The brilliance of the Jobs era, perhaps no one else, counts every new product release with technological innovation, contains the core of humanity, as he said, “We stand at the crossroads of humanity and technology”, which is deeply engraved in Apple’s DNA at that time. However, we have to say that Apple’s aura is dim and its innovative ability has been criticized.
In October 2011, Steve Jobs, a man who has changed the world several times, lost to the disease and left regret to the world forever. The brilliance of the Jobs era, perhaps no one else, counts every new product release with technological innovation, contains the core of humanity, as he said, “We stand at the crossroads of humanity and technology”, which is deeply engraved in Apple’s DNA at that time. After Jobs left, Cook took over Apple, which adhered to his usual style of execution and brought Apple to an unprecedented new height – the first time Apple achieved a $1 trillion market value breakthrough in 2018, which took only seven years. We will never question Cook’s exceptional execution ability. Today, Apple has contributed a lot to Cook’s success.
However, we have to say that Apple’s aura is dim and its innovative ability has been criticized. Take the iPhone for example, from rising prices to big-screen phones following the trend, and then for Chinese users to launch dual-card and dual-standby functions, the new features of the iPhone have even appeared some traces of imitation. This autumn’s conference is even more boring, and it’s not worth looking forward to. Is it the so-called “innovation” that the price reaches a new high and breaks through 10,000 yuan? Lenovo has also experienced a wave of executive turnover in recent years, and the departure of Jony Ive has sounded the last death knell of the Jobs era. The last Knights of the old Apple era finally left the glorious empire built brick by brick and turned to self-reliance. Apple, what’s wrong with you?
Running away from apples is the breakdown of the old apple Era
After Cook took over, there were successive senior executives leaving, and in 2017-2019 set off a number of senior executives leaving the tide. In 2019, it was an eventful year for Apple, with one blow after another, and several key figures fled, including Chief Designer Jonathan Eve, Vice President of Communications Steve Dowling, Senior Vice President of Retail Business Angela Ahrendts, and Gerar, Senior Director of Platform Architecture. D Williams III, 5G modulation regulator project director Ruben Caballero, etc.
Steve Dowling, who recently announced his resignation as head of corporate public relations at Apple for 10 years, helped Tim Cook cope with various difficulties and unexpected public relations crises, ranging from the first generation of the iPhone and App Store to the launch of Apple Watch and Irpods, and even with the U.S. government and the Federation. The Investigation Bureau has had a dispute over the issue of mobile phone decryption.
Needless to say, Jonathan Eve, one of Apple’s souls, has participated in the design of subversive products such as the iPod, iMac, iPhone and iPad. As soon as news of his departure came out, Apple’s share price fell by more than 1%, and its market value dropped by at least $9 billion.
And the reason why he can achieve so much is closely related to his design department’s position in Apple. First of all, this credit is due to Jobs. It can be said that without Jobs, there would be no Jonathan today. It was he who acquiesced that Jonathan put design above other departments.
Jonathan said that only Apple’s design department is not a service department for other departments, they are the dominant Apple company, they put forward ideas and put them into practice, so that departments have a headache, but let Apple taste the sweetness of real design-driven company benefits. In recent years, Apple’s failure in product design may have become a thorn in Jonathan’s mind.
Angela Arenz, once Apple’s highest paid executive, left Apple in February after five years as head of Apple’s vital retail store business.
Allentz, who had 70,000 retail store employees at the time, oversees the large-scale operations of retail stores around the world and led a redesign of retail stores, trying to turn Apple retail stores into “city squares” closer to people’s lives. When Allents joined Apple, the company was trying to inject a sense of luxury into new products such as Apple watches. After all, not just the iPhone, but Apple’s entire line of products are not cheap right now. How many old Air fans have been scared by the expected start price of the new MacBook Air?
However, cook had previously said that “the pricing strategy of the iPhone is under consideration” – which basically means that Apple’s attempt to pull the brand to the luxury level failed. The departure of Allents, once thought to succeed Cook, is already foreseeable.
Apple’s Innovation Weakened
Christopher Stringer opened the door to a fragmented genius in the design department, with a large number of breakthroughs in patented designs, many of which are related to the iPhone. Daniele De Iuliis, Rico Zorkendorfer and Julian Hnig have been veterans of Apple for decades. Jonathan’s departure was a blockbuster. For a while, outside doubts swept over Apple again. Looking at the iPhone, how long have we not seen a breakthrough change? From the beginning of the iPhone 6, Apple seems to be moving farther and farther along the road of the big screen. It’s not only bigger, but also bigger. The hardware upgrades of the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 8 are basically based on the 6S of the iPhone. Only when the iPhone X has some bright changes. This year, there are not only more cameras, but also more cameras, which seem to be just the upgrade and optimization of the previous generation of products.
Apple’s business is not good
With the maturity of the market, consumers tend to calm down, the renewal cycle of mobile phones is prolonged, and the sales of smartphones have stabilized. The slowdown has hit high-end equipment most severely, and the night queues outside Apple Stores are unlikely to happen again. This year, the iPhone 11 will return to 5000, which may be just a helpless move. Faced with your friends and businessmen chasing me and updating iterations, Apple finally felt the bottleneck and put down for the first time to show its only little pride.
In addition, Apple’s market share in Southeast Asia has been unsatisfactory. Perhaps in recent years, the introduction of “sky-high price” mobile phones has also been one of its obstacles. In 2018, Apple’s top executives in India’s sales departments left their jobs, including national sales and distribution directors, business channel and intermediary market business leaders, and telecom operators. Supervisors and so on, the sales department has experienced almost a “big change of blood”. Apple’s news business suffered a wave of executive turnover in 2017, with a large number of people in charge leaving their jobs. The news business, which had not made much progress, has been stagnant, and is still unknown.
