WSJ Stories September 10, 2015

Tim Cook

The Wall Street Journal today announced that Apple CEO Tim Cook will appear at the second annual WSJ.D Live conference in October. Cook, of course, appeared at the inaugural WSJ.D conference last year and gave an in-depth interview with the publication. This year’s conference is slated to run from October 19th through October 21st at The Montage in Laguna Beach, California.

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WSJ Stories September 19, 2014

D11 Tim Cook

Apple CEO Tim Cook is set to appear at a new technology conference hosted by The Wall Street Journal this October called WSJDLive. 

Apple executives including Steve Jobs have appeared at past “D” conferences hosted by former WSJ employees Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher. WSJDLive appears to be a continuation of sorts of those conferences, although Mossberg and Swisher since left to form Recode.net and have also hosted Apple executives at the site’s new “Code Conference” in May. expand full story

WSJ Stories September 4, 2014

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A new report from The Wall Street Journal today is corroborating many previous rumors about Apple’s upcoming wearable, including that the device will include some form of NFC technology and will be shipping in multiple sizes. Furthermore, the report notes that Apple will also be bringing NFC to its next iPhone as seen in previous leaks, making it easier for the two devices to pair and signifying that the watch will be more than just a fitness gadget:

The gadget’s use of near-field communication, or NFC, reflects Apple’s broader ambitions for the so-called iWatch beyond health and fitness tracking, the most commonly cited use. Apple also is expected to add the wireless technology to the next versions of its iPhone, people familiar with the device said, potentially simplifying the process of connecting, or pairing, the two devices.

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WSJ Stories July 23, 2014

AAPL’s report card: how Q3 results fared against analyst expectations

Here’s how Apple’s Q3 results stack up against the analyst expectations compiled by Fortune. Revenue grew 6 percent, but Wall Street was expecting more. Earnings per share was marginally higher than expected, at $1.28 per diluted share. Gross margin was higher than expected at 39.4 percent.

iPhone sales were slightly lower than expected, while iPad sales were significantly below analyst predictions. Mac and iPod sales, in contrast, were higher.

Overall, market reaction was muted, with a slight drop in the share price in post-market trading – but with overall results broadly in line with expectations, all eyes now will be on Q4. Apple has issued wider than usual revenue guidance of $37 to $40 billion, but with the WSJ reporting that the company has ordered a record number of iPhones from suppliers, expectations will be at the high end.

WSJ Stories June 6, 2014

WSJ profile describes obsessive Dr. Dre as ‘cultural barometer of what is cool’ like Apple founder Steve Jobs

In a profile of one of Apple’s newest employees, The Wall Street Journal has described hip-hop artist Dr. Dre of Beats Electronics as obsessive in a Steve Jobs kind of way while maintaining a clear instinct for what customers want without relying on market research.

But behind the scenes, Dr. Dre—whose real name is Andre Young —has quietly played an equally powerful role developing and protecting the Beats brand, eschewing market research for gut instinct at every turn. Though his main obsession is perfecting the sound of the company’s signature high-end headphones, the 49-year-old fitness-obsessed music producer weighs in decisively on everything from TV ads and font styles to the wordiness of descriptions on the Beats Music streaming service.

As one colleague says, Dr. Dre serves as Beats’ “cultural barometer” of what is cool.

But Dr. Dre’s process is mysterious, colleagues say: His assessments are usually immediate, personal and articulated sparely. He often dismisses ideas such as posing for clichéd photos in a recording studio as too “corny” or “cheesy.” Or he’ll wave them off with a terse “I’m not feeling that.”

[…]

That could portend friction at his new employer, Apple, which agreed to buy Beats for $3 billion last month. But like Dr. Dre, Apple has also boasted about not doing market research. The company’s late founder, Steve Jobs, made no secret of his belief that consumers don’t really know what they want until someone else shows it to them. Colleagues predict that at Apple Dr. Dre could also cede some decision-making power and become more accommodating.

