Eddy Cue Says He ‘Disagrees Vehemently’ With Those Who Believe Apple’s Pace of Innovation Has Slowed

Just over a decade after the iPhone launched, and six years after Steve Jobs passed, some critics believe that Apple's pace of innovation has slowed. Unsurprisingly, Apple's services chief Eddy Cue doesn't share that opinion.


"I disagree vehemently with that and I think we've been incredibly innovative," said Cue, in a recent interview with Indian publication Livemint.

Cue pointed out that both the iPad and Apple Watch launched after the iPhone, while noting that revolutionary products take time. He also believes that Apple's work on Mac, macOS, and iOS has led the market.
Apple historically has a track record of coming out with industry-defining products, whether it's the Mac or iPhone or iPod. But over the past decade, there's a been perception that the pace of innovation and the pace at which Apple has come out with game-changing, breakthrough products has slowed somewhat. What do you have to say about that?

No way! First of all, the iPhone is 10 years old. That is the last decade. The iPad came after that and the Watch came after that. So, I disagree vehemently with that and I think we’ve been incredibly innovative. That doesn’t even take into account the work that has been done on the Mac, iOS and MacOS, from that standpoint where I think we’ve led the market. When you think of the products that we’ve built over time, you own a lot of them. And you just assume that every year was a new product. But it wasn’t. You can’t do revolutionary new products, every two months or six months or whatever. They take time.
The rest of the interview was primarily focused on Apple's roadmap for India, which Cue described as a "very long-term opportunity."

Cue said Apple is focused on three areas in India, including the App Store, Apple Maps, and a bundle of other services such as iCloud and Apple Music. Of note, he said Apple is "working on" bringing Apple Pay to India.
The digital payments business is widely being seen as the biggest battleground in India now and in the near future. What are Apple's plans on that front?

Our head of Apple Pay, Jennifer Bailey, is here with me. And Apple Pay is something that we definitely want in India. The challenge with payment mechanisms is that there isn't really a lot of global scale. You deal with individual markets at a time … but India is one of those markets where we hope to bring Apple Pay to.
Cue said Apple doesn't have an exact launch date to announce for Apple Pay in India at this point since it's not "a 100 percent" yet.

In the full-length interview, Cue also reflects upon the leadership styles of past and present Apple CEOs Tim Cook and Steve Jobs, and on Apple's increasing efforts to produce original content.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay

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Apple Opening Two Mac Labs in India That Will Teach Students How to Create Music Using Logic Pro X

Apple today announced it will be opening two so-called "Mac Labs" at the KM Music Conservatory's campuses in the Indian cities of Chennai and Mumbai. The labs will teach students how to create music using Logic Pro X.


Apple also said it will fund 10 full time musical scholarships at the learning institution for students from underprivileged backgrounds.


Apple's services chief Eddy Cue traveled to Mumbai this week, where he announced the news in person alongside A.R. Rahman, an Oscar-winning composer, producer, musician, and founder of the KM Music Conservatory.
"It's an honour to be in Mumbai and I am humbled to be in the presence of the talented A.R. Rahman to make this announcement together," said Cue. "Apple Music and the KM Music Conservatory share a deep love in discovering, sharing and nurturing musical talent and we're proud to be supporting such an institution that is investing in the future arts and music community."
The A.R. Rahman Foundation founded the KM Music Conservatory in 2008. The higher education institution offers a range of part-time and full-time courses in Western and Indian classical music and audio technology.


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Tim Cook Rises and Eddy Cue Drops on Vanity Fair’s 2017 New Establishment List

Vanity Fair released its annual New Establishment List this week, which it has described as the top 100 so-called "Silicon Valley hotshots, Hollywood moguls, Wall Street titans, and cultural icons," and two Apple executives made the cut.

Apple CEO Tim Cook rose to third overall, up from 11th in the year-ago list. Apple's services chief Eddy Cue, who recently ceded Siri leadership to software engineering chief Craig Federighi, dropped from 54th to 73rd.

Cook's description:
CROWNING ACHIEVEMENT
With a market cap north of $800 billion, Apple is on track to be a trillion-dollar company.

RARE DISPLAY OF MORTALITY
As consumers reject the new MacBook Pro and Apple arrives late to the game with HomePod, an Echo wannabe, the company is clinging to the iPhone for more than half of its revenue—an inauspicious strategy, since phone sales are predicted to decline.

