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Steve stepping down?
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starman
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:47 PM
 
it's all over the news but I'm on my iPhone and can't link. Check cnbc

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Dakar V
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:48 PM
 
Taking medical leave until June.
     
Art Vandelay
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:48 PM
 
Medical leave until June, not resigning.
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Cold Warrior
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:48 PM
 
Thru June, from AppleInsider:

Team,

I am sure all of you saw my letter last week sharing something very personal with the Apple community. Unfortunately, the curiosity over my personal health continues to be a distraction not only for me and my family, but everyone else at Apple as well. In addition, during the past week I have learned that my health-related issues are more complex than I originally thought.

In order to take myself out of the limelight and focus on my health, and to allow everyone at Apple to focus on delivering extraordinary products, I have decided to take a medical leave of absence until the end of June.

I have asked Tim Cook to be responsible for Apple's day to day operations, and I know he and the rest of the executive management team will do a great job. As CEO, I plan to remain involved in major strategic decisions while I am out. Our board of directors fully supports this plan.
I look forward to seeing all of you this summer.

Steve
     
Dakar V
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:49 PM
 
     
ort888
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:50 PM
 
What's the stock hit?

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starman  (op)
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:51 PM
 
ok just temporary. Crazy flurry of news, couldn't sort it all out while on this thing

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starman  (op)
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:52 PM
 
stock trading frozen from what I read

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rickey939
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:52 PM
 
Time to get a Dell.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:54 PM
 
If he is stepping down even temporarily its serious. Last week he was singing a different tune.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 05:58 PM
 
Great, after Steve it will be back to cheap plastic computers
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 06:01 PM
 
I heard that Tim Cook hates Apple, babies, and freedom.

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osiris
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Jan 14, 2009, 06:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by Moderator View Post
If he is stepping down even temporarily its serious. Last week he was singing a different tune.
Exactly.

OTOH, he may need the time away from business to fully recuperate. A few months on a nice tropical island away from the masses can do wonders. I do hope that this is the case.
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Jan 14, 2009, 06:05 PM
 
Ok, internet, fire your engines. Steve has LIED! Apple has COVERED THIS UP! Steve is SICK! Will Apple FAIL!? I must have my RSS reader chock full of this swill by tomorrow. Get on it!
     
Big Mac
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Jan 14, 2009, 06:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by ort888 View Post
What's the stock hit?
A loss of around $7 currently in after-hours trading to $78. A wonderful time to buy unless you think Jobs is definitely dying, in which case you need to sell sell sell and buy back in the forties.

I really hope he can return and give Apple a few more good years before retiring, but that seems even less likely now.

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Jan 14, 2009, 06:18 PM
 
Watching the after hours trading has me depressed.

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Kestral
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Jan 14, 2009, 06:22 PM
 
It must be pretty bad, especially when you consider that his recent letter said he'd be well by spring, now he's taking a leave of absence until the middle of summer.

Sad day for us Apple fans, all we can hope is that Steve is stronger than cancer.

btw, Steve's cancer has a 5 year survival rate, he's in year 4 and something right now
     
Jawbone54
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Jan 14, 2009, 06:32 PM
 
One moment I can't shake from my mind right now is the sit-down Steve had with Bill Gates about two years ago where he ended it off by quoting some Beatles lyrics and getting nostalgic over the great distance the two have come, eventually breaking down a bit.

It makes me wonder if he was thinking about it all being over sooner rather than later...

I really, really hope Steve can turn out okay. I'd hate to see Apple take a massive hit.
     
turtle777
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Jan 14, 2009, 06:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by Big Mac View Post
A wonderful time to buy unless you think Jobs is definitely dying...
He *IS* definitely dying, sooner or later. We all are.

Yes, Apple would not be the same, but I also believe that many of the things that make Apple great are ingrained in their culture, which will survive Steve.

-t
     
ctt1wbw
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by SpaceMonkey View Post
I heard that Tim Cook hates Apple, babies, and freedom.
Don't forget apple pie, and he kicks old ladies and pushes veterans out of the supermarket check out line.
     
amazing
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:02 PM
 
So, the stock market thinks we're moving back to 'beige', right?
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
He *IS* definitely dying, sooner or later. We all are.

Yes, Apple would not be the same, but I also believe that many of the things that make Apple great are ingrained in their culture, which will survive Steve.

