Thursday, September 6, 2018 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Inside the World of Eddy Cue, Apple’s Services Chief

Mitchel Broussard:

As he looked into Cue’s history with Apple, The Information’s Aaron Tilley interviewed more than two dozen people who have worked with Cue.

[…]

According to former employees, Cue “seemed to lack much interest in [Siri]” from “the moment he gained responsibility.”

[…]

The profile also looks at Apple’s entry into streaming music, following former CEO Steve Jobs’ derision of the idea of renting music. Apple reportedly “fought tooth and nail” to keep Spotify out of the United States following its debut in Europe, with Jobs going so far as to privately threaten Universal Music by stating Apple would remove its content from iTunes if it worked with Spotify in the U.S.

Aaron Tilley (tweet):

During meetings, Mr. Cue is sometimes known to fall silent, shut his eyes and tilt his head back, leaving other participants to wonder whether he is staring at the ceiling or sleeping, said several former Apple employees and one outside partner present on multiple occasions when it happened over the past few years. In at least two of these situations, Mr. Cue began snoring, one source said.

A lot of Apple’s problem areas are (or were) Cue’s responsibility. But I don’t blame him that much because I think he was given an impossible job, too many disparate things to manage, many of which didn’t seem to be in his wheelhouse.

An interesting detail is that Cue is said to have a “hands-off leadership style” and doesn’t like to “mediate between warring factions.” That sounds a lot like his boss, Tim Cook, contra Jobs and Forstall.

Previously: What Went Wrong With Siri, Apple Services, Apple’s MobileMess, iCloud’s First Six Months.

Update (2018-09-08): See also: John Gruber.

7 Comments

I don't blame Cue, but I do blame Cook for assigning something like Siri that was so crucial to him when he was already swamped.

"But I don’t blame him that much", "I don't blame Cue"

From what I've seen in the past on Twitter, former Apple employees don't seem to like him.

Actually, I blame Cue for everything that's wrong with Apple. I even blame him for the Touch Bar and the keyboard issues, even though he probably didn't have anything to do with that.

Eddy owns "Services" because Apple's first service was the iTunes Music Store, which was amateurishly bolted onto iTunes, which was owned by–guess who. When Apple decided to do an App Store, they just created a new kind of music track in the music store and had it end apps instead of song files. That is why, to this day, you can't upgrade an app: there's no such thing as replacing one song with another. In-app purchases are the equivalent of additional tracks in an album you already own.

Everything that makes iTunes a terrible, steaming pile is Eddy's fault. About half of what makes the App Store suck is his fault too; the rest is Phil Shiller's, who owned app review from day one. (The fake "re-org" with Phil getting more involved was total bullshit.)

Eddy cares more about partying with celebrities, hanging out courtside at NBA games, and racing his Ferraris than he does about technology. His retirement is a decade overdue.

I still think streaming music is wrong.

`Eddy cares more about partying with celebrities, hanging out courtside at NBA games, and racing his Ferraris than he does about technology. His retirement is a decade overdue.`

that is my question as well, we don't see these report when Steve were alive.

Cue is my guess for least competent top Apple exec, but that might just be my bias against corporate executives who go by names like "Eddy".

Nothing will change if Apple is printing money. Seriously, their bank will grown, people will keep buying their products, until taste changes and then it will be too late. But that could be a decade or more. So it's either stop buying Apple stuff or get used to it. Apple answers to shareholders. If you aren't one, you don't have a voice.

Questionable hardware designs, inconsistent software quality, bad leadership, even still, companies can coast for a long time. Especially companies with large piles of cash and single sourced customers.

I don't know what to say, noted yet another Apple is rotten at it's core story, but I don't see changes afoot. Shoulder shrug I guess.

Ps I remember when the mobs rose up to cast Scott Forstall out, while his taste in design was silly, not sure usability or reliability improved even one iota once the coup was over. Arguably, things look worse. Be careful what you wish for because maybe the problem lies elsewhere.

Stay up-to-date by subscribing to the Comments RSS Feed for this post.

Leave a Comment