New York Times profile of Tim Cook hints at iWatch plans

"Aw shucks, me?"

“Aw shucks, me?”

The New York Times featured a fascinating profile of Tim Cook on Sunday, describing his leadership style at Apple — including his role in product development, his efforts to grow the Apple brand, and his “quiet” approach to design. The profile also features a couple of neat insights that may have bearing on Apple’s eagerly-awaited iWatch development.

With regards to the iWatch, Cook is said to be “less involved” with the engineering of the device, and has delegated much of the hands-on work to other executives like Jony Ive. Cook, however, is interested in the “broader implications” of a smartwatch, and particularly in the efforts to let it “monitor heart rate and other vital measures, thus improving health and limiting doctor visits.”

While Apple unsurprisingly didn’t go on the record about the iWatch for the article, employees who spoke with the authors seem to confirm recent reports that the device will launch in Q4 this year.

With regards to Apple’s pressure to deliver another breakthrough product like the iPhone, Jony Ive is quoted as saying Cook has “not neglected” the company’s primary mission for “innovation.” He suggests that it has been difficult for Apple and Cook to “be patient” when it comes to launching a new product line. “People felt exactly the same way when we were working on the iPhone,” Ive says.

As with many of Apple’s recent publicity outings, the company’s focus on environmentalism and charity are highlighted in the article.

There is also focus on Apple’s various personnel hires, including new retail boss Angela Ahrendts and “special projects” lead Paul Deneve, formerly CEO at Yves Saint Laurent. U2 singer Bono — long associated with Apple thanks to his friendship with Steve Jobs — says that Cook is amassing a “creative brain trust.”

Titled “Tim Cook, Making Apple His Own,” the profile makes interesting recommended reading for anyone eager to know how Apple is changing under its current CEO, who finally seems to be making it his own here in 2014.

  • CelestialTerrestrial

    He’s just as much a BS artist as the next CEO. I see Cook as more of a Politician CEO than a Visionary CEO. Personally, I think he’s screwing up in a lot of ways.k Buying Beats was a mistake. Letting Dre have a job with Apple, another mistake.

    • Cody Throndson

      Explain please on your points. Obviously the tech and real world communities liked that Apple bought Beats. So tell me, and the Internet, why it was a mistake to buy Beats and how Tim Cook is ‘screwing up”.

      • Michael Smith

        Because Beats are substandard overpriced headphones and as a brand it is all image and no substance, being shilled by a mediocre rapper to an urban culture that will buy anything branded by a “star” regardless of its quality.

        Apple so far has built up its brand loyalty with quality hardware and software, its doesn’t need a BS artist on its payroll.

        The tech community liked it, because they see the value in the Beats streaming music rights and Jimmy Iovine.
        What does Dr. Dre bring to the table?

      • thomas

        Maybe Apple has the intention to improve beats’ quality and substance.

        Btw beats gained respect in the urban culture because of the designs on their products. Not because it was branded by a star.
        There have been countless other stars who have tried branding their own headphones too and failed miserably. So your hypotheses fails there.

      • Petar Živanić

        I think not many moons will pass before they kick Dre out and keep only Jimmy Iovine. I mean, why in the world would Apple need Dre? They may need the headphones or Beats brand and top people, and they do need streaming business, Iovine and his connections, but they definitely don’t need Dre, because he brings nothing to the table. So he’ll be there a while, and then the creative differences will come up and he’ll quietly leave.

      • Cody Throndson

        Not true, the Beats headphones are made for rap (and I dare say electro) styles of music. Simply, bass heavy songs. I’ve owned a pair of Studio’s for almost two years now and they are perfect for those two genres of music.

        “Mediocre rapper”. Really? A man who has sold millions of albums and tutored the most ground breaking rapper in rap history? You’re really gonna make the point of Dre being a “mediocre rapper” Give me a break.

        Apple has built of loyalty, but Apple needs something to keep them “hip”. Dr.Dre (clearly) brings that. Beats has marketed themselves really well and are known around the world because they’ve used famous people (such as Dre himself) to market these headphones. Apple has used stars to market some of their biggest products (the iPhone for example), so to take Beats under their wing will only expand their market share.

        And on the last point you made, I think it’s clear that I’ve proven what Dr. Dre brings to the table.

  • mahadragon

    “With regards to the iWatch, Cook is said to be “less involved” with the engineering of the device, and has delegated much of the hands-on work to other executives like Jony Ive.”

    Why would Cook be involved with the engineering of the iWatch? It’s well known fact Cook is the supply-chain guy. Jony designs it and Cook builds it. Jony is in charge of hardware and software design. What room is there left for Cook? Cook is the operations guy.

  • lucascott

    That profile is trash.not a single authoritative source including Time Cook himself. They just cobbled together a pile of stuff pulled out of various folks butts.

    Makes CoM look like Pulitzer winning work

  • Merckel

    When it comes to reporting about Apple, the NYT is pure click bait that gives trashy a bad name.

  • firesign3000

    Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t see what the big deal is over these watches. I think Apple is doing the right thing by watching and waiting before releasing one. I think they’re a fad that was dead out of the box.

  • sickntired44

    Apple has lived off of others technology for years and even with hoards of dystopic followers they will remain an also ran when pertaining to technology.

About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

(sorry, you need Javascript to see this e-mail address)| Read more posts by .

Posted in News, Top stories | Tagged: , , |