Un-retired: Why Bob Mansfield is back at Apple in a big way

“Bob Mansfield, Apple’s former senior vice president of Hardware Engineering, is now back at the company after what may be one of Silicon Valley’s briefest retirements,” John Paczkowski reports for AllThingsD.

“The longtime company exec returned fully to Apple this week following a rare executive shake-up that saw the departure of Scott Forstall, one of the most visible faces of Apple since Steve Jobs’ death last year, and head of its mobile iOS business,” Paczkowski reports. “In the wake of that jarring departure: Mansfield in a brand-new position as senior vice president of Technologies.”

Paczkowski reports, “So, what happened? According to a central theory advanced by people who know Apple well: Forstall’s ouster… As one source close to the company told AllThingsD, ‘The timing of Bob’s return is not coincidental.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Once upon a time, there was a bee in Apple’s bonnet, so Tim Cook swatted it.


And everyone lived happily ever after. The end.

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Jony Ive’s minimalist design sensibilities likely to reshape the future of iOS, OS X – October 31, 2012
Now the real Jony Ive era begins at Apple Inc. – October 30, 2012
Analysts: Apple’s executive shakeup a consolidation, not cause for concern – October 30, 2012
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An Apple CEO-in-waiting, Scott Forstall, sells 95% of his company shares – May 2, 2012


  1. Tim Cook with absolute control over supply chain and senior management.
    Johnny Ive with absolute control over hardware and software design.

    Yesss. The best solution for the post-Jobs Apple.

    1. I like Ive (a genius) being in charge of ‘human interface’ right across apple and cook is of course a great supply chain guy.

      thing is : who now is the innovative Software guy?

      forstall was an architect of OSX and head of iOS. He created iOS in an apple competition vs the ‘iPod Phone’.

      Ive doesn’t write code. and code is the other 50% of apple’s success.

      Ive designs all apple products including iPods and Apple TV but best selling by far items in the last 5 years are Forstall’s iOS devices (60% of apple’s profits). Ive designed iPods were in downward trend the last few years and Macs only gained 1% last quarter from year ago.

      What I’m saying is that Ive’s designs and Cooks manufacturing expertise by THEMSELVES don’t necessarily make bestsellers: you need revolutionary advances in software as well.

      Federighi seems to be good as he did moutain Lion and taking over Forstalls job, hope he is the one …

      (personally In a fantasy I would prefer if they could keep Forstall — even if he’s hard to work with — in a separate ‘Pirate Flag’ skunk works — like the original Mac team – to develop new stuff)

      1. please note I’m not blaming Cook for his decisions.

        seems like (from the rumors) the changes of getting rid of Forstall was needed. (Apparently) Tony Fadell head of iPod also quit some years back due to Forstall. Cook probably couldn’t afford to lose mansfield and perhaps others like Ive (who apparently couldn’t get along with Foststall either).

        (I’m prefacing stuff with apprantely etc due to the fact there is no hard data on all these personality issues just rumors).

        I still have faith in Cook though and in apple.

        1. Yea right!, If there are other people to lead the design teams where are they? if it is so easy to design a mobile OS from the ground up where are the good ones and why are so many companies having trouble executing, if it was easy why did Apple have to buy Next OS to make OS X after all wasn’t Copland good enough?

          Apple got rid of the guy that was the driving force behind the core of OS X being used on the iPhone and iPad (iOS), imagine if it had been Linux like the other completing team at Apple wanted, if Apple had used Linux, the iPhone and iPad would have been forked by Google like Amazon and Samsung are doing to Android. Imagine that guy working for the competition, he knows what it takes to pick a team and lead a team to design a mobile OS the
          current one iOS just so happens to be the is the best in the world.

          1. I like the sarcasm! 😉

            Now regarding the rest of your message:  I WONDER WHY Forstall recently sent out the urgent email to his staff demanding that they pass along Big Ideas for updating iOS?  … Is it possible that he was struggling, or always depended upon the ideas of his lieutenants to succeed?

            THEN THERE IS THE POSSIBILITY that the driving force behind the original iOS isn’t the right guy to take it to the next step.  Assuming that Scott F developed iOS all by himself, perhaps he defends the status quo rather than endorsing some other metaphor for iOS.  

            OR DID YOU EVER CONSIDER that even the most talented person can destroy more than he can produce by disrupting the work of others?  Mansfield and Ive had no use for him, and wouldn’t meet with him.  Can Apple succeed without collaboration?

        2. Yes – talent to write code – geniuses all as you wish to be trusted – but to over see and collectively conduct a common direction – maintain a well plotted plan was done by one man; his name is Scott Forstall.

          Apple inc. will be forever in debt to Scott.
          No matter what rumours or how abrasive his character may have been. The success of Apple rise has been due to iOS and the mobile units iPhone / iPad, not its design but the software and how it effected all of us.

