Why I decided to switch to from iOS to Android.

(But Didn’t)

Now I’ve never been a fan of the cheaply built, plastic phones typical in the Android world. And when I’ve tried to get excited about high-end Samsung devices in particular, I’ve found the user interface to be horribly cluttered and inconsistent.

BUT when I saw the HTC One at Mobile World Congress in February, I was instantly committed to having it replace my aging iPhone 4. Had it been available then, I would have purchased it immediately. The HTC One’s 4.7″ full HD screen is just the right size for me and bests the iPhone 5 in all respects. This was the first Android device I’ve seen with build quality matching the iPhone and the beats stereo speakers are fantastic. The overall size of the device seems the perfect balance, unless you want to go running with it in which case the iPhone’s incredibly light stature has the advantage. The processor and other hardware was competitive with the iPhone 5. The One also has a newer WiFi chipset, including 802.11ac and access to Swype is another attractive feature.

While I have come to love many aspects of the iPhone 4 since it arrived in 2010, it has been far from perfect. Compared to my outgoing blackberry bold, it is a marginal telephone at best, with worse reception exacerbated by the antenna issue, and sub-par audio quality. Search sucks as the iPhone is generally incapable of finding any email whereas the Blackberry was fantastic. Losing the keyboard was hugely frustrating, and while attractive, the iPhone has the physical ergonomics of a brick compared to any of the dozen well designed phones I’d previously owned. As a simple example, it takes over six seconds to turn the iPhone on and fiddle with it to take a picture. Ah but the future had come and I needed to be part of it. We all gave up much in exchange for the first truly usable browser and a modern OS that could support the future.

I certainly saw no compelling reason to upgrade to the 4s and found the iPhone 5 underwhelming relative to other emerging devices so resigned to sit tight for another cycle. At least the iPhone software ecosystem had started paying off with fantastic apps like Foreflight, Google Maps & Earth, Skype, Dropbox, Evernote, Kobo, TuneIn & Sirius radio,  TopoMaps, Earthmate, Apple TV remote and more.

I was glad I had skipped the iPhone 5 and recommended the HTC to everyone I met.

I’m fed up with locked phones and the economics of long term ownership now favour buying an unsubsidized phone in any event so an unlocked phone became a hard requirement.

But the HTC One couldn’t be obtained for a few months and by the time it was, it was unclear how to actually obtain an unlocked model in Canada let alone a 64GB one. One of my partners lost his Galaxy S3 so bought a locked HTC and loves it. Seeing it in action, it is a fantastic phone and almost all the key apps seem available. The Google app ecosystem is smoother than on iOS which is a positive and it’s likely to stay that way. iOS 6 was also feeling dated and becoming frustrating on multiple levels. Apple Maps was a joke and to add insult, you had to manually copy and paste addresses to get to Google Maps. Simple things are done more easily on Android and the ability to customize is attractive.

But it’s funny how easy it is to do nothing when there isn’t any urgency and by this time rumours were that the 5s was around the corner. Indeed Rogers wouldn’t sell me an unlocked HTC so the friction of having to go through US mail-order, along with the associated service questions all created friction to my leaping.  I decided to, “wait and see what the 5s looks like”.

Now how does the 5s stack up? The leap on the CPU is hugely compelling in my view, the performance of the 5s makes the HTC look a year out of date (read the anandtech review). In reality, it is blazingly fast and I believe the 64bit processor in the 5s can give it a three year life and that it opens up a next generation of applications. It’s basically “better screen vs better computer”. The other major hardware difference is the fingerprint sensor. It does work extremely well, and notwithstanding any security concerns you may have, it is super convenient.

A couple apps which are important to me aren’t available on Android, and when I’ve spoken to those developers they often have no plans to move over. Foreflight for example is valuable enough that virtually all pilots use iOS and buy a dedicated iOS device for the cockpit just to run it, and the benefit of having a second copy on your phone for flight-planning is key. Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) based applications have held off releasing for Android support because Bluetooth 4.0 hasn’t been part of the standard build, so each device needed to be special-cased, if BLE is even supported (Samsung and HTC do). This is important for any wearable computing device, such as 4iiii‘s excellent sports electronics products. And I can’t argue that Apple’s TV and Airplay (which is wired to every room in our home) have become super-valuable to us.

