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Episode 25: The Apple Watch Conundrum in Asia with Sameer Singh

Sameer Singh from Tech-Thoughts is back for an interesting discussion with Bernard Leong on the three major topics which dominate the Asian technology and business landscape. Discussing in depth the Apple Watch conundrum, they explained why there are flawed misconceptions from western analysts on the Apple Watch market in Asia. The discussion also revolved around the luxury business models from prestige to “mass-tige”, and why Apple is challenging the traditional luxury market in a different kind of way. Moving from Apple Watch, Sameer offered his perspective on why Firefox should not build a desktop OS and argued that the challenge for the next billion is not just for Google but every technology company who is looking to grow their pie there. Finally, the discussion turns to the recent F8 conference and the prediction which both got right: Facebook has finally cloned WeChat, but Sameer argued that Facebook is using the LINE model more than WeChat. Lastly, they also discussed the interesting question on Meerkat and Periscope.

Here are the interesting show notes and links for our discussion:

  • Apple Watch in Asia
    • Who is buying it in Asia? Why is there no smartwatch market?
    • Understanding the luxury business from the perspective of Apple and LVMH. BL introduced the argument that Apple is targeting the “mass-tige” market (similar to Swatch) and not prestige market. “Mass-tige” is a term used by luxury business to target customers towards brands who aspire towards luxury brands. For example, LVMH has acquired “mass-tige” brands in Southeast Asia such as Charles and Keith to move the consumer towards prestige branding (Tag Heuer). Also check out Benedict Evans’ piece on why Apple has made a gold watch.
    • The problem with Apple competing with Tag Heuer in a luxury watch market. BL introduce the concept of disposable luxury (which originated from his wife), where Apple is trying to make luxury disposable such that the customers keep changing the luxury product every 2-3 years.
    • Misconceptions of western analysts on the luxury watches and their predictions on why Apple Edition watch will work in China with the luxury market taking a hit recently due to crackdown on corruption from the Chinese government.
    • Other interesting articles on Apple Watch which are referenced here from Techpinions: “The Apple Watch Augean Stables” (requires subscription), Thinking about Apple watch pricing (requires subscription).
    • How can developers invent new kind of apps on the Apple Watch platform if they are subject to the same constraints?
    • What kind of new interaction models for smartwatches?
  • Mobile in Asia
    • Firefox OS – Why they should build a desktop version to compete with Chrome OS.
    • Web app vs Native app world – the indexing proposition for Google.
    • The tech companies’ next billion problem (including Google and Facebook): why apps like Duolingo are more capable to monetize the next billion. Also read Google and Facebook’s vision of mobile.
    • Google’s lacklustre Android growth – why are OEMs ganging up against them by working with Microsoft? Why is Cyanogen adopted by Micromax?
  • F8 Conference and its implications to Asia
    • Facebook cloning WeChat
      • The apps on messenger platform.
      • Why Facebook is taking a leaf more from LINE and not WeChat.
      • Why Facebook has not introduced Facebook pages similar to WeChat’s subscription brand pages.
    • What is Facebook’s strategy with Whatsapp? Is it following the same strategy with Facebook Paper app?
    • Content is being commoditized on Facebook and the future of news and media.
    • Meerkat vs Periscope (with Twitter backing) and why Facebook has not made a move on Meerkat.

Podcast Information:

The show is hosted by Bernard Leong (@bleongcw) and are sponsored by Ideal Workspace (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) and Linkcious (and check out their other product, Chiibi).

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By | 2015-08-10T06:08:10+00:00 April 3rd, 2015|Analyse Asia Podcast, Podcast Shows|

About the Author:

A pragmatic idealist in technology, media & entrepreneurship.