          Steve Jobs was a great conductor of the Apple orchestra.
          He appointed the right people to do the best tasks.
          Cook will destroy Apple.

        3. So Scott was the only genius at apple who could design OS. Give me a break. You guys are not privy to the huge team of brlliance at apple. To say that only one man was able to achieve the iOS coding at apple is gullible. Do you really think Cook is just firing people without enormous forethought and consideration? Do you feel you have a better understanding of apple or the team at apple than Cook does? Seriously?

    2. “Tim Cook with absolute control over supply chain…”

      Then why the hell does he not fix it? A customer cannot — absolutely cannot — walk into the average Apple store at 2 PM any day and pick up any one of the majority of items announced since 1 September! That’s right, the majority of the new items Apple claims to be selling are not available for immediate sale.

      This needs to be fixed. NOW.

      1. + 10000000000

        The Pepsi Cola leader “spending style years” have returned…
        …HISTORY has a way of repeating itself.

        why because Cook is too damn busy basking in the glory of being a CEO… he is not committed to his prior tasks that got him the position – it all must be too much for him.

        And so, he wishes to have Ives manage two sectors of the business, Eddy Cue to handle more also, Bob is back to handle more — everyone is working over board…

        Down on Tim Cook, for he is spending Apple profits by offering the team leaders more money. When the profits should go back into research, or the products themselves or the tonne of folks who actually do all the magic there at Apple each day. Give them a raise – promote them – grant them the recognition that they deserve.

        In addition, MDN has not been constant with it’s view
        on Tim Cook. Now MDN believes Scott was a pain in the ass a bug bothering Apples success?

        I hope that bee goes to Android or better over to Microsoft and starts up something to really compete against Apple. Cook is Cooked.

        1. So you go from bemoaning supply chain problems — which I agree are regrettable — to condemning Apple and hoping that Scott Forstall goes to Microsoft to do maximum damage to the company.

          Either you are an Android troll, or you are off your meds.  Either way, a sad case.

    3. Because Scott was doing such a horrible job on iOS it only got hundreds of millions of users?

      Tech nerds need to let go and stop making so much drama about this, and stop shitting on people when they have no idea about the situation.

      Funny thing is MDN was practically calling for Tim Cook to be fired just recently, due to whatever Samsung bullshit-of-the-moment was going on. And now he is their hero, I guess they just need someone, ANYONE to shit on at all times.

      Lets wish Mr. Ive good luck in his new position and hope he makes the iOS and OS X platforms even better. Also to Mr. Forstall for his hard work, because we may have had neither without him.

  2. There was always something “beady-eyed” and unnerving about Forstall and I know it’s convenient to say that now that he’s leaving but it’s true. Who knows, maybe this is HISfall from grace and banishment and he might come back “more powerful than you can possibly imagine.” In the meantime Tim did what he had to do. Can’t wait to see the fruits of this shakeup.

      1. you got to be joking…

        Cook is doing FUCK ALL.. no vision… the supply chain is in trouble… ITS THE PRODUCTS themselves and how they work that WON here and brought APPLE out of the grave – not COOK.

        1. I’m curious, what outrageously successful Fortune 50 corporation do you run, TH, that makes you an expert in how to run Apple? Quite frankly, I find your posts to be shallow, bad written, poorly informed and often profane.

  3. The reality is that jobs could manage all the egos because his ego was the biggest.
    Post jobs meant that people need to work together. The team dynamics is more important. Forstal was not smart in that he did not learn to tone it down. Shame because he was smart. But in the end this was the right decision.

    1. Ive admitted that although he and Steve loved and respected each other, they had many knockdown fights, which usually resulted in the right decision no matter who won. Evidently, Scott became too toxic to be constructive for the team.

  4. To all the people talking about how Scott was a pain to work with – you’ve got to remember that Steve Jobs was an ass. Much like Forestall was. If Steve could bring Apple back, I bet Forestall could too. We just might be seeing history repeat itself!

    1. I agree with Dagger. That was the first thought that crossed my mind when I heard of Forestall’s boot. I thought wow this seems oddly familiar.

      Steve Jobs ousted from Apple 1985
      Steve Jobs returns as savior to Apple in 1996
      Scott Forestall ousted from Apple 2012
      Scott Forestall returns as savior to Apple in 2023

      I’m iCaling this one. If true we will see the slow eroding of market share for the iPad until Apple is no longer on top and is labeled as a niche player. As long as Apple never dies, I will be happy. However as I said in bad old days in 1995, “Apple will never die, they have too many talented people and have invented to many ideas used by all of computerdom.” They are like dark matter and dark energy. They have done more behind the scenes to move computing forward than they will ever get credit.

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