- Apple announced incremental updates to iPhone, iPad and Watch at its September keynote last week. But the most interesting announcement for me was the pricing for Apple TV+: free with new devices or $4.99 per month otherwise. As Dylan Byers points out here, this is less about generating revenue from media than about locking consumers into Apple's ecosystem, in much the same way Amazon uses Instant Video with Prime.
- It's been a dire time for Google, facing increased regulatory pressure in the US and Europe. Matt Stoller's excellent newsletter looks at the latest investigative approaches in detail: "These are the biggest threats Google has ever faced... These questions for the record are, again, the kind you submit when you are not fucking around... asked about nearly every major area of business and every anti-competitive practice I’ve heard of."
- Friend and subscriber Damian Horner has shared a fantastic presentation on Real Vision, the financial video platform he co-founded: there are some great insights for media and finance people on storytelling and audience engagement—like how to get over a million people to watch a fifty minute video in an age of short attention spans.
- There's an interesting data point here on a key difference between US and European startups: in Europe, the median headcount at which startups hire dedicated product managers is 34, while in the US the figure is 10. And the ratios of engineers to PMs tell a similar story: 24:1 in Europe and 8:1 in the US. The result is a stark difference in ability to execute and quality of product.
- Personal experience of innovation matters: companies where the CEO holds a patent not only subsequently generate more patents, but those inventions make more money, compared to innovation in a control group.
- Too many organisations form buzzword-heavy strategy in an executive vacuum. The consequence: more than two thirds of senior managers cannot name their CEO's strategy and priorities.
- Finally, this ten-point list of ways to sabotage an organisation, compiled during the Second World War by the forerunner of the CIA, is disturbingly close to everyday office behaviour.