Ben Thompson: I was wrong about Apple Music

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Reacting to Bloomberg’s Apple Puts Music Service on Amazon Echo in Subscription Push.


From Monday’s daily Stratechery post ($):

I’ll start with the mea culpa: I did not see this coming. Earlier this year I argued that Apple Music was for Apple a means, not an end. (Link to Apple’s Middle Age)

This announcement means this analysis was flat out wrong; that’s fine, it happens. Actually, it’s more than fine: being wrong is tremendously interesting, and I find this decision fascinating.

First, I think it is reasonable to assume that the HomePod is a flop. I should note that this statement is fueled by confirmation bias, because that means my analysis was right previously…

This is a decision that quite explicitly favors one of Apple’s services (Apple Music) over one of Apple’s hardware lines (the HomePod); that is a lot less like a services narrative and a lot more like a services strategy. It’s a shift that is not just fascinating, it’s frankly a bit stunning.

My take: The opinionated Mr. Thompson is at his best when revising his opinions.