Reports: Apple fires iOS, retail chiefs

Wow. Lots of big news this week already: the new Google hardware, the Windows Phone 8 launch, AMD partnering up with ARM, and now this.

According to both the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, Apple iOS chief Scott Forstall has been fired after refusing to sign an open letter apologizing for the ill-received iOS Maps app. Apparently, that particular disagreement was just the tip of the iceberg. The Journal elaborates:

Mr. Forstall’s departure came after mounting tension with members of Apple’s executive ranks. For years, senior executives had complained that he wasn’t cooperative and showed off his close relationship with Apple’s late co-founder Steve Jobs.
Without Mr. Jobs to mediate, tensions between Mr. Forstall and other executives built, according to the people familiar with the matter.

The 43-year-old Mr. Forstall recently told people that there is no "decider" now that Mr. Jobs is gone, according to a person briefed on the conversation.

Yikes. Apple’s press release announcing the shakeup doesn’t go into much detail, though. It simply says OS X chief Craig Federighi will take over iOS development, while Forstall "will be leaving" next year and "will serve as an advisor to CEO Tim Cook in the interim."

Oh, and Apple retail chief John Browett is leaving the company, too. The Times attributes Browett’s departure (which it calls a firing) to a "number of missteps." Those missteps included "the faulty implementation of a new staffing formula that cut some employee hours too severely," in the words of the Wall Street Journal. Browett had only been at the helm of Apple’s retail operations since April.

Comments closed
    • albundy
    • 7 years ago

    well, he better not screw up my mcburger order, or else i’ll get him fired there too!

    • ronch
    • 7 years ago

    I guess Tim tried out the new map app and ended up in the middle of the dessert.

      • brute
      • 7 years ago

      cake or ice cream??

        • Welch
        • 7 years ago

        Ice Cream Sandwich please 😉

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 7 years ago

    And Apple continues its slow march down the same road once tread by the behemoths of innovation and technical know-how, IBM and Microsoft.

    Meanwhile, Google continues to blow spitballs at them with Search, Android, and Chrome (browser) straws.

    Eventually, all these mistakes (ie., hiring Browett at all given his track record, tasking anyone to make the Apple stores into mini-Best Buy-like customer service, Siri’s reliability, Maps reliability and the excising of Google before they were truly ready, the stale state of iOS’s UI) are going to start falling squarely onto Cook if he doesn’t right the ship soon.

    And broadening their product line, stretching themselves thinner than they’ve been in many years, is contrary to what Steve Jobs said was his secret to making money in making hardware.

    Remember, though. Jobs thought the reason MS failed so spectacularly to do much with their considerable lead with Windows is because when Gates left, he put a “money guy” in charge instead of a product guy.

    Curiously, in a prior interview, he’d also said that the one thing he could say was a complaint against Tim Cook–a guy who’s great at making OEM deals to produce devices–was, “He’s not a product guy.”

    Jobs set Apple up to be run by a guy who’ll never have the imagination to match him. He knew this. Apple will still be struggling to find a vision, ANY vision, for many years to come and in the meantime, they’ll continue to push onward to thinner, more aluminum devices until they stop being chic in any way.

    Then they’ll just be sad. Like IBM and MS.

      • Great_Big_Abyss
      • 7 years ago

      Microsoft never had the ‘cult-like status’ that is currently helping to fuel Apple’s successes.

      • sschaem
      • 7 years ago

      In history Apple is at its Windows 3.1 era . They have another good 15 years of growth and dominance before coming out with a ‘windows8’ to copy some other company growing success.

      • absurdity
      • 7 years ago

      Wait, Microsoft failed? Windows doesn’t hold a considerable lead on the desktop market?

        • brute
        • 7 years ago

        How about the server market?

          • cygnus1
          • 7 years ago

          microsoft has never owned the server market like they do the desktop.

        • Washer
        • 7 years ago

        What’s disturbing is that you were up voted…

        Sure… as long as Microsoft maintains that desktop market lead they’ll be fine. Not like consumer computing is undergoing a paradigm change or anything like that… That must be why Microsoft has decided to force an interface designed for non-desktop computing on their desktop OS.

      • brute
      • 7 years ago

      Jobs-like creativity is only a bong hit away

        • pedro
        • 7 years ago

        I lol’d.

        • indeego
        • 7 years ago

        He went to Reed, so that statement is 100% accurate.

    • adisor19
    • 7 years ago

    I was wondering why Tim Cook was the one that wrote the apology letter instead of Forstall. Now I know.

    As for Browett, good riddance ! He only managed to mess up a good working retail system.

    Adi

      • sweatshopking
      • 7 years ago

      WHY WOULD YOU WONDER THAT? HOW OBSESSED ARE YOU ABOUT THIS COMPANY?!

        • adisor19
        • 7 years ago

        It just looked a little weird that the VP which took stand to present the amazing new version of maps didn’t sign the apology letter.

