Can Apple Remove 450,000 Cars From Road From This Year?

Can Apple Remove 450,000 Cars From Road From This Year?

As per official statement by the tech giant this week, the new Apple iPhone 12 lineup will ship without wall chargers or Lightning EarPods in the box. Let’s see how this will help in cutting carbon emissions released via cars on roads.

Crux of the Matter

How Will They Do It?
By discontinuing the wall charger and lightning EarPods for the new iPhone 12 series. In fact, Apple Watch Series 3 and 6, SE edition and the Nike models will also remove power adapter from their boxes.

Will This Be Applicable For Older Models?
Yes. On Apple’s official site, listings for the iPhone XR, iPhone 11, and 2020 iPhone SE now say that they ship an Iphone with the only accessory being the USB-C to Lightning cable in the box.

Will This Affect Apple Users?
Not so much. It is estimated that there are already 700 million Lightning Earpods and 2 billion Apple power adapters, with existing Apple fans in the world.

How Is This A ‘Green’ Move?
The move means it has to consume fewer raw materials for each iPhone sold as it allows for a smaller retail box i.e 70% more units can fit on a single shipping pallet. Overall, Apple estimates the changes will cut over 2 million metric tons of carbon emissions annually, which is equivalent of removing 450,000 cars from the road per year.

What Do The Tech Experts Say?
The move has been met with outrage online, with some suggesting that it has more to do with the company increasing its margins and decreasing its shipping costs, rather than protecting the environment. Venture Capitalist M.G. Siegler says,

“Here’s the breakdown of why Apple is doing this, in the order of importance, as I see it:
1) Margins: The next iPhone’s margins, with ‘5G’ components, and the ongoing Covid-19, will alter the supply chain immensely. The charger may not seem like a huge margin savings, but it adds up in aggregate.
2) Shipping: Apple can make these boxes more svelte, they’ll pack more in.
3) Transitions: Make customers ready for the wireless charging revolution.
4) Environment: This is on the list. But it’s the last item on the list.”

Plans To Continue Being The Richest?
In the second half of 2020, Apple had hit the $2 trillion market cap and became the world’s most valuable company by surpassing Saudi Aramco’s $1.78 tn market cap. Apple also became the first US public traded company to have a $2 trillion market cap. It’s valuation doubled in just 2 years.

Also Read: On Apple’s Tax Case & Tax Havens Of The World

One Mobile Charger For All
Since the year 2009, the European Commission has been trying to convince tech companies to adopt a common charging method for smartphones, to reduce the waste that comes with every new gadget. So in 2018, Apple, Google, Lenovo, LG, Motorola, Samsung and Sony all voluntarily agreed to standardize on some form of USB-C charging by 2021.

Read More: Apple iPhone 12: Most Powerful Phone Yet?

Curiopedia
  • If you check Apple’s site right now, the time set on every device will be 9:41. This is so because the first iPhone was unveiled at 9:41 and since then, every apple advertisement shows 9:41 as time on all of its devices.
  • After the release of iPhone X, Samsung released a series of short advertisements under the marketing campaign ‘ingenious’. The campaign was simply made to mock Apple and the sales representatives at Apple retail stores, whom Apple calls “Geniuses”.
  • Apple Park is the corporate headquarters of Apple Inc., located in Cupertino, California, United States. Its scale and circular groundscraper design, by Norman Foster, have earned the structure a media nickname “the spaceship”.

Apple iPhone 12: Most Powerful Phone Yet?

Apple iPhone 12: Most Powerful Phone Yet?

Apple’s latest iPhone lineup: iPhone 12, mini, Pro and Max models, has landed with a support for high-speed 5G network. So where does this flagship product line stand with the existing, premium 5G phones in the market? Somethings borrowed, and somethings new, is it?

Crux of the Matter

Hi, Speed
As per this tagline of 2020 October Apple event, the new iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max models will feature A14 Bionic chip, which VP Greg Joswiak has previously said was the “most powerful chip ever made” by Apple, with performance claimed to be 50% faster than any other phone.

Hi, 5G
Apple’s flagship Pro model will also have both sub-6GHz and mmWave 5G standards (mobile data with frequencies less than 6 Ghz and 24 GHz respectively), promising high-speed support for a wide range of cellular carriers around the world and adhering to their various 5G standards.

