Apple’s VP of Services unlikely to ‘take on the plight of publishers’

By

Keynote pic
Peter Stern at Monday's event.
Screenshot: Apple

Monday’s “show time” keynote introduced plenty of new faces to Apple fans when it came to presenters. One of them, Peter Stern, is the VP of Services in charge of the company’s Apple+ and Apple News+ services.

Having joined Apple in 2016, he’s a relatively new arrival. However, he’s someone we’re likely to see a lot more of — as a new profile makes clear.

According to DigiDay, Stern was recruited by Apple to try and rebuild its relationship with entertainment companies and publishers. While there is still a way to go (see the recent comments from The New York Times), Stern has apparently made positive inroads.

“I’d list him as one of my favorite partnership contacts,” Cheddar CEO and founder Jon Steinberg is quoted as saying. “Smart, direct, fast, delivers on what he promises.”

Fighting the fight for Apple

However, he is also cast as someone who is unlikely to be attempting to help rescue the news industry. The article quotes a source as saying that, “He’s a company man. Peter is not the type to take on the plight of the publishers.”

Gautam Mishra, the CEO of Inkl, a premium news subscription service, notes that: “He’s not trying to solve the long-term problems facing journalism. His view on this is that Apple has a firm view of how it wants to do things and what’s in the best interest of its customers. That takes primacy over things like sustainability, cannibalization.”

It’s no big shocker to hear that someone who works for Apple is prioritizing Apple over other companies. Apple isn’t a benevolent force looking to prop up an industry without helping itself. However, given how Apple is working to fight fake news and promote journalism it’s an interesting observation to make.

If the report is accurate, it will be intriguing to see how this plays into Apple’s work with a growing number of media partners going forward.