-t

Any change to the corporation that a new CEO would try to bring in would cause an uproar at the shareholder's meeting, that's for sure. Well, unless the new CEO brings back the Newton.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by Art Vandelay View Post
Medical leave until June, not resigning.
Sure, after Apple's said for months that he was perfectly healthy. I suspect we'll see something around June saying it was worse than anticipated, the goal being to spread out the bad news of "Steve stepping down". By spreading the news out, the hit on the stock prices won't be as severe.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by amazing View Post
So, the stock market thinks we're moving back to 'beige', right?
That would make your gay interior decorator cringe.
     
Dakar V
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by Wiskedjak View Post
Sure, after Apple's said for months that he was perfectly healthy. I suspect we'll see something around June saying it was worse than anticipated, the goal being to spread out the bad news of "Steve stepping down". By spreading the news out, the hit on the stock prices won't be as severe.
The iPHone Nano is rumored to hit in June as well, further diluting the news, if you will.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:35 PM
 
AAPL at $80 now. Doing a little better than I expected.
     
Person Man
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:41 PM
 
Originally Posted by Kestral View Post
btw, Steve's cancer has a 5 year survival rate, he's in year 4 and something right now
*SIGH*

Why do people persist in saying this?

The 5 year survival rate is for the more common form of pancreatic cancer, adenocarcinoma. STEVE DID NOT HAVE THIS KIND OF CANCER! Steve did not have this kind of cancer. Steve did not have this kind of cancer.

FORGET THE 5 YEAR SURVIVAL RATE THING!

Steve had a a rare form of pancreatic cancer that is much more treatable and even curable. Maybe his cancer is back, maybe it is not, but I really wish people would stop bringing up that 5 year thing.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 07:46 PM
 
Originally Posted by Person Man View Post
*SIGH*

Why do people persist in saying this?

The 5 year survival rate is for the more common form of pancreatic cancer, adenocarcinoma. STEVE DID NOT HAVE THIS KIND OF CANCER! Steve did not have this kind of cancer. Steve did not have this kind of cancer.

FORGET THE 5 YEAR SURVIVAL RATE THING!

Steve had a a rare form of pancreatic cancer that is much more treatable and even curable. Maybe his cancer is back, maybe it is not, but I really wish people would stop bringing up that 5 year thing.
1) My guess is some don't understand what "5-year survival" means. It doesn't mean you'll survive 5 years. It means your chance of survival at 5 years after diagnosis. ie. Perfectly healthy people might have a 5-year survival rate of 98%. People with a specific bad cancer might have a 5-year survival rate of 10%... which means many may survive less than 6 months, while others may survive 5 years, etc.

2) Not just pancreatic adenocarcinoma has 5-year survival data. Specific neuroendocrine tumours would too.

3) Some neuroendocrine tumours are essentially curable. Some are extremely aggressive. And everything in between. It really depends on the specifics, and we don't actually know what they are. He's suggested it's at the more benign end of the spectrum, but he's also deliberately kept some stuff vague. That's his choice but one can understand why some people might ask questions.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 08:12 PM
 
In an era of already-declining medical privacy, I find the whole dance between Jobs and the media over his health to be quite disturbing. Sure, Apple's Board of Directors should be kept in the loop about the man they hired to steer the ship; but I'm not sure the shareholders ought to have a similar right to now, because once they know, so does the press and therefore the world. Where is the empathy for Mr. Jobs here? In the workplace, none of us wants to be judged on the basis of our medical status, only on our ability to fulfill the duties of our employment. There is always uncertainty in business, and I don't think we as as society have fully figured out how to balance a person's right to medical privacy with whatever needs people other than the patient may have.

I think it's despicable that, in the pursuit of a juicy story, certain members of the press have heightened Mr. Jobs' stress level unnecessarily and may even hasten his eventual decline or death.

