Analyst says Apple will decline in post-Steve Jobs era
Colony says that the problems coming down the road for Apple will stem from Cook's lack of charisma and the analyst sees the company slipping from being a "great" firm to one that will be merely "good," with a decline in product innovation and revenue. The analyst, citing sociologist Max Weber, said that "Charismatic organizations are run by people with 'the gift of grace," but when those leaders depart and are replaced by a more bureaucratic leader, the change can be jarring to an organization. Colony notes that not only does Apple itself need a "magical leader" to replace the "magical leader" who is gone, but that Apple's customers also demand the same thing. With that in mind, the analyst believes that Apple executives Jon Ive and Scott Forstall both better posses the qualities that were found in Steve Jobs than Tim Cook does, and either would have been a better choice to replace Jobs as the tech titan's CEO.
We can predict what the analyst expects Apple to be like once the decline has set in. Colony compares Apple post Jobs to Polaroid after the departure of inventor and founder Edward Land. That company ended up bankrupt and its name sold to another company. He also looks at Disney in the 20 years after Walt's death. The company became as bland as white rice with its G-rated movies not making any dent at the box office. It wasn't until another charismatic leader, Michael Eisner, took over that Disney prospered again with cutting edge movies. Another example Colony gave was Apple itself, following Jobs removal by the board in 1985. The stock dropped as low as $12 and under John Sculley, the company was on the verge of bankruptcy. It took the return of Steve Jobs to turn things around. The analyst sees Apple coasting and then decelerating.
source: Forrester via CNN
1. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 626; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
I agree with this prediction: it's the fact that Apple was NOT a succesful company, but a charisma-driven religious following that constituted paradigm which will eventually be filled with competition.
Meanwhile, Apple will slowly but surely fall, and it will become clear that nor the quality nor design nor logistics are responisble for their success, but the cult dimension of shizophrenic intrusion of messianic character like Steve Jobs.
5. Mark.J.Linskiy (unregistered)
He's back.. Lol.
26. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
Based on? Did he use too many big boy words for you? Did the absence the word "magical" throw you off? He gave a very precise and well put together stance. You responded with 3 words. Pretty clear who the idiot, excuse me iDiot, is here.
27. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 4487; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
AppleConspiracy comment + taco50 reply = Made My Day! :D
I can imagine taco50 reaction when he (or she) had read AppleConspiracy comment. LOL! :D
40. denney (Posts: 98; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)
I actually gotta give Taco some credit. AppleConspiracy's post is actually inaccurate. Apple's design, logistics, and quality are all major determining factors in its current success. We like the idea that there is something more at work here, but in reality, while some people buy Apple products just so they can say they have them, the majority of Apple users are just repeatedly satisfied with their experience, and thus, return.
45. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
Fair enough, I guess if the only meat you've ever eaten was rotten Spam and have never tried filet mignon how would you know you're eating crap.
52. denney (Posts: 98; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)
yep, analogies are cool.
feel free to let me know if you come up with any reason a moderate user (talk, text, email, web, games) like myself and the majority of the population NEEDS anything more than the iPhone.
50. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 626; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
The numbers that witness customer satifaction of Apple's products are unreal: as much as 95+ percent of Apple users are extremely satisfied with their products. That means only a small number of users who are dissatisfied are a very narrow deviation that can be understood as a exclusion from the rule. This is impossible without it being a sort of religion, no matter how much quality they give. Many other companies in different fields have same quality or logistics as Apple, however they can't get near Apple's success in that matter. The reasons can be given only by psyshoanalysis: if the object of your desire is constructed, that means everything that represents that object is allways satisfying because the rules are made from this object, not from some external reference point. For instance, when first iPhone was introduced, its lack of MMS, delivery reports and other "rules" of mobile communication was never a true problem, because Apple never complied to external refrence. It was the reference itself, and therefore it had allways great customer satisfaction. Only after that the World introduced "a posteriori" rationalizations, to justifiy those interventions they have just dicarded "old rules", just to put Apple in unique position.
