I do love email. Wherever possible I try to communicate asynchronously. I'm really good at email.
Brand is just a perception, and perception will match reality over time. Sometimes it will be ahead, other times it will be behind. But brand is simply a collective impression some have about a product.
An asteroid or a supervolcano could certainly destroy us, but we also face risks the dinosaurs never saw: An engineered virus, nuclear war, inadvertent creation of a micro black hole, or some as-yet-unknown technology could spell the end of us.
I think the high-tech industry is used to developing new things very quickly. It's the Silicon Valley way of doing business: You either move very quickly and you work hard to improve your product technology, or you get destroyed by some other company.
Winning 'Motor Trend' Car of the year is probably the closest thing to winning the Oscar or Emmy of the car industry.
There are really two things that have to occur in order for a new technology to be affordable to the mass market. One is you need economies of scale. The other is you need to iterate on the design. You need to go through a few versions.