Great companies do survive the loss of their central figures. The best example that comes to mind is Fender Musical Instruments, which continued to be a great guitarmaking company even after Leo Fender left to start others. I do hope Steve Jobs does come back to Apple, but there is reason to doubt that he will.
( Last edited by selowitch; Jan 14, 2009 at 08:31 PM. )
     
sdilley14
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Jan 14, 2009, 08:14 PM
 
I'm just curious, how big of a role do you think Steve really plays at Apple. I mean, I know he's a very important person there and he's the CEO, but I wonder truly how much he influences, designs, builds, invents, and whatever else that happens there. I would think with such a large company that there would be teams of people coming up with the things Apple comes up with. I guess I just have a hard time wrapping my head around the idea of one man making every innovation that happens at Apple and the company's fate resting in one person's hands. The stock trends and media hype sure seem to indicate thats his role and contribution at Apple. I personally think that things wouldn't change ALL that much with Steve gone. Could a more educated soul shed light on this for me and share their perspective...
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selowitch
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Jan 14, 2009, 08:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by sdilley14 View Post
I'm just curious, how big of a role do you think Steve really plays at Apple. I mean, I know he's a very important person there and he's the CEO, but I wonder truly how much he influences, designs, builds, invents, and whatever else that happens there. I would think with such a large company that there would be teams of people coming up with the things Apple comes up with. I guess I just have a hard time wrapping my head around the idea of one man making every innovation that happens at Apple and the company's fate resting in one person's hands. The stock trends and media hype sure seem to indicate thats his role and contribution at Apple. I personally think that things wouldn't change ALL that much with Steve gone. Could a more educated soul shed light on this for me and share their perspective...
Based on what I have read, Steve Jobs has had more impact on his company than most other CEOs at companies of similar size. He has a very large hand in new product development, marketing, and setting the direction of the company, and there is little doubt that he is an inspiring and charismatic leader, albeit prone to occasional outbursts. He created Apple and then revived it when it was in danger of closing down.

It seems little exaggeration to say that Steve Jobs *is* Apple. What Apple would be without him is anybody's guess.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 08:22 PM
 
Originally Posted by selowitch View Post
In an era of already-declining medical privacy, I find the whole dance between Jobs and the media over his health to be quite disturbing. Sure, Apple's Board of Directors should be kept in the loop about the man they hired to steer the ship; but I'm not sure the shareholders ought to have a similar right to now, because once they know, so does the press and therefore the world. Where is the empathy for Mr. Jobs here?
I agree with you to a certain extent, but I also note that Apple is a public company, and Mr. Jobs himself has cultivated this Apple secrecy to promote products through media hype and in a sense has cultivated his cult status too. He craves the media attention, so it should not come as a surprise when some of that attention comes when it is not wanted.


Originally Posted by sdilley14 View Post
I'm just curious, how big of a role do you think Steve really plays at Apple. I mean, I know he's a very important person there and he's the CEO, but I wonder truly how much he influences, designs, builds, invents, and whatever else that happens there. I would think with such a large company that there would be teams of people coming up with the things Apple comes up with. I guess I just have a hard time wrapping my head around the idea of one man making every innovation that happens at Apple and the company's fate resting in one person's hands. The stock trends and media hype sure seem to indicate thats his role and contribution at Apple. I personally think that things wouldn't change ALL that much with Steve gone. Could a more educated soul shed light on this for me and share their perspective...
Steve Jobs has a reputation of wanting his hand in everything he thinks is interesting, and often obsessing over some things you might not expect him to. For example, he is listed as one of the inventors of the patented glass staircase at Apple Stores. WTF?

And yeah, I think Apple would change significantly with Steve gone. One of Steve's key characteristics is the ability to read popular trends... often before they even happen. And he bases company direction with a certain hardheadedness that many people don't have. Sometimes it's a failure (Mac Cube), but sometimes it's an enormous success: iPod/iTunes.
     
sdilley14
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Jan 14, 2009, 08:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post


Steve Jobs has a reputation of wanting his hand in everything he thinks is interesting, and often obsessing over some things you might not expect him to. For example, he is listed as one of the inventors of the patented glass staircase at Apple Stores. WTF?

And yeah, I think Apple would change significantly with Steve gone. One of Steve's key characteristics is the ability to read popular trends... often before they even happen. And he bases company direction with a certain hardheadedness that many people don't have. Sometimes it's a failure (Mac Cube), but sometimes it's an enormous success: iPod/iTunes.

