News Roundup: Silicon Valley Initiatives

A sneak peek into the newest Apple iPhones, Salesforce’s revenue, and self-flying planes rounds up this week’s news.

Apple to Embrace iPhone X Design With New Colors, Bigger Screens

Apple’s yearly announcement of new iPhone versions and other product updates is arguably one of the biggest events of the year among technology circles and iPhone enthusiasts. This year is no different. Even though none of the iPhones that are projected to come out in the September launch will be wholly new designs, there are rumored to be new offerings such as the codenamed “N84,” a model reminiscent of the iPhone X but modified to be a more affordable version, containing aluminum edges instead of steel and other adjustments that make it more cost-effective.

These reworks show Apple’s continuous push towards innovation and dedication to be at the top of the industry. Apple continues to reinvent the standard in order to keep giving customers the best experience possible while transforming technology.

1% of Salesforce’s Revenue Makes a Unicorn

Time for some math. Salesforce is worth $113 billion. What’s 1% of that? $1.13 billion. Therefore, building an organization that can take just 1% of revenue from a tech giant means it’s a billion-dollar organization. While $1 billion may sound like a lot, 1% less so. Finding a niche customer segment to serve will become easier as companies such as Workday ($33B), ServiceNow ($34B), and Atlassian ($20.5B) continue to grow.

The math is simple and the customers are there. By finding the gaps in current products and building for specific customer needs, the next big wave of software companies have the power to create a unicorn.

Silicon Valley Takes a (Careful) Step Toward Autonomous Flying

Just as Uber is building a successful business focused on the future of self-driving vehicles, SkyRyse, a new Silicon Valley-based startup is looking to do the same thing for aviation. The company currently features emergency-response helicopters flown by experienced pilots. Yet the technology they are implementing is similar to that of driverless cars, something their CEO and co-founder Mark Groden is well aware of. Acknowledging that while there are regulations that still have to be socialized and created, “we are developing the technology that can take us there,” Groden says.

They’re not alone. Subsidiaries of Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and other startups are finding their own options for flying taxis and more mainstream flight options. Even Uber is looking forward to air transportation, going so far as to build out their business plan. While there are numerous hurdles that will still need to be overcome, such as uncertainty around flight conditions, adoption, regulations, and federal rules, these companies are pushing towards creating change and pushing the transportation industry into the future.

Companies like SkyRyse and Apple see a need, and with a valuable enough idea, the numbers prove that the opportunity to become a unicorn is there.