Businessmen never truly understood this phenomena, because they are not educated in culture, psychology and phlosophy, so they invented the reason for Apple's success where they could understand it.
Frankly, the reasons are complex and time-dependent, but most of them are just not properly understood mechanisms of cultural dynamics. It means that for success you must be in the right moment in the right place to achieve what Steve Jobs and Apple achieved. It cannot be copied and repeated, but that doesn't mean its beyond our comprehension nor that it is reducible to industrial economics.
70. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 4487; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
Agree, brand name fashion!
+1 for you!
73. Jonathan41 (Posts: 524; Member since: 22 Mar 2012)
The problem lies with the fact that most of these iOS users aren't like us on PA and don't look to see what else is on the market. I spec don't really matter, most people want the iPhone because it is an iPhone. There are phones on the market right now that are better than the 4S. Furthermore the 5 is probably going to have sales numbers disproportionate to the actually margin of improvement that Apple has made to the device in comparison to other high-end phones on the market. Most people don't buy iPhone for specs. They return to apple because of the belief (pop. media is mostly the cause) thats having an iPhone says something positive about there character. We see it all the time: "I have an iPhone so I have money" " I have an iPhone so I'm cool and belong to the elite culture" "I got an iPhone because I'm still young". This is defiantly the not all the iPhone uses but, it's the arguable the majority. iPhone's success is greatly depended on ad, media and commodity fetishism.
7. shadowcell (Posts: 300; Member since: 28 Mar 2012)
Clearly this is just backlash just because you think Tim Cook can't cut it compared to Steve Jobs even though Jobs most likely laid down a 10-year outline for Cook to follow before his passing.
The innovation was not just by one man alone rather than a whole company in-sync in which today is worth more money than the US treasury itself.
By your logic, if all company's mascots (like Andy the robot) were replaced they would eventually fail?
8. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)
Ignoring the morons post I too wonder how Apple will fare. Steve Jobs was a genius and without his influence it will be interesting to see how Apple fares.
12. shadowcell (Posts: 300; Member since: 28 Mar 2012)
Well I think everyone is entitled to their own opinion but I kind of like to see hard facts and not just speculation about the future of a company with 60k employees.
I'm always pro-competition so I hope to see every company live up to its potential.
33. RevKBA (Posts: 11; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)
"By your logic, if all company's mascots (like Andy the robot) were replaced they would eventually fail?"
That would only apply if the bulk of a company's success is derived from a spokesman or figurehead as the OP suggested is/was the case with Apple.
There is evidence that supports that claim. After Jobs left/was forced out of the company in 1985, the company suffered. It wasn't until he came back that the company redirected itself into a positive direction and climbed to where it is today. Steve Jobs became a person that everyone thought of when they considered Apple.
Android is a company that people don't associate with a person. To most, it's Android/Google and that's it. So, in that regard, no. If Andy Rubin were replaced, the public perception of Android probably wouldn't be much affected, either in a negative or positive way.
72. shadowcell (Posts: 300; Member since: 28 Mar 2012)
Too many variables at hand to simply say what happened nearly 27 years ago can be valid evidence that Apple can or will lose it's potential.
The market is different, consumer demand is different and Apple owns a vast variety of technology patents, software and even has a major role in the music industry.
Any individual can see what Steve Jobs has done for the company but I don't think a $100+ billion dollar multinational corporation has the leisure of just planning only months ahead while the executives sit back in lawn chairs drinking mai tais.
I think it's naive to believe one analyst can judge the fate of this company and it's humorous to think any individual on their own could. Apple works in tandem and though Jobs may have passed away, his visionary business model still exists.
76. RevKBA (Posts: 11; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)
You're right, however, there's a difference between decline and total failure. It certainly is naive to think any analyst can predict anything that will actually happen to any company. It's also naive to think that the loss of Steve Jobs will have virtually no impact on Apple as a company.
