Writing about Jony Ive’s “promotion,” Ben Thompson writes for Stratechery, “Taken as a whole, this entire episode is a masterful display of public relations: plant the seeds of this story in two articles — ostensibly about the Watch — that provide unprecedented access to Apple broadly and Apple’s design team in particular, and happen to highlight two designers in particular, neither of whom had any public profile to date (kind of — as John Gruber and I discussed on The Talk Show — Dye is a polarizing figure in Apple circles). Then, after a presumably successful Watch launch, announce on a holiday — when the stock market is closed — that these two newly public designers have newly significant roles at Apple.”
“The catch, of course, is that for all my previous arguments to the contrary — all of which make perfect sense, I might add — the level of orchestration around this announcement augurs something far more significant than a changed title (i.e. why should the stock market be nervous about this move?)” Thompson writes. “In my estimation, whether Ive intends it or not — and I think he likely does, for what it’s worth — this is the beginning of the end of his time at Apple. To give up ‘management’ in exchange for ‘thinking freely’ is, when it comes to business, akin to shifting from product-focused R&D to exploratory R&D.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote earlier this week:
This is how Apple eases the pressure on Jony while addressing one of their most pressing problems since Steve Jobs was CEO: Succession. Jony Ive is the most important person at Apple. The addition of Marc Newson to Apple’s payroll, in whatever capacity, was one answer to the question. This is the next.
Jony Ive is Apple’s next Steve Jobs – May 27, 2015
Obviously, Jony Ive is preparing to retire from Apple – May 27, 2015
What Jony Ive’s ‘promotion’ really means – May 26, 2015
Now Jony Ive will have an even bigger influence over Apple’s image – May 26, 2015
Stephen Fry meets Jony Ive, Apple’s newly-promoted chief design officer – May 26, 2015
Jony Ive gives up day-to-day managerial duties to focus on big picture – May 26, 2015
Jony Ive promoted to ‘Chief Design Officer’ – May 25, 2015
Jony Ive is the most powerful person at Apple – December 12, 2014
Jony Ive hasn’t been given too much power at Apple – because he’s always had it – February 5, 2013
Steve Jobs left design chief Jonathan Ive ‘more operational power’ than anyone else at Apple – October 21, 2011