Jobs' vision, strategy will continue to guide Apple

Impact of late Apple co-founder on technology industry "hard to measure" and company should have "at least another year of success" in smartphone market, says analyst. Competitors and users mourn loss.

Apple co-founder Steve Jobs was responsible for several reinventions in the technology industry, and his vision and strategy will serve as good foundation for the company in the years ahead, said an analyst.

In a statement Thursday following the death of Jobs, Jan Dawson, chief telecoms analyst at Ovum, described the face of Cupertino as "an iconic figure" whose impact on the technology industry and the world at large were hard to measure.

"In just the last four years, he has reinvented the smartphone and the tablet computer. And previously, he had also changed the music industry dramatically with the introduction of the iPod and iTunes," said Dawson. "His death will be felt deeply at Apple, the company he founded and recently led for fourteen years, but also throughout the industry."

In August, when Jobs passed the CEO rein to former COO Tim Cook, analysts told ZDNet Asia that Apple stood in good stead because of the company's talented executives and well planned product roadmap.

Dawson echoed similar sentiments, noting that the iPhone 4S launch on Wednesday was a reminder of Jobs' vision and strategy during his time as CEO.

The company's mobile platform iOS, iCloud and related content-sharing services, Siri voice assistant and the "high specification hardware" would be the foundation to "serve Apple well in the years to come", he said, adding that there was little danger Apple would deviate from the successful strategy.

However, there might be a risk if the company continued to reply on "single hero devices" in its two major product lines with an annual release, he cautioned.

"If one of those devices ever turns out to be a dud, it will put a huge dent in the company's revenues and margins," said the Ovum analyst. "However, yesterday's launch [of the iPhone 4S] should pave the way for at least another year of success in the smartphone business, and future releases are likely to continue that pattern."

Industry players mourn for Jobs
When news of Jobs' passing broke, representatives from various tech players including Apple's rivals expressed their condolences.

In a statement to ZDNet Asia, Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing, said: "Today, the world lost one of its greatest innovators and visionaries with the passing of Steve Jobs. His achievements are unmatched in our time. We admired his spirit, his creativity and his passion. He not only changed the technology industry, he changed the world and made it better."

Yang also paid tribute to Jobs' inventiveness, saying: "Steve led this industry like a beacon for the past decade While we will all feel this enormous loss, I am confident that this industry will take to heart the lessons Steve taught us about innovation

"As a competitor, he helped ensure all of us pushed even harder, and I am confident his legacy will continue to energize the industry for many years to come," he added.

In his statement, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gate said he would miss Jobs "immensively".

Apple users mourn loss
Long-time Apple user, Jeanne Wong, quipped: "I will miss his bitchiness for sure."

Wong has been using the company's products since young as her family, which is in the printing industry, uses Apple's desktop computers. She added that she would miss Jobs' eccentricity, his "quirky" working style and his time as Apple's CEO when "he pushed creativity to great heights".

Lawyer James Teo shared his eulogy on Facebook: "Dear Steve, thank you for inspiring us to never give up despite failures and setbacks, and for reminding us of the fragility of life and the importance of chasing after what we love while alive. Your creative genius lives on in the legacy of the amazing products that we have all come to embrace and love."

Twitter user @arienvalo told ZDNet Asia that Jobs changed "our generation with iPods and such". "[He] saved us from awkward moments and lonely hours."

Singapore-based designer Max Yam called Jobs "an artist", and related that when he saw the iPad for the first time, his thought was: "This is what a laptop should be."

Yam said the simplicity and focus of Apple products had also influenced his own works. "Before this, technology was complicated, like Microsoft's products," he noted.

Peggy, a consultant from the PR industry, said she would miss Jobs because he was "the one person in the tech industry who was passionate about understanding what people wanted".

"He then gave that to them in the simplest form that provided endless possibilities. In short, he actually listened, and he has my utmost respect for that. He will be dearly missed," she added.

Tech convert Miko shared the note she sent to Apple: "I am one of those people who've experienced Steve's brilliance. He put up a good fight and a life well-lived with his inventions and innovations. He's truly an inspiration to everyone. Steve will be immensely missed."