Is Apple flying the pirate flag again? Mansfield move means something special is in works

“Is Apple flying the pirate flag again, just as it did in its swashbuckling days 30 years ago?” Therese Poletti writes for MarketWatch. “The move over the weekend by Apple to reassign Bob Mansfield, a senior vice president and one of its best-regarded hardware executives, to a new position in ‘future products’ suggests that Apple may be trying to recapture some of the magic of those early years.”

“A lot has changed at Apple since the renegade Macintosh team, headed up by co-founder Steve Jobs, made a pirate flag and flew it over their building. But now, just as back in the early 1980s, Apple needs a new product to get its customers and investors excited again,” Poletti writes. “So it would make sense if, as some have speculated, Mansfield is working on some hush-hush project in a skunkworks unit, reporting directly to CEO Tim Cook.”

Poletti writes, “Mansfield could be working on something so top-secret that no outsider has even heard about it… ”

Read more in the full article here.

Related articles:
Gruber: Nothing to read between the lines, Bob Mansfield really is working on ‘special projects’ for Apple – July 29, 2013
Apple’s Bob Mansfield to focus on ‘special projects’ – July 29, 2013
Apple removes SVP Bob Mansfield from executive team; will remain at Apple reporting to Tim Cook – July 28, 2013
Un-retired: Why Bob Mansfield is back at Apple in a big way – November 1, 2012
Tim Cook takes full control of Apple: John Browett and Scott Forstall out; Jony Ive, Bob Mansfield, Eddy Cue and Craig Federighi get expanded responsibilities – October 29, 2012
Apple CEO Tim Cook expands executive team, Senior VP Hardware Engineering Bob Mansfield will not retire – August 27, 2012
Brain drain? Apple’s Bob Mansfield is 2nd key exec to leave since Steve Jobs died – June 29, 2012
Bob Mansfield, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Engineering, to retire; Dan Riccio to take over – June 28, 2012


  1. Apple is doing what it always does, keeping focus. It’s the speculating contributors and yellow journalists that tend to blindly report BS. Eliminate the gossipers and the world would be better for it.

    1. That’s not so secret and not something worthy of Bob Mansfield’s time given the stage iOS in the car is in. Most likely chips to bring this in house. Chips and even more specialized chips will be needed in future devices. Keeping everything in house is the ultimate way to control security.

    1. Correct.

      This article is just following the “analyst” formula:

      – Make a statement that Apple has lost (fill in the blank) and needs to do something to get it back.
      – Apple needs to get investors excited again.

      – Apple is working on something top secret and so huge, it will be amazing.

      – Two or three months later, crucify Apple for not releasing this incredible device and hammer the stock even more.

      See, anyone can be an analyst or tech blogger.

      1. – When Apple does release a new device or product, claim that it isn’t special / won’t sell / other products will do better.

        – Half a year later, claim that market-dominating (formerly new) product will be obsolete once (product)-killer from a rival company progresses from vaporware to actual product, sometime in the future.

        Even when Apple does what this analyst wants, the market still finds a way to say Apple is doomed.

      2. The Apple haters’ 7 stages of grief go something like this:

        1) Predict failure of new Apple product
        2) Attribute early success of new Apple product to rabid fanbois affected by the reality distortion field
        3) Attribute longer term success of product to stupidity of consumers
        4) Purchase previously scorned product for stupid relatives so they stop bothering you to help support the open source version of Apple product sold by Super Lucky Technology Extreme Inc. that you convinced them to buy
        5) Purchase previously scorned product for yourself just to see what all the fuss is about
        6) Admit that you now own and use the product, but complain about the product’s lack of SD card slot on random Internet forum
        7) Forget prior criticism of product, claim that it was revolutionary and an example of how Apple used to be really innovative, but has now lost its edge

  2. Oh great, an overweight 250 lb pirate. Is he wearing an eye patch as well? What is he going to do? Walk the plank?

    Forget about your romantic notions of a pirate looking like Johnny Depp.

    Ain’t no treasure island for this pirate, that’s for sure. Where’s Apple’s magical products? Later than a virgin’s period I’d say.

  3. It could be they do this not only for some new project, but to try to find leaks. The fewer people who know about something the less places to look for something like that.

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