Above Jobs' technological mind was his marketing genius. While Apple's technology is some of the world's best, Apple's marketing is the biggest push in putting the company at the forefront. Apple no longer has that. Tim Cook, while he may be a fine CEO and a brilliant technological mind in his own right, doesn't have the charisma or overly forward thinking marketing mind that Jobs had. The article states that Apple will go from "great" to "good," not "great" to "panicking while spiraling into bankruptcy."
I actually think you're underestimating Jobs' ability as a CEO to say that Apple while be almost unaffected by his death.
77. shadowcell (Posts: 300; Member since: 28 Mar 2012)
No I do believe they will have a troubling road ahead, possibly a drop in revenue, but the talks of bankruptcy won't be in discussion for at least another 10 years. This...analyst just wants his five minutes of fame and because he's CEO of a research company his word is golden.
Any individual could come up with that irrational prediction but I'd like to see what the future holds for Apple and allow them to secure it.
Jobs hasn't brought anything spectacular to the iPod department since 2010, hopefully this year will change.
39. ardent1 (Posts: 1863; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)
There is an obvious flaw with Mr. Colony's prediction. The original Steve Jobs lost a power struggle with the board and left Apple. The new and improved Steve Jobs returned after Apple already had its near-death visit.
To be correct, Mr. Colony had to predict the post Steve Jobs after his second tenure, something that didn't happen at Sony or Polaroid or Disney. It is a deeply flawed analogy.
The new and improved Steve Jobs made accountability a job requirement at the VP and up. VP's and up can no longer explain away their failures. It's a mean pressure cooker at Apple.
43. Pdubb (Posts: 223; Member since: 08 Aug 2011)
Except he did explain like Disney made a come back with Michael Eisner. Just because it already has happened does not mean it cannot happen again. I think Apple will be just fine because the tech industry is reaching a plateau. All the companies will have the same tech available and innovation will stop for a moment in a few years. The next big thing could come from Apple or MS or Samsung or even RIM. Time will tell.
67. mercorp (Posts: 915; Member since: 28 Jan 2012)
When the time comes,android will rule.And samsung will buy out apple and jump to ios directly.
74. good2great (Posts: 952; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
why dont you guys just get over it...
apple created a phone that does all the basic necessities (talk, text, camera, music, web)
THEY NAILED IT
and to top it off the phone is very attractive.
android makes great phones as well dont get me wrong...
its like choosing walmart or best buy to purchase electronics...
walmart has a lot more variety of other things than JUST electronics and the prices are more affordable (android)
best buy doesnt give much choice ONLY electronics but at an expensive price (apple)
thats the truth!
why try to justify apples success by calling it a religious cult?
its all strategy they have a great strategy to reach people...
6. jaytai0106 (Posts: 490; Member since: 30 Mar 2011)
I think this will happen sooner or later. Any company that does well and climb to the top has to come down at some point. But Apple will be fine as a company since they have a hugh fan base and sitting on top of a large money stash. I am an android fan and still wants to see Apple to be around. Android needs Apple to push itself to be better.
17. jamrockjones (Posts: 345; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)
Agreed. Apple won't go anywhere but you can only stay on time for so long. The iPhone is more than just a phone, it's a trend. And just like every other trend, they eventually die and go to something else.
36. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)
How is the iPhone just a trend? You act as though it's a Giga Pet or something. You don't make the kind of impact that iPhone or iPad did and say it's just a trend, especially when they have use in the classroom and in business. You may want it to be that, but it's not.
And the company doesn't exactly have to die. If that's the case, why is Ford and GM still here after almost a century? Are people loyal to those companies sheep? Should we actually be buying Honda's instead?
The one thing you don't get is that Apple is going to make what the general public will buy. Not you. You're a nerd. I'm a nerd. We want very different things than what the general public wants. That's mostly why you're angry with Apple. They don't make products for you specifically. But companies that cater to nerds usually fall because we are such a niche market. The smartest thing that companies started doing with Android was stop spouting off specs and finally start telling people what they can do with their phones.