Dr. Dre has resisted much of the limelight since the Beats acquisition by Apple was announced leaving many of the interviews and spin to his Beats co-founder Jimmy Iovine and Apple’s Eddy Cue. The WSJ noted he declined to be interviewed for the above profile, and that decided exclusivity, too, is reminiscent of Jobs.

Dr. Dre did participate in a WWDC demo earlier this week, though, accepting a phone call from Apple’s SVP of Software Engineering Craig Federighi. Even that bit has parallels with the Steve Jobs days at Apple as Dr. Dre previously cameoed in a demo with the Apple founder.

WSJ Stories March 26, 2014

iPhone-born

Ahead of the latest Apple-Samsung trial, Apple is sharing some of the details regarding the creation of the iPhone with the WSJ. As an aside, Apple also shared a shot of the secret windowless room where the original iPhone meetings took place. The nondescript room is where most of the design decisions for the original iPhone’s software were made and is called “hallowed ground” to Greg Christie, who designs the software interface for products and one of the first members recruited to work on the device in 2004.

It doesn’t mean that the windowless room, lit by fluorescent lights hanging from the ceiling, looked like anything special. Christie recalled the walls had signs of water damage from a flood in an adjacent bathroom. A few images covered the walls including one of Apple’s “Think Different” posters of famous graphic designer Paul Rand and another of a large chicken running around without its head.

Inspiration comes in many forms.

Apple may be sharing this information to drum up public support before the trial. Or, perhaps more likely, Apple knows this information will come out in the trial and wants to “own” the story beforehand.

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WSJ Stories January 23, 2014

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The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Apple is planning to release two distinct iPhone models with larger displays later this year. This corroborates a report from Bloomberg News published late last year, so this is not entirely new information. The first new iPhone is claimed to have a screen between 4.5 and 5-inches while the second model will go beyond 5-inches in size:

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WSJ Stories January 14, 2014

Tim Cook calls China Mobile launch ‘a beginning’ as Chairman says ‘multi-million’ iPhones ordered

Ahead of the launch of the iPhone on China Mobile on January 17th, Apple CEO Tim Cook sat down with the Wall Street Journal and other publications for a brief interview. Cook hints that this iPhone deal is only the beginning of a longer-term partnership between Apple and China’s largest mobile carrier:

Speaking in a small media briefing to Chinese media and The Wall Street Journal, Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook said he is “incredibly optimistic” about the outcome of the cooperation with the Chinese carrier.

“We’ve gotten to know each other….today is a beginning, and I think there are lots more things our companies can do together in the future,” Mr. Cook said.

Cook is likely referring to future generations of the iPhone, and other products such as the iPad, appearing on China Mobile’s network in the future. Cook also shares that half a million of the App Store developers are from China:

Mr. Cook said Apple wants to reach as many Chinese consumers as possible by offering iPhones through China Mobile, and added that the country has more than half a million people writing apps for the U.S. company’s iOS operating system.

“Apple has always been about making the best products, not the most products, so that’s always our North Star and that’s not going to change ever,” said Mr. Cook.

“Multi-millions” of iPhones have already been pre-ordered through China Mobile, according to a statement from China Mobile’s Chairman in the same interview. Earlier today, the WSJ reported that over one million iPhone 5s units were shipped from Foxconn to China Mobile. 

WSJ Stories November 3, 2013

51091983tim-cook

In a rare move, Apple CEO Tim Cook has written an opinion article in the Wall Street JournalTim Cook discusses his feelings about race, gender, nationality, and sexual orientation equality in the context of life inside of and outside of Apple. Cook says that Apple fosters an environment where every single person is safe and welcomed. He goes on to share details about this and Apple’s policies:

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WSJ Stories September 5, 2013

iPhone-Plus-Blanc-02

The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple is testing larger iPhone displays, ranging from 4.8 to 6 inches. This isn’t the first time we’ve heard reports of this, but it does give further credence to the rumors. While the next generation of iPhones, which will be announced on September 10th, will include two different designs, the screen sizes are expected to remain the same. A more diverse family of displays, however, could in the pipeline for future generations.