Should Samsung Be Scared?
When Apple declared that it would ‘go green’ and not include charger and earpods with the iPhone boxes henceforth, Samsung took a dig by post on Facebook: A picture of the Samsung Galaxy adapter, with caption as “Included with your Galaxy.”

What About 5G Support?
iPhone 12 mini with iOS 14.1, called the ‘smallest and lightest 5G phone, has in fact arrived late in the 5G line as the following Android OS-based phones are already popular in the flagship tech market:
– OnePlus 8 and Nord series
– Samsung Galaxy S20 series
– Google Pixel 5

Things Apple Borrowed From Others

  • High Pixel Density Displays and OLED Displays, first found in Samsung Galaxy
  • Qi Wireless Charging and Fast Charging, like Qualcomm QuickCharge, Oppo VOOC
  • Water Resistance, found in early Sony and Samsung phones
  • “Hey Siri”, like “OK Google”
  • Stereo Speakers, first seen in HTC One

Things Others Borrowed from Apple

  • Android’s FastShare from Apple’s Airdrop
  • Battery Saving Mode from Apple’s Lower Power Mode 
  • Facial Recognition and AR features
  • Gesture controls and ditching the Home Screen button
  • Apple also introduced the idea of making an ecosystem, wherein all their products (iPod, iPhone, iMac, etc) would function in sync with each other. 

Knack For Touching The Chord With Marketing
From the ‘Think Different Campaign’ targeting the ‘crazy ones’ or the revolutionaries to introducing iPhone at Oscars and creating iconic moments by taking out a MacBook from a manilla envelope at a keynote and holding an Alexa and Siri wedding, Apple has done it all. 

Read More: Can Apple Remove 450,000 Cars From Road From This Year?

Curiopedia
  • If you check Apple’s site right now, the time set on every device will be 9:41. This is so because the first iPhone was unveiled at 9:41 and since then, every apple advertisement shows 9:41 as time on all of its devices.
  • After the release of iPhone X, Samsung released a series of short advertisements under the marketing campaign ‘ingenious’. The campaign was simply made to mock Apple and the sales representatives at Apple retail stores, whom Apple calls “Geniuses”.
  • Apple Park is the corporate headquarters of Apple Inc., located in Cupertino, California, United States. Its scale and circular groundscraper design, by Norman Foster, have earned the structure a media nickname “the spaceship”.

Apple & Android v/s Fortnite

Apple & Android v/s Fortnite

Fortnite developer Epic Games has sued Apple and Google for removing its app from their respective stores. The tech giants said that the game developer violated store policies by bypassing them. Let us understand the whole matter.

Crux of the Matter

Battle Between Apple, Google, and Epic Games
Apple and Google removed Fortnite after the latest update which violated the terms and conditions of the stores. Epic games accused Apple of creating a monopoly in the market. Due to an ongoing lawsuit, one would not be able to run and download Fortnite on any iOS devices.

Apple and Google (wherever the game is listed) get a 30% commission on any inbuilt game purchase made by the users. The rest 70% goes to the developer. For Example, if someone buys a Gun skin in PUBG for ₹100 then ₹30 will go in the pockets of Apple or Google and ₹70 will go in Tencent’s pocket.

Why Pay 30%?
Epic Games was reluctant to pay a 30% share. It said that Google and Apple are earning money from various sources and still charging a high commission. In 2018, Epic Game launched a mobile version of Fortnite on the Android platform. To avoid paying a 30% commission to Google, it launched its private server to download the installation file (APK file). However in 2020, due to people’s preference to download apps from the play store on Android, the company launched the game on Android’s Play Store.

Beginning Of Saga
On August 13, Epic Games updated “Fortnite” and introduced an option to buy in-app items at a 20% discount directly from Epic Games. Thus, Google and Apple removed the app from their stores saying the company violated terms-of-service, and Epic Game sued both the companies in retaliation. As per the update, the revenue distribution would be as follows:

Escalation
Epic Games has said that Apple’s App Store is a monopoly. It has launched a campaign called “Join the fight to stop 2020 from becoming 1984”. Unreal Engine is a game engine developed by Epic Game, which many companies and developers use to develop games. Apple has threatened to ban unreal engine access to all iOS and Mac developer tools. When Apple threatened to ban the engine, many companies extended their support against the move.

