Tim Cook talks about Parler, iPhone encryption, “Tim Apple”, Apple TV+ and more in interview

Tim Cook has made an appearance in Sway, Kara Swisher’s podcast for The New York Times, to talk about privacy, social media, Parler’s removal from the App Store, his future at Apple, his opinion of Tesla, and the name “Tim Apple”. This is one of the most casual interviews that we have seen from Tim Cook in a long time, where he spoke about a range of topics, and openly spoke about other companies like Facebook and Tesla.

Apple CEO Tim Cook

Tim Cook’s interview covers a lot in just 30 minutes

The interview started with a question regarding Apple’s removal of Parler. Cook responded that Apple gave Parler an opportunity to fix their content moderation problem but they chose not to, which is why the app was removed from the App Store because it did not comply with its terms anymore. He stressed a few times that he would like Parler to come back to the App Store if they fix their content moderation issue. Kara Swisher also brought up that during her interview with Parler CEO, coincidentally around the same time when the Capitol Hill attack happened, he said that he takes no responsibility for moderation.

Kara asked about Tim Cook and Apple’s stance on encryption when the FBI asked Apple to create backdoors for its devices after the San Bernardino. Apple had rejected this request and that it would impact all its users. Even though the Department of Justice was able to unlock the iPhones themselves through various exploits, Cook believes that he picked up the right fight. Once there is a backdoor for the good guys, it is also used by the bad guys.

When asked about future innovation for Apple, Cook said that he is very excited about augmented reality and artificial intelligence. Kara brought up the rumors that Apple is expected to launch its mixed reality headset at WWDC 2021, and Cook said that he can’t talk about products that may or may not be in the pipeline, but he spoke about AR and how it can benefit different fields like health, gaming, retail, and more, with the use of the phone. He agreed that it is a critical part of Apple’s future.

Apple is now competing against Netflix and HBO Max with Apple TV+, and he said that they only focus on original content. They will build content over time, and have 300 nominations so far, and won 80 awards.

Cook also said that he had changed his Twitter name to “Tim Apple” for a while after Trump mistakingly called him so during an event. When asked if he’s become more political based on how he worked with Trump administration and now with Biden administration. Cook said that he believes in policies, and no matter who is in the White House, Apple will seek engagement and find common areas. However, the focus is on policies but not on politics.

Regarding voting rights, he said that we should be talking about how we can use technology to increase the voter turnout to 100%, or closer to it. When asked whether voting could be done on phone, Cook said that banking, health data, and other information is on phones so why not.

About his coming out back in 2014, Tim Cook said that he believed that coming out and speaking his truth would help kids that face challenges because they are part of the LGBTQ community. For the unethical Arkansas ruling that doctors can refuse to treat LGBTQ patients, Cook said that everyone should be treated with dignity and respect and he was disappointed that this even has to be said.

Lastly, when asked if he will be at Apple in 10 more years, he said that probably not and that it is a long time. If he wouldn’t be Apple, he said that he could not imagine his life without the company and he wouldn’t know until after he’s not at Apple. “I’ll run so fast that I’ll never really think about it until I’m not running anymore”.

The complete podcast episode is embedded below.

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