MORTIFYING TRUMP MOMENT
Cook showed up at Trump Tower in December to kiss the ring, then went to the White House in June to try to convince Trump of the importance of coding in schools.
Cue's description:
CROWNING ACHIEVEMENT
Launching HomePod, Apple's voice-activated virtual assistant. The product, a competitor to Amazon's Echo, may be the new hit Apple so desperately needs as interest in the iPhone wanes.

RARE DISPLAY OF MORTALITY
Planet of the Apps, Apple's foray into original programming under Cue, "feels like something that was developed at a cocktail party," according to one review.
Laurene Powell Jobs, co-founder of educational and philanthropic organization Emerson Collective, rose from 73rd to 44th.

Powell Jobs gained a majority stake in The Atlantic in July, and she's also reportedly investing in Monumental Sports & Entertainment, the owner of several Washington D.C. area sports teams. She is the widow of the late Steve Jobs.

Professional wrestler turned actor Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, who starred in an extended Siri ad this year, broke in at 37th.

Vanity Fair's fourth annual New Establishment Summit is underway this week at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills, California. There, so-called "titans" of technology, media, business, entertainment, politics, and the arts discuss issues and innovations shaping the future.


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Apple Acknowledges Siri Leadership Has Officially Moved From Eddy Cue to Craig Federighi

Apple has updated its executive profiles to acknowledge that software engineering chief Craig Federighi now officially oversees development of Siri. The responsibility previously belonged to Apple's services chief Eddy Cue.

Craig Federighi is Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering, reporting to CEO Tim Cook. Craig oversees the development of iOS, macOS, and Siri. His teams are responsible for delivering the software at the heart of Apple’s innovative products, including the user interface, applications and frameworks.
Apple's leadership page is only now reflecting Federighi's role as head of Siri, but the transition has been apparent for several months, based on recent interviews and stage appearances at Apple's keynotes.

At WWDC 2016, for example, Federighi and Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller joined Daring Fireball's John Gruber to discuss how Apple was opening Siri up to third-party developers with SiriKit later that year.

At WWDC 2017, Federighi was on stage to discuss improvements to Siri in iOS 11, including more natural voice, built-in translation capabilities, and advances in machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Cue continues to oversee the iTunes Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay, Apple Maps, iCloud, and the iWork and iLife suites of apps, and handing off Siri should allow him to focus more on Apple's push into original content.

Apple's updated leadership page also now lists profiles for recent hires Deirdre O'Brien, Vice President of People, and Isabel Ge Mahe, Vice President and Managing Director of Greater China.


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DreamWorks Founder Jeffrey Katzenberg Met With Apple About His Mobile-Focused TV Network

Former DreamWorks Animation CEO and founder Jeffrey Katzenberg is working on a new mobile-focused TV service, tentatively named New TV, and has met with Apple executives to discuss a possible investment, reports Variety and CNBC.

Katzenberg was in attendance at this year's Allen & Co. media conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, along with dozens of other tech and media moguls, including Apple CEO Tim Cook. According to Variety, he was aiming to coax one of several tech companies into a $2B investment in his new project. Katzenberg was seen meeting with Apple CEO Tim Cook and Eddy Cue at the event, and CNBC says he has previously held meetings with Apple, Google, AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Snapchat, and Spotify.

Apple CEO Tim Cook at the Sun Valley event last week. Image via Rob Latour, Shutterstock

Given the sheer number of investors Katzenberg is courting, it's not yet clear who he will partner with nor if Apple is interested, but New TV is a unique proposal. Katzenberg wants to create a short-form video series that's produced with primetime TV budgets to target 18 to 34-year-olds.
For example, imagine a drama akin to "Empire" or "Scandal" but shrunk to 10-minute episodes made for mobile consumption. Or a five-minute talk show, or a two-minute newscast -- all with high-profile talent attached.
In addition to seeking a distribution partner, Katzenberg is also pursuing potential content partners, with CBS and Disney CEO Bob Iger considering producing shows for the service. "The explosion of short-form video is obvious to all of us, but a lot of what we've seen is the production of amateurs -- user-generated content," Iger told Variety.

Katzenberg's goal is not to shrink longer-form media into a shorter format, but to create "new and different" programming that's native to mobile devices. No episode will last longer than 10 minutes, and there will be no ad breaks, with monetization coming via title sponsorships and brand integrations.

