Episode 73 – Apple Structure, State of Smartwatches

Our News Roundup this week covers three topics. First, two stories about home assistants, with a report that Amazon will make an Echo with a screen, and another that Microsoft will add features to Windows 10 to allow PCs to serve as ambient voice assistants. Secondly, two pieces of news from the digital video market, with AT&T launching the long-awaited DirecTV Now service, and Netflix announcing a download feature. Lastly, we discuss Bloomberg’s report that Apple will begin using drones for mapping data.

Our Question of the Week is “Should Apple change from a functional organization to a divisional structure?” Aaron talks us through the differences in these two organizational structures and the conventional wisdom on which is better for different kinds of businesses, and then we discuss how these arguments apply (or don’t) to Apple. We don’t come to a firm conclusion one way or another, but hopefully you’ll be better armed to make up your own mind about this topic by the end of the discussion!

Our third segment is a conversation about the state of smartwatches, in which we talk about Fitbit’s reported acquisition of Pebble, Motorola’s announcement that it won’t be making any more Android Wear watches in the near term, and the Apple Watch, including Aaron’s recent experience trying one for a while.

We wrap up with our Weekly Pick, which this week is a book recommended by Jan.

As usual, you’ll find some links to related content as well as other ways to listen to the podcast beneath the embedded Soundcloud player below.

We invite listeners to submit questions for subsequent weeks in the comments below, on Twitter (@jandawson@aaronmiller), or via email (jan at jackdawresearch dot com). We also have a dedicated Podcast Twitter handle at @BDPcast.

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Show notes:

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