Steady Rise

By Daniel Drew Turner  |  Posted 2006-04-26 Print this article Print

At Apple, Rubinstein helped Jobs simplify and clarify the Macintosh product lineup, which had grown increasingly complex and diffuse under CEO Gil Amelio. During his tenure, Rubinstein also oversaw the hardware design of the iMac, modern PowerBooks, the Xserve, the Mac mini and more powerful Power Macs.
In May of 2004, Apple went through an internal reorganization.
This move created two new components of the company; the existing hardware division, which had been under Rubinsteins eye, split into iPod and Macintosh divisions. At the time, Jobs said that the iPod division was created to retain the companys focus, and that the reorganization was in the mold of Apples creation of its successful retail and Applications divisions. Click here to read about Apples introduction of dual-boot Macintoshes that can run both Windows and Mac OS X. Rubinstein was assigned to the iPod division, leaving the Macintosh division, which oversaw hardware engineering, sales, support and operations, to Tim Cook, who was previously Apples head of sales and operations. Prior to joining Apple, Cook worked for Compaq as vice president of corporate materials, which entailed managing the procurement and handling of the companys product inventory. Cook was named Apples chief operating officer in October 2005, though he did not relinquish his role at the Macintosh division. Some have speculated that Cook is being groomed as an eventual CEO candidate; he has filled in for Jobs in the past. Also in October 2005, Apple announced Rubinsteins forthcoming retirement from senior vice president of the companys iPod division. Taking his position was Tony Fadell, who joined Apple in 2001 as "the first member of [Apples] iPod hardware engineering team," according to Fadells official company biography. Rubinsteins resignation went into effect officially April 14. Rubinstein currently has a one-year consulting agreement with Apple. According to the contracts terms, Rubinstein will make himself available for a limited amount of time per week in exchange for a flat (and undisclosed) fee. Before Fadell came to Apple, he was the co-founder, chief technology officer and director of engineering of the Mobile Computing Group at Phillips Electronics. He also started his own company, Fuse, which developed a small music player that contained a hard disk. In 2000, he showed this device to Apple, which hired him in early 2001 as a contractor to work on the companys iPod project. Within a few months, Fadell was brought in full-time to oversee the iPod and iSight products. And three years later, in 2004, Fadell was named as vice president of the iPod Engineering Group, under Rubinstein. This wasnt Fadells first tenure at Apple, exactly. In 1992 he had joined General Magic, a company co-founded by Apple luminaries such as Andy Herzfeld and spun off from Apple in 1990 to explore PDA-like devices. Though Tevanians and Rubinsteins departures are watersheds in Apples history, these moves most likely do not represent a break with history. "In both cases—Tevanian and Rubinstein," said Gruber, "I think youve got guys who worked their butts off for years, managed a series of very successful large projects for NeXT and then Apple, earned small fortunes in Apple stock, and have now decided to enjoy their success." Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis on Apple in the enterprise.


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