The problem is compounded for developers by the n^2 problem of having to special-case not only unique hardware (and thus device drivers) from each vendor, but also a highly fragmented OS installed base. More than half of Android devices accessing the Google Play store are running a 2011 or earlier OS. I was also hearing frustration from a lot of folks on Android phones that they can’t  get the latest OS even if they want to, either because it’s not yet qualified for their device, or because their carrier hadn’t yet released it. Android has the same ecosystem Achilles heel that plagued Windows — ultimately pushing the bulk of the gaming market away to consoles.

We advise the startups in our portfolio to iterate on one platform until they get critical mass in order to be more capital efficient. Although there are more Android devices in the market and being sold each month, the fragmentation above means that the largest easily-addressable market is still iOS, and there is also (still) more revenue through Apple’s app store than all Android stores combined. Drivewyze.com is an example where, because 85% of truckers use Android devices, the choice was easy despite the increased QA resources required. So depending on your interests, the market can be quite polarized.

But there is another important point here. The fact that Apple has a retail presence, which made it easy to get an unlocked 5s, and that service is easily available without delay, is important.

So my T-Chart looked like this:

HTC One: Superior screen, solid Google app ecosystem, Swype, fun to tinker with.

iPhone 5s: Superior processor, fingerprint, Broader app ecosystem (for me), ease of purchase & service, super light (112 grams) device I can go jogging with!

After 24 hours with it, I believe I made the right choice. iOS 7 adopts the wonderful BB10 style multitasking control, search works and everything is a solid 10x faster than my old iPhone 4. It even seems like a good telephone and what a joy not to have to hold it with a convoluted pose to avoid getting cut off. Your decision matrix may vary — let me know!

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Is the new iPhone 5s fingerprint reader secure?

(Originally published on TechVibes)

As I have some background in the space, several people have asked me about Apple’s new fingerprint replacement for your phone PIN. Other that the Thinkpads, which were hobbled by poor integration due to the complexity of Windows, this is the first large scale consumer deployment of fingerprint sensors.

Most people think of Mission Impossible when you mention retinal scans or fingerprint sensors.  Popular culture has elevated “biometric authentication” to represent the pinnacle of “high security”. Unfortunately, the very phrase “biometric authentication” is a misnomer.

Biometrics — literally a biologically derived number — in the best case provides no more than a unique identification. This unique number has no inherent security; it can be copied, stolen and misused just as easily as a password.

Used within a secure system, biometrics can be an extremely convenient alternative or supplement to “something you know”… a password or PIN number. People I’ve spoken to are intrigued by the iPhone’s new sensor because it seems faster and more secure than the lock screen PIN. But other people’s first response has been concern over privacy related to their fingerprint.

And that concern is not entirely unwarranted.

The consequences of getting security wrong are grave, because unlike a password, you can’t very well change your fingerprints! If you want to use your fingerprint to unlock your phone and all the capabilities that entails…. we need to be sure that your fingerprint isn’t accessible to malicious software running on the phone.

When working on the first USB Keys, my team and I at Rainbow Technologies explored this subject in great depth (USPTO #6,671,808, 7,272,723, 7,269,844, 7,111,324), and developed several products embodying the resulting ideas.

With the “superkey” (pictured below), we took security to it’s logical conclusion; it was the first thumbprint-activated USB key, which, importantly, kept your biometric permanently inside a cryptographically and physically secure container. The device would create a digital signature on your behalf when authorized to do so by the presence of your thumb on its sensor, but would never reveal the underlying capability to do so. A simple, fixed-function device such as this can be designed to meet rigorous “trusted system” objectives and even constructed to provide tamper resistance and tamper evidence.

Rainbow_ikey_supertoken2_s

Now this is tricky business because the key became your trusted personal agent but we had to assume that the PC on the other side of USB port was insecure and infected with virus or other malicious software.

Fast forward fifteen years and little has changed. Our smartphones run general purpose operating systems which are complex and full of vulnerabilities that allow attackers to gain access. While Apple has done a better job of maintaining the security of their OS — albeit through sometimes draconian policies — an Android based phone is not much less likely to contain malicious software than your long-plauged Windows PC. While there are solid systems emerging to provide a trusted environment on smartphones (i.e. Fixmo — an iNovia portfolio company), such systems are not now readily available to you as a consumer.

Bottom line: Today’s smartphone is not a trusted device that you want to reveal your fingerprint to.

Which brings us back to the iPhone 5s… is it secure?

