Tim Cook says Apple's executive team at "the very top of their game"

Posted:
in AAPL Investors edited January 2014
Following a shake up of Apple's executive team last fall, Tim Cook made a particular effort to highlight the skills and experience represented in the company's top leadership at this morning's Goldman Sachs Conference.

Apple Leadership


Apple's new Leadership page. | Source: Apple

Jony Ive "best designer in the world"

"When I look around the executive team table," Cook said, "I see superstars. I see people who are at the very top of their game. I see people like Jony Ive, who's the best designer in the world. He's now bringing his talents to our software as well," Cook said.

Last fall, Ive was put in charge of coordinating Apple's iconic hardware designs with its software user interfaces, a task formerly managed independently by the heads of the OS X and iOS teams and by each individual app team, including iWork, iLife and the company's Pro App groups.

Apple's future designs in the hands of Ive will need to balance the extremes of sophisticated, minimalist, utilitarian design with the whimsical, rich and customizable options many users appreciate. In that regard, Ive is more likely to favor Apple's traditional route of leaning toward clean, expertly designed layouts, scaling back some of the flourish of Calendar and the oddball OS X Contacts app.

Underscoring its future plans to keep its software updated and modern, Apple recently overhauled all of its iTunes clients for both iOS and the Mac and PC desktop.

iTunes 11

Bob Mansfield "the top silicon expert in the world"

Cook next turned attention to Apple's hardware, noting that, at Apple's executive team table, "I see people like Bob Mansfield, who I think is the top silicon expert in the world."

Mansfield had initially announced plans to retire last year, but agreed to stay at Apple for another two years after Cook decided to sideline Scott Forstall in order to streamline operations and reduce contention within the executive team.

Mansfield has transitioned from his role in managing hardware engineering to a broader job description that puts him in charge of Apple's new Technologies division.

The newly formed group combines all of Apple?s wireless teams across the company in one organization. The group will also include Apple's semiconductor teams, which the company says has "ambitious plans for the future."

Superstar executives: a coordinated hardware and software team

"Jeff Williams," Cook added, "there's nobody better in operations anywhere!" That's a humble comment coming from the man who acts as Williams' boss in Apple's operations, and is widely credited with the company's operational rescue from its darkest days in the mid 1990s, when the company was facing operational nightmares.

"I see Phil [Schiller, head of worldwide marketing] and Dan [Riccio, the head of hardware engineering who answers to Mansfield] and Craig [Federighi, head of software engineering, now managing both OS X and iOS] and I see all of these guys who are so focused on product and at the very top of their game, and it's a privilege to be a part of that," Cook stated.

Cook didn't make specific mention of Eddy Cue, the only other member of Apple's executive team to handles customer facing products rather than legal or financial issues. Cue's responsibilities were expanded last fall to include not just iTunes, iBooks and the App Store but also Apple's expanding set of related online services, including iCloud, Siri, iAd and Maps.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 24
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    Tim always calls out Jony and Bob specifically. Must have special affection for those two. He says he's "ecstatic" about Jony getting involved in software so hopefully that means good things to come. :)
  • Reply 2 of 24

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    Cook didn't make specific mention of Eddy Cue, the only other member of Apple's executive team to handles customer facing products rather than legal or financial issues. Cue's responsibilities were expanded last fall to include not just iTunes, iBooks and the App Store but also Apple's expanding set of related online services, including iCloud, Siri, iAd and Maps.


    Not sure if the non-mention of Eddy Cue was intentional or not...nevertheless, amongst all their other investments/R&D, iTunes & online services are definitely where improvements are urgent and important.


     


    I don't envy this development group that has to deal with the ever increasing complexity & mass immigration to iTunes...but iTunes is the first impression for almost all customers of Apple.  And if Apple chooses to still rely so heavily on iTunes, they need to step up their game.  Most are not thrilled with the new operation of iTunes, it's just getting too bloated.  While there are lots of good things about iTunes, the nature of this growing beast is that it gets tougher to develop to keep customers thrilled.

  • Reply 3 of 24
    Jeff Williams looks like Cook's clone. Coincidence?
  • Reply 4 of 24
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,797member
    I wonder if all these top executives can figure out a way for me to place the cursor exactly where I want? or how about a backspace key as well?

    And why all these separate articles? There must be about 8 now. Would have made the discussions much more interesting to combine them all into one or two articles
  • Reply 5 of 24
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by gwmac View Post



    I wonder if all these top executives can figure out a way for me to place the cursor exactly where I want? or how about a backspace key as well?



    And why all these separate articles? There must be about 8 now. Would have made the discussions much more interesting to combine them all into one or two articles


    Agreed.  These don't need to be in separate articles.  Discussion doesn't flow as well when they're separated like this.

  • Reply 6 of 24
    daharderdaharder Posts: 1,580member
    Jeff Williams looks like Cook's clone. Coincidence?

    Most likely... then again there's very little diversity to be found in Apple 'Executive Team' anyway
  • Reply 7 of 24
    lantznlantzn Posts: 240member


    "...figure out a way for me to place the cursor exactly where I want? or how about a backspace key as well?"


     


    What are you talking about?  Just mouse click where you want the cursor on a Mac or hold your finger on the spot on a iDevice.  The "delete" on an Apple device acts the same as the "backspace" key on a PC.  If you look at an Apple keyboard they sit in the same place as a PC keyboard.  Why is that so difficult to understand?

  • Reply 8 of 24
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,797member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lantzn View Post


    "...figure out a way for me to place the cursor exactly where I want? or how about a backspace key as well?"


