As tributes to Apple founder Steve Jobs continue to flow, a pattern is emerging showing the two traits that helped the leader drive his company to become the largest business in the world: inspiration, and innovation.
Although Jobs resigned as CEO in August, following a leave of absence stretching back to January, he remained a member of the board of directors, and with his passing it will be up to his successor, Tim Cook, along with little-known design chief, Jonathan Ive, to show that the company can still inspire and innovate with the best.
Shares in Apple have remained steady since Jobs’ passing, a testament to the excellent job he did over the last five years grooming chief operating officer Tim Cook for the role of CEO.
However, responses to the iPhone 4S released just a few days ago were lukewarm; although the device has some cool features, it isn’t the iPhone 5 which many were expecting. This is perhaps more a reflection of the failure of Apple’s marketing team to keep expectations in check than of the design team to deliver a worthy product.
In the short term future, iCloud and iOS 5 are due out next week, and Apple’s latest earnings report will come the week after, on October 18. It is the next six months, though, that will determine whether Cook and Ive, both of whom have been with the company since the late 90s, have enough leadership and design expertise to fill the shoes of an icon.