March 16, 2023

Tim Cook AR Headset and His Legacy

Tim Bradshaw, Patrick McGee, on Financial Times:

After seven years in development — twice as long as the iPhone — the tech giant is widely expected to unveil a headset featuring both virtual and augmented reality as soon as June.

But Apple’s famed industrial design team had cautioned patience, wanting to delay until a more lightweight version of AR glasses became technically feasible. Most in the tech industry expect that to take several more years.

John Gruber already wrote about this, and I absolutely agree with his gist:

But more importantly, the FTs reporting makes it sound as though this decision was solely between the industrial design team and Jeff Williams’s operations team. That’s not how Apple works.

The narrative that certain areas of Apple don’t have as much power as they did before misses the point. I believe Tim Cook has tried to keep a balance between functions. It used to be that with Steve Jobs would out-weight everyone, so you needed a powerful counterweight in Johnny Ive and others, even Tim Cook.

But now, weight is more distributed between groups, leading to more varied opinions and winners when deciding a course of action.


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