Apple: Inflection, Reflection or Reset–Futurum Tech Podcast Episode 051
by Olivier Blanchard | July 2, 2019

On this week’s edition of the Futurum Tech Podcast, is Apple on the verge of another major transition? North Korea launches a smartphone. Verbal skirmishes between Nokia and Huawei set the stage for a new phase in global 5G competition. Google returns to the bottom of the ocean, and sends cars into fields. Those stories, and more, coming up on this episode of FTP.

Our Main Dive

One of Apple’s core players, lead designer Jony Ive, is departing after a decades-long stint to start his own design firm. Yes, Apple will be his main client, but no, it’s not clear just how much this move will impact the design-side of the venerable brand. Is it possible the firm is setting itself up for a reset?

Our Fast Five

We dig into this week’s interesting and noteworthy news:

Tech Bites

Google and a hundred drivers who rely far too much on Google Maps demonstrated the risk of over-relying on technology as driver after driver followed an erroneous detour on their way to Denver’s airport. Rather than short-term parking they found themselves in a long-term mud pit on a private road.

Crystal Ball: Future-um Predictions and Guesses

Just when will Apple CEO Tim Cook hand the firm over to the next CEO? We take a look at the year and month it just might happen.


Olivier Blanchard: Welcome to this week’s edition of FTP, the Futurum Tech Podcast. I am Olivier Blanchard, senior analyst with Futurum Research, and joining me today are Fred McClimans as usual. And a special guest star for the first time ever on the FTP podcast, is Ron Westfall, who is also an analyst with Futurum. And since Dan is out of town, and out of reach, we’ve decided to throw him in the lion pits, and see how he does. I think he’s going to do pretty fantastic. So how are you guys doing today?

Fred McClimans: Doing well, doing well. Looking forward to today’s podcast, and to Ron being a part of the FTP family here.

Olivier Blanchard: I know, I’m psyched. Ron, how you feeling?

Ron Westfall: Oh, very good. And yes, thank you for that generous introduction. Just looking forward to a prosperous summer. And so, likewise, some hot topics I think we can tackle today in the podcast. So looking forward to it, like Fred.

Olivier Blanchard: Awesome, fantastic. So anyway, here’s what we have in store for you guys today. We’re going to start today’s show with a discussion about the future of Apple. I know we talk about Apple a lot, but this is going to be a little bit different. We’re not going to be complaining about Apple. We’re actually going to be talking about what I think might happen as a transition for the company in the next five years.

Also, we’re going to share some of our favorite tech news stories of the week in our Fast Five segments, as always. Followed by Tech Bites, in which we highlight one of the biggest tech-related fails of the week. And we will end the show, as usual, with our Crystal Ball.

But, as always, it goes without saying, that this show is intended for informational purposes only, and no advice or insights provided here, no matter how great, or how terrible, should be taken as investment advice.

Okay, so now that that’s out of the way, let’s talk about Apple. Jony Ive’s leaving this week, and that sent some of ripples of terror and uncertainty in the markets. I think that Apple lost somewhere north of eight billion in market cap from that announcements. Which is temporary, and silly, and we’re going to discuss that. That was one of the big news items this weekend. And what kind of triggered my reasoning behind making this our main topic today. It seems that Apple is going through a transition, and has been for some time.

The first part of that transition was the unfortunate death of Steve Jobs. It seems that, although Apple was able to maintain its momentum that Steve had created for Apple, the company seems to have stalled in the last few years. They’ve stalled in terms of design. I don’t think that any of Apple’s products are as mind-blowingly beautiful and well-designed as they used to be. So, that’s gone down a little bit.

Performance-wise, especially with regards to the iPhone, it’s also … Apple, I think has lost some of its luster, and some of its ability to claim a leadership position in technology and performance. The battery issues, whether they were technical problems, or other types of problems, still were experienced as a negative feature of the brand for iPhone users.

