It’s our T-Day edition CultCast! This time: Jony Ive’s golden touch makes millions for charity; Apple teases underwhelming Black Friday deals; how Apple’s blacklist keeps bad press at bay; the new money in old macs; and we pitch our favorite Thanksgiving Day foods on our holiday edition Faves ’N Raves!
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Apple’s Industrial Design studio is one of the most secretive corporate locations in the world, where even some of the company’s own high ranking execs can’t get in unless Jony Ive wants them to. So with the ID group barred tighter than a nuclear lockdown, how does one go about getting secrets about the design processes at Apple for a book?
Bloomberg TV’s Emily Chang sat down with Leander on her show this afternoon to talk about some of the secrets he discovered about Jony Ive and the design team at Apple for his new book. Not only did The Gov dive into how hard it is to cover Apple, but he also dished on rumors he’s heard about Ive butting heads with top execs who have left Apple – and not just The Felt King, aka Scott Forstall - as well as how Tim Cook has become the ultimate peace keeper at Apple in contrast to Jobs diabolical ways of pitting execs against each other.
Tim Cook caused quite a stir in the worlds of both tech and fashion earlier this year when he announced that Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts would be leaving the famous trench-coat maker to head up Apple’s retail divisions.
Ahrendts new position at Apple alone wields great power, but when you combine it with her incredible turn around of the Burberry brand, its no wonder many are starting to consider her one of the most powerful executives in the world, which is exactly why Fortune placed Ahrendts at #4 of its annual list of the top people in business.
She doesn’t take over at Apple until Spring 2014 but Ahrendts received the nod from the business mag for her work redefining Burberry’s brand and the subsequent 29% bump in the company’s stock price.
He may feel more than comfortable publishing an open letter to Tim Cook calling for Apple to engage in an immediate $150 billion buyback of shares, but (vocal) activist investor Carl Icahn has said that he would never push Apple to buy Nuance Communications Inc., maker of the software that runs the Siri feature on Apple’s iPhones.
Apple CEO Tim Cook has written an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal arguing in favor of the Employment Nondiscrimination Act, a proposed piece of U.S. legislation that protects against sexual identity and gender discrimination in the workplace. Cook occasionally gives media interviews, but him writing something like an op-ed out from under the umbrella of Apple is pretty significant.
Get your silver bullets and holy water ready dear friends, because our new CultCast: some Dell laptops are emitting a mysteriously pungent smell; iPad Air gets benchmarked, is murderously speedy; our fave photo app brings darkness… out of the shadows; Apple says some 5S batteries are dieing… faster than they should; Tim Cook says upcoming Apple products will blow… your mind; and we chant… aloud our favorite apps so you can vote on which is best… it’s an all new Faves N Graves!
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Write it off as a smokescreen to cover sliding profit and margins if you want, but Tim Cook’s belief in the culture of Apple came across loud and clear during Monday’s conference call with analysts and reporters.
Speaking about Apple as a “force for good in the world beyond our products” Cook claimed that, “Whether it’s improving working conditions or the environment, standing up for human rights, helping eliminate AIDS, or reinventing education, Apple is making substantial contributions to society.”
During this afternoon’s earning call, Tim Cook was asked about the iPhone 5c and whether the company is disappointed with sales after customers were expecting Apple’s plastic iPhone to be significantly cheaper than its $99 price tag on-contract.
Before diving into iPhone 5c expectations, Cook clarified that even though customers may have expected the iPhone 5c to be Apple’s entry level phone, the company has never considered it to be its cheapest model. That honor goes to Apple’s other cheap phone – the iPhone 4s.
Tim stated that the iPhone 4s is priced as a entry-level offering to giving customers full-access to iOS at a cheap price, while the iPhone 5c is being sold as a mid-tier offer with the 5s of course at the top. Cook elaborated the the iPhone 5c was a good way for Apple to enter the mid-tier market and expand sales in the category. With a record number of iPhones being sold last quarter Tim says he’s pretty pleased with the results so far.
We’re still waiting for Tim Cook and Peter Oppenheimer to start today’s earnings call, but now that the closing bell has rung Apple just released its official financial results for Q4 2013. So far the numbers look pretty good with Apple beating analyst estimations for revenue and profit with $37.5 billion and $7.5 billion respectively.
Sorting through the pile of information and numbers Apple just gave us can make your head spin, so we’ve broken it down for you. Here are the most important numbers you need to know from today’s earnings: