AirPods as a financial rocket

And also a new MacBook / Apple Card drama

Greetings! Coming right up, the most interesting stuff about Apple in the past week. β€” Please forward this email to anyone you think might find it interesting. We're trying a new format this week.


Apple Card 

πŸ™β€β™€οΈ Last week, Steve Wozniak along with entrepreneur David Heinemeir Hannson and his wife, complained about a supposed Apple Card discrimination of women and minorities in credit checks.

πŸ—½ New York State Department of Financial Services started an investigation about it, but Ian Kar explained what was going on: "credit card approvals and credit limits are really effing complex".

πŸ’³ In a heavily regulated industry, and as much as I hate Goldman Sachs (which would be the one at fault in this case, although the one to take the hit in the court of public opinion will surely be Apple), probably both cases are nothing much more than mere coincidences. Again, read Ian's explanation, it's great.


AirPods are on a iPhone trajectory

πŸš€ Neil Cybart, who is as smart in his analyses as he's grumpy on Twitter, says that Apple has already sold over 61 million pairs of AirPods in its first three years. That's one million more than the iPhone did back in 2007-2010.

πŸ’° Cybart estimates an ASP of $162, and that the majority of those sales, about 35 million (57%) have been sold this fiscal year, 10 million of which were in the last quarter. Great numbers. 

πŸ’Έ Counterpoint also says 35 million for the year, but ups the figure to 15 million in Q3 counting Beats devices, with an ASP of around 150$.

πŸ‡¨πŸ‡³ AirPods suppliers are doing great this year in the Chinese stock markets. Wireless audio devices or "hearables" if they're smart enough, have a "consumer demand worth billions of dollars barely tapped yet".


The new MacBook Pro 

πŸ’» It's finally here and it's 99.99% great. The reviews are fantastic and the price is compelling. Apple hosted a small event in NYC for reporters, in which it showed the new Mac Pro too. 

⌨️ The keyboard has been fixed, and our long worldwide nightmare is over. CNET interviewed Phil Schiller and asked him why it took Apple so long to go back and honestly, it's quite interesting (tldr: keyboards are hard) but I feel like Apple fell trap of some kind of a sunk cost fallacy with the bad butterfly mechanism.

🎧 Casey Johnston, the journalist that first deeply reported the butterfly keyboard issues in the MacBooks, did a podcast with John Gruber. You should listen to it.

πŸ“… The new Mac Pro is slated for "Fall" in the MBP 16 Press Release and "December" in the website, so it'll be here before December 22 if Apple respects the laws of the Sun.


Chart of the week

$AAPL had a major streak this week.


Trump

(Yes, he has a section in here too!)

πŸ€’ Apple recently hired one of President Donald Trump’s "closest allies in Washington, D.C." as a lobbyist to avoid getting hit with another round of tariffs.

🀠 Trump will visit Apple's manufacturing plant in Texas on Wednesday, so get ready for some nice pictures of him and Cook pointing at stuff. β€” I feel for Tim Cook, because as diplomatic as he is, he must hate every minute of being with Trump.


Services

πŸ‡©πŸ‡ͺ Germany wants Apple to open direct access the NFC chip in the iPhones, so 3rd party developers could better integrate their payment systems. The company then warned legislators of privacy and security issues of doing so. 

πŸ“° Over 200,000 people subscribed to Apple News+ in the first week, but then it got "stuck in neutral since that time, according to people familiar with the matter". β€” The company has been mute for almost six months with subscription figures.

🧠 The company is looking to push its services in Windows again, as it hires software engineers to build "the next generation of media apps for Windows". Most probably Apple TV+ and Music related, nothing about Books, Podcasts or.

🎹 Apple Music now offers business plans and a year-end review feature called Replay. It's mostly what you'd expect, but it's one of the many things that Spotify had over Apple Music.


Safari

🦁 The creators of Brave, a Chromium-based and privacy-focused browser that I really like, have published a table (PDF) comparing its security features to Safari, Chrome and Edge. Safari could do more, but not without basically going to war with the ad-industry.

🧭 Pwn2Own Tianfucup, the Chinese edition of the hacking competition, ended up with one Safari exploit being awarded


More from the Orchard

πŸš— Foxconn won't build complete cars for now, it'll focus on component integration. This is interesting because Apple could need Hon Hai (or Magna! as it was previously reported) if it finally enters the car market.

πŸ‘Ώ Another Apple Genius caught stealing intimate pictures of a customer that left her iPhone to fix. He was fired, but maybe the company should look to add a "guest mode" to iOS so this stops happening.

πŸ” iOS 13.3. beta 2 brings Safari support for NFC, USB, and Lightning FIDO2 security keys. 

🏒 Interesting video of a visitor tour through the Apple Park campus, that shows zones usually not open to the public.

πŸ”Š Huawei will launch its own HomePod-like speaker, with a very HomePod-like design.


Thank you for reading Apple Weekly. Please consider forwarding this email to your contacts or hitting the like button below. β€” Alex