Apple has struggled to keep up with Android with a number of key user features, including the shift to 5G. There hasn’t been a lot of innovation either, on the computer front. And the AR goggles that we’ve been promised for the last two years, still are not here. So, it seems that after a couple of years of Apple kind of stalling out, and even sales suffering from this, there’s some movement at Apple, and Tim Cook is finally ready to make some changes.

So, Ive is leaving. Apple has started to distance itself a little bit from Intel. Seems to be indicating that it may be distancing itself from Intel even more, not just on the modem front, but also on the chip front for its computers. And obviously 5G is going to be a big feature of Apple’s future again.

Actually, I’m going to start with Ron, since you are our guest today. Thoughts and first impressions about what I just said, and where you think Apple may be transitioning, or how, in the next two to five years?

Ron Westfall: Yeah. No, I think that’s a great start, and it hit the nail on the head. Apple is at an inflection point, and will need to make some serious changes in order to remain a highly influential, let alone competitive. Yeah. Let’s start with that, on the supply chain side of things. Yes. We saw the high profile showdown between Apple and Qualcomm, and essentially Apple blinked. And as a result will be using Qualcomm’s technology, in order to accelerate the availability of Apple iPhones, and related products for 5G.

Obviously, 5G is actually on the ascent. It looks like Apple itself a little stalled out at the end of last year, and the beginning of this year, but we’re seeing some serious momentum. For example, Ericcson’s recent consumer study verified that there are lots of new consumers and services, that are actually genuinely 5G, that are available today. And we can anticipate up to 10 million 5G users by the end of this year alone. That really is shaking up Apple to really get on that 5G bandwagon.

In addition, yes, Apple again is looking for that holy grail of being able to control as much of the supply chain as possible. IE, even becoming less dependent on Intel, and using, for example, ARM-based chipsets to drive its own PC development, and other related technologies. So, that’s the snapshot right there. That over the next two to five years, Apple will simply have to be successful in implementing its own supply chain strategy. But the jury’s really out on just to how effective this will be. This is something that many companies aspire to. But easier said than done, especially when you’re going up against competitors that have really excelled in these areas. So yeah, that’s the thought here.

Olivier Blanchard: Yup. Fred, thoughts? Anything additional?

Fred McClimans: Yeah, there’s always something additional. I think Apple is a victim of their own success, to an extent. The early products that they brought to market, they really were breakthrough. And they established new aspects of the industry, of the consumer industry, of the business industries, and technology industry, that they really took hold. As a result of that, I think the company, over the years, has just become increasingly focused on serving that need that they created initially, that they kind of brought to market. As a result, because that success leads to increased consumption of product, and a larger number of users, the ability of the company to really be breakthrough, in their existing product line, is challenging.

That’s the same for just about any company. Look through the years. Whether it’s been somebody like an IBM, or a Cisco, or in this case an Apple, it’s a challenge there, and it takes a lot to course correct, or to maintain that leadership position. I don’t think that’s something that they’ve done anywhere near as effectively as somebody like Microsoft, for example, that has really managed to keep themselves at the forefront by reinventing themselves.

Maybe that’s something that Apple maybe ultimately gets to. I just don’t see them really reinventing themselves with this space. In fact, most of what we see from Apple, even in the areas where they’re making some really significant progress- I really like some of the things they’re doing with the watch. I like some of the moves into the medical space, but that’s still kind of maturing, or has a long way to go.

But, even with that, I mean, if you look at the moves they’re making, it is very incremental. They do surprise on occasion. I mean, just in the last couple of days here, we’re getting word that the new MacBook Pro may not actually be manufactured in the US, as it has been in the past. It may actually be manufactured over in the- I’m sorry, the Mac Pro in China, at the very same moment that they’re trying to move iPhone production out of China.

Olivier Blanchard: Right. Right.

