I’ve heard a lot about Xiaomi, but never really understood how it keeps its prices low! One thing you mentioned was the fact that beyond price, MIUI is another selling point. How much does the company invest into this customized OS versus its hardware? And how much do consumers find this to be a driver for purchase? I’d be curious to understand whether over time, this becomes a big cost base that Xiaomi will have to find ways to optimize like it has done with the hardware.
This is mind-boggling! I knew that public transport in the US tended to the inefficient, but these numbers are massive. I’d be interested to know the split of deficits as it relates to subway and commuter rail versus bus. It seems like systems with heavy capital investments (i.e., rails) would be more susceptible to deficits. So in a city like Boston where most of the subway T runs above ground (or easily could if it wanted to) whether switching to lower cost public transport would help alleviate some of the cost pressures. Also, as a total aside, does the refrain we often hear to “take the T more” hold water here? How much would volume have to increase to plug the gap?
Cool – I’ve used Duolingo before (the language learning, not translation side) but didn’t realize the impetus for its inception! I’ll be interested to see how this service fares against paid language learning platforms like Rosetta Stone and whether its crowdsourcing business model will be able to continually improve content (ala Wikipedia). Are there any quality control mechanisms beyond self-policing?