David Coursey: ‘Steve Jobs will never return to the helm at Apple’

“I have come to the sad conclusion that Steve Jobs will never return to the helm at Apple. This is another of those ‘I hope of am wrong, but…’ posts that I hate to write. But, skipping the shareholder meeting is a more than subtle hint that Jobs won’t be back in the active role he’s enjoyed, if at all,” David Coursey opines for PC World.

MacDailyNews Take: The shareholder meeting fell during Job’s leave of absence. Look up the word “absence,” Dave.

Coursey continues, “Apple under Steve Jobs is not a company but a phenomenon. A micromanaged manifestation of one man’s view of technology, design, and the world. Apple is about a sensibility as much as it’s about anything else.”

MacDailyNews Take: Replace “one man’s” with “a singular” above and you might find yourself closer to the truth.

Coursey continues, “Outsiders are not privy to how decisions are made at Apple. People who know are afraid of getting fired if they tell, which probably says quite enough. Still, I’d like to get a handle on the extent to which other people have ideas that Jobs accepts vs. only Steve has the great ideas. My impression is the latter has been true in the past. Is it still true? I hope not, but the idea of a meeting where a dozen people tell Steve that he’s wrong and live to tell about it just doesn’t sound like the Apple we know and (begrudgingly) love.”

MacDailyNews Take: A dozen people? Probably not. One or two, though? Maybe.

Coursey continues, “As for the present: Tim Cook is not a succession plan. Nor is Phil Schiller, though I like him a lot. We should expect that Apple has a decent product pipeline in place, so the immediate future has likely been decided.”

MacDailyNews Take: We do not agree with Coursey’s assessment of Tim Cook. But, while we also like him a lot, we do agree with him about good ol’ Phil. We also agree that Apple’s product pipeline is likely quite solid.

Coursey wonders, “But, does anyone at Apple have the gravitas (and vision) to cut the deals that made the iTunes Store such an incredible success?”

MacDailyNews Take: Well, now, that’s the $64 billion question, isn’t it? Nobody knows. One thing’s for sure: Jobs is a rare genius; one of a kind, but perhaps Apple could find another rare talent who possesses a different combination of skills to lead the company when the time comes (hopefully, decades from now)?

Coursey writes, “As long as Steve Jobs can read a memo or look at designs and say, ‘this one, not that one,’ Apple is remains in good hands. But, we have already seen what happens when Apple loses is vision. When that happens, as it eventually must, its not clear Apple’s creative culture will be able to pick up where one man’s vision leaves off.”

MacDailyNews Take: No, David, the future’s not clear and is difficult, if not impossible, to predict. Thanks for the news flash.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: One thing we actually can predict, since “Steve Jobs will never return to the helm at Apple” has been iCal’ed, is that we shall revisit Coursey’s proclamation whether he’s right or wrong when we know for sure either way (Jobs returns to “helm” Apple or he leaves this earth). All we know right now is that, just today in fact, Apple director Arthur Levinson reiterated that CEO Steve Jobs plans to return to helm Apple at the end of June.

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