Apple announced a big management shakeup today in what almost seems like a Hurricane Sandy news dump. A press release titled “Apple Announces Changes to Increase Collaboration Across Hardware, Software & Services” reveals in its third sentence that Senior Vice President for iOS Scott Forstall is leaving the company and way down in the penultimate paragraph says that Senior Vice President for Retail John Browett is also leaving.*
The idea is to replace Browett with someone else, though Apple hasn’t decided who. But Forstall’s responsibilities are going to be parceled out among the other senior executives.
Jony Ive, Bob Mansfield, Eddy Cue, and Craig Federighi are all grabbing new responsibilities. Ive is going to be in charge of user interface design as well as industrial design. Cue is going to add Siri and Maps to his portfolio and now be in charge of all online services. Mansfield “will lead a new group, Technologies, which combines all of Apple’s wireless teams across the company in one organization, fostering innovation in this area at an even higher level.” And Federighi will be in charge of both iOS and OSX as a consolidated operating systems portfolio.
The upshot is that, somewhat ironically, Apple is now in some respects a more centralized firm than it was with Steve Jobs at the helm.
* John Browett’s name was misspelled in an earlier version of this post.