Hired in an 'unknown' role. Well it's about time, Apple has traditionally be very weak in the unknown department.
Mind you I suspect that he has been hired to bring Cook's portrait posing up to company standards.
You're making the assumption that the markets have anything to do with reality.
This speculation seems to be a good fit. I was shocked (well, intrigued really), when Steve dropped 'Computer' from the name of our favourite company but of course he was looking years ahead, doubtless with crystal clear vision.
The luxury aspect is, in part, what sells Apple as it is a luxury most people can afford. You might not be able to buy that new BMW or Audi, but that new iPhone or iPad, or iWatch will make you look just as stylish in the office or out on the town.
Updated: thanks Suddenly Newton
FUD. Let him succeed or fail before declaring him the next John Browett.
Apple seems to be in a unique position of providing the only true luxury computers on earth, but still needs to remain accessible to a majority of the population. As Apple saturates the upper tier of the market, many assume that releasing cheaper products with more volume is the only way to go. But, along with the middle-tier iPhone, Apple could also quite successfully expand their pro offerings, by offering things that come with significant advantages, but which are not as amenable to mass production (e.g. carbon fiber, sapphire glass screens, liquid metal). With rumors of a new MBA being based off of an A series processor, I think it's a possibility we'll see an MBA Pro in the not too distant future, thinner, lighter, carbon fiber, possibly with touch capabilities (along with the successor to Mavricks). Tim did mention somewhat randomly in a past PR statement that Apple's chip designers are "ambitious," makes me wonder..
However, Deneve's fashion connections may be just as important. It was pretty cool to hear about Cue being a Ferrari board member, then having them incorporate iOS into their cars. Tim also mentioned sensors in his latest visit to all things d (I don't know how he put up with that ridiculous interview, he's a saint to say the least). I think we could see Apple release clip-on iBeacons in the near future as well, along with iWatch, which would be a great security feature to incorporate into expensive high-end bags and clothing (or your kids haha).
NB: I also want to gush again about how much I love the DED editorials, particularly in long form. My last two Saturdays have been spent drinking some delicious beers by the pool, and enjoying every bit of the sarcasm, digs, and perspective in those articles. It's a great time to be an Apple fan.. Thanks!
MBW...The machine driving ultimate.
Based on his previous positions, I doubt he was signing off on designs. He was steering the business. More likely he'll be used for his industry Rolodex.
"Plastic" does sound cheap and toy-like, doesn't it? Eh, so just call the material CRP (carbon-fiber reinforced thermoplastic) and stand away from the doors as the herd thunders in to buy three each.
Whatever it's made of, Apple does need a lower cost device for the developing markets though... as long as it doesn't degrade the brand in the developed markets. And I admit, that is going to be tricky. And apart from any specific projects Cook has in mind for him, it'll be interesting to see what haute couture ideas this fellow is going to come up with for various Apple devices or the retail ops..