Spotify – Just a reminder that the SPOT initial public offering will take place later this month. I read its gross margin went from 17% to 24% in the 4th quarter of last year vs 2016. Netflix has a 34%. Private equity firms value Spotify at 19 billion, roughly 19x last years gross profit. The equivalent using Netflix is 30x which shows some room for growth. The big question mark is how can it grow being under the control of the “big 3” – Sony, Universal, and Warner which account for 87% of the music on Spotify’s playlist. You’ll notice that Netflix has started to produce its own content which inevitably gives it more control and the ability to turn higher profits. How can Spotify move from under the record companies thumb? That we will have to wait and see.

How does Spotify intervene in my life? Virtually everyday I use it. That was pretty much my basis behind this post and what’s important. I’m not alone as subscriber growth went from 30 million to 70 million in a mere year. So not only is subscriber, recurring, revenue a factor, Spotify can make money getting involved in the sale of show tickets, promotion from artists for their own material, and *gasp* advertising. I will be purchasing some SPOT.

Samsung Galaxy 8 – What do I not use my phone for? Writing long emails. Researching. Creating DraftKing lineups. For most other activities such as email, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and golf updates, I use my phone. I’ll even watch Netflix on my phone while I have a sporting game in the background. The sound is better on this device than my Kindle Fire which has 3x the screen. The 8 isn’t that much different than the 6, but the bottom line is that I’m satisfied. I didn’t have a battery issue one time in Europe. It lasted at least 16 hours and probably would have gone for 30. The GPS is rock solid on Google Maps. All in all, well worth the money.

I’m going to take a moment and respond to everyone who reads this and says, “buy an Iphone”. I’ve wrote many posts about this, but there is one key reason why I don’t like Apple, and it has virtually nothing to do with the actual device. Apple uses iOS. iOS is, to my understanding, a closed source operating system. When you do Apple, you are using all material produced by Apple developers specifically for Apple products. Android is open source and that’s my general life philosophy. It’d be like the USA saying that they don’t accept any material from anyone outside of the USA. This isn’t a great analogy because I’m sure there are millions of developers in other countries, but just go with it. Steve Jobs would argue that having complete control over what goes on your device is incredibly important for safety and quality reasons. To say I know better than Steve Jobs is idiotic. To me though, Apple products seem more dictatorial, loyalty induced / brainwashed, than Android and Google which give me the feeling of open thinking. Like I wrote, it has nothing to do with the product, strictly the mind set.

Pilot G-2 – One of the funniest parts of my life is when I write something down and Sam says, “here’s the first thing you’re doing wrong, you’re writing it down instead of typing it.” I still use a pen everyday of my life and I like this one specifically. First off, it’s cheap. You can buy 20 of them for 10 bucks at Sam’s club. Maybe cheaper. The ink doesn’t smear. This is the most important part of a pen. When the ink comes off, how long does it take to dry? They seem to last a long time as I lose them far more than I throw them out. The clicker works great and I don’t find myself inking myself when the pen is in my pocket. Finally, the grip on it is comfortable and the point is sharp for consistent writing. I’ve used the cheap Bic’s and gel pens and this is by far the best.