Tim Cooks talks HomePod pricing, and why AR makes him want to ‘scream’

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Tim Cook
Tim Cook's interview covers a range of topics.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Bloomberg has released some more highlights from its recent conversation with Tim Cook, touching on a number of important topics.

Having already confirmed Apple’s interest in self-driving car systems, Cook now speaks about Steve Jobs, why he doesn’t spend any time thinking about his legacy at Apple, Apple’s $1 billion advanced manufacturing fund, his response to accusations that Apple isn’t as innovative as previously, and more.

Check out a few highlights below.

One interesting point of discussion is Cook’s discussion of the HomePod’s $349 price point, which makes it more expensive than rival devices like the Google Home and Amazon Echo. He explains that:

“If you remember when the iPod was introduced, a lot of people said, ‘Why would anybody pay $399 for an MP3 player?’ And when iPhone was announced, it was, ‘Is anybody gonna pay — whatever it was at that time — for an iPhone?’ The iPad went through the same thing. We have a pretty good track record of giving people something that they may not have known that they wanted. When I was growing up, audio was No. 1 on the list of things that you had to have. You were jammin’ out on your stereo. Audio is still really important in all age groups, not just for kids. We’re hitting on something people will be delighted with. It’s gonna blow them away. It’s gonna rock the house.”

Cook also reiterates his long-standing interest in augmented reality technology, which Apple made official at its recent WWDC keynote. “I think it is profound,” Cook said. “I am so excited about it, I just want to yell out and scream.”

He says that the technology isn’t quite complete yet, but that it has “an incredible runway” and will make for some great products in the future. (No word on that standalone AR headset that Apple’s reportedly got hundreds of people working on, though!)

The other interesting discussion concerns President Trump, who Cook has been an outspoken critic of. (He was actually briefly considered as Hillary Clinton’s running mate, although nothing came of this.) Speak Apple Trump’s policies, Cook said that:

“I feel a great responsibility as an American, as a CEO, to try to influence things in areas where we have a level of expertise. I’ve pushed hard on immigration. We clearly have a very different view on things in that area. I’ve pushed on climate. We have a different view there. There are clearly areas where we’re not nearly on the same page. We’re dramatically different. I hope there’s some areas where we’re not. His focus on jobs is good. So we’ll see. Pulling out of the Paris climate accord was very disappointing. I felt a responsibility to do every single thing I could for it not to happen. I think it’s the wrong decision. If I see another opening on the Paris thing, I’m going to bring it up again.”

You can check out more highlights of the interview here. Otherwise, you’ll be able to read the entire discussion with Bloomberg Businessweek editor Megan Murphy in the magazine, which arrives on newsstands on June 19.