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3 Years In, a "B" For Tim Cook's Performance at Apple 90

Posted by timothy
from the apple-polishers dept.
Cult of Mac has taken a look at the three years since Tim Cook began his job as Apple's CEO, and rates him a "solid B." Cook might be neither as charismatic or volatile as Steve Jobs was, but he's made some interesting moves and statements. One factor (an area in which Cult of Mac gives Cook an A) is employee happiness, something for which Jobs was not always known: Cook’s highest “grade” on this hypothetical report card may come from Apple employees. Though the lanky 53-year-old is reportedly short on small talk, his people skills have earned him a 93 percent approval rating from a sampling of almost 2,000 people who work at Apple on website Glass Door, where anonymous employees can rate their satisfaction with the overall work environment as well as give thumbs up or down for the CEO.
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3 Years In, a "B" For Tim Cook's Performance at Apple

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 24, 2014 @01:17PM (#47742417)
    Apple Stock is at a record high. He did what he was hired to do.
    • by ffejie (779512)
      Mod parent up. There is quite simply no other relevant measure of a CEO for a publicly traded company. These people are hired by the board, who have a responsibility to the shareholders, who want exactly one thing: long term appreciation of their assets.

      AAPL is at a record high, up 99% since he took over. NASDAQ is up 93%, S&P500 up 77%. He's beating the market with the world's largest market cap. This is extraordinarily difficult.

      I'll give him an A-, because GOOG is beating AAPL, up 137% in the same
      • by Jeremy Erwin (2054) on Sunday August 24, 2014 @02:13PM (#47742623) Journal

        I'm not sure why Apple needs to enhance shareholder value. Apple hasn't raised capital on the markets for years. Apple needs to be profitable, Apple needs to be an attractive platform for developers. Apple needs to be perceived, by its customers, as qualitatively superior to Android and Windows. But enhancing shareholder value should be a side effect of those more important goals, not a goal in itself.

        • by ffejie (779512)
          Apple the corporation exists to enhance shareholder value. All corporations do.

          Apple doesn't design attractive platforms for developers for entertainment, or because they love changing the world. They do it to increase shareholder value. Being perceived, by its customers, as qualitatively superior to Android and Windows, is a means to the end of increasing shareholder value.
          • by ultranova (717540)

            Apple the corporation exists to enhance shareholder value. All corporations do.

            You do realize that every legal entity that counts as a person under the law is a corporation, right? This includes such non-profit entities as cities and towns.

            Apple doesn't design attractive platforms for developers for entertainment, or because they love changing the world. They do it to increase shareholder value.

            That's probably the biggest threat facing Apple in the post-Jobs era. There seems to be a rather ironic trend th

    • by lucm (889690)

      The stock has been a roller-coaster ride over the last 3 years. The real good thing that he did was the deal with IBM to at last set foot in the enterprise. For a very long time a lot of people have been using iPhones at the office but most of the time it was in BYOD organizations. If the Apple-IBM thing can move forward (and if Apple can get a grip on reality, price-wise) it could be a new era for Apple.

      Enterprise customers can't be dazzled by marketing or fashion trends like the typical Apple crowd. And w

      • Dont get your hopes up for an Enterprise Apple. They have always dipped their toe, but they have never stepped into the water.
    • Apple Stock is at a record high. He did what he was hired to do

      I too own stocks of corporations and also am major stock owner of several companies

      Stock price for me is not a be all and end all - for me, the future of the company is much more important than the _current_ stock price

      For this, Tim Cook has failed, and has failed miserably

    • by rtb61 (674572)

      Cough, cough stock buybacks do not count for shit https://www.apple.com/pr/libra... [apple.com]. All you are doing is using existing profits to reduce the number of shares, so reducing capital to artificially inflate share price. This is normally done when executives have no idea what to do with failing numbers mounting and still want a bonus.

      Apple is a marketing company and eventually inevitably the marketing goes stale and the consumer fad fails and then it is forced to compete on product qualities and price which

  • Though the lanky 53-year-0ld is reportedly short on small talk, his people skills have earned him a 93 percent approval rating ...

    "Th0u9h the 14nky 53-ye4r-01d is rep0rted1y sh0rt 0n sm411 t41k, his pe0p1e ski11s h4ve e4rned him 4 g3 percent 4ppr0val r4tin9."

    Probably still some room for improvement, but it's a start!

  • by pecosdave (536896) on Sunday August 24, 2014 @01:58PM (#47742575) Homepage Journal

    I use Apple products, but I'm by no means a fanboy, as my signature suggest (fanboys should NEVER have mod-points). I support Apple products at work, use a 27" iMac at work (which I rather like, and I've put TotalTerminal and other utils on to make it more Linux-like and comfortable for me), and I've got a work iPad 2, all of which I like.

    I'm actually a Linux/Android guy.

    Why I like Apple better under cook:

    Less lawsuits. They're slowly settling/arbitrating old ones and filing less new ones. I developed a deep hatred of Apple under Jobs due to his temper-tantrums and deep ingrained need to shit in everyone else's punch bowls.