        Adi

          • sweatshopking
          • 7 years ago

          ok, that makes sense.

    • ronch
    • 7 years ago

    So where to next, Scottie? AMD? Mark’s already there.

      • Great_Big_Abyss
      • 7 years ago

      Why would AMD need a software guy? Maybe CCC can have a leather/paper skin?

        • ronch
        • 7 years ago

        No, they need him to write blogs.

      • CuttinHobo
      • 7 years ago

      I wonder who has more truckloads of money parked in Forstall’s driveway, Microsoft or Google?

      One of those two is going to pay through the nose to pick him up before the weekend.

    • Meadows
    • 7 years ago

    In other news, hurricane horse.

    [url<]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTO_NsYkqOo[/url<]

      • sweatshopking
      • 7 years ago

      was that you?!?!?!

        • Meadows
        • 7 years ago

        Nonsense, sweatshopking!

        I desire a dolphin fursuit, not a horse head.

      • yogibbear
      • 7 years ago

      Why are all the comments in russian?

        • derFunkenstein
        • 7 years ago

        Don’t worry they’re back to the Youtube level of awesome we’ve all come to expect.*

        *someone shoot me

    • anotherengineer
    • 7 years ago

    I wonder how big his severance will be for being hardheaded and getting fired??

      • shaq_mobile
      • 7 years ago

      Well Carly Fiorina only got $20 million. I can’t imagine this fellow getting much more than just a few million. Poor fella.

    • Peldor
    • 7 years ago

    Memo from the desk of Tim Cook

    October 29, 2012

    Re: Your job.

    You’re holding it wrong.

    Sincerely,
    Tim

      • dpaus
      • 7 years ago

      Brilliant!

      • pedro
      • 7 years ago

      Epic comedy here folks.

      • internetsandman
      • 7 years ago

      I realized I hadn’t thrown my +one onto your massive pile. I have fixed this. Excellent joke good sir

    • sweatshopking
    • 7 years ago

    you guys reading all the talk about that guy being the one against unifying iOS and osx? rumors are they want to merge…

      • derFunkenstein
      • 7 years ago

      Johnny Ive is now the Human Interface Overlord, so you can expect iOS to look more like the hardware on which it runs.

        • Game_boy
        • 7 years ago

        Will they stop making UI elements look like paper or leather now?

          • dpaus
          • 7 years ago

          It was Forstall who was into leather. Jobs was into paper (currency, cheques, bonds…)

          • pedro
          • 7 years ago

          We can only hope.

        • sweatshopking
        • 7 years ago

        that doesn’t mean that osx isn’t going to look more iOS like.

          • End User
          • 7 years ago

          You obviously have not used OS X in a long time. Talk about what you know next time.

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            nice!! typical EU post! no substance!

            watch this:

            You obviously have not used iOS in a long time. talk about what you know next time.

            see how it says nothing, but allows me to click “submit reply”? great job!

            • End User
            • 7 years ago

            It is plain as day that you don’t use OS X in any meaningful way. You have no in depth user-centric Mac OS X/OS X knowledge. You proved that by going on about iOS/OS X “unifying” as if it was something new in the first place.

            Are you running OS X 10.8.2 on a Mac that you use on a daily basis? Have you ever owned a recent Mac?

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            I had, until about a month ago, a snow leopard hackintosh, on a Toshiba laptop. I’m aware of the additions to OSX that come from IOS. Even if I didn’t use OSX, it was all over the net for weeks. Quit being silly. We will see how windows 8 does, then either we will see apple moving towards a combined single os, or we won’t.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 7 years ago

          It already does. Have you seen screenshots of Mission Control, Messages, etc?

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            you guys don’t seem to know what merge means…. not borrowing a feature, MERGE.

            • derFunkenstein
            • 7 years ago

            I think you’re misunderstanding what Tim Cook said:

            [url<]http://www.techradar.com/us/news/computing/apple/tim-cook-ios-os-x-convergence-will-continue-1064034[/url<] [quote<]We see that people are in love with a lot of apps and functionality [on the iPhone]. Anywhere where that makes sense, we are going to move that over to Mac[/quote<] So the whole "borrowing a feature" thing is their intent.

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            i’m not saying ANYTHING about what tim said. i’m talking about speculation coming up this morning. like the one i linked…

            • derFunkenstein
            • 7 years ago

            My point was just that you don’t have to merge them (i.e. build them off the same base) to have feature convergence, as they’ve proven the last couple years. They already share the Mach microkernel and basic BSD/Core Foundations gooey innards. One could argue that they’ve been as merged as Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. All that’s missing (and given the software similarities probably wouldn’t be too tough to add) is support for iOS apps on OS X. They already have an iPhone and iPad simulator and ARM emulator built into XCode.

      • End User
      • 7 years ago

      This is news to you? iOS is based on OS X and OS X is already using iOS design elements.

