One year after Steve Jobs’ death: does Apple need a new leader?
It is a year since the death of Apple visionary Steve Jobs, and the question on everyone’s mind is: How long will Apple last? The hot topic is whether Apple needs a new leader and if the current CEO Tim Cook can become the perfectionist Jobs was.
Since Cook took over, there have been some undeniable blunders in both marketing and technology. Most recently, there was the flawed new map application on the iPhone 5, after which Apple saw a 4.5% drop in share values – an approximate loss of $30 billion. While the Apple CEO said he was “extremely sorry” for the mishap, many queried whether such a mistake would have occurred under the thorough Jobs.
Another incident was Apple’s disappointing TV advertising campaign, which aired during the London 2012 Olympics and just as quickly disappeared. In the opinion of former Apple employees, the humourless “Genius” spot wouldn’t have made it past the drawing-board stage with Jobs in charge. The hands-on Jobs would manage day-to-day operations, down to helping with designs and advertisements.
“I shudder to think what [Jobs] would have said about that ad,” says Tom Suiter, whom Jobs hired as a creative director in 1982, “the bar is so high for them now.”
However, Jobs also had some issues with the iPhone himself, including “Antennagate”, when the signal strength of the iPhone 4 was diminished when users touched the lower left edge of the phone.
According to USA Today, Adam Lashinsky, author of Inside Apple said: “Apple just had one of the most extraordinary 15-year runs” in business history. “It is unreasonable to duplicate that, even if Jobs were still alive”, he said.
With rumoured talks of a 7-inch iPad on the horizon and the latest iteration of Apple’s TV delayed until next year, analysts suggest that the company’s product line is lacking the originality Jobs brought to the table.
It has been years – a very long time in the technology world – since Apple delivered what is to be considered an astonishing product. One must wonder what, if anything, could recreate the cult-like following by fans of the iPad in 2010 and the original iPhone back in 2007.