Fred McClimans: Maybe they know something, we don’t know with this here. But yeah, certainly with the recent changes, with Ives moving on, I don’t see that as really being that significant an issue for them at this point. I mean, he’s still going to be servicing Apple. They’re going to be his main client at his new design firm. So, yeah, it’s interesting news. But yeah, of late, Apple, they do need maybe think a little bit more like Microsoft.

Olivier Blanchard: Yeah. It’s ironic, because I think that Apple has a Microsoft problem. They’re basically where Microsoft was when Ballmer took over. I have a little bit of a theory of Apple, because I’ve been thinking about this for quite some time, as you guys probably also have. And it’s not this groundbreaking thing. I think we’ve all come to the same conclusion. But let me try to articulate it quickly, if I can.

Apple was at the height of Appleness when it was a challenger brand. And that’s what it was always good at. The whole rebel, think different, et cetera. As a challenger, as the David to Goliath, Apple was in its elements. That was the time when Steve Jobs, who was the ultimate challenger, had control of the company. So, it was the perfect combination, the perfect direction, and the perfect state of being, for Apple. Then, Apple became an incumbent. It stopped being the challenger. It became Goliath as opposed to David, and then Steve Jobs went away. Those two things, happening virtually at the same time, were the worst thing that could happen to Apple.

Apple transitioned into a very different phase of growth, where, instead of having a CEO, it had a COO in chief. COOs do what COOs do, and Tim Cook is probably one of the world’s best COOs ever. He’s just not necessarily the best CEO for Apple, given what type of company Apple is, and what type of leader it needs, to keep doing, what made it so successful to begin with. So, the phase that it’s been in the last few years, has been a a growth phase, in terms of scale, in terms of profitability, in terms of financial performance.

Its aggressively tried to reshape and reinvent supply chain. And all those things, are things that that Tim Cook was uniquely qualified to do, but I think that’s run its course. Apple needs to switch back to that Steve Jobs challenger phase, and it needs to challenge Android, and it needs to challenge itself, and it’s something that hasn’t been able to do because the wrong people were at the top.

I think that Tim Cook knows what needs to happen with Apple, and we’re seeing those moves begin to become more obvious, but I’m not sure that Apple can actually transition into what Apple needs to become for the next phase of its growth, if Tim cook remains at the helm.

I also think that, at the same time, Jony Ive leaving, kind of opens the doors. A lot of people are freaking out because, “Oh Jony Ive’s leaving, it’s bad for Apple.” I think it’s good for Apple. I think there are plenty of super-talented designers out there in the world, who could inject genius back into Apple. And even though Ive isn’t completely leaving, he’s still going to be working with Apple, that’s a given, I think that a change at the top, and a change in the design thinking of Apple, and a return to their source, to the holy grail of Apple is what’s needed now.

So, my prediction is that, for this to work, Tim has to go, or take on a different role at the company. I don’t think that Apple will actually be successful in its plan to transition back to the challenger, cool, innovative brand that it used to be, as long as Tim doesn’t do that. Really quickly, from both of you, 30-second reactions to that.

Ron Westfall: That rings true. Yeah. I think we’ve seen, in the tea leaves, the fact that, for a company to successfully execute a transformation, Ivy become a thought leader, become a dynamic force in the competitive landscape, that frequently requires a change in the executive leadership. Usually, that’s the CEO, it could also evolve the CXO team. And in this case wouldn’t be too surprising. And with them bringing in a new CEO, hopefully they can implement a Microsoft type of transition, or suffer the fate of say, the convulsions that IBM went through the 1990s. They came out through it, but you really wanted to avoid that type of experience and have something that’s obviously less disruptive to the organization to get through a serious competitive challenge phase.

Olivier Blanchard: Perfect. Yep. Absolutely. What about you Fred?

