Archive for October, 2013

For the past two weeks I’ve been trying to find four iPhone 5S phones.  I’ve been to the mall a couple of times and a few mobile phone kiosks and no one has them in stock.  What do they have in stock?   There is plenty of iPhone 5C garbage everywhere.   One T-Mobile guy was trying to convince me to buy the iPhone 5C giving it feigned accolades and other nonsense but it was pretty clear that he didn’t want that bloated inventory of garbage phones.

What’s the bottom line?   Tim Cook made a huge error in making the 5C.  I think the mistake was threefold actually, the first mistake was making the 5c a technically inferior product than the 5S.   The kids actually like the color models but not the inferior specs (yes, they’re that savvy).   The second mistake was in not producing enough of the 5S since it is in such higher demand than the 5C.    The third mistake was imagining you were a good CEO because with this fiasco you’ve proven yourself too incapable to head Apple.

So here I am with $3,000 in my wallet and no iPhone 5S to buy.   What’s that, I can order it online and wait 2 to 4 weeks to get it?    Uh yeah, why not just produce enough of the damn things from the get go and get them to the proper distribution channels in a timely manner?   Isn’t that what being a CEO is all about?

 

I’ve not been keeping up with this blog because I have been extremely busy but here are a few highlights from the last few months.

1. I have been traveling to South America a great deal on business.  I will be there again soon so I won’t be posting much beyond this week and next.

2. I have dropped out of my second MBA program.  To make a long story short, I was told I would need to take more classes to complete the second MBA and I’ve had enough of the clowns at the college so I dropped out and settled for one MBA.

3. I have paid off my mortgage.  Technically, I have about 2k left on the loan but that will be gone over the next few weeks as I move money from various banks around to restructure my banking strategy and posture for some potential meltdowns over the next couple of months.

4. With the Obamacare healthcare fiasco (website not working, no one signing up, etc) I decided to take my health into my hands by purchasing a new treadmill.  I now run 3 miles in the morning and 3 to 5 miles in the evening on it.  So far so good and I love that it has a screen with google street view to allow me to go on runs all over the world!

5. I am learning Portuguese because I have fallen in love with Brazil.    Despite some protests and rather scary violence outbursts, the country is quite agreeable with me so I may be spending more time down there in the future.

6. My kids are getting older and are only a few short years away from college.   It’s hard to imagine but we’ll be empty-nesters in a few short years!

7.  There have been an astonishingly a high number of friends and relatives that are dying at the age of 50 something.   An Uncle had a sudden heart attack, a friend died of cancer, others from a variety of illnesses.   A few of my kids friends have been left without parents and I find this startling.  I went to a public school with 4000 kids during high school and don’t recall hearing about a single person’s parents dying and now I’m hearing stories of deaths almost monthly!

8. With the year almost over, I am now planning my winter vacations and deciding on what to get everyone for Christmas. Hint: iphone 5S are in the queue.

 

I ordered a Roku 3 device for my new treadmill.   My treadmill has a TV on top of it with an HDMI interface so I figured I would hook it up with the Roku and listen with my earbuds hooked into the remote.   Unfortunately, the brand new out-of-the-box Roku worked for a total of 5 minutes then died instantly.  No more power, no more TV.

If that weren’t bad enough, that’s not the reason for abandoning the device, the real problem is “device management.”   You see the problem is a huge proliferation of “devices” that my family and I now have.   We have ipods, ipads, ipad mini’s, iphones,  mac notebooks and imac.    When I add them all up we have well over 20 devices and the amount of devices is growing.  I can easily envision buying four new iwatches or other innovative products.

When you sign up for services like Aereo, Netflix, HuluPlus, etc you have to “register” each device with the service and if you take 20 devices x 10 services you can see that you will spend the better part of a few hours registering or re-registering or removing 200+ devices from services.   This is simply not manageable and having “too much” choice is detrimental to every TV business model out there.

Ironically, I started down this path because cable tv was too expensive but when I factor the hassle and lost time managing these devices, the cable TV proposition is starting to look very good.    The good part is the cable tv company takes care of the backend work for the most part as I don’t remember these hassles when I had ATT Uverse.

I’m sending back my Roku 3 and hope to get a new one soon but I’m already dreading having to re-register all those damn services with those crazy codes.  Roku, if you don’t find a way to make it easier, you’re business model is done.

It seems rather odd but news reports seem to have confirmed the highly unbelievable story that Chase bank is limiting withdrawals and outbound international wire transfers.   Beginning on November 17th, Chase will limit cash withdrawals to 50k and while 50k may sound high for most individuals, if you’re running a business importing stuff from China or elsewhere, 50k doesn’t really buy you too much so not sure what gives here?

Essentially, the letter most businesses received seems legit and no one seems to know why.  Perhaps China has finally put their foot down and said no more borrowing?

Personally, I abandoned Chase bank shortly after the 2008 financial crisis and encouraged others to do the same.   You should have moved to a credit union where your money stays somewhat local and not used as part of a giant bank casino.   It would not be a bad idea to pull some emergency cash out and stuff it under your mattress.

I wrote this on August 16, 2009 and it may be finally coming to fruition:

When people realize that the money they thought they had in the stock market is gone, when they realize that their credit lines have been cut and when they have no cash on hand left to pay for fuel, groceries or medicine there will be a stampede at your local bank.   The first ones to get there and pull out some or all of their cash will get their money; the lazy, the ignorant, the socialized, the optimists, and the clueless will be left cashless.

Who is John Galt?