Apple shuffles executive team: iOS chief, retail boss out

Apple shuffles executive team: iOS chief, retail boss out

Summary: Apple vice-president for iPhone and iPad software is leaving the Cupertino giant, along with retail vice-president John Browett who heads up the firm's Apple Stores worldwide.

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Scott Forstall, Apple senior vice-president for iOS software, will leave the company as part of a reshuffle of the company's executive management.

He will not leave immediately and will stay on and serve as an advisor to Apple chief executive Tim Cook in the interim the Cupertino, CA.-based technology giant said in a statement. Forstall will formally leave the company next year.

Forstall joined Apple in 1997, pegging his tenure at more than 15 years. He was responsible for iOS, the Apple-built mobile operating system that features in the iPhone, the iPad and the iPod touch. He recently came under direct fire by Apple product owners and the media after the Maps application was released with iOS 6 in September unfinished and full of bugs. 

Retail head John Browett will also leave the company, the firm added. Browett led the firm's push into China, a key market for the technology giant, but will leave a void in the firm's retail space. The retail team will report directly to Cook in the interim.

It comes only two years after his predecessor Ron Johnson left the company to join J.C. Penney. He almost infamously claimed in 2010 that there would be at least 25 stores in China by this year. At this time, there are six Apple retail stores in mainland China and a further two stores in Chinese-owned Hong Kong.

Along with the changes, Apple said vice-presidents Jony Ive, Bob Mansfield, Eddy Cue and Craig Federighi will add more responsibilities to their portfolio.

To wit:

  • Sir Jonathan Ive, Apple senior vice president of Industrial Design, will add "leadership and direction" for the human interface unit across the company, while retaining his ordinary duties as head of hardware design.
  • Eddy Cue, Apple senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, will now be responsible for Siri and Maps -- two of the 'failed' (at least by Apple's standard) products previously under Forstall's command -- and will also be in charge of the iTunes Store, the App Store, the iBookStore and iCloud.
  • Craig Federighi, Apple senior vice president of Mac Software Engineering, will lead the iOS software team effort -- along with being responsible for Mac OS X software.
  • Bob Mansfield, Apple senior vice president, will lead a new group only a few weeks after he announced he wouldn't in fact retire at the end of this year. Mansfield will now focus on Apple's Technologies team, including wireless teams, innovation, and include the semiconductor teams -- a chip-making focus that Apple has recently brought in-house.

Topics: Apple, iOS, iPhone, iPad, IT Priorities, IT Employment, Tech Industry

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15 comments
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  • Apple maps fiasco claims it's first victim? Maybe, maybe not.

    Could just be the result of ios not addressing its horrible security, shoddy reliability, stagnated ux, and general smacking upside the head by MS much more productive, fluid, integrated UX.
    Johnny Vegas
    • Yet even with those shotcomings

      It's still more desirable than Windows Mobile? And even Window Phone 8? What does that say about Microsoft's misguided attempts at mobile?
      Troll Hunter J
      • Of course

        Windows Mobile? Who would want a system that was discontinued in 2010 ;)
        paul2011
  • Probably they end up at google

    n/t
    Ram U
    • But Google already has its own high-profile and highly visible bosses

      For their mobile and non-mobile software efforts.
      DDERSSS
      • Siri is "fail"? Zack is strange with this statement, since there is nothing

        to say about Siri that would indicate that is is failure. On the contrary, it was the main sales force for iPhone 4S for like half of the year.
        DDERSSS
  • These seem like smart moves

    I'm not sure Win8 will take the world by storm but has given people to think about when in comes to UX.

    I don't Ives blowing it up but I do see him looking at the strengths of Win8 and bringing them into iOS in a way that keeps its simplicity.

    I'll just be happy to see less leather decorating the apps.
    _NonZealot
  • Yep!

    Rats jumping ship!
    slickjim
  • Without Steve Jobs to cover his back, Scott's continued tenure was iffy

    No matter how good you are, if the rest of the team can't get along with you or consider's you a classic A**Hole, your corporate days are numbered unless your "Number One". Scott wasn't.

    Still, it is a bit surprising that he would get the ax.
    kenosha77a
    • Iam surprised at

      I am surprised Scott is leaving but i am also surprised it took apple so long to fire John Browett. This guy is good at running a dollar mart where they don't care about customer satisfaction, but only profits
      Ben_rockwood
      • I agree with your Browett opinion

        What seems clear now is that Tim Cook rules with an iron fist. The new Apple Mantra should be - don't make the Boss make a national apology.
        kenosha77a
  • Chinese-owned Hong Kong??????

    Hong Kong always was part of China just as seattle is part of the US, not owned by the US. For a period of time it was leased and governed/controlled by GB.
    Bradish@...
    • not the Island

      Hong Kong Island was permanently succeeded to the British in 1842. Only the surrounding territories were leased. The British voluntarily returned the island at the conclusion of the lease.
      flyingburgers
      • Kowloon peninsula too

        The Kowloon peninsula was also ceded, twenty years later, to the Brits. Also returned at lease end.
        sparent
  • Apple Crumbles

    n/t
    agrajag