Earlier today, fitness tracker hardware and software company Fitbit filed to go public on the New York Stock Exchange. Since the regulatory filing went public, observers have been scouring the paperwork for information on Fitbit’s financials, sales numbers, and notes about the competition. The Financial Times‘s Tim Bradshaw noticed that that Fitbit cites Apple and the recently-launched Apple Watch as the top billed competitor in the IPO Risk Factors section:
Financial Times Stories May 7, 2015
Financial Times Stories April 2, 2015
Apple’s planned rebranding and relaunch of the Beats streaming music service has not had the easiest of rides. The launch, initially planned for earlier this year, was delayed by the departure of key execs and difficulties integrating Beats and Apple technologies. A planned $5/month price-point had to be abandoned in favor of an attempt at $7.99/month when music labels wouldn’t play ball, and that too now looks increasingly unlikely even though Google Play offered initial All Access Signups for a $7.99 locked in. And any plans to offer artist exclusives as an inducement now face competition from newly-relaunched Tidal.
Just when it seemed things couldn’t get any tougher, London’s Financial Times reports that the European Commission is considering launching an antitrust investigation into the service, even before it launches. The Commission has contacted several music labels to ask what deals have been done with Apple, says the FT.
The commission, which also has contacted Apple’s music-streaming rivals, is said to be concerned that the company will use its size, relationships and influence to persuade labels to abandon free, ad-supported services such as Spotify, which depend on licenses with music companies for their catalogues.
The newspaper implies that the investigation may have been triggered by a formal complaint by an existing streaming music service … expand full story
Ecobee HomeKit Thermostat
Financial Times Stories March 6, 2015
London’s Financial Times today carries a profile of Jony Ive in which he discusses how the Mac changed his dislike of computers, why he is consumed by design and disinterested in sales, the difference between designing a phone (and its slim battery) and designing a smartwatch–and why Apple decided to take a low-key approach on even the top-end Edition watch.
Financial Times Stories December 11, 2014
Financial Times names Tim Cook ‘Person of the Year’
Tim Cook might have gotten snubbed for Time’s Person of the Year recognition after being nominated as a finalist for 2014, but the Apple CEO did get the coveted title from the Financial Times this year. The FT cited both Cook’s financial decisions for the company and social decisions including publishing the essay on his sexuality:
Financial success and dazzling new technology alone might have been enough to earn Apple’s steely chief executive the FT’s vote as the 2014 Person of the Year, but Mr Cook’s brave exposition of his values also sets him apart.
This was never more powerful than when he talked publicly for the first time about his sexuality.
FT also nodded to Cook hiring Angela Ahrendts to run Apple’s retail channels, luring her to Apple from her role as CEO of Burberry, as well as Apple buying Beats for $3 billion this year and launching the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, Apple Pay, showing off the Apple Watch, and Apple’s market capitalization setting a record for US companies hitting $700 billion. You can read the full piece here.
Financial Times Stories October 13, 2014
Not much is known about Apple’s deals with its suppliers, but court filings by former sapphire supplier GT Advanced reveal that the contract included a $50M penalty for any leak of Apple product information, reports the Financial Times.
While the amount of the penalty clause may vary according to the size of the supplier, it seems likely that a substantial leak penalty is a standard condition of supplying product components to Apple – though the number of leaks over the iPhone 6 suggests that such penalties offer limited protection.
Contracts between Apple and its suppliers will undoubtedly be subject to strict non-disclosure agreements, but lawyers for GT Advanced are asking the court to allow details to be made public … expand full story
Financial Times Stories September 30, 2014
Two days after the Financial Times reported that the European Commission was about to come down hard on Apple’s alleged deal with the Irish government to reduce its tax liabilities, Apple has made a statement to Business Insider claiming that it has received “no selective treatment.”
Apple is proud of its long history in Ireland and the 4,000 people we employ in Cork. They serve our customers through manufacturing, tech support and other important functions. Our success in Europe and around the world is the result of hard work and innovation by our employees, not any special arrangements with the government. Apple has received no selective treatment from Irish officials over the years. We’re subject to the same tax laws as the countless other companies who do business in Ireland.
Since the iPhone launched in 2007, our tax payments in Ireland and around the world have increased tenfold. To continue that growth and the benefits it brings to the communities where we work and live, we believe comprehensive corporate tax reform is badly needed …