Apple Really Only Does Two Things

Behind the big facade of their website, apps and very attractive stores what Apple does, and does better than all the other tech companies is two things. And only two things. They build hardware that everyone, including their competition, drools over. And they retail what they make.

Sure you can talk about their developer programs. You can talk about how they have a platform to sell apps, music, movies and television content, or how they provide a route for universities to share lectures, and others to deliver podcasts, but at the end of the day all that "content" does is drive more sales of hardware. And all that hardware drives more people into the Apple Store or to the online version.

This very binary approach is pretty much what built many industries in the USA. Take the automotive industry. They make cars and trucks. They sell them. Everything else they do is designed to support either one part of the business or the other. Airlines are the same. They fly planes and sell seats and cargo space. In many ways, Apple eliminated the computer store, while airlines have done a pretty good job at eliminating the travel agent and are on their way to get rid of more middlemen each year.

Now, let's compare Apple to the banking industry. The latter has expanded into so many different sectors that they have to have lawyers just to make sure they're not doing anything wrong, or to help get them out of trouble with one regulatory body or the other. It used to be banks did two things. Took deposits and disbursed your money. Then they got into lending. Then brokerage, then all kinds of "financial services." As they did they got deeper and deeper into the debacle of the last decade. 

If you think this binary approach doesn't work just look at Domino's Pizza whose stock is outperforming Google and others. Domino's does two things. They franchise/operate pizza parlors. They deliver pizza.  And everything they do, supports either operating a pizzeria more efficiently, or delivering a pizza.

Binary works.


Collaborating Better

Long time peer and friend in the collaboration sector, David Coleman, best known for his Collaborative Strategies consultancy, has launched a new website, CollaboratingBetter.com.

David is filling a few gaps in the collaboration sector with both news and insight, but it'z his testing platform that has me excited. With it he will help buyers understand which service is better and why, as well as assist companies in validating their claims.

Two big hits are the real time Collaboration Tools database is a dynamite resource and not found elsewhere all in one place. Think of it as Product Hunt for Collaboration services. So is the Collaborative Calendaring-Scheduling Tools database.

As with any new website, it's clearly a work in progress, but in a sector that is so much a part of everyday business these days, but only thinly covered with any depth on a regular basis, David's new site, and his own personal perspective, is one to keep on your daily reading list.


The Comunicano for Friday March 17 2017

 
MARCH 17 - ISSUE #45
Andy Abramson
 Happy St. Patricks Day…are you green yet? So to not delay things, like green beer, a shot of Irish whiskey and more, let’s get on with the news, in today’s COMUNICANO.
 

Here's why Irish entrepreneurs' eyes are smiling on St. Patrick's Day
Google Watch
G Suite Update Alerts: Improving video file attachments in Gmail with video streaming
Google reduces JPEG file size by 35%
Amazon Watch
Alexa on iOS: Siri's Not Even the Best iPhone Assistant Anymore
Amazon puts Alexa inside its main iPhone app
Amazon invades smartphones in war over voice-controlled computing
Media Watch
YouTube makes its biggest e-sports bet with FACEIT streaming deal
Report: Spotify considers restricting biggest releases to paid users as it renegotiates royalties w/ labels
Netflix Ratings System Changed From Stars to Thumbs
Comcast’s X1 leads cable video resurgence, even as cord-cutting reached an all-time high of 795K in 2016
In Motion Watch
Sleepy Behind the Wheel? Some Cars Can Tell
To avoid the high cost of car ownership Singaporeans are gigging as Uber drivers with rented cars
LimeBike Raises $12M From Andreessen To Solve The 'Last Mile' Problem
Amex GBT Launches Automated Air Rebooking Tool
Odds & Ends
Jessica Alba’s Honest Company is replacing its CEO after a sale to Unilever fell through
AT&T Blocking Facetime Over Cellular on the New GoPhone Unlimited Plan | Prepaid Phone News

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The Comunicano for Wednesday March 8 2017

MARCH 8 - ISSUE #38
Andy Abramson
 
Wednesday…HumpDay….middle of the week. Video is the news today. Actually immersive VR based video is in the news….The British Are Coming..well going over the top ( OTT)… Google makes a buy, Shazamthinks sale. 8X8 messages about a buy…Those stories, and LOTS, LOTS more….in today’s COMUNICANO!

