Apple exec: Uber “would not exist without our platform”

Apple’s Eddy Cue.
Apple’s Eddy Cue.
Image: Reuters/Stephen Lam
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Fast Company published a long interview with Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of internet software and services, and Craig Federighi, SVP of software engineering. They touch on a lot of things, like Apple Maps (“a core organizing structure for the physical world in which you interact”), Siri (“it’s a very different animal”), and making mistakes (“we have to be honest with ourselves”). Also, Uber.

Fast Company: Many people argue that you, Google, Amazon, and Facebook are all after the same thing in the long run: ownership of the customer throughout the day.

Cue: I love Facebook. We can’t be everything. One of the reasons we’ve been highly successful is that we focus. We can’t be great at everything; nobody’s great at everything. I mean, come on. So, if you want to be great at something, you have to focus and do a few things. We’ve been lucky. We’ve had a few, and not just one. That’s the only way we know how to work. So we don’t want to be Amazon and be Facebook and be Instagram and so on. Why? Or Uber. Why? I think it’s awesome that Travis [Kalanick, Uber’s CEO] and his team have done Uber on our platform. It would not exist without our platform, let’s be clear. But great for them for thinking of that problem, and solving it. We would never have ever solved that problem. We weren’t looking that way. We would have never seen it.

Uber has long been no. 1 iPhone app for US travel in Apple’s iOS store, according to download data from App Annie. The same is true for the transportation category in the Google Play store.