Reprise: Apple after Jobs

Plenty of comment already about Steve Jobs stepping down as Apple CEO, and discussion of Tim Cook who takes over. We’ve been here before, of course, when Jobs left the company previously: after which it lost its way until he returned. The company’s in a lot stronger position now than it was then; and this departure has been well anticipated, and planned for, rather than being a boardroom coup.

Jobs hasn’t altogether disappeared; he takes over as Chairman. As well as the announcement in a press release, Apple have also published his (very brief) resignation letter recommending the existing succession plan be implemented.

Apple is sufficiently important these days that this made the headlines on the mainstream BBC news this morning. There’s a lot of comment out there already and, unsurprisingly, the share price is down. The BBC quote Gartner’s Van Baker to the effect that “Apple will do just fine”, though I haven’t been able to verify the quote (Van Baker is on the Gartner Blog Network, but hasn’t posted there since March this year).

In the Forrester Community, their JP Gownder has looked at the implications. His comment is for product strategists (that is, Apple’s competitors or those whose products are Apple-related). But it’s relevant to users: in brief, he considers that Apple’s competitive position isn’t going to become suddenly vulnerable (to Microsoft, Google, HP, HTC and so on) – nor will it for some time either. Apple has learned long term planning, he says, both for its people and for its product strategies. So don’t hold your breath; Tim Cook’s been running the show for months anyway.

Best wishes to Apple’s visionary; let’s see what happens next.

Steve Jobs Resigns as CEO of Apple, Apple Press Release, 24 Aug 2011
Letter from Steve Jobs, Apple, 24 Aug 2011
• Steve Jobs resigns as Apple CEO, Tim Cook takes the reins, Tech Republic, 24 Aug 2011
• Apple boss Steve Jobs to be replaced by Tim Cook, BBC News, 25 Aug 2011 (with other links)
• Steve Jobs resignation hits Apple shares in Frankfurt, BBC News, 25 Aug 2011
• What Steve Jobs’ Resignation Means For Product Strategists, JP Gownder, Forrester Blog (Consumer Product Strategy), 24 Aug 2011

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