Special Treatment To Amazon?
Last month, during the antitrust law case hearing in the US, an email showed that Apple allowed Amazon to bypass Apple’s inbuilt payment system. Controversy arose when Apple took no action against Amazon. So far Apple has not allowed any company to bypass its payment system. Experts say that Apple controls small companies to maintain supremacy in the market. There is also speculation that Apple did not take any action against Amazon because the latter has an equal muscle to counter.

Also Read: On Apple’s Tax Case & Tax Havens Of The World

Curiopedia
  • The Fortnite World Cup 2019 was an esports competition based on the Fortnite, which took place in July 2019. An estimated 2.3 concurrent million viewers on Twitch and YouTube streaming services watched the World Cup finales
  • “1984” is an American television commercial that introduced the Apple Macintosh personal computer. Originally a subject of contention within Apple, it has subsequently been called a watershed event and a masterpiece in advertising.
  • Since the removal of Fortnite from the App Store, iPhones with Fortnite pre-installed are listed on eBay for as much as $10,000. Apple removed the game citing policy infractions, but those who already had the game installed still have access to it.

Understanding Market Cap As Apple Hits $2tn Mark

Understanding Market Capitalization As Apple Hits $2 tn Mark

After reaching $2 trillion market capitalization (cap), Apple became the first US public company to achieve this feat. But what exactly does market cap mean? How is it calculated? Is billionaires’ wealth linked to market cap? Let us demystify it all.

Crux of the Matter

Apple’s Latest Feat
Recently, Apple hit the $2 trillion market cap and became the world’s most valuable company by surpassing Saudi Aramco’s $1.78 tn market cap. Apple’s stock rose after it declared 3rd quarter (Apr-Jun 2020) results, which showed massive growth. Apple also became the first US public traded company to have a $2 trillion market cap. It’s valuation doubled in just 2 years.

But What Is Market Capitalization?
Market Capitalization of a company means the total market value of outstanding shares. Outstanding shares are the total number of shares held by all shareholders, including retail owners, institutional owners, and the company’s owners. Market cap can be calculated only for publicly traded companies and fluctuation in the share price directly affects the market cap of a company.

Market cap = Outstanding shares of a company x current market price

For instance, if a company has 10 million outstanding shares and the current stock price is $50 then, the market cap of a company equals, $50 x 10 million = $500 mn.

Are Billionaires’ Wealth Linked To Market Cap?
Billionaires’ net worth is linked to the market capitalization of their company. Generally, they are company owners holding substantial amounts of the company’s stock. Let’s say if Facebook’s market cap is standing at $400 billion and Mark Zuckerberg owns 20% of its shares, then his net worth from owning Facebook would be $80 billion.

Moreover, billionaires or owners of companies get paychecks and dividends from their companies. It must be noted that the company’s stocks are not the only element in the net worth of a billionaire. Inherited wealth, private assets, paychecks, holdings in other companies, etc also contribute to it.

Curiopedia
  • The DOW theory on stock price movement is a form of technical analysis. The theory was derived from 255 Wall Street Journal editorials written by Charles H. Dow, journalist, founder and first editor of The Wall Street Journal and co-founder of Dow Jones and Company.
  • Saudi Stock Exchange or Tadawul is a stock exchange in Saudi Arabia. It is supervised by the Capital Market Authority. On 11 December 2019, Saudi Aramco’s shares commenced trading on the Tadawul stock exchange and surpassed the $2 trillion mark on the second day of trading.
  • Apple was recently subject to internet memes when it released its $700 wheels for Mac pro. The company was criticised for these overly prized wheels and many parody videos were made in which the wheels were tested for skateboards.

On Apple’s Tax Case & Tax Havens Of The World

On Apple's Tax Case & Tax Havens Of The World

Apple won a €13 bn tax avoidance case against EU Antitrust Regulator. You might think that how famous and well known companies like Apple sneak out from under the government’s nose without paying any tax or seldom paying minimal? Tax havens are the key to do so. But do you know what are tax havens and how do they help corporations and individuals bypass taxes? Let’s demystify it here.