Fred McClimans: I think the one thing that’s kind of missing here though is, if you look at companies that have undergone that that transformation leaving behind one phase, whether it’s their initial startup success phase or, follow on peak that they’ve achieved, especially for longer companies. What usually is required there is some type of really poor abysmal performance and a clear sign that they’re really going down the wrong avenue for success. And, I mean, go back and look at the, again, I’ll use IBM as an example, I’ll throw Cisco in there. Microsoft as well.

You could clearly see that those companies had reached a point where they were not making any real forward progress at all. In the case of Apple, it’s still growing. It’s still, at the forefront of the pack. It may not be number one in every aspect, but, it’s certainly not accompany that is spiraling downhill. And if you look at, even their stock performance. Yeah. They’re down off their peak, the trillion plus peak, but, they’re not that far down off. And, even the news today with Ives leaning, they’re down less than a percent. It looks like they’ll close less than a percent down today.

So there’s still a lot of optimism around Apple and I just, I’m not sure that they have, especially given cook’s operational focus, they have the ability to really say at this point, “Let’s upend the Apple cart.” And that’s a bad pun.

But, I just don’t see them at that point here. So, it’s going to be interesting to watch to see what happens over the coming 12, 18 months or so with this company. But, right now I just don’t see them undergoing any significant change.

Olivier Blanchard: Okay. Cool. Well, we’ll circle back to that in our crystal ball at the very end of the show. So we’ll have a chance to discuss one particular aspect of how that changed my play out. So stay tuned for that.

All right gentlemen, that’s all the time we have for a main topic. So let’s switch to our fast five. So, I’m going to start again with, with our guest. I have to be polite here. Ron, you have a story about Nokia and Huawei, and I’m assuming 5G. What’s that about?

Ron Westfall: Yeah. It’s a bit of a novelty, a rare instance where a company, Nokia in this case, is this gets itself from the comments of it’s a CTO. Nokia’s distinguished CTO, Marcus Weldon was on BBC yesterday. And he noted that recently Huawei has enjoyed a competitive advantages that were fundamentally unfair. And he cited aspects. One, the fact that Huawei and it’s stable mate, ZTE benefited from subsidies from the states, soft loans, et cetera. And this is pretty well understood. And it has altered the competitive landscape, but not to the point where they ran the competition off into the fields.

But the more controversial aspect was that, he cited a recent study that pretty much said that up to 55 percent of all Huawei product had a security flaw. IE, backdoor vulnerabilities that are fueling the concerns that are driving the US government to restrict or ban Huawei equipment in the US, but also a lobbying allied countries to do the same thing. Specifically to UK, which is, was the reason why Marcus was on the BBC show to begin with.

And so in fairness, it was a third party study conducted by a firm called Finite State. And so, they’re the ones that I came out with the conclusion that Huawei’s equipment compared to comparable 5G suppliers like Ericsson Nokia had this a security challenge. And today a Nokia basically said, “Well, that is not our official position. We’re not endorsing what Marcus was pointing to in terms of these security flaws. We’re not going to comment on the security capability of the competitor equipment.” And basically, is hedging in some ways, because just the other day China Mobile House selected Nokia’s equipment for its own 5G expansion efforts. But specifically in the 2.6 gigahertz ecosystem.

So, this is all part of the new competitive dynamic. Geopolitics is becoming more prominent, and the decision making of the suppliers and how they look to differentiate themselves from the competition, but it’s also impacting the entire ecosystem. IE. the operators, they now have to think twice, “Okay. Do we want to adopt Huawei equipment because of restrictions on their supply chain for US originated technology? Or is this security study actually legitimate? Or is it actually pointing to a serious issue here that might not be able to be effectively countered in the near term?”

And so, this is something we’re going to see more of quite simply. The fact that the US/China show down in terms of resetting trade relations and other considerations, are going to have this significant ripple effect throughout our industry for the foreseeable future.