Ideally, Apple’s design incorporates a physically separate, tiny computer within the sensor package comprising a processor, memory and cryptographic capability with exclusive access to the sensor. This is neither economically nor technically impractical. The iPhone proper shouldn’t even be connected to those wires coming from the sensor except for the power supply — it would have an abstracted API to determine whether your finger is present or not and to authorize payment transactions or digitally sign documents. This would be a fantastic step forward in security.

And I don’t say, “except the power supply” lightly, believe it or not, “power attacks” exist where keys can be inferred by watching the power consumption of a security subsystem, but that is a level of detail beyond this blog post. My point is that separating and protecting a authentication system from attack is very important.

Early indications are that Apple “stores your fingerprint in a secure area of the A7 processor”. Now it’s promising that they acknowledge the need to separate your biometric information from the larger, complex iOS. But I’m concerned that the design may only isolate your private biometric when its stored, that it is still processed by iOS and on the main CPU, and thus it will become accessible to a determined hacker at some point in the future. We’ll need to wait until additional details are available….

For the moment, I’m cautiously optimistic for two reasons.

First, Apple acquired  Authentec last year, and having known the founding team and culture of that organization I am hopeful that they will at least have been aware of and appropriately sensitive to any security shortcuts that may have been taken.

Second, because Apple has full control over their integrated design, the team certainly had an opportunity to do a good job of the overall security architecture. It will be more challenging for the Android world to achieve a secure design, although on the positive side any vulnerabilities will be more quickly discovered in that world.

I’ll update this post as we learn more.

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How not to complete a triathlon

I “successfully” completed my first triathlon today. I was anxious owing to not having great idea of what I was in for — or more accurately having reasonable uncertainty as to my ability to complete the event. Having looked for informative posts from other first-time triathletes while training, I didn’t really find much relevant to my concerns so if you’re thinking of doing one, perhaps this will be helpful!

When the horn went off at 10:00 AM I dove full of confidence into Two Jack lake from the waist deep starting area. My neoprene cap snugly in place, and body already acclimatized from ten minutes of splashing around; the light rain, low clouds and 7° air were not a concern. Fortunately for us, the dam allowing freezing Minewanka water in had been closed since the massive Alberta floods earlier in 2013 so Two Jack had reportedly warmed up to a balmy 17°C rather than the usual 13°. I don’t have any experience swimming in a wetsuit but my test swim in this cheap two-piece model suggested that it would be difficult. Everyone says the additional bouyancy of a wet suit and the “drafting effect” of being in the midst of hundreds of swimmers collude to propel you to the finish line in record time. Even in a warm pool, I’ve found that it’s very hard to adopt a natural stroke and that considerably more energy is required to get from A to B. Now to be clear, I love to swim and consider it my strongest of the three sports. I have no trouble swimming double the requisite 1500M non-stop freestyle with 3-5 pulls per breath, on-pace and with a sprint at the finish, even in large pools including Vancouver’s 137M Kitsilano outdoor marvel. But here I was a couple hundred meters out in the middle of a cold lake gasping for breath every second pull and veering outside the lane markers. I just could not get enough O2 into my lungs and was near enough to panic that I resorted to breast-stroke, then back-crawl. Not even to the first buoy and I was starting to wonder whether I could complete this swim — I would have to quit after the first lap. My stroke was atrocious, I was burning twice the energy I normally do to achieve a slower pace. Around the first turn I started to regain composure, accepted that my lungs were just not performing today despite the 5000′ altitude being only 800′ above my home training area — must be the cold water. This is when the faster of the ladies, having started 4 minutes behind us, started to overtake me. More smashing into bodies. I should mention at this point that I’m completely blind without glasses, as in unable to see the other side of the lake and relying solely on the trajectory of my neighbours for an indication of which direction to head. Contact lenses next time, please.

Now swimming a stable backstroke I started to regain composure and could see the second buoy wherein we turn back to the starting point for lap two. Perhaps I can do this. In the home stretch I became devoid of neighbours, requiring more frequent correction from the canoe-borne marshalers. One kindly guide resorted to holding his paddle over my head once I got more than 90° off course to point the direction I should turn. I actually started thinking about my stroke, making moderately strong backstroke pulls and adopting a reasonable posture for the first time thus far. It was resolved, I would make the second lap and everything would be fine once this dreadful swim was complete.

