“Everything about this video was exceptional at the time, and just as critically, nothing was objectionable.” —Stratechery’s Ben Thompson
From Thompson’s “Apple, Epic, and the App Store,” posted Monday:
While Apple pretends like the Internet never existed as a distribution channel, the truth is it was a channel that wasn’t great for a lot of users: people were scared to install apps, convinced they would mess up their computers, get ripped off, or accidentally install a virus.
The App Store changed all of that: Apple effectively extended the trust it had earned with users over the years to all developers in the App Store. Users could install whatever they wanted, confident the app would not mess up their phone, rip them off, or be a virus… This was the combination of integration and modularity at its absolute best: Apple leveraged its control to create a better market that benefited everyone.
My take: Thompson makes a point succinctly that I’ve been trying to make here for some time…
[T]he question as to what is anticompetitive and what is simply good business changes as a business scales. A small business can generally be as anticompetitive as it wants to be, while a much larger business is much more constrained in how anticompetitively it can act.
He also tells a joke my readers may appreciate:
There is a bit of a running joke in tech that the mainstream media believes that every tech company is ridiculously over-valued right up until the day that the exact same company is a juggernaut that is killing industries; in the case of Apple, the company’s strategy was doomed right up until it was illegal, or so it seems with the App Store.