The Macalope: A disagreement


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Apparently Apple doesn’t do gigantacquisitions like other firms. This is apparently an untenable situation, because Apple needs to do exactly what everyone else does. Apple, the company with more cash and profit share than anyone else. That Apple. It needs to change its ways, pronto.

Needless to say, Business Insider’s Jay Yarow is on this problem. Phew. What a relief that is.

The URL and the page header for Yarow’s piece on this breaking news, which has been slowly breaking since 1997, take a slightly different tack than the headline. The page header reads:

Apple Needs To Be Aggressive

Oh, but that’s not nearly jerktastic enough. No, no, no. This is Business Insider we’re talking about. So the headline is:

Tim Cook Is Blowing It

Mmm, that’s good jerk. And they wonder why the Macalope doesn’t link to their stuff.

Let’s look at what [the five technology companies that matter] have done in the past three months.

Microsoft got a new CEO.

Which is apparently some kind of feather in its cap. Congratulations, Microsoft! You’re no longer a rudderless cruise ship full of cannibalistic rats!

Amazon announced plans to eventually use drones to deliver packages.

Amazon announces teleportation will one day deliver your packages to you! BOLD. DECISIVE. TALKING ABOUT STUFF YOU WON’T LIVE TO SEE. AMAZON.

Google bought Nest for $3 billion, sold Motorola for $3 billion, and bought a handful of robotics companies.

Google bought a company it was already invested in, finally admitted the Motorola acquisition was a bomb, and is playing with its action figures. BOLD. DECISIVE. WHOOPS. SQUIRREL! GOOGLE.

[slow, sarcastic golf clap]

Facebook paid $19 billion for WhatsApp.

Facebook paid a crapton of money in a move that was equal parts offense and defense. BOLD. DECISIVE. REAAAALLY EXPENSIVE. FACEBOOK.

Apple announced $14 billion in share buybacks.

This is apparently all that Apple has done in the last three months. Oh, it did make some acquisitions (like it always does) but when you’re setting up false equivalencies, such inconvenient facts need not be mentioned.

Which thing in that list is not like the others?

None of them are like the others! They’re all different!

In case you can’t figure it out, it’s Apple’s boring buyback.

Of course.

As fund manager Eric Jackson notes, Apple is just standing still while these other companies go flying around snapping up key assets to bolster their future.

Key assets like CEOs. “You know, we really think we should have a CEO.” BOLD. DECISIVE. FINALLY REALIZING IT’S STUCK IN A DITCH. MICROSOFT.

Action Jackson has been whining that Apple isn’t spending enough like a drunken sailor for months. Forget the fact that Google’s Motorola acquisition is a perfect example of how these big deals usually don’t work out, what matters to the Jay Yarows and Eric Jacksons of the world is hurling a bunch of cash at a problem. That’s the only way to solve things! Everything I need to know about business I learned at a strip club!

Yes, it likely has interesting things happening behind closed doors at its headquarters. And, yes, it spends billions on factories and equipment to build new products.

But so what?

So. What. Apple is actually doing things, but they’re subtle things and those are soooo boring that they make Jay Yarow all smashy.

There’s nothing out there—nothing at all?—that Apple sees, and thinks is worth buying?

Apple, of course, buys companies all the time.

And short of buying companies, Apple doesn’t think there’s a strategic value in lowering the price of the iPhone to ramp up sales around the world? Really?

Why? So its margins can fall? Must we have this same argument over and over? Can’t we argue about something else?

That’s a rhetorical question.

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