New TV will be shaped by whichever partner joins the project, says Katzenberg. It could work as a subscription service offered by a single video provider for a monthly fee, or it could be entirely free and integrated into an existing brand.

Apple has been aggressively pursuing original content in recent months, but in a more traditional format with standard episode lengths. Planet of the Apps, the company's first original show, launched in June, and its second show, Carpool Karaoke: The Series is set to be released on August 8.


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Apple CEO Tim Cook and iTunes Chief Eddy Cue Attend Sun Valley Media Retreat

Apple CEO Tim Cook and iTunes Chief Eddy Cue this week attended the Allen & Co. Sun Valley media conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, as they have done for the last several years.

Many well known tech and media moguls attend the Sun Valley event, which is essentially a retreat and is invitation only, but meetings and discussions at the conference are kept under wraps so it's unlikely we'll hear details on anything that goes on. In years past, Cook and Cue have kept a low profile during the week long event.

Described as a "summer camp for billionaires," the conference includes activities like rafting, cycling, and golf, and because it brings so many major media executives together in one place, it's been credited as the catalyst for major deals like the AOL and Time Warner merger, Walt Disney's acquisition of ABC, Google's purchase of YouTube, and Jeff Bezos' acquisition of The Washington Post.

Apple has been taking a more direct approach to media in recent months with its ever-growing interest in original content, so it's no surprise to see Cook and Cue at the event once again.

Other notable 2017 attendees include Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Jared and Ivanka Trump, DreamWorks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes, Twitter COO Anthony Noto, 21st Century Fox Chairman Rupert Murdoch, CBS Chairman Les Moonves, and Facebook CEO Sheryl Sandberg.

Image via Rob Latour, Shutterstock


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Charitybuzz Auctions Another Lunch With Eddy Cue at Apple’s New Headquarters

Charitybuzz today launched an auction in which the winning bidder will have lunch with Apple's services chief Eddy Cue at the company's newly constructed Apple Park headquarters in Cupertino, California.


The auction has an estimated value of $50,000. Bids can be placed between now and Tuesday, July 25 at 12:01 p.m. Pacific Time, in support of non-profit organization Autism Movement Therapy, based in Van Nuys, California.

Autism Movement Therapy works to provide expressive movement therapy and workplace readiness skills resulting in meaningful, dignified employment for individuals with autism and related disorders, according to Charitybuzz.
Here's your chance to have lunch with Eddy Cue at the stunning new 175-acre Apple Headquarters in Cupertino, CA, where you will learn more about Apple's industry-leading content stores and online services. This is a rare opportunity to see "Apple Park" and engage in a one-on-one, in-depth conversation with one of the most innovative business minds of our generation.
Cue offered a similar luncheon auction just a few weeks ago, raising $255,000 in support of the National Association of Basketball Coaches Foundation non-profit organization in Kansas City, Missouri.

The private meet and greet will be scheduled at a mutually agreed upon date between August 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018. The winning bidder must be at least 18 or older. The cost of the meal and gratuity is included, but travel and accommodations are not. The experience cannot be resold, re-auctioned, or transferred.

The lunch does not include a formal tour inside Apple Park facilities, and photography is not permitted, according to Charitybuzz.

Cue, who is officially Apple's senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, currently oversees the iTunes Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay, Siri, Apple Maps, iCloud, and Apple's iWork and iLife suites of productivity apps.

Apple executives have participated in several Charitybuzz auctions over the years, with CEO Tim Cook most recently raising over $680,000 for the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights.


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Charitybuzz Auctions Lunch With Eddy Cue at Apple’s New Headquarters

Charitybuzz today launched an auction in which the winning bidder will have lunch with Apple's services chief Eddy Cue at the company's newly constructed Apple Park headquarters in Cupertino, California.

AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez
Here's your chance to have lunch with Eddy Cue at the stunning new 175-acre Apple Headquarters in Cupertino, CA, where you will learn more about Apple's industry-leading content stores and online services. This is a rare opportunity to see “Apple Park” and engage in a one-on-one, in-depth conversation with one of the most innovative business minds of our generation.
The auction has an estimated value of $50,000. Bids can be placed between now and June 28 at 12:00 p.m. Pacific Time, in support of the National Association of Basketball Coaches Foundation in Kansas City, Missouri.

