watch is still fast, however, and has a few dedicated apps that manage your health, pulse, oxygen levels, breathing, rest, hearing, and sleep.
I especially like how quickly you can configure this TicWatch to take a walk or run. It has both a microphone and a speaker which are important for the phone I have – the Microsoft Surface Duo 2 which sounds great but is awkward to hold your face in during calls.
Mobvoi has done a good job with this watch and at its suggested retail price of $299, it’s not a bad deal. While I can hardly wait for an update to Google Wear OS 3, the latest TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra GPS is a great alternative to the Apple Watch for those of us who don’t use iPhones — and it’s my product of the week Is.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ECT News Network.