The death of Steve Jobs, announced tonight by Apple, was expected but still comes as a shock. There are very few business people who are truly irreplaceable but Mr Jobs was undoubtedly so.
Like many other people, I heard the news via his products – in my case through Twitter on an iPod Touch — and am writing this on a MacBook Air. Mr Jobs’ original vision of a world of personal computers came truer than even he imagined. Read more
Steve Jobs. Image by Getty.
There will be plenty of time for analysis of what now happens at Apple and whether the company can retain is extraordinary leadership of the world of technology, but my first reaction to the resignation of Steve Jobs as its chief executive is sadness.
Mr Jobs, at the age of only 56, stands as one of the great business leaders – arguably the greatest – of the postwar era. For the past 30 years, he has not only led the wave of technological change emanating from Silicon Valley – the personal computer, the internet, the tablet – but stamped his aesthetic on the world.
He has combined the iconoclasm and creativity of the rebel entrepreneur with the ability to assemble a world-beating manufacturing, design and marketing team around him. In the past few years, Apple has been not only unbeatable but hardly even matchable. Its competitors have fallen by the wayside in frustration. Read more
Steve Jobs’ apology to customers who have bought an iPhone 4, and offer to supply a free case to alleviate any reception problems, was the right response but the way in which he delivered the message reduced the impact of his climbdown.
Mr Jobs looked exasperated by the fuss over the iPhone 4 losing reception when it is held in a certain way, and his body language and manner gave the impression that he was being forced into something that he did not really believe in. Read more