Into the second lap I had some directional confidence, and was no longer pestered by “the pack” who were out of sight ahead. In my own world at last, I focused on establishing a proper crawl, remembering from who-knows-where the trick of rotating your whole body out of the water to breath rather than just lifting your head. Made a world of difference. I passed someone. Hands freezing in the water and spent from all the pointless flailing, but I starting working on my pull and climbed out of the water in good shape, realizing that I came to embrace a physical challenge but was almost bested by the intellectual hurdle of focusing on what I needed to do. I was surprised to see that my swim was under 40 minutes, not a good time for me, but actually right on plan. My five minute budget for the transition turned to ten as I pondered the possibility that the pouring rain might become sleet — excellent — while numbly changing one set of wet clothes for another then pensively eating a banana as if I were a spectator rather than competitor.

I’ve done a short swim once most weeks for the past couple years but otherwise haven’t been on a bike or gone for a run to speak of in almost 25 years. Thus my goal, appropriately, was to “complete the event without serious injury”. I started training ten weeks before the event, and in hindsight this was my first mistake — I needed more time given my starting point. It turns out that having run 10Ks in your early twenties, and having been a mountain bike god in university isn’t enough to propel a 47 year old through a triathlon regardless of how much commitment one has.

I have ridden a road bike eleven times in my life, having purchased my first six weeks before the event. Always in excellent weather. The eleventh time was the triathlon itself; I was so cold after five minutes that my jaw was sore from clenching it to stop my teeth from chattering. The spray from my front tire was causing my ankles to cramp up. My fingers were too numb to get the water bottle out. That I was a mountain-bike god that rode through Edmonton winters with steel studded tires, and could do jasper-banff without preparation as a teen-ager was proving irrelevant at this point. The front of the pack was whizzing by me on their second loop at 40kmph+ as I was braking on the downhills while peddling to get my cardio up and generate heat. It doesn’t much matter how efficient your bike is when you’re squeezing the brakes while peddling and your speed is limited by fear of wiping out on wet pavement!

As the rain slowed and finally stopped, I warmed up and my battle against the elements was won. I found myself in my own world on the most spectacular ride through banff park and forgot I was in a competition; I could see no one ahead and, I got in the groove. Now I was cruising. Compared to my training rides, this was easy due to the downhill in to Banff. Everything was good, I dared a little more speed. My right knee gave a slight tinge to remind me that there was another obstacle between me and the finish line. The tinge became a shout at three o’clock each revolution. I backed off, it was easy going down into Banff and I wasn’t here to set any speed records.

Have you ever rolled out your IT band? I racked my brain to comprehend this novel sequence of words. I’ve rolled out a lot of software — and other IT products — in my career, but why would the physiotherapist be asking me about marketing? Apparently the knee pain was a simple matter of my various muscles being too tight, pulling the knee-cap off-centre or some such. Both my recent 10K runs through Stanley park had ended in walking but but if I just do this sequence of stretches everything will be fine. OK, great I still have 11 days until the event and, well I’m travelling pretty much solid between now and then but I can definitely get a couple good stretches in and although I can’t swim or cycle between now and the event I can still do a few runs. Thus far, I had faced significant pain after about 5km on every run but felt confident in the credible sounding 20 minute diagnosis and prescription, even if it seemed overpriced at $95.

I ran 10K through the spectacular Sonoma wine country at 7AM Sunday before the event and, well yes there was pain, but I did it with a minimum of walking! My knee hurt for the rest of the week so no more running but the plan was to taper off the final week in anyway. My final week included 28 hours in cramped aircraft with the food that normally accompanies but fortunately I was able to juggle my meeting schedule and arrive home before the mandatory event sign-in and meeting, rather than 12 hours prior to the actual start time!

This run started out great, the 37K ride had been slow (1:30) so I had plenty of energy. The first 1K whizzed by in under 6 minutes and shortly thereafter someone stabbed a knife in my right knee every time I lifted my foot. I immediately slowed to a walk. Oh-oh. I tried a slow jog. A shuffle. I grimaced and kept going. By 2K, my left calf cramped up, how crazy is this! Full of energy, I just wanted to GO but I hobbled. Stumbled. Walked. Stopped and tried stretching this and that. Stumbled some more. As I finally came to the finish line — I was done. Could not go another step. Everyone was cheering as I came to the finish chute — ah but no how humiliating to cheer as I have another 5K loop to do where do I veer off for that? The sign said right but barricades were up in that direction. That’s it; I’m so late they’ve shut down the course. I stood there not knowing what to do next.  How do I admit defeat? Who do I tell?

