Pundit: Tim Cook is not only a pale imitation of Steve Jobs but a low-rent version of John Sculley

“The long awaited, much hyped Apple earnings report came out last night and offered a little something for everyone, particularly investors who’ve been arguing that the company has much bigger problems than a slumping stock price,” Jeff Macke writes for Yahoo Finance.

“The company has spent $2.1b on R&D over the last 6 months, putting it on pace to spend around $4.2B for the year. To be generous, we’ll say Apple’s expected R&D expenditures are about 2.5% of revenues,” Macke writes. “To compare, the percentage of revenues used for R&D at Microsoft, and Samsung are about 11% and 6% respectively.”

MacDailyNews Take: And, yet, Apple makes markedly superior hardware, software, and services versus both companies. Granted, Samsung beats Apple handily in washing machines and backhoes. Congrats, Jeffie, you’ve just highlighted the vast inefficiencies in Microsoft’s and Samsung’s R&D efforts.

“Despite the questions raised by this underinvestment in new products, Apple stubbornly refuses to discuss timing on new product roll-outs. ‘Our teams are hard at work on some amazing new hardware and services we can’t wait introduce this fall and throughout 2014,” CEO Tim Cook said vaguely on last night’s conference call,'” Macke writes. “Apple had dropped 5% by the end of the call, taking back all of its after hours gains. Careful listeners could actually hear analysts dropping estimates.”

MacDailyNews Take: You know, because sell-side “analysts” are always right and they have absolutely no ulterior motives such as, for example, inducing trades – buy or sell, either way; doesn’t matter – in order for their firms to rake in commissions and fees.

Macke writes, “Regardless of what Apple’s stock does in the near term, yesterday’s performance left little doubt that Cook is not only a pale imitation of Steve Jobs but a low-rent version of John Sculley. Apple is now just a depressing reminder that the circle of life applies to all living things, even Apple.”

Full article – Think Before You Click™here.

MacDailyNews Take: Jeff Macke, a low-rent version of John Dvorak, has been iCal’ed for copious future use.

Related articles:
Apple preparing to unleash a blizzard of new products, says source – April 24, 2013
Apple drops below $400 in premarket as analysts cut price targets – April 24, 2013
Why Apple’s Q213 earnings make it a fist-pounding buy – April 23, 2013
Piper Jaffray’s Munster: Apple’s going into a good year – April 23, 2013
Apple opens bank vault to dole out $100 billion to shareholders; $60 billion in buybacks the largest in history – April 23, 2013
Debt-free Apple plans to borrow to finance massive capital-return program – April 23, 2013
Apple beats Street on EPS and revenue; ups quarterly dividend by 15%; ups buybacks to $60 billion – April 23, 2013
If Steve Jobs were alive he’d do another buyback instead of upping dividend – March 18, 2013

49 Comments

    1. Get your facts right, Tim was the VP of Operations, NOT CEO of the Mac division, whatever the hell that is in your imagination. Not the Mac division per se, but that there could have been 2 CEOs. Stupid statement.

        1. I didn’t say anything about NOT leading the Mac division, Before being named CEO in 2011 his title was VP of Operations. He was responsible for all of the company’s worldwide sales and operations, including end-to-end management of Apple’s supply chain, sales activities, and service and support in all markets and countries. He was NEVER The CEO of the Mac division. There is only ONE CEO, unless of course you’re RIM, and we all know how that turned out.

  1. John Scully was competent, it’s just that he was a sales guy and did not go for market share instead of profits. Tim Cook is doing a great job we just have a lot of companies who are profiting by manipulating Apple’s stock price. The fundamentals of the company are sound.

      1. No, not just pissed away, signed away in a licensing agreement with Microsoft which basically allowed them to copy the look and feel of Mac OS.

        MS may have held us captive during computings’ dark ages, but the asinine deal by Scully was the prime enabler. How is that for irony.

  2. The writer is typical of ignorant pundits which in normal times would be an oxymoron. Apple’s low R&D % is actually a testament to great management at Apple, which is getting huge results out of small but well thought out investments. The iPhone is now far bigger as a business than Microsoft. For a pundit to suggest that a company should waste more money so as to keep up with supposed competitors whose stocks have been flat lining for the past decade is beyond stupid. It is criminal. This person most likely is pushing a short position. The world of stock analysts is now as corrupt as our government and our Leader.

      1. If you want to keep political debate out of this forum, then don’t respond to it when someone makes a politically-based comparison. It takes two people to make a fight, and it takes someone who can’t resist responding to a political point of view with a different political point of view to make political debate.

        If you don’t like it, don’t do it.

        1. @emmayche
          I’ve tried that before. I’d love nothing better than if everyone else boycotted the few little ranters. Since I couldn’t get everyone on board – or, seemingly, anyone – I decided to occasionally express my disapproval.

          Notice — I didn’t give a different political point. I simply made it clear I didn’t want his. I don’t want political drivel from ANYONE, from any political camp.

          1. Are you kidding me? Whatever else these posts measure, like most forums, regardless of their announced purpose, they are a seismograph of the American political schism (with a little free speech thrown in). If it bothers you, use the stars.

            1. I do use the stars. But it would be so nice if people would grow up, stick to the topic and not use EVERY DAMN NEWS ITEM as an opportunity to make some small-minded, petulant political shot.

              Do we do it in our lives? I sure don’t. Imagine…
              “Nice new truck, Joe. By the way, Romney is a hypocritical jerk.”
              “What a beautiful spring day. By the way, Romney is a hypocritical jerk.”
              “Look at that eagle flying overhead. Probably be dead, if Romney gets his way.”

