Talking to All Things Digital’s Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg tonight, Apple CEO Tim Cook artfully danced around a number of questions the pair lobbed with regards to future products and technology that the company was working on – but he did discuss a number of issues relevant to the space:
It’s clear that while Apple TV might not sell iPhone-level numbers, it’s rapidly becoming more than just a simple hobby for Apple. While Cook refused to divulge any sort of detail on strategy or confirmation regarding an Apple television set, he did talk about how Apple TV is a useful tool for more than simply generating profits. The little device feeds Apple all sorts of data on how customers watch content on their TV, and how Apple might make it better.
Apple isn’t just sitting on all that cash
While Apple has Sagan-like (Billions and billions) of dollars in the bank, they aren’t just sitting pretty. While Cook neglected to mention just what Apple is buying with it (“Not until we have to.”), he did say that on average, Apple buys a company every 70 days or so – but they’ve acquired a whopping 9 since October alone.
Apple is doubling down on green efforts
As one of the most visible targets in the electronics industry, Apple famously gets called out all the time, both for taking environmentally-friendly actions, and for the reverse. They’re serious about keeping green, however, and to prove it, CEO Tim Cook announced that they’d recently hired ex-EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson to lead the way. What her title is, exactly, appears to be something of a mystery – but trust us, it’s about the environment.
Apple might be getting just a smidge more open
During the interview on stage at D11, Kara Swisher remarked that while she uses iOS more often than Android, she doesn’t love it as much – and that has a great deal to do with how open Apple’s iOS is, or rather, how open it isn’t. Android manages to outcompete iOS in some areas in part because it grants developers greater latitude in hooking into the devices’ operating system. That may be changing later this year, as Cook said that we can expect Apple to get a bit more open, and give devs more room to tinker. That doesn’t mean you’ll be able to swap out the dialer for some tricked-out app from the App Store, but it might let you put your weather on the lockscreen.
The Apple CEO also confirmed that Jony Ive has been working hard to bring change to iOS and that we’d be seeing some major changes with regards to the software very soon, at the company’s WorldWide Developers Conference in a couple of weeks. While it’s unlikely that Apple will be showing off much in the way of new hardware on the conference, we could see a radically new Mac Pro finally raise its head – a promise that Cook made to a customer late last year.