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Apple CEO Tim Cook sat down for an interview at the European StartupFest conference in Amsterdam on Tuesday, answering -- and in some cases, dodging -- questions on a wide range of topics. Overall, Cook pushed Apple's ability to foster entrepreneurs through app development, creating an infrastructure developers can use to push innovative software and services. He also advocated for the idea of making software coding part of the elementary-school curriculum, touted Apple's current and future health plans, and more.
One of the most interesting aspects of the talk came at the end, when Cook was asked about advice for new companies. He said that one big mistake companies make is that as they grow, they "compromise" new products to protect their original successful products. Speaking from experience, Cook told the audience not to worry about "cannibalizing yourself," and to keep the focus on making great products rather than fall into the trappings of success: "[Some executives] worry more about their cufflinks, or if their office is nice, but building great products is really key."
While Cook avoided most questions dealing with Apple's future plans and potential products, he was drawn out on a vision for the Apple Watch, and how it will become increasingly indispensable over the course of its product life. Cook said the Watch would eventually become one of those products people wondered how they lived without. While the Watch has already proven itself as a useful and popular accessory, Cook noted that the company's "holy grail" was to devise ways for the device to monitor even more about the users' body and health.
The goal, Cook said, was to empower users to take steps that would extend and enhance their own lives. He later mentioned that areas in which the company was planning to develop further included healthcare and health research, tying back to the Watch and other devices, such as the iPhone. Cook specifically saw healthcare and the healthcare industry as ripe for "disruption" in both administration and improvements to the quality of service. He noted that his call for software coding to be taught starting at the fourth-grade level was not just about creating apps -- like music, coding engages different areas of the brain and calls upon a number of different skills.
"We are doing our kids a disservice" by not introducing coding skills to students early on, Cook said, adding that society is still in the "early innings" of the app economy, and that the potential of devices like the iPhone and iPad in enterprise is only just being explored. Europe, he said, had a great foundation of laws and consumer protections that could foster startups. He quoted a proverb: "If you want to prosper for a year, plant gain. If you want to prosper for ten years, plant tress. If you want to prosper for a hundred years, invest in people."
He added that he felt a "vibrance" in Europe on this trip that had been absent in recent years, and was encouraged by the success of Apple's products in the region. He also touch on his strong views on privacy, explaining his view of the company's role with regards to user privacy as similar to that of a package-delivery driver who delivers a sealed parcel. It is "Apple's job" to strengthen privacy and encryption to protect customer data.
Last edited by NewsPoster; May 24, 2016 at 03:37 PM.
I worked on the nursing staff of one of the top ten children's hospitals in the country and I've written what'll soon be my fourth book on what that meant. I've also looked at the iOS software that Apple and IBM are creating for hospital nursing. It's not merely worthless, its counterproductive. It's a hospital administrator's idea of what nurses need. Nurses need tools that help them work more efficiently. What these apps offer are time-consuming to-do-lists-with-pointless-priority-assigning that bureaucrats value so highly.
Author of Untangling Tolkien and Chesterton on War and Peace
"He is a press whore, he needs to be fired asap. Why is this guy always on TV instead of working ?"
Yeah, because, you know, when the CEO is on TV, nobody back home at Apple is doing anything. They're just sleeping, or playing ping-pong, or taking a "sick" day. Maybe Apple needs managers other than Cook?