              How INCREDIBLY tiresome.
              It’s INCREDIBLY tiresome here too, and stupid. All those folks — go away… to the political forums.

            2. While your point is taken, your post here suggests which side you fall on, and believe me, you’re not in the minority here. If you were talking about MDN in particular, you’d have used “Obama bin Laden the socialist America-hating Muslim” as your example…

              Even so, I agree with the spirit of your argument 100%.

    1. There is a consorted effort ( Google, Samsung, Wall Street vultures, hedge funds et all…) of no precedent, to FUD sling and tarnish Apple and all it’s associated affiliations, fanfare, forums and PR, at any cost.

      Infiltrators have invaded the blogs, left, right and center, the financial publications, the media and every effort is persistent in fatiguing the Apple brand and trust.

      All long time Apple users and loyal fans from the beginning, are historically used to this and will not be swayed, they will stay the course and prevail because there is no other company like Apple that has such an impeccable track record, but, to be sure: the level of exposure and noise is louder and more widespread than ever.

      Just like the political noise and fear mongering was, leading into the election, and the subsequent non stop attacks on the American middle and working class sponsored by “big money”, it too will fail and Apple will continue to shine, because those that do think, know and think different.

      That is something that no noise will ever destroy – it is the spirit and soul of Apple and you can’t kill soul.

      Expectations in an instigated FUD world aren’t reasonable nor rational when laced with lies, misinformation and ignorance. If it was only as easy as the pundits state, the competition to Apple would be huge and thriving. – it ain’t.

  3. it is almost unbelievable that a human could be that stupid and condescending – for no apparent reason and so unabashed to share the news with everyone.

    oh, wait, I just checked his name and noted he works for yahoo…

  4. Apple’s low R & D percent is because they keep making so much money, which they will now be punished for because it was only 9 billion plus this freaking quarter. Go Amazon, Go Google, Go Netflix, Go Bullshit.

    1. cut the crap. Its much better that they take their time and get it right rather than push out a ‘new’ slightly different iteration every 4-6 months.

      Reminds me of the late 80s, when kodak advertised films as new and improved to keep up with Fuji and Illford,but the biggest ‘innovation’ seemed to be a change in the design of the packaging. Apple doesn’t need to be like that.

      If its worth doing, it should be done right, even it it takes more time than you and Wallstreet have come to expect for purveyors of poop like SameDung

  5. “* The company has spent $2.1b on R&D over the last 6 months, putting it on pace to spend around $4.2B for the year. To be generous, we’ll say Apple’s expected R&D expenditures are about 2.5% of revenues. To compare, the percentage of revenues used for R&D at Microsoft (MSFT), and Samsung are about 11% and 6% respectively.
    Despite the questions raised by this underinvestment in new products, Apple stubbornly refuses to discuss timing on new product roll-outs. “Our teams are hard at work on some amazing new hardware and services we can’t wait introduce this fall and throughout 2014,” CEO Tim Cook said vaguely on last night’s conference call.”

    re: 2.5% on R&D
    Without comparison to Apple’s historical investment in R&D, both % and absolute, this is meaningless.

    re: second paragraph
    This is the first questioning of Apple’s R&D expenditures I have seen. Apple is supposed to drop everything and pre-announce new products because the tech media has a question? Even if this would not represent a complete about face for the notoriously secretive Apple, why would a company pre-announce to competitors what they are working on?

    1. Tech media pundits, like other journalists, have an overinflated opinion of their own importance and intelligence. Journalism in the USA has moved from reporting facts with as little bias as possible to reporting only selected facts with the desired spin.

      I hereby propose that we abbreviate “pundit” to “pund,” meaning a self-important misreporter of selected facts in a biased manner. Why “pund?” Because it needs a four-letter word.

  6. Attn: MDN – your iCal is getting loaded with what will prove to be some very embarrassing items. Cook’s critics are on target. Your continued, irrational support for him and what Apple is doing and not doing is based on a past era. While I don’t think it would make any difference to Apple’s directors, you should join the growing chorus for a new CEO just for the sake of your own credibility. Cooks days are numbered – they just must be if we are ever to see anything really WOW from that mythical pipeline or if AAPL is to ever regain any momentum. BTW – your once overused “AAPL sets new high” can be retired. You won’t EVER need it again.

    1. Andy, I recommend immediate treatment for your case of PD (Pundit’s Disease). It seems to be highly infectious.

      If you have followed Apple’s history during Steve Jobs’ “second coming” you should recognize familiar patterns. Repeated episodes of stock price driven down by FUD. Analysts critical of Apple’s secretiveness, inability to innovate, two-low level of R&D, etc. There were always criticisms of new products, with predictions of market failure as each was introduced, such as the iPhone and the iPad. Semi-competent tech experts giggled at Jobs’ “reality distortion field” presentations of new products, predicting the rapid demise of the company. Only after his illness and death did they decide that Apple would be doomed without him.

      Jobs and the Board paid no attention to blithering nonsense.

      Cook and the Board should pay no attention to the current round of blithering nonsense.

    2. Blind following of the drivel of a bunch of “analysts”. Apple is doing WAY better than any other computer company. In the mobile industry, they make more money than every other model by EVERY other phone maker on the planet, combined. Get real!

    3. andy, you big moron you, I want you to look at the career of the head moron, Steve Ballmer. 10 years and counting of absolutely no innovation and sinking fast. And yet, no lynch mob in sight.

      It will take years to remove Cook. Years in which new products will be released and new paradigm switches will have happened.

      Don’t be so damned short sighted, you big moron.

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