Video Watch
CNN launches a virtual reality news unit
BBC and ITV’s BritBox Launches With ‘Prime Suspect,’ ‘AbFab’
Vimeo now supports 360-degree video
Buy or Sell Watch
Shazam CEO: Company could be acquisition target now that it's profitable
What 8x8's Sameroom acquisition says about cross-platform collaboration
8x8 Bridges Messaging Islands
Google is acquiring data science community Kaggle
Uber Watch
Actually, Uber’s PR disasters aren’t that great for Lyft
Lyft offers ride hailing for developers to use in their apps
Legal Watch
171 Groups Urge FCC, Congress to Protect Net Neutrality
Amazon gives up fight for Alexa’s First Amendment rights after defendant hands over data
Biz Watch
Apple’s enterprise success: Mac and iOS usage is climbing fast
This Is The Stunning Number Of Small Businesses That Have Turned Their Backs On Technology
Qatar Airways unveils new business class product
Odds & Ends
Telcos feed growing Aussie appetite for data downloads
Disney scraps free digital downloads with Australian Blu-rays
Local firm rolls out online translation service for multiple Asian languages

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The COMUNICANO for Thursday March 2 2017

 
 
MARCH 2 - ISSUE #34
Andy Abramson
 
 
Yahoo is on its way to being part of Verizon, but the soap opera in Sunnyvale seems to find a way to continue. And, the media, which now enjoys exposing errors made in Silicon Valley because the CEO’s and founders who want to be positioned as “rock stars” are going to be paying the price. People, not products and services, have become the news stories of late. It’s time for a media reset as it’s the product or service that the market eventually uses to decide a company’s fate.

On the subject of services, Facebook, is showing a very socially responsible side, has added a feature to help prevent suicide. As someone who has a friend actively involved in suicide prevention this is awesome news and follows the “safe check in” approach that FB likes to promote in times of disaster.

In other news Netflix is doing more and more with Artificial Intelligence (AI) while YouTube seeks to be Cable 2.0 but better.  Facebook adds an Apple TV app, Spotify goes Higher Fi, Medium goes Snap. All those stories and more are in today’s COMUNICANO.

Yahoo’s head lawyer is taking the fall for its hacking, while CEO Marissa Mayer is getting her pay docked
Yahoo cookie hacks affected 32 million accounts, CEO foregoes bonus
Snap Watch
Snap IPO Values Photo-Chat App Maker at Twice Facebook’s Worth
SEC advisory committee to question Snap's transparency for investors
OTT Watch
Cord-cutting pace quickens
Netflix uses AI in its new codec to compress video scene by scene
YouTube TV needs to nail technical performance
Launch Watch
Facebook Launches Video App for Apple TV
Spotify is preparing to launch a Hi-Fi music tier
Medium Launches Series: Snapchat Stories, But for Medium
Octane AI opens to the public, launches Convos feature to bring blog posts into Messenger
Allo now makes it easier to bring Google Assistant into conversations - The Verge
Odds & Ends
Why We Embrace Team Turnover

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Google Voice on Your Pixel

I've had a Google Fi Pixel for a few months now, but one of my key use cases of any mobile phone is reachability. With DialPad my phone can ring either in the app or to the phone, depending how I have it set up, but I tend to prefer the app, as I'm usually in WiFi or LTE environments. With GoogleVoice, you can't set a Google Fi number up as a destination. But there is a way around it.

Go into the Hangouts app and turn it on to receive calls. Set up Hangouts to ring accept incoming calls on your Pixel. Now your calls to your GoogleVoice number will ring on the Pixel. What I can't do is send SMS's or originate calls from Google Voice on my Pixel so it's still not perfect but at least the calls to me can now be answered on the Pixel...I'll take that as a half victory.


The COMUNICANO for Thursday February 23 2017

 
 
FEBRUARY 23 - ISSUE #29
Andy Abramson
 
 
Getting Quoted…and getting quoted regularly are two different things. So far this year I’ve been quoted three times. Last year over 40. Like the number of exits Comunicano has been involved in, now 42, this isn’t luck, chance or accidental. It’s all about having insight, perspective and opinion on subjects, and having the ability to articulate the answer so it’s reporter educational and friendly. 
So the first story about the fastest way through some airports, CLEAR, has my quote, but the background provided to the reporter is there too…that’s how you GET QUOTED…There’s also news about Amazon getting in some hot water, Facebook trying to play nice, faster mobile in the USA, Twitter getting more “personal”, Lyft adding more cities and more news you need to know, so now onto the news in today’s COMUNICANO.

