Apple CEO Tim Cook has had a remarkable run

Apple CEO Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook
Throughout Tim Cook’s tenure as Apple CEO, critics have lamented his lack of “the vision thing,” casting doubt on his ability to launch breakthrough products on the level of the iPhone. Ridiculous, yes, as the iPhone is the best selling product of all time.

One can criticize Cook for not being a visionary, but that’s unfairly comparing him to an absolute legendary visionary. Criticizing Cook for not inventing a new all-time bestseller just sounds silly. Cook did take what Steve Jobs built and leverage the iPhone and other products and services to keep Apple growing, helping to boost the company’s market value well past $1 trillion.

Apple CEO Tim Cook has had a remarkable run – and it’s not over yet!

Steve Kovach for CNBC:

Apple under Cook hasn’t invented a new, game-changing product like the iPhone. Instead, he’s leveraged the iPhone’s success into new areas of growth… Apple’s stock is up about 480% since Cook took over in August 2011. It became the first publicly traded company to reach a $1 trillion market cap in 2018…

The iPhone was a once-in-a-generation product, and it would’ve been technically impossible to recreate that magic. The writing was on the wall, and Cook formed a new path for growth outside the iPhone… The foundation is in place for Apple to get more out of its subscription services in the coming years as it builds out its content offerings.

Wearables have turned into the sleeper hit for Apple, with Citi analysts estimating last month that the segment could show $10 billion in sales for the holiday quarter. That would make Apple’s wearables business alone about seven times larger than all of Twitter…

Even if Apple [with 5G] fails to spur another iPhone super cycle, so far the company hasn’t needed one. Adding new products to the already massive installed base of iPhones has been more than enough.

MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote late last year:

Cook can’t win. The iPhone is arguably the best-selling, most successful product ever. Against this, Cook is judged by some; unfairly… it’s unfair to criticize Cook for not coming up with something bigger than the iPhone. There is nothing bigger. This side of sub-$1,000 personal teleporters, there may never be anything like it.

By any reasonable measure, Apple Watch and AirPods are blockbuster products about which any other company on earth can only dream. Apple Music is also a blockbuster success! So, really, Tim Cook’s Apple had a great decade, including at least three new blockbusters! (And, btw, have you seen Apple’s share price?)

We continue to look forward to Apple’s bright future, especially as we believe Apple Glasses have the potential to change everything at least as much as did iPhone, and maybe even more!

As always and regardless of who Apple’s CEO is, following Steve Jobs’ act is an impossible, generally thankless task (outside of the becoming fabulously rich aspect, of course).SteveJack, MacDailyNews, November 6, 2017


  1. Tim can’t — and shouldn’t be expected to be — Steve. As a long-time user (IIci was my start), I’m pleased that Apple of late has been getting back to basics and improving their hardware. As a shareholder, who could possibly complain about their returns over the years? Unfairly valued? Perhaps. But stellar returns nonetheless. Wish I had bought and held a whole lot more when I got in it. Then I could have been one of the guys on this forum who boast about retiring on their Apple stock.

    1. Yep. Focus on SJW agenda and mandatory subscriptions for everything.

      Meanwhile the business has never been less consistent.

      Cooks has been underinvesting in the Mac platform, letting expensive Ahrendts destroy the tech focus, letting Jony degrade usability with his impractical design memes, letting Schiller push a badly designed keyboard for years while ignoring huge gaps in hardware offerings. Spending billions to enrich the thugs at Beats when all the capabilities were already in-house. Pouring shitloads of cash into an inefficent edifice, a donut office that doesn’t house enough people, running a company where the left hand doesn’t know what the right does. Chasing after Netflix with low-margin media adventures, partnering with one of the main causes for the 2008 economic implosion (Goldman Sachs) to offer a credit card with poor terms. Squandering formerly promising platforms (Airport, Quicktime, Homekit) while launching overpriced low-capability me too products like Homepods. Squandering the opportunity to take the performance lead and abusing the name “Pro”, which today means nothing at Apple. Absolutely ruining the user experience with default apps that don’t even come close to delivering on their promise — or killing apps that should be great (Aperture, Filemaker, Maps, Photo, iWork apps, iTunes, Siri ….. all poorly managed and in many ways outperformed by the competition).

      Whatever it is Timmy focuses on, it’s certainly not the products and the users. Apple used to be worth the cost. Now the value and quality has regressed and Timmy leverages market dominance to charge a premium for what is, year after year, increasingly just Chinese-built sealed consumer grade underwhelming plastic consumer landfill fodder.