        • sweatshopking
        • 7 years ago

        i’m aware of that. i think the difference is that they’re interested in merging the two. if merge is a tricky word [url<]http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/merge?s=t[/url<] can sort you out 😛 here: [url<]http://www.zdnet.com/why-apples-reorganisation-spells-the-unification-of-ios-and-os-x-7000006595/[/url<] One of many new articles about this.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 7 years ago

          While I can’t get it to load, the headline seems to indicate that the article contains a bunch of guesswork. All the “new articles” seem to point back to ZDNet. I can’t find a single independent thought outside of the article that won’t load for me.

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            it’s totally guesswork.

          • End User
          • 7 years ago

          You and ZDnet are stuck in the Mac OS X past. OS X is another story. The changes that you and ZDNet think will happen now began visually back on July 20, 2011 (OS X 10.7) and took a big leap on February 16, 2012 (OS X 10.8). The groundwork for all of these changes was laid way back on August 28, 2009 with OS X 10.6.

    • chuckula
    • 7 years ago

    Looks like he failed the Emperor for the last time!

      • squeeb
      • 7 years ago

      lol

    • l33t-g4m3r
    • 7 years ago

    Apple was Apple because of Jobs. Without him, have fun.

    I also happen to think Microsoft is the same way, although not to the extent Apple was, after all w8 was a product of Ballmer and Sinofsky, not Gates. Just like watching water circle down the drain, really.

    edit: I’d like to point out linux still has Torvalds, and that’s where the real innovation’s going to be in the immediate future, especially with valve signing on. I don’t know what it is about organizations losing their founders, but once they do, everything seemingly goes to pot.

      • sweatshopking
      • 7 years ago

      losing*

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        I know how you feel, but I will still downthumb these grammar fixes just out of principle.

      • absurdity
      • 7 years ago

      That’s a lot of doom and gloom speculation there.

      • Deanjo
      • 7 years ago

      [quote<]edit: I'd like to point out linux still has Torvalds, and that's where the real innovation's going to be in the immediate future[/quote<] Torvalds doesn't do much for "innovating" for quite a few years he has been simply the spokesperson and reviewing commits made to the kernel. Most of the "innovation" in linux stems from 3rd parties. Heck the whole idea of linux to begin with was to develop a kernel that was unix like.

        • ermo
        • 7 years ago

        Andrew Tanenbaum, who authored a couple of books that most comp. sci. students will be at least vaguely familiar with and Minix which was the educational OS that Torvalds initially wanted to usurp, finally got around to creating his theoretically better micro-kernel based [url=http://www.minix3.org/<]Minix 3[/url<]. EDIT: [url=http://www.osnews.com/story/15960/Introduction-to-MINIX-3/<]Here's a short introduction to how Minix 3 is different from Linux[/url<]. And just like every other UNIX-like OS these days, it has gained comparatively little exposure because Linux has gained so much traction and is mostly pragmatic (rather than academic) in nature and thus grabs all the attention from sponsors who just want to use a UNIX-like OS without having to pay an arm and a leg. And, they get access to the source code at no additional cost. It may be that Linux is not taking advantage of the very latest research or the most advanced techniques, but it works well enough in practice. The interesting question is what will replace Linux when that day comes. I'm betting that it will be similar to Linux in two key aspects: It will offer POSIX compatibility to the same extent as Linux and it will be Open Source because Open Source breaks down all artificial barriers to innovation, even if it creates a few other headaches as a result. And just to keep things vaguely related: iOS and OS X wouldn't be what they are today without the Open Source Mach micro-kernel and the FreeBSD userland.

      • Geistbar
      • 7 years ago

      You seem to have forgotten that Win7 was a product of Ballmer as well. The last MS OS with Gates’ hands in it was Vista. Gates is awesome (especially for his charity work), but he was not so irreplaceable a part of Microsoft.

      Personally, I’d see any company/entity on the size that you’re talking about that derives its success from a single personalty to be one with a not so bright future; it’s placing too many eggs in one basket, and no person can be all competent.

    • tanker27
    • 7 years ago

    Oh Geez. But if they guy flaunted the fact that he was untouchable because of Jobs……well……that dog dont hunt. Time and time again I have seen this same scenario played out. Person B Cozies up to Person A and they have a strong professional relationship to which Person B flaunts it in everyone’s faces. When change happens (and it DOES happen) Person B is the next to go after A.

    I wonder what Federighi is going to bring to the table now.

      • Captain Ned
      • 7 years ago

      And only A can keep all of the subordinates’ knifes sheathed.

    • kvndoom
    • 7 years ago

    Timing is everything I guess… somehow after the disaster that struck last night, I can’t find myself sympathetic to millionaires losing their jobs.

      • internetsandman
      • 7 years ago

      If you’re ever able to feel sympathy towards a millionaire loosing their job, remind yourself what you make and the taxes you pay, and you’ll feel better again

    • lilbuddhaman
    • 7 years ago

    Can’t wait for the movie.

      • asdzxc57
      • 7 years ago

      “The dogs of silicon valley”

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