Limping around in a circle, I watched as other runners came up, and to my surprise some paralleled down the left side of the finish chute for the second lap. After this nice break, I could now hobble up there and resign with dignity, blaming a mechanical failure. There my family waited, fully understanding and supportive that I should stop. We spoke for a few minutes. My sons assured me that I’d done my best and that’s a success. No, a success would be crossing that finish line I said, not finishing is what we call a failure. Clearly the only way I can do that is by walking 5K which could take an hour, at which time everyone will most certainly have gone home. My sons assured me I was a success in their eyes.

As I jogged up to the first K marker on the second loop the sharp pains now doubled in frequency, coming every time I planted or lifted my right foot. I tried hopping on my left foot, ok that’s not going to work. Back to walking, after a couple minutes of walking I would jog for as long. If I lengthened my stride, the frequency of pain jolts lessened. Whatever I was wrecking would probably heal. A woman came up beside me and noted my plight, to which I quipped, “the only way I’ll finish this thing is with drugs”.

“I have Advil.”, She said.

Seriously? You bring actual Ibuprofen with you on a run? Would that be cheating?

In 5 minutes I was jogging again. The pain was there, but tolerable. In 10 minutes I was holding my own, then started passing people left and right.  I went into a sprint and turned the final corner at breakneck pace with the announcer saying, “look at that guy coming up the chute in the Orange!”. This time the whole crowd applauded, not politely but  in genuine disbelief — who is this weirdo showing up at 3hours 30minutes at that speed?

I could not live with myself if I’d given up, but the real lesson is that I should have signed up for the sprint, not olympic, rather than diving in head first only 10 weeks before the event!

Apparently they do one of these in Hawaii where the water is warmer…

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Universal Number? Yes!

Unified Communications (UC) was meant to decouple my selection of device to receive a call on from the number you need to dial to reach me. It’s finally arrived for me, but in a most unexpected manner.

It’s idiotic that in 2012 I was still asking people to call my office number, unless I’m out of the office in which case call my mobile, but my iPhone refuses to ring in our office because the coverage is poor so don’t call that when I am at the office. Oh and if I’m outside Canada I don’t check my office voice mail and Roger’s roaming is insane so neither of those will reach me, you need to call my skypeIn number. Given the caller can’t possibly know where I am before calling this just makes no sense. And not surprisingly I have been told by more than one person that I’m hard to reach. All my voice mails now say, “send me an email”.

We all want to give out a single number then separately choose how we receive that call — a Universal Number. Number portability took a decade and went about 1% of the way toward that goal. UMA, UC and a bunch of other fancy technical initiatives never worked because they didn’t acknowledge a business reality. Expecting carriers with competing interests to cooperate in any kind of standard that would reduce their pricing power is naive, nay ridiculous. In a regulated monopsony suppliers do not respond to customer desire!

Carriers have used our phone number to lock us into their rate plans since the beginning of time. The stickiness of other people knowing your number is the singular reason that telcos have been among the greatest cash cows in business history. In the long term, phone numbers go away and everyone connects by name using skype, google hangouts and the like. But meanwhile, what business pressures could lead a supplier to deliver that oft-saught and technically trivial Universal Number?

They may not cooperate, but happily it seems that one service provider, Rogers, is audacious enough to start giving away services only previously available from its competitors.

I’ve unexpectedly achieved UC nirvana by using Rogers One with one of Rogers’ new UNLIMITED calling plans; I’ve dumped my Telus office phone, dropped my SkypeIn number, canceled my “long distance” plan and lowered my total telecom costs. More importantly I now give people that single phone number that reaches me anywhere in the world. I answer on my laptop over broadband at my office, on my iPad with a jawbone headset using an AT&T SIM in the US, a local SIM or wifi in Asia and Europe, and on my iPhone away from the office but while in Canada. And I can talk for thousands of minutes per month with impunity, that is to say without feeling violated by roaming charges.

Excepting of course skype or google hangouts for those truly in the know, and for overseas outbound calls. And if you knew my mobile number then now you know my new universal number.

The future has arrived, finally!

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What does a VC look for in financial statements?

A good friend and repeat entrepreneur recently asked me what we look for when reviewing the financial statements of a prospective investment.

