Apple AR glasses launch could mark end of Tim Cook era

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2018 interview with Tim Cook suggests Apple was working on iCloud backup encryption
Tim Cook wants to stick around for one more big Apple product hitting the market.
Photo: Apple

Tim Cook has been Apple CEO for 10 years and he’s considering his exit strategy. But it won’t be soon because the executive will wait until the launch of “one more major new product category,” according to a new report.

Mark Gurman from Bloomberg says, “The belief inside Apple is that Cook just wants to stick around for one more major new product category, which is likely to be augmented reality glasses rather than a car — something that’s even further out.”

Next big thing: Apple AR glasses

There’ve been unconfirmed reports for years about Apple’s efforts to make AR glasses. These would allow the wearer to do almost everything they do now with an iPhone, but through a heads-up display held in front of their eyes. Information would be overlaid onto the real world, not replace it.

A release date for these is seemingly anyone’s guess. Rumors point to Apple’s AR glasses being just around the corner… or maybe they won’t debut until 2025.

The Apple car project is no secret. But developing reliable self-driving technology is proving more challenging than many had thought a few years ago.

Tim Cook has run Apple for a decade

Cook took over as CEO from Steve Jobs almost exactly 10 years ago. He’s 60 years old, and has been at Apple for 23 years.

His tenure brought very successful new products like Apple Watch and AirPods. And some more marginal ones, like HomePod. If he sticks around for the launch of Apple’s AR glasses then he could still be in place another five years or more. But he has himself has said he probably won‘t be at Apple for another decade. “Ten more years is a long time,” said Cook in an interview this spring.

There’s quite a bit of speculation about who could take over but no real answers. Cook hasn’t even hinted at a successor. It could be Craig Federighi, the head of software development. Or Greg Joswiak, the head of marketing. Or perhaps Deirdre O’Brien, who is charge of Apple HR and retail.

As Gurman points out on his Bloomberg article, many Apple top executives are nearly the same age as Cook. And he’s not leaving for years. That raises questions about whether someone nearing retirement age wants to take over one of the world’s largest companies.