News Analysis: On Oct. 4 at the anticipated iPhone event, Tim Cook is making his first big appearance as Apple CEO since Steve Jobs became company chairman. He has worked under Jobs' shadow for a number of years. But what should folks know about him?
CEO Tim Cook has long been one of Steve Jobs' most trusted associates. For
years, he was content to live in Jobs' shadow while making the company's supply
chain the best in the business. But Jobs has moved on from being Apple's CEO to
becoming its chairman, and it's now Cook's job to lead the iPhone maker.
Attention will naturally turn to Cook, and questions will be raised about where
he will take Apple.
Apple's Oct. 4 iPhone event
, Cook will likely take the wraps off who he is
as an executive and what he might have planned for the company's future. He
might not discuss Apple's future product plans, but he will undoubtedly provide
a glimpse into what he believes will help Apple continue to succeed and,
perhaps most importantly, how he plans to run the company for the foreseeable
before Cook takes the stage at the iPhone event, it might be a good idea to
provide a little cheat sheet on what folks can expect from Apple's CEO both at
the iPhone event and at any point during his tenure as top executive.
on to find out what Cook brings to the table:
1. Little, if any, strategy shifts
after Jobs announced that he would no longer be CEO of Apple, Cook reportedly
sent a memo to employees indicating that "Apple is not going to change."
He didn't provide too many details about his plans for the company, but if the
memo is to be one's guide, Apple will stay the way it is indefinitely.
2. A keen eye for profit margins
Apple COO, Cook was in charge of managing the company's huge supply chain. And
in that capacity, he did an exceptional job. In fact, Apple's supply chain is
widely considered the best in the business. It's the main reason the iPhone
maker has been able to get so much hardware to store shelves at costs that help
it produce record-breaking profits. As CEO, Cook will continue to exert
influence over Apple's profit margins and deliver impressive earnings each
3. Less stage generalship
the iPhone event on Oct. 4
, those hoping to see a Jobs-like performance
from Cook will be disappointed. As Cook has shown at Apple events in the past,
he simply doesn't have the stage presence that Jobs does. What's more, he
likely won't spend as much time on stage as Jobs did. From now on, Apple events
will likely be headlined by several folks, rather than just one. And that's
4. Less vision than Steve Jobs
Apple, Jobs was often called the "innovator-in-chief." The Apple
co-founder had a keen eye for product design and implementation, with an
instinctive knowledge of what devices would be popular with consumers. Cook
doesn't have that eye, and he will need to rely upon the collective genius of
Apple's product designers and marketing executives to determine the shape of
future products. Will that hurt Apple product designs? It's too early to tell.
But it's something that observers should keep an eye on.