5G, AR, Autopilot… Commitments are hard to live up to
As for 5G technology, which has attracted worldwide attention, Apple has not been clear about it, and its entanglement with Qualcomm and Intel has made Apple nervous. It is said that Apple told its candidates in an interview that it would switch to its modem by 2025. But this year, Apple’s failure to get 5G is also putting tremendous pressure on it. We can’t help but wonder whether the departure of Ruben Caballero, director of Apple’s 5G modem project, was related to this in April. Caballero was involved in almost all of the company’s patents for 3G, 4G and other wireless networks.
Avi Bar-Zeev, co-inventor of Hololens, left Apple in January. The pioneer in AR/VR was responsible for developing Apple’s Augmented Reality Headwear Device. It is reported that Apple intends to launch augmented reality products in 2020, and the development has not been made public. I wonder if the project has been “beheaded”.
There is also Apple’s mysterious driverless project. It is said that in 2016, more than one manager in charge of Apple’s driverless car project submitted his resignation. This year, there was also news that Apple’s driverless program had drastically reduced its workforce. But apparently Apple has not abandoned the Titan project, which has added several new employees since February, including former executives at Tesla, Google, Anki, a consumer robotics company, and En Zhipu, a semiconductor giant.
Insufficient innovation, both software and service
Faced with the pursuit of friends and businessmen, the iPhone seems to have been pulled off the altar. It is no longer the consumers’unthinkable choice to buy a machine. Its advantage in hardware is weakening. Therefore, we can clearly see that the focus of Apple’s business is changing from hardware to software services.
At this year’s Apple Autumn Conference, Apple introduced the game subscription services Apple Arcade, Apple TV+, Apple Trade In installment services and the upgrade of Apple’s retail stores. It also presented the performance of the bionic chip A13 in detail twice when introducing the iPhone 11 and the iPhone 11 Pro.
Disney CEO Bob Iger has resigned from Apple’s board of directors recently, and his resignation coincides with the announcement of Apple TV+. It seems to the outside world that Eagle’s departure is somewhat “avoiding suspicion”.
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It is understood that the official launch time of Apple TV + and Disney + is only 11 days apart. The former costs $4.99 a month, while the latter costs $6.99 a month for the basic package. The launch of Apple TV + also marks Apple’s formal challenge to entertainment giants such as Netflix and Disney, and Eagle, caught in it, has had to draw a line with Apple.
Such examples are not uncommon. Eric Schmidt also served on Apple’s board until competition between Google and Apple grew fiercer in several core areas. In addition, in terms of executive turnover, Apple has promoted its Operations and Enterprise Development Director to Tim Cook’s executive management team. The two executives, Sabih Khan and Adrian Perica, also reflect the growing complexity of Apple’s supply chain and the company’s ambition to expand into areas such as chip development and entertainment. It makes sense to explain the staffing changes in related fields.
Cook: It’s so hard.
In recent years, Apple has been criticized and has been under tremendous pressure of public opinion. Since Cook became CEO of Apple, the outside world has never stopped questioning him. Many people often only see that the veterans of Jobs and Apple are the saviors of Apple’s rise and fall, standing on the world’s technological highlands, but forget that under Cook’s leadership, Apple has opened a new era – in August 2018, the total market value of Apple exceeded $10,000, becoming the world’s first market value to reach trillion dollars. Company.
Jobs’s Apple is by no means a mess, but Cook, as the second-generation leader, did take over the “hardest job”. Legendary and crazy geniuses like Jobs are rare in the world, and Cook modestly and gently takes another approach, taking Apple with him.
The CEO, who has always been known as the successor of Jobs, has a keen sense of business management and a keen pursuit of overall profits, which has proved to be his best asset. For him, abandoning Jobs’mysticism and embracing pragmatism is the best way to be an heir.
Facts also prove that Cook, who came from the supply chain, is market-oriented. He is absolutely an excellent operator and strategy executor, and the company has stable revenue under his leadership. But it is undeniable that Apple is losing its original position in creativity and leading edge. Perhaps Cook’s achievements today also prove that there is only one innovative Jobs.
In addition, Cook pays more attention to team power than Jobs’dictatorship. The design department that is above all departments may not work here in Cook.
The departure of veterans is not necessarily a bad thing for Apple once the emperor is a courtier. A batch of fresh blood that is more adaptable to decision makers may be able to push the apple to a new height. We can no longer look at today’s Apple from the innovative perspective of the Jobs era. Today’s Apple has less ability to change the world and more ability to adapt to the world than ever before.
The Jobs era redefined personal computers, Walkman and mobile phones, and Apple in the Cook era has not had so many amazing world-class innovations, which is predictable and understandable.
In response, Peter Cohan, an American venture capitalist, made a similar comment: “Under the leadership of Jobs, Apple has made a breakthrough in innovation. Under Cook’s leadership, the company’s strategy has changed. Although it’s fair to say that Apple is much bigger than Cook when he first took over, that’s because all the innovations he offers are based on a copy of Jobs’innovations.
To maintain its edge, many people, including Warren Buffett, agree that the technology giant needs to put technology behind the scenes and extend its product portfolio to services such as streaming, payment, credit cards and health, which Cook urgently wants, but it may also be one of the biggest challenges Apple faces. 。
Of course, Apple, which lacks innovation, must not and will never watch its rivals gradually surpass them. Let’s see how Cook sees the recruits.