Latest posts - Benedict Evans - RSS Feed

The first phase of the platform wars are over - Apple and Google both won,
more or less. But nothing is remotely settled - it's just that all the
questions have changed. What will Android be? How will Google or
Xiaomi change it? How will

Latest articles

Can Apple change ads the way it changed music and games?

Once upon a time, Apple was the iPod company. iPods were a much bigger business than the Mac, and they also made Apple a dominant force in the music industry. Then, as we all know, Apple jumped horse to the iPhone, which was a vastly bigger business again. But meanwhile, music switched from the download-to-own model pioneered by Apple to subscription...

Does Amazon know what it sells?

Of Amazon’s top 50 best-sellers in “Children's Vaccination & Immunisation”, close to 20 are by anti-vaccine polemicists and 5 are novels about fictional pandemics. This poses two questions. First, how much content moderation should a universal bookshop do? Second, does Amazon really know what it sells? The content moderation questions here are closely...

Resetting the App Store

Apple launched the App Store in 2008, and tightened up the payment rules in 2011, and we’ve been arguing about it ever since. In many ways the issues haven’t really changed - it’s just that the numbers got a lot bigger. Almost everyone understands that some kind of locked-down, sandboxed software model has been a huge step forward for both users and...

Step changes in ecommerce

This might be quite an important chart. The lockdowns of the past 12 months led to a lot of forced adoption and forced experiment, and...

Is content moderation a dead end?

‘Gin Lane’ - Hogarth In the late 1990s, Microsoft was the evil empire, and a big part of ‘evil’ was that it was too closed - it made things too hard for developers. But then came the great malware explosion, which at one point shut down half the Pentagon, and we realised that the...

Amazon's private labels

Amazon is a big and very aggressive company, that’s radically changing how retailing works, and that attracts a lot of scrutiny and a lot of criticism. Some of this is entirely justified. However, there’s one strand of criticism that fascinates me because it attacks Amazon for something that’s been part of retail for 150 years - the private label business....

Outgrowing software

Source: Walmart Ten years ago Marc Andreessen wrote an article in the WSJ called ‘Software is eating the world’, arguing that there was a fundamental shift in the role that software plays in the economy. In the past, IBM, Oracle or Microsoft sold technology to other companies,...

Do Amazon ads bring in more cash than AWS?

There’s an old and common narrative around Amazon that it doesn’t make money, it sells below cost, it’s subsidised by investors and in particular it’s subsidised by AWS. People tend to repeat these to each other as though they’re unquestionable true, but they’re either debatable or objectively false - for example, Amazon hasn’t raised money directly...

Paying for news

Newspaper revenue really started to collapse well over a decade ago, and we've been discussing what to do about it for almost as long. ...

Shopify

Shopify’s 2020 results came out today, and much as expected, it reported that consumers spent a total of $120bn on its platform, almost exactly double the figure from 2019. Amazon’s rather different Marketplace business, which started back in 1999, probably had $275bn of third party GMV in 2020. That means Shopify’s merchant sales were over 40% of Amazon’s....

Discover, share and read the best on the web

Subscribe to RSS Feeds, Blogs, Podcasts, Twitter searches, Facebook pages, even Email Newsletters! Get unfiltered news feeds or filter them to your liking.

Get Inoreader
Inoreader - Subscribe to RSS Feeds, Blogs, Podcasts, Twitter searches, Facebook pages, even Email Newsletters!