     


    What are you talking about?  Just mouse click where you want the cursor on a Mac or hold your finger on the spot on a iDevice.  The "delete" on an Apple device acts the same as the "backspace" key on a PC.  If you look at an Apple keyboard they sit in the same place as a PC keyboard.  Why is that so difficult to understand?



    I am not talking about on a Mac, I am talking about doing that on an iPhone! Do a test for me if it is so easy, view this page on your iPhone and now try to quickly select the just a letter in the middle of a word . Press and hold and the magnifying glass appears, good for word or sentence selection, but not so great if you want to move the cursor to a very specific location. That is what I am talking about, it is not easy to place the cursor exactly where you want in iOS. 

  • Reply 9 of 24
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,511member
    daharder wrote: »
    Most likely... then again there's very little diversity to be found in Apple 'Executive Team' anyway

    I know, not a single old hippie or barefoot Buddhist. If only Steve were still with us.

    Edit: Seriously, though, I think Apple is thinking about expanding education with their technology, and that should have the effect of breaking down some of the socioeconomic barriers that stand in the way of training more engineers, designers and other technical types. And artists.

    One thing we know about Apple is that they're very aware of diversity. You can see it in their advertising all over the place, and that's not just about selling iPads, it's about raising consciousness. Bunch of bleedin' hearts, they are.
  • Reply 10 of 24
    ipenipen Posts: 410member


    Seems like the Wall Street didn't like Cook's Executive Team.  AAPL down 11 points now after Cook spoke.

  • Reply 11 of 24
    ipen 2013/02/12 03:43pm
    Seems like the Wall Street didn't like Cook's Executive Team. AAPL down 11 points now after Cook spoke.


    Apple was down 2.5 dollars after market yesterday..... Did that also have something with Tims talk today?..

    Sure Tim does not have the charisma of Jobs... But there is too much ignorant bashing going on!

    He is one of the best!
  • Reply 12 of 24
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by ipen View Post


    Seems like the Wall Street didn't like Cook's Executive Team.  AAPL down 11 points now after Cook spoke.



    Wall Street didn't like that Cook disclosed nothing.  I've no doubt we'll see them do something with their huge cash pile in the next couple weeks and then the stock will jump again.

  • Reply 13 of 24
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DaHarder View Post





    Most likely... then again there's very little diversity to be found in Apple 'Executive Team' anyway


    So Apple should just hire a female or person of color so their exec team looks diverse?

  • Reply 14 of 24


    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

    So Apple should just hire a female or person of color so their exec team looks diverse?




    I've never understood the people who want that.


     


    If you see a woman on the executive team, it's because she's the best at what she's doing, which is why she got the promotion. If you see a man there, it's because he's the best at what he's doing, which is why he got the promotion. 


     


    Whining about it being "all men" tells me you'd rather Apple not have the best people for the job up there. It's a company; that's all that matters.

  • Reply 15 of 24


    What, no mention of Oppenheimer, the pro who ignores hedge fund superstars and doesn't even communicate with the CEO about discussions with investors? 

  • Reply 16 of 24

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by gwmac View Post




    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lantzn View Post


    "...figure out a way for me to place the cursor exactly where I want? or how about a backspace key as well?"


     


    What are you talking about?  Just mouse click where you want the cursor on a Mac or hold your finger on the spot on a iDevice.  The "delete" on an Apple device acts the same as the "backspace" key on a PC.  If you look at an Apple keyboard they sit in the same place as a PC keyboard.  Why is that so difficult to understand?



    I am not talking about on a Mac, I am talking about doing that on an iPhone! Do a test for me if it is so easy, view this page on your iPhone and now try to quickly select the just a letter in the middle of a word . Press and hold and the magnifying glass appears, good for word or sentence selection, but not so great if you want to move the cursor to a very specific location. That is what I am talking about, it is not easy to place the cursor exactly where you want in iOS. 



     


    Yeah!  There are some iOS apps that include a custom kb with a few extra keys -- arrow keys, for one example.  You can position the cursor with press-hold -- then refine the position with the arrow keys.  Something like this is definitely needed as a standard part of the iOS UI.

  • Reply 17 of 24
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    yojimbo007 wrote: »
    ipen 2013/02/12 03:43pm
    Seems like the Wall Street didn't like Cook's Executive Team. AAPL down 11 points now after Cook spoke.

    Apple was down 2.5 dollars after market yesterday..... Did that also have something with Tims talk today?..

    Sure Tim does not have the charisma of Jobs... But there is too much ignorant bashing going on!

    He is one of the best!

    Please explain that to Wall Street.

    Apple's valuation and Wall Street's expectations are absurd. They're concerned that Apple's gross margin might drop from 41% to 40% and bash the stock because of that. Amazon's gross margins are less than half of that - and they usually don't even make a profit - but Wall Street loves them.
  • Reply 18 of 24
    rogifan wrote: »
    So Apple should just hire a female or person of color so their exec team looks diverse?
    Given equal qualifications, yes.
  • Reply 19 of 24
    robmrobm Posts: 1,068member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by KingChael View Post


    What, no mention of Oppenheimer, the pro who ignores hedge fund superstars and doesn't even communicate with the CEO about discussions with investors? 



    I've never heard that Oppenheimer doesn't communicate with Cook about discussions with investors. That seems hardly credible even it does come from you.


    What proof do you have to be making such spurious allegations ?


     


    Im quite prepared to believe that he ignores *splutter* err, hedge fund superstars, probably with good reason. 


    He also probably ignores the likes of money grubbing Einhorn.

  • Reply 20 of 24


    To be honest as much as Apple being a grand brand for liberal consumers, their executive team cannot be more conservative looking. All middle aged white men. No Asian no black no Latino no female (and possible no gay?). 

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