8 Things I'd Rather See Apple Do With Its Cash

tim cook sad looking down

Photo: Apple

28 days ago, the world lost one of its greatest innovators, and Apple lost its father. And today, there’s serious banter being bandied about that Apple is now considering using it’s considerable war chest of cash ($82 billion) to start buying back shares or, worse, begin distributing a dividend (face in hand).I can hear Steve now…”Do you know who buys back shares? Do you know who hands out dividends? Tech companies like Microsoft. Don’t be an arsehole…

Here Are 8 Thing’s I’d Rather See Apple Do With Their Cash →

Do you really think that’s what Steve would want, Apple? Forget ‘what Steve would do’, what would he want?

He would want greatness, and this ain’t it. It’s lazy. It’s unoriginal. It’s boring. So, if you’re listening Apple, I’ve got some suggestions for what you should do with your 82 bills.

In the interest of disclosure, Apple is one of my largest personal holdings and I do own a considerable amount of Apple shares for client accounts as well.

I’ve owned Apple for a very long time. And the reason I own Apple is because I agree with James Altucher, I think they have the DNA to become the first trillion dollar company in the world.

Ok, Apple — First and foremost, unleash your greatest asset; the love of design. And as I see it, the time is ripe for the Apple to fall a bit further from the tree. See, Steve gave the company the licence to do it in 2007, when he dropped “Computer’ from their name.

Apple’s greatest untapped resource isn’t just the expectation of future tech innovation; it’s world-class design. And Apple’s greatest asset in the pursuit of design nirvana is Jony Ive, arguably one of the most successful designers of the 21st century.

So, let’s unleash Jony on the world. Let’s give the shareholders what they want… super human growth applied to a company that stands for perfection. It’s staring you in the face.

See, in 2003 Jony Ive gave an interview to the Design Museum in Britain as the winner of Design Museum’s inaugural Designer of the Year award.

He said, “By the age of thirteen or fourteen I was pretty certain that I wanted to draw and make stuff. I knew that I wanted to design but I had no idea what I’d design as I was interested in everything: cars, products, furniture, jewellery, boats…”

Reinvent the rest of the world, make more dents in the universe.

So Apple (and Jony), if you’re listening, let’s see what you can do with these ideas.

This post originally appeared at I Heart Wall Street.

Furniture

Cars

I'm tired of pining for a retread of the classic Camaro. I'm tired of dealing with skeezy salesmen & buying charcoal grey and gunmetal silver. I'm tired of plugging my iPhone into the car, only to be able to play music.

The whole thing lacks imagination. Are the limits of our wow factor really going to be a self-dimming rear view mirror? Now, some of you will think I'm proposing an endless money pit of bailouts & failures. I understand. So, rather than start from scratch, let's just buy someone. Who? GM? Apple could probably afford their $36 billion market cap, but there's too much baggage-- too many models to choose from. Very Un-Apple. Sure, Apple prides itself on being an American company (even though many of its suppliers aren't-- yet another enigma that is Steve Job's), but we need something that is going to capture the imagination of drivers around the world. Someone young enough to be moulded.

So who?… Why not Tesla, a company named after another great innovator, Nicola Tesla? Do you know what Tesla's market cap is right now? $2 billion. A measly $2 billion. Buy them & help them take it to the next level. I want to never want to leave my car. I want to feel giddy every time I see it & feel good about owning it. I want it to integrate with my Apple gadgets deeply. Forget Microsoft Sync, totally lame. Let's see what Siri can do in my car, like politely warn me about the upcoming speed trap in my a licence plate-less Mercedes. Are we really going to let the Google cars be the great innovation of the automotive industry in the 21st century? Is that how we're going out? Allowing a bunch of engineers, who have no sense of style, to rule the world? Jobs help us.

Source: I Heart Wall Street.

Appliances

Bicycles

Banking

I'm guessing in about a year, your next iPhone is going to have near-field communications & effectively remove the need for me to carry my lumpy wallet to make purchases. And when Apple does, they'll have 200 million users ready to listen.

They'll be the biggest credit card hub on the web. So why stop there? Apple, why do you insist on me dealing with my soulless bank? Why do I have to keep being hocked financial products I probably don't need while I wait in line to talk to someone with 'premier' in their title. Where's my 'Money Genius'? Where is somebody to help me figure out how I can afford the next vacation to Steve's favourite spot in Hawaii? Where's the 'beam money to my friend' app? And why is my banker wearing this awful suit under these horrific fluorescent lights? Is this really the best we can do?

Source: I Heart Wall Street.

Venture Funding

If you can't imagine anything yourself, at least find people who can. Carve out $20 billion & start funding complementary technologies and ideas.

Wireless electricity, smart meters, reinvent the houses that inspired Steve, heck-- anything but giving us the money you've been squirrelling away for more growth opportunities & innovation-- 'Nuff said.

Source: I Heart Wall Street.

Education

Steve Jobs was for equal opportunity and he conceded equal outcome isn't possible. As he saw the world, education was the keystone to equal opportunity and as such, education always held a special place in his heart.

Apple's love of education is why they are so close to me today. My first computer in elementary school was an Apple IIc. You think that hasn't paid some dividends to your company? So, aside from subsidizing iPads for schools around the country, why not just reinvent the school itself? Build a school that blows away everything we think about rote system of learning we've boxed ourselves into. Invent a school that crushes the standards of every other school in the country, because it's simply the best.

Buy a software company like IXL, that's on the verge of creating new educational breakthroughs by optimising our overworked teachers and empowering students & parents alike. That's what Steve would want. That's what I want. Not to watch you whittle away $82 billion dollars in an exercise of defeated lack of imagination.

Source: I Heart Wall Street.

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