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Mobile Fix — October 26


It’s a slightly shorter Fix this week as it being written in Paris on airBnB wifi, whilst we celebrate a big wedding anniversary. So a little less comment and we are going to ignore all the Q3 results from GAFA until next week when we get back to normal.

Quick note on Paris — as lovely as ever and the Basquiat exhibition alone is worth the trip. But the scooters have arrived. Both Bird and Lime are everywhere and Parisians seem to love them. Our Uber driver suggested that they are stealing journeys from Uber but not a huge effect yet



Is the shine coming off the big tech players? With news the Italians have “proven” that Apple and samsung do slow down old phones, a long held customer belief is confirmed. Some continue to believe Amazon isn’t playing straight with reviews and, along with the Dark Patterns we mentioned last week, are they unfairly pushing their own brands?

John Battelle has two new pieces that are worth reading around this topic. Firstly he thinks that rather than breaking up GAFA they should be forced to share the data they hold on us all. Then he looks at how Walmart could use this free data to win over new customers. It is interesting thinking and the idea that individuals should control their data continues to gain ground


Tim Cook continues to agitate for better privacy and his language has escalated. Speaking at a conference in Brussels he argued that people’s personal data is being “weaponised with military efficiency” by companies who are using it to make profit for themselves.

The full text of the speech is worth reading, as it clearly shows Apple on the other side of the debate from Google, Facebook and most others. As well as arguing for new legislation he also echoes the point Battelle makes;

Companies should recognize that data belongs to users, and we should all make it easy for users to get a copy of, correct and delete their personal data.

Apple do have a healthy ad business though and analysts expect it keep growing — saying it could be a $2billion business by 2020. But with search, user data isn’t as necessary.


A new infographic from Amazon shows how excited they are about ads on the big screen. Right now the weak spot in their burgeoning ad business is Video, but as their sports programing comes to air we will see this change. Their new ish head of content talks about how they plan to keep getting the best talent. In a separate interview she also talks about how ecommerce integrations will be a priority — we see huge potential for modern product placement.

The new head of ITV recognises the threat of Netflix and Amazon and also the opportunity to build a British challenger. We punch above our weight in drama ( the Informer is world class) and in entertainment formats but can ITV keep them for a UK service rather than automatically licensing them to the big US players? A partnership with the BBC and C4 would be interesting but the last time it was tried with Kangaroo, the regulators tied it up in knots.

ITV are no slouches at commerce integrations either. The Love Island partnership with Missguided was a huge success — a 500% increase in sales. But it is unclear whether ITV participated in the upside or just sold a partnership.

New data from the US shows that amongst teens YouTube and Netflix now account for 70% of video viewing. It’s hard to buy the trad TV industry argument that as they grow up they will swing back to the more usual linear channels. The full Piper Jaffray survey into teens habits (PDF) is always a great source of insight — even if it is US focused.

Quick Reads

Mark Ritson and Facebook Steve Hatch debate modern marketing. A score draw.

When you make it easier to pay, more people buy. Who knew? This Paypal data supports our experience with Apple Pay and Android Pay.

Fix friend Tom Goodwin builds on this with a look at why DTC brands work

Get it right and you can have huge success. A South Korean firm reinvented a Banking service with Mobile and got 10m customers. Our friends at Albion undertake this sort of innovation work for many brands and start ups and their new website is worth checking out.

Personalisation works but you can get it wrong.

Good podcast with the Accenture programmatic lead on Exchanges and OTT

A stellar presentation from Terry Kawaja on the current state of the AdTech industry. 30 minutes of magic on Problemattic Advertising

I am fascinated by how tech is used in industrial espionage ( eg Stuxnet ) and the latest story about Apple and Amazon being compromised is interesting. But is it true?

Getting digital stuff done well is still hard — this McKinsey piece covers the fights you have to win in Digital Strategy

Finally…I have been involved in developing websites for such a long time — I recently found the promotional postcard we did around launching the first PlayStation site in the mid 90s. This animation shows how poor the user experience is on so many sites now. 

Fix is my thinking rather than that of MediaKitchen. We now have over 6000 subscribers across Google, Facebook, Snap, Amazon etc as well as many VCs, Brands and Agencies.

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