Apple will be just fine because they aren't focused on you.
10. threed61 (Posts: 107; Member since: 27 May 2011)
Some falloff in sales will occur naturally simply because the 'cool' will wear off. Apple is gaining rapidly in enterprise, and this should help them for years to come.
11. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)
They're also making a lot of inroads in education which means kids will grow up using Apple products.
21. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 4721; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
They were making inroads in education back before Steve was ousted from Apple. A lot of good that did them. The challenge for Apple is to find the next big thing and position themselves to lead in the market. The person to watch is Ive - if he leaves Apple, it will be time to sell.
28. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
What an ignorant thing to say. Apple doesn't give a f*ck about educating children. They DO give a f*ck about brainwashing them from a young age to believe apple are the greatest and only products in the world. I cannot tell you how many little sh*ts I see freaking out when they see any idevice in a store and throwing a fit until their failure parents buy it for them. Apple has the best marketing team on the planet, I give them that. And that's exactly what they are doing: MARKETING TO KIDS. Cut the f*cking bullsh*t, ok?
If apple really wanted to help our schools they would donate money for books, teachers, renovations, lunches and school supplies for kids whose parents can't afford it, etc etc etc etc etc. Our (the US) educational system isn't in the sh*tter because kids don't have i f*cking pads, people.
32. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
My comment was of course @ taco, not you Doug.
44. denney (Posts: 98; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)
Would anyone else prefer an omission of swearing altogether as opposed to this self-editing nonsense?
46. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
Yeah, prudes and old women. People swear, especially if it's something they feel passionately about, get over it. Omit my profanity and my point still stands.
55. denney (Posts: 98; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)
I don't care if you swear, it just looks ridiculous when you replace vowels with asterisks.
56. denney (Posts: 98; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)
.... also, why are you so concerned with Apple marketing to children? I don't see you undercutting Nintendo.
58. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
Don't much care for nintendo either, and they have nothing to do with phones or this conversation.
59. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)
He's a fandroid and blindly hates anything Apple. There's no reasoning with him.
61. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
Are you stupid or something? I have given SEVERAL reasons why I hate apple, I won't list them again to enlighten a fool. There is nothing "blind" about my hate for apple. I can make a case and back up why I feel that way. Clearly you either lack the vocabulary, social skills, grammar, or intelligence to do so and just call people 'idiots' or 'stupid'.
Try presenting a platform or argument and do a good job of it, and if you convince me well then I guess I can be reasoned with huh? But you cannot and you will not, so enjoy being you, such as it is. They say ignorance is bliss, so you must be ecstatic most of the time.
64. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)
You can remain locked into your blind DROID rage. Apple continues to be wildly successful because they make GREAT products that people LOVE. They also are working together with educators to make kids futures better.
You'll have to figure out a way to deal with it.
13. mobilefuture (Posts: 206; Member since: 12 Nov 2011)
probably apple is mysteriously working on a new idevice thats gonna be in competition to the galaxy note and that upcoming htc phablet. You know since its got an awesome tablet and phone. And just for the record, im a nokia c3 user. :p
14. ananya22 (Posts: 92; Member since: 23 Apr 2012)
I don't think that would happen. they are a company which has different principles and have followers who think similarily. take for example ios which has a basic, never changi nyng experience which is loved by apple users while we android users complain for lack of.functionality whereas the apple buyer prefers the ui smoothness thats why they buy it. which will always remain the case. so neither apple nor android is going anywhere and nor is any one of them gonna take over anothers market. thay are based on diff believes amd as long as all humans are diff. apple will do well. i personally want them to do well as competition is only.good for the consumer and.i.am.one
15. roscuthiii (Posts: 1602; Member since: 18 Jul 2010)
I don't think decline necessarily equals fall and/or fail. They may just go from a great company to a good company. It's unavoidable fact of nature that what goes up must come down, what goes around comes around, & as above, so below. (Take whichever metaphor you like.) Apple needs their stock to teeter up and down. The stock market is rooted in ups and downs. Right now, AAPL is an inflating bubble that may look good but is destined to pop or stagnate. They also haven't hit market saturation yet for the masses of consumers to tire of their products. Once market saturation happens, that's when you might see some bigger issues at Apple if they continue to stay the course. You'd think people would have learned lesson by now about 'bubbles' and the effects of said bubbles popping.