    I'm seeing less new intenentional handicaps of their own products, and some of the old ones are getting less rigid (iOS is becoming slightly less user-hostile).

    They've finally declared hardware the source of their profits and allowed free upgrades to the OS. (I refuse to use the nomenclature of "Free Operating System" that's been used here on Slashdot too damned many time to describe Mavericks since it's still tied to a mandatory purchase to run it)

    What Apple still needs to work on:

    Drop all user hostility - make so people can release source code for iOS apps they write. Stop attempting to strong-arm exclusivity out of the iOS platform.

    ADOPT FRIGGIN NORMAL CABLES FOR YOUR IOS DEVICES
    USB-C connectors are on their way, go with those. All the advantages of your Lightning cables but not "just ours".

    Give me an editable path bar I can enable (it can be off by default) like every other OS. As a tech moving around yoru file system is more of a pain than it's worth. Don't spout anything at me about using muCommander or something, I'm a tech, I support other peoples stuff and I don't want to install crap or run utilities that have to be imported somehow every time I sit at a different system.

    Drop the artificial restrictions on OS updates "when it was manufactured" isn't a good yard-stick for install eligibility and everyone knows it. Those Mac Pros that are six months too old to run Mavericks are more than capable of doing so and everyone knows it, it just makes you look like a bunch of pricks by barring install.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Oddly enough I have a similar attitude to Apple products, I have them but Unixify them to make them more useful to me.

      Not sure we're both looking at the same Apple.

      >> Lawsuits

      The Samsung one was big enough for a while. Don't see it dying down though...

      >> I'm seeing less new intenentional handicaps of their own products, and some of the old ones are getting less rigid (iOS is becoming slightly less user-hostile).

      Well I was looking for a new Mac Pro to replace my elderly but functional Mac Pro. I

      • a new Mac Pro. I like the CPU options, memory is a bit miserly but I can up that, ah! Hard disk options, external Thunderbolt, dodgy USB 3 or errr.... nothing. Also the internal hard disk was limited to a 256GB SSD. What the fuck is that good for? I want lots of disk all in the same place so I can do lots of database and video work. I don't want to drop another £600 to £1,000 enclosure to get going.

        I don't get this. You can daisy chain external hard drives and external monitors to your hearts content. Not sure what you mean by £600 hard drive enclosures, but I think you're doing it wrong.

    • by DigiShaman (671371) on Sunday August 24, 2014 @02:52PM (#47742807) Homepage

      ADOPT FRIGGIN NORMAL CABLES FOR YOUR IOS DEVICES
      USB-C connectors are on their way, go with those. All the advantages of your Lightning cables but not "just ours".

      A multi-billion dollar company. You know, Apple could chuck the community a bone here and open up their lightning cable specs free from royalties. I prefer that design over USB-C.

      • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

        You know, Apple could chuck the community a bone here and open up their lightning cable specs free from royalties.

        It would never catch on because it doesn't support what existing Micro USB connectors do, and what other manufacturers already use. For example, there is no way to do uncompressed 1080p video over it, and phones were doing that three or four years ago so are not likely to drop back now. The cost of the Apple video solution is prohibitive as well, when an MHL adapter is â5.

        Lightning doesn't seem to support USB peripherals either. Not sure if it is an inherent limitation of the design or just that Apple

        • by tlhIngan (30335)

          It would never catch on because it doesn't support what existing Micro USB connectors do, and what other manufacturers already use. For example, there is no way to do uncompressed 1080p video over it, and phones were doing that three or four years ago so are not likely to drop back now. The cost of the Apple video solution is prohibitive as well, when an MHL adapter is Ã5.

          Lightning doesn't seem to support USB peripherals either. Not sure if it is an inherent limitation of the design or just that Apple

    • by Noah Haders (3621429) on Sunday August 24, 2014 @02:59PM (#47742833)

      ADOPT FRIGGIN NORMAL CABLES FOR YOUR IOS DEVICES USB-C connectors are on their way, go with those. All the advantages of your Lightning cables but not "just ours".

      The industry wouldn't bother with USB-c if apple hadn't made lightning. Otherwise regular USB would be "good enough" like it has been for the past decade. Aside from apple the entire electronics industry is about commodity components and a "good enough" attitude about everything.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by LordLucless (582312)

        Yeah, because USB hadn't already gone through three generations of improvements and refinements before Apple's messianic connector forced the industry to start improving again.

      • by pecosdave (536896)

        Otherwise regular USB would be "good enough" like it has been for the past decade.

        I don't know how you can look at a Mini USB 3.0 and say that. It's nearly as wide as the old style Apple connector, no USB really did need a Thunderbolt or better treatment, and I hope they stick with it for a while.

    • " All the advantages of your Lightning cables"
      Except for being actually available.

      " As a tech moving around yoru file system is more of a pain than it's worth"

      "open /path/to/show/in/Finder" from a shell. Or just use the shell and skip the Finder.

