Since we reported on Steve Job’s resignation from his post as CEO of Apple yesterday there have been an alarming number of heated comments. Since I’m an Android guy, and have some long-standing “hard feelings” against Jobs, I felt I’d officially go “on the record” about my thoughts and feelings.
First and foremost, I would never wish ill-health on anyone. I hope none of our readers would either. Although I think it was poor-judgement to keep his health issues secret from the shareholders as long as he did, I sincerely hope his health improves and that he’s with Apple in his new role for a very long time to come.
When Steve Jobs was “ousted” from Apple all those years ago, I has happy to see him go. He was pushing his vision at the cost of the company. It was a good move back then. After he left we got the Newton which really kicked off the mobile market, and eventually led to what we have today.
When Apple was floundering and Steve Jobs was brought back to help provide vision and direction, he rolled Newton, Inc. back into Apple, then killed them. I still haven’t forgiven him for that. Apple didn’t have a presence in the PDA/mobile area after that for a very long time, which lead Microsoft and Palm to dominate, and stagnate.
Eventually Jobs found his niche: portable media players. The iPod saved Apple and served as a cash cow and platform from which the iPod Touch, and eventually the iPhone and iPad were born. In no uncertain terms, the iPod and iPhone made Apple relevant again — and then they raised the bar. Everyone else had to jump into catch-up mode, or be made irrelevant.
Android was born from the lack of innovation from Microsoft and Palm, and began to push back against Apple. Finally Apple had some competition. Ironically, many of the recent and upcoming enhancements to iOS look like they’re inspired by Android.
In summary, I feel that the entire mobile industry owes a great debt of gratitude to Mr. Jobs for pushing the envelope and forcing his competitors to innovate — or get out of the game. This, in turn, put more pressure on Apple to continue their innovations. I sincerely hope that the new organizational structure will work out well, and that the community will rally around the change to continue to make our mobile ecosystem even stronger. Sure, we’ll see some road-bumps and dips in the stock price as the transition is accepted, but I hope the long-term viability of Apple stays with us.
My one request to the new CEO: stop suing everyone and put those resources to making your products even more awesome.