Apple Is Already Dying, And This Process Has a Name

Why Apple’s slow and painful downfall is Steve Jobs’s own fault

Alan Trapulionis


No, Tim Cook is not the enemy. Photo by iphonedigital via flickr (Creative Commons)

If Steve Jobs saw the Apple of today, he would be disappointed.

“He believed that once-great companies often declined after they became monopolies, innovation slowed, and the products they made became an afterthought. Eventually, they put salespeople in charge and prioritized how much they sold instead of what they sold.” (Tripp Mickle, “After Steve”)

Well, Apple today is a monopoly. Its innovation has slowed. The products they’re making do seem like an afterthought. And yet, they’re selling more white boxes than ever.

Apple revenues in billions, image via Canva

The current narrative is to blame Tim Cook, the “replacement” CEO.

In ten short years, Cook put Apple on steroids and turned its rockstar design studio into a trillion-dollar manufactory that prioritizes profits over products. The “salesperson in charge” who would lead Apple into inevitable decline seems to be the very person Jobs trusted to continue his legacy.

At the same time, the core talent that made Apple Apple seems to have left. Jobs is gone, and now they’ve lost Jony Ive, who left the company “after years of frustration, seeing the company migrate from a design-centric entity to one that was more utilitarian.”

(Ive was basically the design brain behind iMacs, iPods, Macbooks, iPhone and iPad all these years.)

Jony Ive in 2006. Wikimedia Commons image

It’s easy to believe this narrative.

Under Cook, Apple barely innovated:

  • The “infinity pool” iPhone X design was envisioned by Ive before the first iPhone was ever created
  • The new iPhones barely offer anything new, focusing more and more on proven features like camera and battery life
  • The Apple Music was solely built to mimic Spotify, and failed miserably