This week’s News Roundup covered three topics: Microsoft’s deal with Xiaomi to share patents and pre-install Office and Skype on Xiaomi devices; rumors of a new 5K display from Apple; and a new EU Code of Conduct on policing hate speech signed by major American tech companies. We discuss the ins and outs of each of these stories and their implications.
Our Question of the Week is “What’s the state of the smart home, and how will it change?” This topic builds off a recent piece Jan wrote for Techpinions which was syndicated to Recode, titled “The Smart Home is Stuck“, in which Jan argued that the most high-profile element of the smart home market – the retail purchase, self-install segment, is stuck at the early adopter phase. However, we also discuss the other major segment in the market, which is the service-based alternative, which sees devices professionally installed and managed, and charges monthly service fees rather than a one-off device purchase fee. This part of the market, exemplified by companies like Vivint, AT&T, and Alarm.com (through a white label model) is performing much better. We talk about how this situation might change over time, some of the other dynamics, and potential future innovations in the space.
Our third topic is a discussion of analyst Mary Meeker’s most recent slide deck, which provides a 200-slide overview of major trends in the internet and related fields, and was presented at the Code Conference this week. We focus on three of the trends she identified – ad spend, cars and technology, and China – and discuss each of these in some detail.
We wrap up with our Weekly Pick, which is something of a follow-up to an earlier recommendation from Aaron.
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