On a somewhat related note, we’re seeing more Cloud providers coming together to form the official alliances. And so this is a second hot topic is, for example, Oracle and Microsoft earlier this month formed a interoperability relationship after being erstwhile competitors for quite some time in terms of public Cloud offerings and other Cloud implementations. IE, Hybrid Cloud. And this is being driven by the enterprises out there saying, “Hey look guys. We want to adopt more Cloud capabilities. But Cloud administration is becoming a real headache, particularly in a multi-Cloud environments, and hybrid IT implementations, and so forth.”

And so, in addition we saw Equinix and IBM broaden its relationship to address this very challenge. And so, we can anticipate throughout the rest of this year, more formal alliances between Cloud providers that are pretty much rivals. But, [inaudible] pretty much evolving toward a more [co-opetition] type model, and more a broadening of existing relationships and alliances in that regard.

And a third one that I think is interesting is a Cisco this week came out with a, they basically a blog emphasizing the fact that they are focusing on re-skilling the IT workforce. IE, we want companies out there that are facing the challenges of digital transformation to have a high morale workforce to basically enable their workers to actually succeed in new roles or a new combination of responsibilities. And to that end, they really came out with a repurposing of their certification programs to ensure that network engineers and other IT personnel, and have that competence to work with in their organizations, and to basically learn new capabilities, and contribute to the organization and these new ways.

And also, reinforcing that their network academy is always available to anybody out there who wants to learn the new skills or adapt to new skills. And this is aligning with what we advocated earlier, of the fact that AutoNation, for example, robot automation, is something that can actually augment existing human workforces. It’s not an trade off, it’s not an either or proposition. The main goal is to use AI, to use the robotic process automation, and other technologies closely related, to really enhance the workforce. To enable companies to adapt to digital transformation, and to be able to leverage their existing workforce to really make it successful. And so yeah, those are some of my hot takes for right now with the eight pick.

Olivier Blanchard: Excellent. Yeah. So you came prepared you. So that was three of our fast fives today. So that, that’s fantastic. Just as a footnote before I let Fred give us his number four and number five. The topic that we just discussed about human machine partnerships and the augmentation versus replacement equation when it comes to machines taking over for humans or not, is the topic of a book that Daniel Newman and I wrote earlier this year. And that comes out this July with a UK release in, I think in, in two weeks, and the US and Canada release on July 28th.

So we’ll definitely be talking more about that on future podcasts. Look out for that. So Fred, I’m going to let you close out our fast five segment with your two fast five stories. And I’m going to give you three and a half minutes on the clock to get through both of them.

Fred McClimans: Perfect. I’ll do it in two.

Olivier Blanchard: Good luck.

Fred McClimans: Yes. So a couple of quick stories caught my eye this week. The first, anytime I see anything about North Korea, it just kind of grabs my attention. And this one actually kept my attention for all of about two or three minutes for its just, over the top approach to technology here. So, North Korea has released a smartphone in North Korea. It is the Pyongyang 24/25 and I have no idea how they came up with that naming nomenclature. First let me just say that it looks like a really slick phone. It’s got an eight core processor, it’s got facial recognition, it’s got a WIFI charging.

Olivier Blanchard: I bet it does.

Fred McClimans: Wireless charging. So as pointed out though in the mirror, so I’ll have to disclose the source of the story was the mirror. It turns out that, number one, this phone may not have actually been made in North Korea. It may actually be a Chinese phone they just kind of repackaged, repurposed in here. But more importantly, in keeping with the North Korean style of government oversight, it only connects to the state run WIFI network. It does not connect to any third party WIFI networks available out there.

Applications appear to be available only through the North Korea sponsored store and in some cases it appears that it may actually require you to actually take the phone in to a retail outlet and have somebody put an application on there for you, a to even more closely monitor it. But, just the idea of North Korea launching a what looks like a really slick smartphone that does not have the ability to access any data outside of North Korea, is somewhat impressive, and somewhat humorous, and somewhat disappointing, all three at the same time. So, we’ll watch this one. It’s worth watching just to see what happens here.

