Apple Announces Changes to Increase Collaboration Across Hardware, Software & Services


A few quick thoughts:

  • Forstall is a huge loss, clearly. The father of iOS. But he was not without controversy inside of Apple. People have heard about the “skeuomorphic wars”, but there were also plenty of whispers of um, issues, with other employees. And then there was also the matter of Maps and Siri, under his watch, of course.

  • Apple makes a point in the release of saying that Eddy Cue is now in charge of both Maps and Siri. Read into that what you will.

  • Forstall’s “special advisor” role sure sounds a lot like a pure optics move. The same title was given to Tony Fadell when he stepped down as head of the iPod division in 2008 (and he officially left about a year later).

  • Seven (7!) paragraphs in, we get: “Additionally, John Browett is leaving Apple. A search for a new head of Retail is underway and in the interim, the Retail team will report directly to Tim Cook.” This was clearly a mistake by Apple from the start. Good to see them rectify it so quickly.

  • Bob Mansfield went from retiring (just four months ago!), to un‑retiring and being an SVP without an official role, to getting a whole new division, Technologies. HUGE.

  • Likewise, Jony Ive can now add software design to his resume. The fact that he’s staying may be the single most important thing to Apple in all of this.

  • Craig Federighi is now in charge of iOS. The OS X/iOS lines continue to blur. I think it will be good to get some new blood in there. It was only two months ago he was elevated to SVP (of OS X), now he is without question one of the most important execs at the company.

  • No mention of Phil Schiller. No need. He’s clearly number two in the food chain, I believe.

Update: Interesting thought by Ryan Jones.

Everybody chant: Jony! Jony! Jony!

Still, I find it hard to believe that Forstall is being let go. The guy did build iOS after all, and was presumably in the process of leading the Maps team to a redemption. From the outside, he seemed extremely valuable to Apple.

Maybe Jobs was Forstall’s biggest backer. Without Jobs there, he was losing more and more arguments against the rest of Apple’s leadership, and Forstall himself finally decided, “Sod this”, and gave up on Apple. In other words, maybe Apple lost Forstall. Update: apparently not.

Either way, it’s quite incredible.

Posted and reblogged from parislemon on 29 October, 2012.