While it certainly depends on stage and business model, we do see a dramatic difference in approach from different companies, and this can be a quick filter as to whether we’re going to spend more time looking at an investment opportunity or not. Beyond the balance sheet and income statement, on which there isn’t much room for creativity, the forecast is the place where the maturity of thinking about how to build a business really comes out.

Often we’ll see a top-down “2% of the market” approach to revenues along with excruciating detail on the expense side. While it’s great to see how an entrepreneur thinks about the phasing in of talent over time and assumptions on future costs, this amounts to false precision because really it needs to be driven by actual achievement of revenue and the leading indicators of revenue (i.e. distribution partnerships, customer validation, etc). So the biggest early red flag we see is this lopsided approach where expenses are built bottoms-up but revenues are built top-down. Seeing revenue drivers tied to assumptions that, if not already validated, can be spoken about as clearly defined “experiments” to be run is the biggest thing I look for. Structure that breaks out business level leading indicators wired into the revenue forecast shows real maturity, and showing a linkage between costs and revenues rather than having them entirely separated is another positive indicator.

CFO’s are often taught to model “scenarios”, presenting in their simplest form a baseline, upside and downside budgets. While these aren’t terribly useful in themselves as they’re usually arbitrary variations, they demand an underlying sensitivity analysis capability be built into the model which can be helpful. Most finance types will model trite scenarios which are too abstract to be useful; what happens if product is delayed a quarter, if revenue ramps at half the predicted rate, if per-saleshead productivity varies, etc. We’ve seen that the questions which matter are generally more fundamental; what happens if the product just doesn’t resonate with the broader market the way it seems to with our limited pilot customers!

Once a business has traction, analytics become extremely useful. For instance, with one of our early stage companies, they quickly identified a direct selling model that worked and build a detailed model tracking salesperson productivity, cost of customer acquisition (CAC), lifetime customer value (LTV), and worked to refine their lead generation process. This provided the confidence that upon us writing a cheque, they scaled from three to thirty sales people within 90 days. Seeing the depth of their model at a small scale reduced the risk on investing. Now that’s a high-velocity sales model so may not relate exactly to other business models, but the point is they knew enough about one business process to hire and fire people quickly based on a model rather than hum and haw for months about whether a new hire is effective or now.

“Getting to Plan B” (John Mullins & Randy Komisar) and “The Lean Startup” (Eric Ries) are both terrific books detailing how to use more disciplined “experimental method” approaches to quickly iterate through assumptions. Hit the highest risk assumptions first, design an experiment to prove or disprove it, then move on. Done properly, this kind of thoughtful approach to validating a business model comes out in the financial forecast and that’s probably the key thing we look for evidence of.

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Delorme InReach vs SPOT

I’ve used the SPOT satellite messenger since it came out several years ago with great success. While I wholeheartedly recommend it, I will say that it really requires some thought to establish exactly how you’re going to use it with those following your adventure. I detail here how I use it, what the limitations are and why I now also carry a Delorme InReach.

Continue reading

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Starbucks and Square

I find two things interesting having watched “the big interview” with Howard Shultz and Jack Dorsey last night.

First, the complete lack of vision expressed by both iconic leaders. I expected to hear them wax eloquently and in unison about the impact on customer experience, perhaps the ability to put an order in as you walk in the door and skip the line-up to pay. I expected Howard to talk about how Starbucks will be able to more efficiently service customers and improve service. I expected Jack to reenforce the fact that Square is consolidating multiple players in the payment chain and disrupting that traditional industry to extract efficiencies with Starbucks’ scale which Starbucks couldn’t have done alone. But we heard none of this. Nope, you couldn’t watch the interview without being left with the impression that Square dropped their shorts to get scale, and Starbucks was solely motivated by getting a cheaper payment processor.

But second, I do believe the value being created in this partnership is far more profound than what we’ve heard from the horse’s mouth. Specifically, we have a two year old tech startup gaining a board member and investor from the top of a $12Bn revenue global leader that employees over 37 thousand people. Think about this — Starbucks has committed in this partnership to transition their entire corporate store transaction processing to startup with presumably less aggregate volume across its entire customer base than Starbucks alone has today.

Square has an opportunity to significantly recast the way Internet and real world commerce come together.

The point here is reenforcing that Internet startups today have a profound opportunity to impact and disrupt major traditional industries. As a VC, that gets me up earlier in the morning.

Thanks for leading the way, guys.

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