The other story that caught my attention-

Olivier Blanchard: You know there’s going to be a black market for this on Amazon or somewhere on eBay. Somebody is going to be trying to get like import, like take these out of North Korea and just, be able to own one.

Fred McClimans: Yes. And I’ve got to tell you, I will put my name on that list. I am so curious about this phone that yeah, I’d love to have one.

Olivier Blanchard: That’s going to be the hot gadget this Christmas. If you’re looking for the gift to a techie, that you’re not, you can’t get anywhere. That’s it right there. Just, I’m calling it right now. Okay, go ahead. I’m sorry.

Fred McClimans: There you go. So, hey, the fifth fast five of our final fast five of the day, involves Google. Somebody that we talk about frequently. But this is an aspect of Google that we really don’t touch on much at all. And that’s the infrastructure aspect of Google in the communications world. So Google has, over the years, put in place 13 subsea cables. You know, you think back to the old days when the US and Europe wanted to communicate. You had that first Trans-Atlantic undersea cable that they installed and everybody would use that cable. It didn’t matter who you were or what company you were. Everybody used that cable. Over the years, the number of cables has greatly expanded and Google has dropped 13 of them under sea in various parts of the world and just announced that they’ve dropped their 14th cable.

It is the third international cable according to Venture Beat that is funded entirely by Google. So, this is kind of an interesting note. I mean we think about Google putting up these massive data centers everywhere here. We have Google actually literally installing their own undersea cable. In this case it’s the Aquanto ,or Equiano cable, that goes from Portugal down to the southern tip of South Africa.

Interesting thing, it touches Lisbon. Touches somewhere on the west coast. I can’t quite tell exactly where this is here. It looks like Nigeria. And then like I said, down to South Africa. So, interesting aspect of the communications world here. Company like Alphabet spinning out everything from balloons and WIFI on a global scale to now undersea cables. It’s just an interesting aspect of technology that I think is worth, that’s worth considering or tracking and … And unlike the North Korea phone, I don’t need one of these for Christmas.

Olivier Blanchard: All right, cool. That does it for our fast five. That was, that wasn’t too bad. It wasn’t, it wasn’t superfast five, but it was, we kind of kept it under control this week. So in, in order to like really be time efficient this week, I’ve also outsourced our tech bites segments to Fred. I was going to mention a snafu with Deep Fakes and how close we got this week to Deep Fakes becoming widely available on all of your devices. But Fred actually came up with a, with one that I think touches on Google as well, right? That the actually puts cars in ditches. So that one felt more immediate. So tell us about it.

Fred McClimans: Yes. So, this from a tech byte perspective. Maybe it hits a little bit on Google, but it also hits on our reliance upon technology in many cases, often outsourcing common sense to technology. So, this past week there was a traffic jam on the highway blocking access to Denver’s International Airport. So, like a lot of people do when they’re stuck in traffic, they turn to Google maps, and they go, “Find me an alternate route.” In this case for whatever reason, we’re not sure, Google’s not quite sure. But Google maps suggested an alternate route that led to essentially a giant mud pit on a piece of private property on a private road.

So, to Google’s credit that they didn’t, their system has limitations, and it’s unclear whether or not that roadway was actually listed as, privately owned or whatnot. But, apparently dozens of cars decided to go off on this track. It took them down a, eventually a dirt road and they just kept going because they assumed Google knows what it’s doing. You know, in this case it didn’t. So I’ve got to say, “Hey look, this is a bit of Google and a bit of user error.” Tech bites. If a, you’re following Google maps ,or Apple maps, or ways, or wherever, and you find yourself going down a dirt road, you might want to think twice.

Olivier Blanchard: Which is weird because typically when Google reroutes you through the wrong route, there’s a toll road involved. So now we know that the default when there’s no tow road and involved, it’s going to be somebody’s field.

Fred McClimans: Exactly.

