Republic of Samsung + more

7 minutes estimated reading time

Republic of Samsung

Galaxy Note 7 Recall Dismays South Korea, the ‘Republic of Samsung’ – – interesting how attached Korean people are to the Samsung brand. Samsung represents over 20 percent of Korean GDP and the Korean stock market – hence the Republic of Samsung. The Republic of Samsung has a wide reach in Korea. You can shop at Samsung, go to a Samsung Lions baseball game, pay for petrol to put in your Renault Samsung SUV with a Samsung Card. And go for an appointment in a Samsung hospital where you can be prescribed Samsung medicine.

Samsung can censor the media by withdrawing its media spend. They stop negative books by pointing out that the publisher could face legal action and a lack of Samsung retail distribution. The Republic of Samsung owes its rise to former President Park who put in place the chaebol system to drive the Korean economic miracle at the end of the 1960s. The Republic of Samsung success is mirrored by the likes of LG, Lotte and Hyundai.

Samsung ‘blocks’ exploding Note 7 parody videos – BBC News – if it wasn’t a PR train wreck before. It also reinforces how the Republic of Samsung nickname has value. Like India’s Tata, Samsung is almost like a country within a country.


LeEco Who? Chinese Tech Giant Tries Its Luck In the US With ‘More Products Than You’ve Ever Seen’ – Slashdot – what about patents / intellectual property?

Starbucks pushes ahead with China expansion | Marketing Interactive – interesting that they are going big in the face of declining economic growth


As Chinese Incomes Rise, So Does Pollution | The New Republic – it was a similar state in the UK and US during the industrial revolution. Super Fund sites would have looked familiar to the Chinese. That’s what industrially driven progress looks, smells and tastes like

History tells us where the wealth gap leads | Aeon Essays – really interesting read

Brexit could be halted after Government admits that MPs likely to have final say | The Independent – It raised the prospect, at the very least, that MPs and peers could amend the Brexit deal if they opposed key elements of the impact on trade, immigration or other areas. However, it could also mean Britain tumbling out of the EU – probably in early 2019 – with no deal whatsoever.


How One Goldman Sachs Trader Made More Than $100 Million – WSJ – junk bond trading (part of the 1980s making a return)

Hong Kong

Move over K-Pop: desperately seeking an international cultural icon made in Hong Kong | This Week In Asia | South China Morning Post – how does Hong Kong claim is place on the international cultural stage?

7-Eleven, McDonald’s, Circle K … Google launches Android Pay at 5,000 Hong Kong locations | South China Morning Post – way behind WeChat and ApplePay and Octopus card


Kenny: Suggestion of EC probe into Ireland ‘wrong’ | RTE – Irish Times report stirred the hornets nest


How I started my company in Japan | Danny Choo – really interesting read


Saving the Swiss Watch Industry—Again – Bloomberg – I think this is over egged this time. The big challenges is that there is less growth globally and so less luxury purchases. The prestige brands will be fine, the mid-market Tissot and the like will have problems


72andSunny Launches Social Media Influencer Division | AdWeek – it makes complete sense as ad agencies need content to amplify via paid and interact with via multi-channel story telling. It also shows how porous the walls of public relations as a discipline have been eroded


The New York Times is buying The Wirecutter for more than $30 million – Recode – The Times will pay more than $30 million, including retention bonuses and other payouts, for the startup, according to people familiar with the transaction – so in reality less than 30 million but still a great result for Brian Lam and the team

Yahoo to Clapper: Global, Global, Beyond our Borders, Global | Emptywheel – basically Verizon will likely look to write off the value of Yahoo!’s European businesses as they are likely to go through a legal grinder. US government likely to get kicking by EU

Google Has Dropped Ban on Personally Identifiable Web Tracking | Propublica – Google’s ownership of Android and Chrome make this particularly interesting


Hong Kong lifestyle retailer accuses competition of copying design of his shop | SCMP – interesting area for IP, what about retailers that transplant formats (Yo! Sushi etc)


AT&T Spying on Americans for Profit, New Documents Reveal | Daily Beast – The telecom giant is doing NSA-style work for law enforcement—without a warrant—and earning millions of dollars a year from taxpayers

The Decline in Chinese Cyberattacks: The Story Behind the Numbers | Technology Review – or just taking liberties that could be then easily bargained away to create the illusion of a win

Every LTE call, text, can be intercepted, blacked out, hacker finds • The Register – Ruxcon Hacker Wanqiao Zhang of Chinese hacking house Qihoo 360 has blown holes in 4G LTE networks by detailing how to intercept and make calls, send text messages and even force phones offline

GitHub – DaylightingSociety/WhereAreTheEyes: Surveillance Detection and Mapping App – interesting move that would be of value to the surveilled and the watchers


What is Dolby Vision? | Electronics EETimes – high dynamic range video

Homeless on Stockholm’s silicon slopes – POLITICO – with the implication that they prefer refugees over technical talent

Batteries May Trip ‘Death Spiral’ in $3.4 Trillion Credit Market – Bloomberg – of course this doesn’t seem to take into account the finite supply of lithium and rising cost of the metal…

IBM claims moving to Mac drastically reduced support calls, operating costs | ExtremeTech – ironically over 20 years ago Arthur D Little Consulting did a report on this (sponsored by Apple) that showed exactly the same thing. The more things change, the more they stay the same

Fed-Up Belichick Takes Screen Out of His Arsenal. (The Hand-Held One.) – The New York Times – not great for Microsoft’s Surface, its sponsorship of the NFL seems to be starting to come undone

Microsoft kinda did OK this quarter – but whatever, Wall Street loves Satya Nadella – this is as much PR as financial results. Don’t get me wrong its good for Microsoft, but it shows how Ballmer was dogged by shitty PR – the Nokia decision notwithstanding

Web of no web

My first virtual reality groping | Mic – why should we be surprised that VR mirrors the best and worst of real life?

Twitter Fires Its New Head of VR After Two Days | Gizmodo – where was the due diligence in the hiring process?


Xiaomi is selling the concept phone of your wildest dreams – The Verge – impressive design, it will be interesting to see if it can take the crown back in China from Huawei and Oppo

Huawei Mate 9 to sport 4X optical zoom, cost up to $1300 | Phonearena – trying to use ridiculous pricing to develop a perception of quality

Sky’s CEO drops MVNO bombshell at results conference | The Register – I already thought Sky had a triple play, the way they presented their multi-screen entertainment offering Sky Q, it will be interesting to see if they roll this out to other countries beyond the UK

KODAK EKTRA – Main | Kodak – this looks like a better camera orientated smartphone than the Huawei P9 or LG’s collaboration with Hasselblad

Qualcomm Announces New X50 5G Modem, First Gigabit Class LTE Network and Router | Anandtech – we don’t know exactly how it is all going to work out; but Qualcomm has a modem for it anyway