Why the iPad doesn’t have a calculator?

Apple iPad doesn’t have a calculator. 

iMac, iPhone, and Apple watch all have stock calculator apps.

There is a story behind this.

Back in 2010, Apple was only weeks away from launching the iPad.

A guy name Scott Forstall was leading iPad software development. 

The iPad calculator meant for the launch was just a scaled-up version of the iPhone calculator

Just a month before the launch, when Steve Jobs saw this design and right away called Scott.

“Where is the new design for the calculator? This looks awful!!, said Steve

Scott replied, what new design? we are shipping this design 

Steve said, No, pull it. We can’t ship that. Redesign the calculator or ship the iPad without it.

With only a few days left for the launch, Apple decided to launch the iPad without the calculator.

The rest is history. 

iPad users have to rely on third-party calculators. 

In an interview, one of the top executives of Apple reasoned that 

“We want to do it when we want to do it really really well”

Great to see #appleinc lives by that value.

But isn’t it #counterintuitive?

Do it well or don’t do it at all?

Please leave comments.


Lovely Youtube Ads

These days I end up watching the full ads that YouTube makes me go through.

I watch them even when there is a skip option.

Reason? They are so creative !

We hardly consume ads on television these day, thanks to the OTT platforms like Netflix.

But I tend to get hooked to YouTube ads.

Creators of these ads have no pressure of time limit.

Some ads are even 2 minute long.

Some are so meaningful.

Some are so fresh and novel.

These ads just beat the content created by individual YouTubers.

Come to think of it, it is content vs content.

Reminds me of the 90s and 2000s where some ads aired during primetime just don’t fade away.

Obviously ads shows on YouTube don’t intend to have that top of the mind effect but they are more tuned towards call to action.

Do they even have a big budget? I don’t think so.

Just high quality, medium-low budget targeted advertising.

Makes so much sense.

What do you think?


The Onslaught of Credit Card Calls

The onslaught of credit card calls. I am sure you are facing it every day.

It is relentless. Imagine in 2021, a human voice is cheaper to hire than a robocall.

In India, you could pay some youth Rs 500-1000/day and make him or her do hundreds of calls.

I wonder what could be the conversion ratio here?

Is it even efficient? 

The system never learns, unlike some algorithm that might target a different set of potential customers.

Duplication of data. The same bank might call you four times a week.

I don’t think the inefficiency is because of a lack of automation, India provides software automation solutions to the world.

The inefficiency is because of the easy availability of cheap resources.

A human resource willing to call 100 people a day is more economical than the pursuit for selling financial products through creative marketing and advertising or automated calls.

Sometimes I feel the developing world is slower towards progress because we want to preserve jobs and create more jobs.


The Rise and Fall of Pods

The rise and fall of pods.

What are pods?

Pods are users that boost your posts on LinkedIn or any other social media for that matter.

Pods will incessantly like and engage on your posts, without even reading them.

When you return the favor you also become a pod.


A few months back LinkedIn was super hot.

Organic reach plummeted.

The #LinkedIn algorithm couldn’t keep up with the spiked activity.

Then I observed the real rise of pods.

Pods boost your post until the algorithm detects it and boosts it further.

Well, the trick was neat.

Unless you are Ankur Warikoo or Simon Sinek for that matter, how are you going to influence without that thought leadership or content that really rocks?

And the answer was reciprocation principle, one of Robert Cialdini’s six principles of influencing.

You scratch my back and I will scratch yours.

It makes sense, but on LinkedIn, it becomes labour intensive.

A few weeks back I noticed that the activity has receded.

The regular pods are nowhere on the scene, some new pods took their place.

I suppose the reciprocation principle is not so sustainable.

Especially when it comes to incessantly engage on content that you even don’t care to read.

What do you think?

Have you come across a pod?

Would you love to be a pod?

Would you like me to be your pod?

Creativity is a process

Week 10 of writing daily

People often ask me how do I keep the ideation engine going

I won’t say it is easy, but there is a process

If you follow my posts you will notice that I write on a range of topics, right from business models to personal anecdotes

Someday I might write about NASA’s vision and Netflix’s policies

And then completely move on to Bollywood or LinkedIn’s organic reach

I know that is crazy, but that is my colorful canvas

Keeps me going, as long as you are curious you won’t be out of ideas

That answers the first part

Talking about the process, trust me it is boring

But this process is more crucial than the ideation engine

I just capture my thoughts on the Notes App

I don’t let them die a slow death in my brain

I build an inventory of ideas, only 60-70% make it through the first cut

Out of those roughly 20% are always work in progress, they never see the light of the day

Out of two interesting concepts that I think, one comes alive

That is a good success rate I would say

To summarize

Be curious and keep your mind open, don’t be too deliberate because that won’t work in the long run.

Follow a process to publish consistently, I know that is boring but you have to do it 🙂

Follow #alokwrites

Digital Slaves

I can only offer you one thing on this platform.