I also think that in the long run, it's entirely possible that Tim may even be better than Steve at the helm being much more rational, more pragmatic.
But yes, there are already so many ways it's become evident that the RDF is wavering.
18. egbtmagus (Posts: 11; Member since: 12 Apr 2012)
Steve Jobs is not the man behind the iPhone, that's what all analysts fail to see. He was just the man who green lit such a crazy idea as entering a market that they had never had any experience with.
As long as Jonathan Ive (the real man behind the iPhone) is around they will continue to release good designed product.
Now if their management fails to listen that's another problem altogether.
20. HugeTroller (banned) (Posts: 80; Member since: 27 Apr 2012)
yeah yeah ya ya true true, if so then I'm Barack Obama by now.
57. denney (Posts: 98; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)
I know your UID should probably tip me off, but I have no idea what the hell this means.
22. theruleslawyer (Posts: 108; Member since: 23 Apr 2012)
I don't think it is about a Steve Jobs cult, but the fact is that Apple is a publicly traded company. Jobs had the political clout with investors to stay true to his vision and resist the inevitable pressure from investors to do it their way. I'm not so sure that the new CEO will be able to resist this. Apples vision will become clouded and lose the the thing that made them great. Apple will be around for a long time, but I foresee a lot more "me too" products from Apple in 5 years rather than driving innovation.
24. annymu5 (Posts: 15; Member since: 01 Feb 2012)
I can see what the guy is saying but Apple will only get better as time goes on. Not just apple all companies. Technology is constantly getting better. Apple has the money to hire the greatest minds in the world.
30. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
.....and yet the only thing they have been able to do the last 6 years is make the ipod bigger and smaller, add 1 feature to differentiate, and suddenly they now sell ipads, iphones, appletv (LMAO at that), etc. Like it or not, that's the truth. Innovation my ass, slapping a shiny apple silhoutte and a touchscreen on everything =/= innovation.
29. wizzardtech (Posts: 59; Member since: 12 Mar 2012)
there is only one STEVE JOBS in this world. STEVE AND TIM have different ideas, principle and spirit and that cannot be change. for now, they wont noticed it but
10 yrs from now and they will see the difference. its like CUBA without CASTRO
31. tedkord (Posts: 3409; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)
Well, since nothing is forever, and Steve Jobs is dead, then it's a safe bet that Apple will decline post Jobs. The question is will it be in 2 years, or 20 years?
34. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
"Colony says that the problems coming down the road for Apple will stem from Cook's lack of charisma"
Uh...what? I see what he's saying, but that would imply steve hjobs was a charismatic individual, when in fact 99.9% of the people who actually knew/worked/interacted with him will say he was the biggest iDouchebag in the whole world and had to refrain from punching him in the goddam throat. Steve bjobs was a horrible, horrible person and if he was the "best" apple had for a face, maybe they are f*cked.
But I believe Spencer Pratt, Nick Leche, or Perez Hilton are probably looking for work and they are all despicable human beings. If apple hired any one of them as their face I'm sure they'd fit right in and apple would bounce right on back.
35. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)
You ok there? Take a deep breath.
37. Mandroid (Posts: 209; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
Shut up. You have nothing of value to contribute to this discussion, society, the economy, or the gene pool.
I am just fine, thanks. How's your fanatacism and mild retardation treating you?
38. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)
Why are you so angry? It's unhealthy for you to have this type of an emotional response to a tech company.
I have nothing of value to contribute to society because I'm an Apple fan? Sounds like you're the one with issues.