Scott Forstall was recently relieved of his post as Senior Vice President of iOS software at Apple, and will now serve in an advisory role until his eventual departure from the Cupertino in early 2013. While exact details as to why Forstall has been deemed surplus to requirements have yet to be properly revealed, it’s widely believed he had a fiery personality which didn’t sit well with some of his colleagues, and after allegedly refusing to apologize for the dire Maps app of iOS 6, it’s thought Apple felt it better to remove Forstall from the executive team.
Jony Ive is said to be taking over many of Forstall’s responsibilities, along with Eddy Cue and others, but while the general consensus seems to be that Apple will be better off with other staff filling the void left by the former iOS helmsman, one former Apple engineer feels the fruit company is making a big mistake parting ways with a guy he feels “was the best approximation of Steve Jobs that Apple had left.” Michael Lopp, now a director at Palantir once senior engineer at Apple, also added that in his many years working for Apple, the Caffe Macs gossip chain indicated Forstall was "the only legit successor to Jobs."
It’s a bit of a turn up for the books, really. The tech world was consistently been led to believe Jony Ive was the closest Apple would get to a live Jobs incarnation mainly thanks to the similar ideas and the close relationship of the pair when the former CEO was still alive, but if the utterances of Lopp are indeed true, it would go quite away to explaining why perhaps Ive and Forstall did not get on.
Could it be that both wanted to take the position as Apple’s most influential member? Ive seems, from reports, hell-bent on removing all remnants of Forstall from Apple, starting with the skeuomorphic designs within the Cupertino company’s mobile software.
While Forstall may have had a fiery temper, so did Jobs, and nobody could say the mannerisms of the late, great Apple co-founder were not to the company’s benefit. I personally think Apple will do okay with Ive and Cue taking on a heavier role, but there’s a lot to be said for a headstrong, "no, we’ll do it my way" attitude; in fact, it’s the kind of mentality that has got Apple to where it is today.