      "Drop the artificial restrictions on OS updates "when it was manufactured" isn't a good yard-stick for install eligibility and everyone knows it. "

      a) If they let you install then people will complain that Apple is deliberately showing their machine down to try to fo

      • by pecosdave (536896)

        The thing about these UNIX based system in the modern era - system requirements can actually go down between releases. Draw lines where they need to be, with real specs, not age. I'm running a five year old system at home more powerful than a lot of new stuff, it just takes a little more electricity to run that quad core 64bit Athlon 64 with 8 GB of RAM than if I were to build it today. Apples hardware in the Mac Pro line of the same era had the same type of power my home built system does. Age of hardw

    • Drop the artificial restrictions on OS updates "when it was manufactured" isn't a good yard-stick for install eligibility and everyone knows it. Those Mac Pros that are six months too old to run Mavericks are more than capable of doing so and everyone knows it, it just makes you look like a bunch of pricks by barring install.

      I don't know about MBPros too old to run Mavericks. I do have a MacBook that runs Mavericks. In fact, I have one of the (very) short run of Aluminum MacBooks that was created in late 2008. Pretty much the oldest MacBooks that runs Mavericks. And the OS is slow as all heck. The system limps by, but I really need to get new hardware to make much use of it.

      I can't imagine a hardware version older than that that's capable but Apple won't allow. Likely more pain than it's worth unless you're running only t

    • by l0ungeb0y (442022)

      Give me an editable path bar I can enable

      Command+Tab > Tab to Finder / Command + SHIFT + G

      • by pecosdave (536896)

        I know about this, and I use it, it's how I bring up /etc. Still, a royal pain in comparison to say, Windows 95 B.

        • I know about this, and I use it, it's how I bring up /etc. Still, a royal pain in comparison to say, Windows 95 B.

          That's about the only thing where W95 is better - and barely at that.

    • by garote (682822)

      Actually, "those Mac Pros" do not contain a 64-bit EFI. The choice was not arbitrary. Apple decided not to deal with the complication of driving a 32-bit EFI with an exclusively 64-bit kernel.

      Now, you could still perhaps make the case that since Apple has very deep pockets, they could just throw more engineering time at the problem and do that support anyway. In fact, one dedicated hacker out there managed to create a replacement EFI interface for Mavericks that simply translates most of the vital 64-bit

  • Innovation (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Citizen of Earth (569446) on Sunday August 24, 2014 @03:04PM (#47742855)
    How many years in until Cook finally produces an innovative product? For the past three years, it's been all about belatedly adopting Android features. This fall, it will be the bigger screens Android phones have already had for years.
    • by viperidaenz (2515578) on Sunday August 24, 2014 @03:16PM (#47742939)

      He's about to release the iPhone Galaxy next month.

    • I wonder if any of the "innovations" from the last three years were his anyway. I would presume that Jobs would have 3-5 years of projects and products in the pipeline, and maybe more if he knew he would be leaving the company soon. So are we still working out of Jobs' notebook, or has Cook started actually calling the shots creatively?
    • Man, I have no idea what you want from that company.

      Take for example the laptops. Under Big Steve's tenure - which everybody is using as an assumed judgement against Cook - Apple laptops got lighter, much faster, acquired new ports, higher resolution screens, more comfortable sizing, way better battery life, magnetic hinges, laser-drilled microphone ports and power lights, tiny built-in webcams, and a huge raft of software innovation like automatic backups, global search, and ... "widgets".

      But they were st

  • It bugs me that we're using words like "hip" and "cool" to describe programming languages. That anyone would choose to learn (or use) a language on the basis of it being "hip" is dumb. I'm looking at you, Ruby.
  • by heteromonomer (698504) on Sunday August 24, 2014 @04:08PM (#47743237)
    Seriously, that single purchase would have made Apple maps superior to everything Google Maps offered till then, and way better than any GPS even today. Couldn't spare some change eh apple? As an iPhone user I constantly find myself using Google Maps. Apple maps on its best day can't hold a candle to where Google Maps was three years ago. And now after buying Waze and integrating it only half-way, Google Maps is already miles ahead. Buying Beats instead of something everybody would use every day. Yeah, smart move, Apple.
    • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

      Buying Waze would not have helped because Waze uses Google data for maps, so presumably would have had to switch to using TomTom/Bing like Apple Maps did. TomTom's data is crap and Bing's search results are average at best, which is why Apple Maps also sucks.

      Google's StreetView programme wasn't just about invading everyone's privacy, it was about getting more data on roads than mapping provided at the time. Their systems can read things like street signs, understand road markings, spot where a particular ho

  • A CEO that gets it.

    Tim Cook realizes he's not Steve Jobs. Steve Jobs is perhaps one of three people in the world who can be an asshole and yet get results done (the other two - Linus Torvalds and Theo De Raadt). Say what you want, but they're all assholes, except mysteriously, they get results.

    Everyone else who've tried, failed miserably.

    And I'm sure Cook realizes it too - he's no Jobs and being an asshole would destroy the company (most who try fail, hence why there's only three people in the world who cou

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