“Silicon Valley is aglow from so-called moonshots. Google’s parent company, Alphabet, is building autonomous vehicles, life-extending drugs, and animal-look-alike robots,” Adam Satariano reports for Bloomberg Businessweek. “Facebook is developing Internet-beaming drones and virtual-reality headsets, while Microsoft has unveiled hologram glasses and is chasing breakthroughs in translation software. IBM’s AI software, Watson, will take on all comers in chess.”
“Compared with its resources, Apple has remained relatively quiet. It spent just 3.5 percent ($8.1 billion) of its $233 billion in revenue in fiscal 2015 on research and development, a lower percentage than every other large U.S. technology company, data compiled by Bloomberg show,” Satariano reports. “By contrast, Facebook spent about 21 percent ($2.6 billion) on R&D, chipmaker Qualcomm 22 percent ($5.6 billion), and Alphabet 15 percent ($9.2 billion).”
“Apple’s success belies the conventional wisdom that a leading tech company must reinvest a sizable chunk of its sales in R&D or risk being overtaken,” Satariano reports. “Apple has never subscribed to that philosophy. Steve Jobs said in 1998 that “innovation has nothing to do with how many R&D dollars you have.” He liked to point out that when the Mac was introduced, IBM was spending about 100 times more than Apple on research.”
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MacDailyNews Take: It’s not how much you spend, it’s how well you spend.
People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I’m actually as proud of the things we haven’t done as the things I have done. Innovation is saying no to 1,000 things. — Steve Jobs