An excerpt from the interview, in response to a question on what drives Amazon going forward:
When you have computing power doubling every 18 months, and you have the costs of long-haul bandwidth halving every 12 months, and disk-space costs halving every 12 months, you get to layer a lot of innovation on top of that. Things that would have been prohibitively expensive to do [a few years ago] become possible.
And as CPUs get cheaper and cheaper, people will start to have multiple computers in their homes. That will drive our business, too. If you were to install a computer in your kitchen, your Amazon account purchases would probably double. That’s what happened in my house. I strongly recommend this to you [the trademark laugh].
It [still doesn’t] make sense for you to look up a phone number on your computer, as opposed to dialing 411 or using the phone book — we’re not there yet in terms of convenience. [But] that’s not going to happen with any intervention on our part. Those are things that happen from the free market.
As we think of computing in the Indian (and emerging market) context, we too need to take advantage of all the developments. One difference: lag technology. This means, we use technology (hardware) which is a few years old. This eliminates the RD cost and gives us 3-year technology at a tenth of today’s “new technology” prices.
The key to make this model work is to put the smarts in software which uses the latest ideas and standards to make up for the older hardware. Taken together, they provide the base to build out a new tech mass-market infrastructure for the rest of the world.