Disney CEO reveals why he left Apple’s board

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With Apple TV+ ready to compete against Disney+, Bob Iger resigns from the Apple board.
With Apple TV+ ready to compete against Disney+, Bob Iger resigned from the Apple board.
Photo: Josh Hallett/Flickr CC

Disney CEO Bob Iger finally spoke about his recent resignation from Apple’s board of directors in an interview with Mad Money host Jim Cramer.

Iger resigned from Apple’s board earlier this month. As many people speculated, Iger says he felt it was time for him to step aside because of Apple TV+.

“The reason I got off the board as they got more and more into creating television shows and movies, it became more clear to me our paths were conflicting rather than converging,” Iger said on CNBC. “I just thought it was the right thing to do.”

Apple and Disney will launch competing streaming services in November. Disney+ will include access to Disney’s vault of classic movies and TV shows. Its lucrative catalog also includes new shows from Marvel, the Star Wars galaxy and more.

Meanwhile, Cupertino continues to slowly build up its own original content for Apple TV+. The company keeps rolling out teasers and trailers for shows like Dickinson and For All Mankind. It even spammed the Emmy Awards broadcast with ads for Apple TV+ shows.

Apple plans to launch with just a handful of shows and movies, all for the low price of $4.99.

Why Bob Iger left the Apple board

Iger said that even though the streaming business will be small for Apple, it’s meaningful for Disney. Staying on the Apple board “wasn’t right,” he concluded.

In a recently published excerpt from his new book, Iger talks about his relationship with Steve Jobs. The two became friends when Disney bought Pixar when Iger became CEO in 2007. Iger said he thinks Apple and Disney could have merged, or at least seriously discussed it, if Jobs were still alive.

Even though he’s readying to face off against Apple in the streaming wars, Iger still had nothing but praise for Apple CEO Tim Cook during the interview.

“Tim has done a great job,” Iger said. “No matter what direction you look, I think you’d conclude that the company is one of the great companies of the world.”