The National Association of Basketball Coaches Foundation is a non-profit organization that aims to bring attention to the positive aspects of the sport of basketball and the role coaches play in the academic and athletic lives of today's student-athletes. Cue is a longtime basketball and Golden State Warriors fan.

The private meet and greet will be scheduled at a mutually agreed upon date by June 30, 2018. The winning bidder must be at least 18 or older. The cost of the meal and gratuity is included, but travel and accommodations are not. The experience cannot be resold, re-auctioned, or transferred.

The lunch does not include a formal tour inside Apple Park facilities, and photography is not permitted, according to Charitybuzz.

Cue, who is officially Apple's senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, currently oversees the iTunes Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay, Siri, Apple Maps, iCloud, and Apple's iWork and iLife suites of productivity apps.

Apple executives have participated in several Charitybuzz auctions over the years, with CEO Tim Cook most recently raising over $680,000 for the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights.


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Eddy Cue Previews ‘Planet of the Apps’ at Code Conference: Non-Linear Viewing, Weekly Release, First Trailer and More

Eddy Cue, Apple's SVP of Internet Services, spoke at Code Conference tonight alongside Planet of the Apps producer Ben Silverman to preview the show and debut the first trailer from the program. Cue and Silverman also teased several unique aspects of the show, including a dedicated app that allows you to watch the show in a non-linear format.


The format of the show is similar to that of fellow talent-based reality shows The Voice and Shark Tank. Aspiring app developers descend down an escalator while pitching four judges on their idea. By the time they get to the bottom, the judges must swipe left or right to demonstrate whether they're interested. If multiple judges swipe right on a contestant, the contestant gets to choose who they want to pair with. Once paired, the developer goes through an incubator period, getting advise from developers at big companies like Uber, until it's ready enough to pitch to Lightspeed Venture Partners for funding.

Silverman and Cue say that the show will debut a new episode every week starting in the Spring, rather than dumping the entire season on a single date, as Netflix tends to do. The show will also have a dedicated app that'll allow viewers to watch the show in a non-linear format. Within the app, people will have the opportunity to pause the linear version of the show to access unused footage of specific developers.

Apple wasn't the first choice for the show, according to Silverman. The project was initially shopped around to the big networks. The show drew major interest, but Will.I.Am brought up the show to Jimmy Iovine while at a meeting with Apple in Los Angeles. Apple was interested, and Silverman and the rest of the producers slowed down the process with the networks to give Apple a chance at securing it for Apple Music.

When asked why a TV show about apps is debuting on Apple Music, Cue says that he believes video could a differentiator for the service. "We think we have an opportunity to do something unique with Apple Music and shows," Cue said. "The things we're doing aren't being done by anyone else. If we wanted to do something everyone else was doing, we might be better off buying something or whatever." He later clarified that shows on Apple Music don't have to be about music, similar to how MTV programming isn't always about music.


Cue says Apple is just starting out with original content, but that it wants to do more. When asked whether it could see itself becoming Netflix, Cue said Apple wants to see where it can go with its own strategy. Cue later emphasized that Apple doesn't just want to buy shows, denying that Apple was ever interested in purchasing The Grand Tour. Instead, Apple only wants to make shows that are unique and "create culture."

Silverman says that Apple's influence is the only reason he thinks Planet of the Apps could work, pointing out that developers and stars, like judges Jessica Alba and Gwyneth Paltrow, might not have signed onto the show if Apple had not been producing the show.

Planet of the Apps will not have ads. Cue says he's unsure if future Apple productions will have ads, but that he doesn't know of many people who actually watch ads when they're watching programming. Cue says a lot of people either watch shows on streaming services or purchase or rent them from places like iTunes, bypassing the ads of regular TV.

Cue also talked about the future of TV. When asked what the big roadblock for Apple was when it was planning its rumored TV service, Cue said discoverability and the complexity of the TV industry. Cue said the TV app is one way to help customers find the content they want to watch without jumping into various services. Cue also says industries are reticent to change, and that people in the industry aren't yet moving in the same direction, making it difficult for Apple to put what it wants to do together. However, Cue says Apple is not interested in pursuing a skinny bundle. In 2015, the CEOs of Time Warner and CBS said Apple was working on a "forward-thinking" streaming service.


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