Travel Watch
Now you can go through MSP airport security with a fingerprint or iris scan
Norwegian Air steps up transatlantic pressure with $65 fares| Reuters
Media Watch
Facebook Is Trying To Smooth Over Relationships With The Media
Amazon Watch
What 'Chime' is it? Amazon sued over name of its new online conferencing technology
Amazon resists US demands to hand over Echo audio in murder case
Ridesharing Watch
Google’s Waze Plans Expansion of Ride-Sharing Service
Lyft launches in 54 new cities, while Uber does damage control
Wireless Watch
T-Mobile Continues to Boost Capacity for Customers with LTE-U Launching in Spring 2017
GE, Intel, AT&T team up to put cameras, mics in San Diego
Why I am not going to buy a cellphone
Odds & Ends
Google's Perspective API Opens Up Its Troll-Fighting AI
Twitter tweaks direct messages for brands so they sound more human
How Peter Thiel’s Palantir Helped the NSA Spy on the Whole World
How leaders of 9 billion-dollar companies stay productive

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The Comunicano for Wednesday February 22 2017

 
 
FEBRUARY 22 - ISSUE #28
Andy Abramson
 
 
UPS, like Amazon, is fascinated with what flying drones can do for their business. For normally silent UPS, their efforts with drones seem to be “taking off” in Florida the way Uber is testing driverless cars in Arizona. We lift off today with three items about UPS and their lofty ideas surrounding drones….those stories and a lot, lot more are all in today’s COMUNICANO.

UPS tests drone deliveries, eyes future price changes
UPS Tests Residential Delivery Via Drone Launched From atop Package Car
SportsTech Watch
Exclusive: Facebook in talks to live stream one MLB game per week - sources
Amazon Watch
Move over, Amazon: Here comes Walmart
Amazon plans to sell beer and wine at its new high-tech convenience store
Wireless Watch
Verizon offers taste of 5G as it expands network trials
Some subscribers of Project Fi are getting access to VoLTE on T-Mobile's network
Odds & Ends
Israeli glass tech can help car windows show ads
An AI Hedge Fund Created a New Currency to Make Wall Street Work Like Open Source
Apple has kept Steve Jobs promises with its new HQ

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The Comunicano for Monday February 20 2017

 

 
 
FEBRUARY 20 - ISSUE #26
Andy Abramson

For a Presidents’s Day holiday Monday, there’s a lot of interesting news out there to read. 
 
I was debating putting the Uber Sexual Harassment story in the Comunicano at all, as the news coverage is so widespread, but given how fast they have responded and the actions taken, it deserves amplification….
Right or wrong, give Uber credit for responding to a crisis over a weekend as fast as they did. Now the key is to make the actions they take PUBLIC, not keep things too quiet, which is often the case in crisis management. 
As we tell our crisis management clients. “Bad news travels fast and far. Good news doesn’t travel at all.” Uber needs to make sure whatever they do to correct things has to travel

There’s a lot more to read, including some sports news involving Intel’s Slam Dunk, YouTube, the FCC and FM, Snap, Second Hand car buying…All that and a LOT, LOT MORE, in today’s COMUNICANO.

Reflecting on one very, very strange year at Uber by Susan J. Fowler
Uber CEO responds to claims of workplace sexism
Media Watch
The FCC wants you to be able to listen to FM radio from your smartphone
YouTube to stop 30-second unskippable ads
Shopping Watch
Snapchat Spectacles: Where to Buy Online
Connected car in the second-hand lot? Don't buy it if you're not hack-savvy
Retail Watch
New data highlights Amazon Australia threat
The impact of voice-activated virtual assistants on retail
Drone Watch
2017 NBA Dunk Contest: How Aaron Gordon's Drone Dunk Went Awry
Intel Slam Dunk Drone, hidden communications.
Intel + Sports | For the Win
Hype Watch
These University of Washington professors are teaching a course on bullshit
AT&T completes its first "flying COW" test flight
It's Time To Take AI Seriously
New York's City-Funded Tech Hub Looks Like a Prison Built by Ikea
Money Watch
High-flying Portland startup snags $15.5M, set to add dozens of jobs
Apple buys Israel's facial recognition firm RealFace
Odds & Ends
Microsoft Accelerates HoloLens V3 Development, Sidesteps V2
Twelve ways to make yourself a Gmail genius
Developer Prep for TADHack-mini Orlando

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