I guess I never thought of it that way. I just can't see someone like Steve surrounding himself with a team of people much unlike himself (obsessive, driving personalities), which makes me think the company would be in pretty good hands should he be gone longer than anticipated.
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Jan 14, 2009, 09:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by sdilley14 View Post
I guess I never thought of it that way. I just can't see someone like Steve surrounding himself with a team of people much unlike himself (obsessive, driving personalities), which makes me think the company would be in pretty good hands should he be gone longer than anticipated.
Driving personalities tend not to play well with other driving personalities.

Given the degree of credit that goes to Steve Jobs for returning Apple to success and keeping it there and the cult status he's generated which suggests that every design is his, I'd say that shared holders have every right to be completely informed about his ability to perform.
     
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Jan 14, 2009, 11:16 PM
 
IMO, he needs to go.

He's very good at bringing companies back from the brink, but he's not so good at managing them once they've recovered.

Witness the slow death of Firewire, stupid iPhone SDK restrictions, the lack of a mid-tower, Apple not reducing it's margins. It still treats Apple like it's on the brink of death. C'mon Steve, you can add a mid-tower to that matrix... it won't hurt anything...
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Jan 14, 2009, 11:58 PM
 
My judgment is that Steve has done such a good job bringing Apple back from the brink that the company has everything it needs to carry on without him... for maybe 5 years.

But after that, without Steve, Apple will not adapt well to whatever is around the corner. When OSX starts getting dated, when the iPhone needs to be overhauled, when iTunes is faced with some new form of competition, Apple just won't have the vision required to face these challenges successfully. They will lack Steve's vision that placed them at the forefront of the computer industry during the 00s.
     
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Jan 15, 2009, 12:00 AM
 
I don't know why people think that Apple will be incapable of producing attractive hardware if Jobs leaves. Do you think that he's the person who actually has come up with all these design ideas? Maybe right at the beginning, but come ON. There's whole design team out there in Cupertino coming up with this stuff. If Steve kicks the bucket or just retires, it's not like the people are actually the force behind the final products are going to be going down with him.
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Jan 15, 2009, 12:19 AM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
I don't know why people think that Apple will be incapable of producing attractive hardware if Jobs leaves. Do you think that he's the person who actually has come up with all these design ideas? Maybe right at the beginning, but come ON. There's whole design team out there in Cupertino coming up with this stuff. If Steve kicks the bucket or just retires, it's not like the people are actually the force behind the final products are going to be going down with him.
It doesn't matter what we think. It's what the shareholders think. And shareholders are highly over-reactive people (just look at the stock market)
     
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Jan 15, 2009, 12:21 AM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
I don't know why people think that Apple will be incapable of producing attractive hardware if Jobs leaves. Do you think that he's the person who actually has come up with all these design ideas? Maybe right at the beginning, but come ON. There's whole design team out there in Cupertino coming up with this stuff. If Steve kicks the bucket or just retires, it's not like the people are actually the force behind the final products are going to be going down with him.
EXACTLY! I'm willing to bet he isn't the only creative genius they have. Who know, maybe they have people BETTER than him working there that don't get the credit or creative freedom they deserve because they're hampered by Steve's stubbornness and obsession of having control over everything. I just can't believe that a company like this would just go into a downward spiral and collapse on itself if ONE person is gone. There are teams of people behind everything Apple does and those people will remain in place (I'd imagine) and I'm sure new creative geniuses will be added to the mix over time. I think they'll be ok for quite some time regaurdless of Steve being there (not trying to take anything away from what he has done).
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Jan 15, 2009, 12:28 AM
 
Are you guys being serious? If Apple had all of these creative geniuses more talented than Jobs floating around the company, where were they pre-1997?
     
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Jan 15, 2009, 12:37 AM
 
Will Apple continue to do well without Jobs? Probably. But, the impression that Apple has given the world is that Apple *is* Steve Jobs.
     
starman  (op)
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Jan 15, 2009, 01:05 AM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
I don't know why people think that Apple will be incapable of producing attractive hardware if Jobs leaves. Do you think that he's the person who actually has come up with all these design ideas? Maybe right at the beginning, but come ON. There's whole design team out there in Cupertino coming up with this stuff. If Steve kicks the bucket or just retires, it's not like the people are actually the force behind the final products are going to be going down with him.
Well, where were they before Steve got there? Did he hire new people to make the iMac? I mean, he WAS right, the Mac line was a pathetic mess when he got there. Apple was losing its grip on its userbase. Now, without Steve, would there BE an iMac line? Would there BE an Intel-based Mac? I can tell you this much: with Gil at the helm, Apple was doomed.