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WSJ Stories June 3, 2013

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The WSJ reports that after years of worsening patent legislation in the US, the Obama administration has finally decided to try to do something about it.

The president has taken a dim view of certain patent-holding firms. In February, he said some firms “don’t actually produce anything themselves. They’re just trying to essentially leverage and hijack somebody else’s idea to see if they can extort some money out of them.”

Apple, depending on who you ask, is sometimes the agressor in patent cases but is often the victim of  frivolous lawsuits that often earn these patent holding companies millions and millions of dollars. These companies aren’t really companies at all; instead they are just shell companies built around a patent or a portfolio of patents, which are often overly broad or were never intended to be used in a particular way.

These lawsuits often take place in courts in Eastern Texas, where judges are notoriously friendly to trolling interests.

Some examples of companies who’ve questionably sued Apple or its interests: VirnetXPersonal Audio LLC, Lodsys, Motorola? etc.

The administration’s plans in 5 steps:

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WSJ Stories March 13, 2013

Samsung’s ad budget exploded past Apple and the rest of the field in 2012

We have been hearing much about Samsung’s advertising efforts in recent months including its efforts crafting the now well-known ad campaign mocking iPhone line sitters, to some of the companies recent marketing tactics used to target iPhone users. Last night The Wall Street Journal published a new piece outlining Samsung’s increasingly aggressive advertising thanks to new data from research firm Kantar Media. According to the report, Samsung passed Apple in 2012 for ad spending by around $68M in the US:

Outspent by rival Apple Inc. more than three to one in advertising for mobile phones in the U.S. in 2011, Samsung responded with a marketing blitz on TV, billboards, the Internet and print media that moved the Korean company into the pole position last year… In 2012, Samsung spent $401 million advertising its phones in the U.S. to Apple’s $333 million, according to ad research and consulting firm Kantar Media.

Apple spent more than three times Samsung on marketing its mobile devices in 2011. If a slew of recent media reports is any indication, including one from Apple’s own former ad man Ken Segall, many seem to think Apple is losing its advertising momentum to Samsung.

The Wall Street Journal added that executives at carriers said Samsung “also spends more on “below the line” marketing than any device maker. Those funds help pay for in-store advertising, promotions and training for carrier sales representatives that help close the sale.”

To put the spending in perspective for the global smartphone market, Tech/telco analyst Benedict Evans noted the figures above account for around 10% of Samsung global ad budget compared to 1/3 of Apple’s, which also somewhat reflects sales proportions.

WSJ Stories February 5, 2013

WSJ says Apple’s PR goes on offensive as competition heats up

The Wall Street Journal is out with a report today that claimed Apple’s press relations team has tried “a little harder to get its message out” by sending members of the press an increasing number of positive third-party reports about the company. The Wall Street Journal described one of the reports Apple PR sent out as a “study predicting that by 2014, Apple will be as accepted in the enterprise as Microsoft is today.” According to article, Apple has sent out five reports in a month since the starting of 2013, representing quite an increase compared to the past.

Apple issued a press release last month for the minor iOS 6.1 release, as well as the 128GB iPad released today ahead of Microsoft’s new 128GB Surface product. The Wall Street Journal said a person familiar with the matter claimed it’s a “recognition that competition is heating up.”

Apple, and indeed virtually all its competitors, send reporters favorable studies from time to time. But the five reports Apple has sent since the start of the year, mostly related to mobile market share, represent more than recent months… Apple has long been willing to sing its own praises when it needs to, issuing press releases about major milestones, products and sales. So rather than a big shift, the latest moves represent a recognition that competition is heating up, a person familiar with the matter says. Apple also has more to cheer internationally, with growth in countries like China very strong.

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