Crux of the Matter

Apple Lawsuit
Apple won a €13 bn tax avoidance case against the EU Antitrust Regulator that objected to the aid given to Apple by Ireland, where the company’s the base for Europe, Africa, and the Middle East is accused Apple of avoiding tax. The EU’s General Court annulled the decision in favor of Apple as antitrust regulators failed to present enough evidence to show Apple broke EU competition rules.

What Did Apple Do?
All US-based companies in Ireland functioned with two subsidiaries but as per the 1991 treaty signed between Apple and Ireland which was renegotiated in 2007, Apple functioned with one subsidiary with two branches. Thus, Apple Sales International (ASI) had 2 branches namely IRL1 and IRL2. IRL1 is an Irish registered company selling products to non–US locations from Ireland and IRL2 is “registered” in Ireland, but “managed and controlled” from a tax haven such as Bermuda.

Ireland considers Apple as a Bermuda based company because of IRL2, but the US considers it an Ireland based firm based on IRL1. Now the interesting part is that, because of this arrangement, Apple was neither taxed in Ireland nor the US, but in Bermuda – having minimal corporate tax rate – because of Irish Tax arrangement. So the EU considered this arrangement illegal and claimed that this kind of favored arrangement towards Apple is disturbing the competition in the EU market.

What Are Tax Havens?
A tax haven is any jurisdiction that offers minimal tax rates to foreign individuals and businesses. Moreover, tax havens do not require businesses to operate out of their country or individuals to reside in their country to receive tax benefits. Lack of transparency and no substantial activities are features of tax havens.

Tax Havens Good Or Bad?
According to the World Economic Forum, it cost $200 billion in the form of loss in global tax revenue. Moreover, 40% of multinationals’ profits or $650 billion are shifted to tax havens each year and 10% of the world’s largest multinational firms are responsible for 98% of this activity. Such tax evasion results in huge revenue loss for many countries across the world.


Caught Offside?
Many athletes have also been found using tax havens to protect their income. Cristiano Ronaldo was accused of evading €14.7 mn in taxes via shell companies based in tax havens. Lionel Messi and his father were alleged to have used shell companies in tax havens to protect royalties and licensing earnings from Spanish income tax. Radamel Falcao was suspected of using a web of shell companies in the British Virgin Islands, Ireland, Colombia, and Panama to avoid taxes on €5.6 mn of income. Angel di Maria was accused of not pay €1.3 mn to the Spanish tax authorities by giving up his image rights to companies based in tax havens.

Data Leaks – An Important Issue in Tax Havens
However, tax havens are not always safe for clients. Here are some of the major data leaks revealing critical information about tax havens and chain of shell companies:

  • 2013 British Virgin Islands offshore leaks – International Consortium of Investigative Journalists released a 260 GB database of 2.5 mn tax haven client files.
  • 2015 Swiss leaks – Le Monde released 3.3 GB data about a tax evasion scheme of over 100,000 clients and 20,000 offshore companies with HSBC Bank, Geneva.
  • 2015 Panama Papers – 11.5 million docs totaling 2.6 TB, detailing financial and attorney-client information for more than 200,000 offshore entities leaked.
  • 2017 Paradise Papers – 13.4 mn documents totaling 1.4 TB, detailing personal and corporate client activities of the offshore magic circle law firm, Appleby, covering 19 tax havens, were leaked.

Curiopedia
  • The Double Irish is a base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) corporate tax tool used mostly by US multinationals since the late 1980s to avoid corporate taxation on non-U.S. profits. It is the largest tax avoidance tool in history and by 2010 was shielding $100 billion annually in US multinational foreign profits from taxation.
  • New trade theory (NTT) is a collection of economic models in international trade that focuses on the role of increasing returns to scale and network effects, which were developed in the late 1970s and early 1980s. New trade theorists relaxed the assumption of constant returns to scale, and some argue that using protectionist measures to build up a huge industrial base in certain industries will then allow those sectors to dominate the world market.
  • The Apple Park is the corporate headquarters of Apple Inc., located at One Apple Park Way in Cupertino, California, United States. It was opened to employees in April 2017, while construction was still underway. Its scale and the circular design, by Norman Foster, have earned the structure a media nickname “the spaceship“.