And that is information.

You can offer me only one thing in return.

And that is Information.

You can like and comment.

Or you might just read and do nothing.

But your inaction is also an information.

Everything is stored somewhere.

Perhaps the ferromagnetic storage discs on some server farm in Finland.

A layer after layer of information is built over time.

Our thoughts, our whims our preferences.

Ideas and conversations all are neatly stacked.

We are like neo masons of the digital world.

But we are not paid to do this.

Just like the slaves in ancient Egypt who built the Pyramids.

Then why are we even doing this?

We are investing time, money, and energy in building these digital identities.

Digital devices and the internet is not cheap.

We exist more on storage discs owned by Amazon Web Services.

And less in our own minds.

If you want to relive a moment, you might go to Instagram.

Instead of retrieving that moment in your own mind.

We are slowly growing on server farms.

But what is the endgame here?

Digital eternity?

Comment and share your thoughts.


Death by Information

This happened a long time ago on a planet far, far away.
There was only one commodity on this planet; #information
There was no food, no money but just information.
Information was sold in bright red packets.
In exchange for information, you would get more information.
People had no choice but to consume these packets.
Perrinially famished, they would devour any piece of information like a horde of zombies would attack a mortal.
This information was manufactured at a factory headed by an opportunist.
For thousands of years, people consumed true and factual information.
But when a pandemic swept away half of the population there was a dearth of factual information.
Information was now made artificially but to compensate for authenticity, it was made more entertaining.
Justice was also served by manipulating info.
Justice was not served by trial but my popular opinions and debates.
Populist decisions ruled.
Political and judicial mechanisms were redundant.
Eventually, all information was replaced with artificial information.
Everything got distorted, people went crazy and they lost touch with reality.
I don’t know what happened next but here are the few last words that someone heard.
Exasperating farrago of distortions, misrepresentations & outright lies being broadcast by….

Cruising through the age of the vertical

A new Apple ad is actually a nine-minute vertical movie called “The Stunt Double”.

You are also reading this post in a vertical feed, aren’t you?

Vertical aspect ratio provides an infinite feed at your disposal.

For every one post you consume, you might discard 20.

It is designed for infinite content consumption.

Think Tik-Tok or Instagram.

Also, think about the ancient paper scroll.

The many books you must have read.

The Ipad and the Kindle and the smartphone which you might be holding right now.

The list goes on.

The vertical aspect ratio gives you control, you can interact with what you see.

You should also thank your opposing thumb too.

The horizontal aspect ratio is perhaps designed to sit back and relax, 16:9 takes control.

Giant cinema screens to home theatres and television sets.

It is also designed to work and focus.

You stay invested while engaging with a horizontal aspect ratio.

A vertical aspect ratio is designed to discard more and boost the velocity of consumption.

And Apple has realized this, vertical movies shot on iPhone matter more than ever.

I am sure Apple will revolutionize this space.


People on Linkedin love deseeded watermelons.

Have you heard about Broetry?

Let us deal with Broetry first.

What you are reading now is a Broetry.


Yes! You are reading a Broetry!

One word. One Line. So much white space.

Very neat.

Every post you read is an investment.

Investment of your time and attention.

No one wants to process anything.

Processing has a cost.

It is a cognitive load after a long Monday.

Every time you click a see more button, you take a risk.

Will this person deliver on his promise?

He said something about deseeded watermelons.

He mentioned something about Broetry.

Well, I did.

If you have come so far you have devoured the deseeded watermelon.

Perhaps you have opened a new browser and searched for Broetry.

I have taken a minute of your time, perhaps more.

I can’t believe you are still reading this Broetry.

It is nothing but Broetry!

I have fallen prey to many such Broetrys

But that is the way how it works here

Digital space has no value

Wow! can’t believe I have not consumed my 1300 characters yet!

Ohh, you are still with me?

Have you noticed I am not using full stops anymore

Ok, let us end this

Leave a comment!

Because I know you have a say in this


Let us listen to the cry of Spotify

I wanted to activate Spotify premium on my iPhone

I clicked on the premium button and was surprised to read this: “You can’t upgrade to premium in the app, we know it is not ideal”

It sounded very subtle but was enough to trigger the curiosity in me.

Why the heck I need to go to the desktop to update something on my mobile?

Spotify’s official support site directed me to a website called timetoplayfair.com

The site explains that Apple charges a discriminatory tax of 30% for use of their in-app purchase system.

In music streaming, Apple gives an advantage to its own services; Apple Music

That tantamounts to building an 8 lane highway (IOS) and owning your own fleet of trucks but you charge 30% on toll for rival truck services

Wondering how the monopolistic rise of platforms could impact the consumers in the long term

Examples galore; Jio, Linkedin, Amazon

We heard the Spotify story, what could be Apple’s explanation for the discriminatory taxes?

Share your views