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Jan 15, 2009, 01:09 AM
 
Originally Posted by Kerrigan View Post
My judgment is that Steve has done such a good job bringing Apple back from the brink that the company has everything it needs to carry on without him... for maybe 5 years.

But after that, without Steve, Apple will not adapt well to whatever is around the corner.
yup

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Jan 15, 2009, 01:51 AM
 
Originally Posted by Kerrigan View Post
But after that, without Steve, Apple will not adapt well to whatever is around the corner. When OSX starts getting dated, when the iPhone needs to be overhauled, when iTunes is faced with some new form of competition, Apple just won't have the vision required to face these challenges successfully. They will lack Steve's vision that placed them at the forefront of the computer industry during the 00s.
My impression is that Steve is a big picture guy. He'll tell you if OS X looks like crap. Ask him to give feedback on whether or not a new kernel design is going to carry OS X forward, and he wouldn't have half a clue.

They've got Ive to handle the looks of things. The engineers are more than smart enough to do the technical dirty work. And honestly, from what I've heard, Steve cuts some very cool things engineers do because he simply doesn't care about technical things. This is why we're doing Snow Leopard now. Cosmetic things were pushed way more heavier than technical things, and as a result, very important stuff like QuartzGL and resolution independence which was supposed to ship with 10.4 still hasn't shipped.
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Jan 15, 2009, 04:35 AM
 
I think Apple is screwed without him. Without him, it'll be a gigantic marketing focus group where decisions are made by committee, and nobody can be blamed for everything. They will make stupid decisions, because everyone in charge will be a waste of skin (aka business or marketing major), and the company will bloat itself into oblivion, just like other companies run by marketing groups (gm, for example).

I mean... can you guys imagine a world without apple? Without the ipod? What would all the ********* business majors be asking for when they want innovation? (of course, they dont'r eally want innovation, they want the safest possible solution that is 99% sure not going to get them into any trouble, but they say they want innovation because that's what successful business people say).
     
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Jan 15, 2009, 08:05 AM
 
Originally Posted by Kerrigan View Post
Are you guys being serious? If Apple had all of these creative geniuses more talented than Jobs floating around the company, where were they pre-1997?
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Jan 15, 2009, 08:21 AM
 
He's only 53, how scary is that, he's still young. If he recovers from his health issues there's no reason why cannot remain at the helm of Apple for a very long. Realistically though it seams they have been setting up the framework life without his Stevieness

Regardless, I wish him well
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Jan 15, 2009, 01:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by Kerrigan View Post
Are you guys being serious? If Apple had all of these creative geniuses more talented than Jobs floating around the company, where were they pre-1997?
Working for other companies? Still in college?

Look, I'm not trying to take away from what Steve has done. He has undoubtedly pulled Apple away from the brink of disaster and brought them to a very good place. I just feel that in doing so, he (and the rest of his team) has put together the framework for the company to survive and thrive should he not be there in the future. You can't tell me they're not anticipating Steve leaving eventually (especially considering these new developments) and they haven't taken steps for the company to continue on without him.
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Jan 15, 2009, 01:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
Do you think that he's the person who actually has come up with all these design ideas?
No, I think he's the person that sorts through all the options they put on his desk, and consistently picks the good ones.
     
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Jan 15, 2009, 02:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by Kerrigan View Post
Are you guys being serious? If Apple had all of these creative geniuses more talented than Jobs floating around the company, where were they pre-1997?
Yes, we're being serious. Everyone who was in charge (senior executives) at Apple when Steve Jobs came back 10 years ago is gone. We have reason to believe that all of the current executives were hand-picked by Jobs to come to Apple from other companies (where they were pre-1997).

Now, you can argue that Jobs "hand-picked" Sculley, and he helped force Jobs out, but Jobs was not CEO at the time Sculley was brought on board. Sculley was recruited to be the CEO of Apple. Sculley became CEO in 1983. Jobs was chairman of the board only at that time. Due to a power struggle that developed between the two, the rest of the board forced Jobs out.

Jobs isn't stupid. He's not going to let the same thing happen twice. So you can bet that the people he has chosen to run the company will be able to carry Apple to new heights in the post-Jobs era.

And that's why "we're serious."
     
 
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