        1. Spark — please explain mitigating evidence if you think Apple’s recent performance on the above issues is acceptable to you. Hell, I even left off many other obvious shortcomings: Cook refuses to offer a small size fully featured iPhone, a full family of affordable Mac displays, and has for years crippled iOS devices so they cannot be used as wired I/O for Macs. The Mac App store remains a ghostyard, there is no ability to try before buy, and Apple merely talks about security and privacy while guaranteeing nothing. Apple couldn’t even get Airpower ready for prime time after announcing it — not that it was a good product anyway. Apple’s ideas for the future are long on fashion wireless and miniaturization, short on function and practicality.

          The list of Timmy talk without action is extensive and growing. Sure, it’s nice that Apple’s iOS app store prints money. Sorry, though, inheriting a gold mine doesn’t excuse the pathetic leadership and inconsistencies that are plainly obvious at Apple today. Timmy simply isn’t a good tech executive. He should go work at a nonprofit where he can fulfill his true passions.

          I’m certainly not the only one saying that if Timmy can’t operate all burners at the same time, then he needs to get out of the kitchen. Timmy has practically infinite resources and all of the above shortcomings are unacceptable to me because other companies don’t have this number of self-inflicted problems. Timmy simply doesn’t care about serving a wide array of computer users at multiple price points with top usability and reliability as Apple did in the past. He’s chasing fashion premium prices using disposable consumer grade Chinese plastic, subscriptions, and media production. He spends years selling obsolete 1080p Apple TV or Mac Pro trashcan units for full price while pretending Apple is an innovation leader. He trots out isolated half-baked products like the Homepod (basically just an Apple Music interface) at a significantly higher price than the competition and half the abilities. OS software updates are buggy so that now even the most understanding Apple fans refuse to upgrade immediately. The only ones who do are the ones who have given up fighting the forced Apple nagware.

          Apple is no longer the pro-customer underdog. Timmy knows Apple is the industry gorilla and he is doing nothing but find ways to extract customer cash faster. Offering a better value than the competition — that’s too much work for Timmy.

  2. As long as the products remain good and the stock value continues to climb, I have no complaints about Tim Cook being Apple’s CEO. He’s not as interesting to listen to at Apple events as Steve Jobs was, but I suppose that doesn’t count for much. Tim Cook’s success with AppleWatch and AirPods is quite decent. I don’t expect Tim Cook to come up with anything that can rival the iPhone, but it’s unlikely any CEO in the world can create some device that will change the world as the iPhone did. I think Tim Cook is doing a decent job and he’s not finished yet. Maybe some product I can’t even imagine will come out of Apple in the future and be a world changer. If not, it won’t matter to me as long as Apple continues to do well as a company and keep pace with other major tech companies.

    Tim Cook is not Steve Jobs, but Steve Jobs is dead and Tim Cook is alive. There is no point in trying to compare the living to the dead. The times are different and Tim Cook is maybe the preferable CEO for these present times. I continue to buy Apple products and have made fantastic gains from Apple stock. I’m more than satisfied with Tim Cooks performance as CEO. Apple was the first public company to break the trillion-dollar market cap, so Tim Cook must be doing something right.

  3. Cook had numerous product delays at critical selling points. These and the Mac Pro fiasco, were absolutely befuddling. Take away these “operational” misses from the “operational Genius” and the criticism during his reign would be quite typical.

    It feels now, stock price aside, like a strong march forward/upward and it’s his bus.

  4. Apple, like many companies, wasted a lot of money in stock buybacks. I am not that excited about getting into the video streaming business but it would have been good for Apple to have purchased a large player in the field. The latest rumor is that it will buy MGM (or the name may be MGM/UA). Time Warner would have been a much better buy – and use of the money wasted in stock buybacks. Bewkes was wanting to personally gain from selling Time Warner and maybe a bit greedy in what he wanted to personally get out of destroying the company. Perhaps, if Apple was interested in becoming a media company, it would have been better to satisfy Bewkes’ desire for self enrichment and pay a rich price for Time Warner than to buy MGM, which is a has been.

    If Apple is serious about becoming a significant medical technologies company it should not only do internal development but also make significant acquisitions in the areas that it hope to get in.

    By the way, I think that AT&T’s acquisition of Time Warner is likely to end up a burst for it. Not sure if the results would have been different for Apple.

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