What Will Apple Do Without Steve Jobs?

January 19, 2011 by  
Filed under Features & Editorials

Sadly Steve Jobs health is once again a hot topic for debate. The Apple CEO has taken leave for the third time in seven years. In this sample from my latest TrustedReviews editorial I wish him well and ask: what will happen to Apple without their illustrious leader at the helm…


What Will Apple Do Without Steve Jobs?

Author Gordon Kelly
Published 19th Jan 2011


Let’s get one thing straight: we’re not here to speculate on Steve Jobs’ health. We’re not qualified to do so and quite frankly we’ll leave that to others – we find the whole practice somewhat distasteful. What we are qualified to talk about, however, is Apple as a company both with and without its enigmatic leader. So the question remains: ‘What Will Apple Do Without Steve Jobs?’

On Monday Jobs announced he was taking his third medical leave of absence in seven years. It follows a 2004 break for treatment of a treatable form of pancreatic cancer called Islet cell carcinoma and a six month absence in 2009 which saw Jobs undergo a liver transplant. Jobs put no timeline on a return to Apple saying only that he has “great confidence that Tim [Cook] and the rest of the executive management team will do a terrific job executing the exciting plans we have in place for 2011.” A statement which suggests, despite continuing as CEO and being “involved in major strategic decisions”, his absence this time will be lengthy. We wish him all the best for a successful, long term recovery.

The problems facing Apple without Jobs’ day-to-day involvement, however, are massive. Many sites have speculated about the ability of the team – centred around Tim Cook (COO), Jonathan Ive (industrial design), Peter Oppenheimer (CFO) and Bob Mansfield (Mac & iPhone hardware engineering) [pictured below, left to right] – to run the company in his absence. This is to be expected yet whatever their merits their biggest battle is with market perception because Apple has yet to prove it can prosper without its famous co-founder at the helm.

This belief is founded upon three significant generalisations… READ ON

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