Mobile Makes Facebook Just an App; That’s Great News

“Strong opinions weakly held” is a core principle of mine, and while I think I’ve demonstrated strong opinions aplenty on this blog, today it’s time to give credence to the “weakly held” part. Specifically, I have been wrong about Facebook. I’ve been a bear about their long-term prospects, and now I am a bull. My […]

Understanding Google

The surest route to befuddlement in the tech industry is comparing a vertical player, like Apple, with a horizontal one, like Google. Vertical players typically monetize through hardware, only serve a subset of users, and any services they provide are exclusive to their devices. Horizontal players, on the other hand, monetize through subscriptions or ads, […]

The (alleged) 13-inch iPad and the triumph of thin clients

The WSJ, in an article entitled Apple Tests Larger Screens for iPhones, iPads: In recent months, Apple has asked for prototype smartphone screens larger than 4 inches and has also asked for screen designs for a new tablet device measuring slightly less than 13 inches diagonally, they said. The current iPhone 5 has a four-inch […]

Services, not Devices

I have been very critical of Microsoft’s decision to organize functionally: Why Microsoft’s Reorganization is a Bad Idea argued that Microsoft was much better suited to a divisional structure The Uncanny Valley of Functional Organizations argued that Microsoft was setting itself up for failure pursuing a functional structure The larger question remains, though: why did […]

The Uncanny Valley of a Functional Organization

Consider this Part 2 in an accidental series on Microsoft’s recent reorganization, and functional and divisional organizations. Part 1 focused on a divisional organization, while today’s Part 2 focuses on functional ones. The “Uncanny Valley” is most typically associated with animated films (although it was originally about robots). From Wikipedia: The uncanny valley is a […]

Why Microsoft’s reorganization is a bad idea

DuPont, the famous chemical company, was actually built on gunpowder.1 Founded in the early 1800s, DuPont was a small family concern until the early 1900s, when Pierre DuPont modernized and organized the company around functions: primarily sales and manufacturing. The structure served DuPont well, particularly in World War I, when in response to overwhelming demand […]

The Dropbox Opportunity

Benedict Evans, in Glass, Home and solipsism, one of the most insightful posts I’ve read in some time: Your customers’ relationships with you are the only relationships you have as a business and you think a lot about them. But you’re one of a thousand things your customer thinks about in a week, and one […]