Olivier Blanchard: So that’s good. Excellent. Cool. That was, that was better. So yeah, be careful. If you find yourself self in the middle of a field, you’ve done it wrong. So thanks, thanks for nothing Google. Okay, so, we have reached almost the end of our show today. So for our crystal ball this week, we’re circling back to our main topic as we tend to do. And I’m going to ask you to, to really put your Vizier hats on and peer into your crystal balls.

And each of you tell me the as close as you can get to it. So year, month and day if you want to. But definitely year and month of Tim Cook’s departure as CEO of Apple. Not departure from the company necessarily. I’m not talking about retirement and buying his own islands. But when, what is the dates, the year and month of Tim Cook, stepping down as CEO of Apple. So I’ll start with you, Fred.

Fred McClimans: That would be December 31st, 2024.

Olivier Blanchard: Okay. I’m writing this down because I’m going to hold you to it. How about you Ron? And the answer can be never, by the way. That’s also an option.

Ron Westfall: Fair enough. However, I’ll decline. In conjunction with my earlier comments, I’m going to go with June 6, 2023. Sooner rather than later in relation to Fred’s prediction.

Olivier Blanchard: Okay. I am, the month is difficult. Right? So any reason why June because December 31st like makes sense for some reason, but I mean there’s symmetry to it. But why June six? Is it just random or is there something that happens in June usually?

Ron Westfall: Well, it happens to be T Day. So that kind of sticks out in the mind. But also ,it is after many of the major trade shows and so forth. And, something that would be, I think a way to really shake up the organization versus a generic August or December departure.

Olivier Blanchard: Okay. Fair enough. Yeah. Well I think, I think the announcement will be leaked months before it’s actually made. So, I’m going to kind of skirt away from the month by saying that really the month doesn’t really matter, because it’s going to be this drawn out process of, is it true? Is it not true? But yeah, it’s weird. I’m with you guys on the 2023, 2024 timelines. I think, I’m leaning towards 2024 cause I don’t think Tim Cook wants to leave. I would almost push it to 2025, because there’s some symmetry to that. But I think, yeah, sometime between May and December of 2023 is a, I’m sorry, 2024 is when we’ll see that departure. So I’m going to write down that for myself as well and see if I’m wrong, and if I need to adjust my crystal ball. It’s not always right. It’s not always right.

Okay. Well gentlemen, thank you very much. This is, I think we might’ve beaten the record. This might be one of the shortest FTP episodes yet. The plan was always to keep this at about 30, 35 minutes. So congratulations, you guys rock. Thanks again for your amazing insights this week. This was a really cool show. Ron, we’ll definitely have you on again soon. And for the rest of us, that does it for this week’s edition of FTP, the Futurum Tech podcast. Thanks a bunch for listening. Don’t forget to hit that subscribe button. And catch us next week for another round of news and analysis about the tech world. Have a great week everybody.

So for Olivier Blanchard, Ron Westfall and for our missing cohost, Daniel Newman,  I’m Fred McClimans, thanking you for listening to this edition of FTP, Futurum Tech Podcast. There will be plenty of more tech topics and tech conversations right here.  Please be sure to subscribe to us on iTunes.  Join us, become part of our community. We would love to hear from you. Check us out at We’ll see you later.

Disclaimer: The Futurum Tech Podcast is for information and entertainment purposes only. Over the course of this podcast, we may talk about companies that are publicly traded and we may even reference that fact and their equity share price, but please do not take anything that we say as a recommendation about what you should do with your investment dollars. We are not investment advisors and we do not ask that you treat us as such.

About the Author

Olivier Blanchard has extensive experience managing product innovation, technology adoption, digital integration, and change management for industry leaders in the B2B, B2C, B2G sectors, and the IT channel. His passion is helping decision-makers and their organizations understand the many risks and opportunities of technology-driven disruption, and leverage innovation to build stronger, better, more competitive companies.  Read Full Bio.