This week on a very spicy edition of The CultCast: Tim Cook is thrilled with the new U.S. tax overhaul, and has some exciting plans to spend Apple’s massive fortune. Plus: Forget other smart speakers — we’ll tell you why we’re now even more excited for HomePod. And stick around for our favorite movies, shows and sausages in an all-new, very weird “What We’re Into!”
Our thanks to Squarespace for supporting this episode. It’s simple to accept Apple Pay and sell your wares with your very own Squarespace.com website. Enter offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off any hosting plan.
CultCast #319 – How Apple’s going to spend its MASSIVE fortune
Subscribe on iTunes
Our Twitters, if you please
@lewiswallace / @erfon / @lkahney / @bst3r
This week’s stories
- Tim Cook has revealed that a future iOS 11 update will let users disable the feature that was causing their iPhone to throttle performance.
- He says that this forthcoming update will give users the option to disable performance throttling if they would rather be at risk of unexpected shutdowns but maintain full CPU and GPU performance.
- Apple’s big tax break is about to unleash an big beautiful avalanche of spending from the iPhone-maker.
- In its last earnings report, Apple said it held $252 billion in cash overseas. It appears, given the new corporate tax rate of 15.5 percent, that it is returning a majority of this to the United States. This low rate is a one-time deal for corporations to repatriate their overseas cash hordes
- Apple revealed its plans to contribute $350 billion to the U.S. economy over the next five years now that the fee for repatriating its mountain of overseas cash has been significantly lowered.
- Even though construction on Apple’s new spaceship campus just finished, the company says its already looking to build a new one. Plans (including the location) for the third Apple HQ will be revealed later this year. The building will initially house new team specializing in technical support for customers.
- The company also says it plans to increase the size of its advanced manufacturing fund from $1 billion to $5 billion. The fund is used to invest in U.S. manufacturing companies and suppliers.
- Apple says it will add over 20,000 new jobs in the next five years by hiring for new jobs at its existing campuses and the new one. $30 billion will be spent on capital expenditures in the US over next 5 years with $10 billion of that going to data centers.
- With the new tax law in effect, Apple expects it will only pay $38 billion to bring its money home. That would still be the largest ever payment to the IRS.
- Apple told employees Wednesday that it plans to give all of them $2,500 worth of restricted stock, thanks to the revised tax law that goes into effect this year.
- Trump applauded Apple’s moves on Twitter, saying “Great to see Apple follow through as a result of TAX CUTS. Huge win for American workers and the USA!”
- Tim also announced a very generous new charity match:
- I’m happy to announce that starting immediately and running through the end of 2018, Apple will match all employee charitable donations, up to $10,000 annually, at a rate of two to one.
- Apple suppliers have begun shipping the first HomePod units ahead of the smart speaker’s much-anticipated launch. Just 1 million devices are on the way initially. However, Apple is expected to receive as many as 12 million by the end of this year.
- HomePod was supposed to launch ahead of the holidays but Apple delayed it because it wasn’t ready. When it finally goes on sale this year, HomePod will give Apple fans an alternative to Amazon Echo and Google Home.
- Meanwhile, smart speakers were ubiquitous at CES, and Amazon’s Alexa is now being built into everything from thermostats to toilets.
- Apple still hasn’t provided us with a proper HomePod release date yet