Apple’s WWDC Keynote yesterday left one impression on me above all others: the executive team seems much more comfortable and in sync under CEO Tim Cook now than they ever have before. Rarely has a keynote or event gone as smoothly as the one Apple delivered yesterday, and rarely has the ensemble cast approach (where different execs present different features and announcements) worked as well in terms of providing moments of unforced levity and in terms of pacing.
Others have noted that Craig Federighi, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering and the man in charge of iOS and OS X, somewhat stole the spotlight at the keynote this year, blending with with the presentation of some of the biggest news to come out of the show around iOS and OS X. Federighi definitely stands out as a star of the show, but the fact is that everyone delivered in a way that was engaging and comfortable, which hasn’t always been the case.
This was the first event Apple has held since it shuffled things around at the top of its corporate structure late last year, with position changes that saw Scott Forstall and John Browett leave the company, alongside new roles for Jony Ive, Eddy Cue, Federighi, and Bob Mansfield. Federighi inherited Forstall’s former role in addition to heading up development of Apple’s desktop operating system.
Apple overtly talked about a new level of interaction between its industrial product and software design teams, but there was even further evidence of that on display not only in the new iOS and OS X software the company unveiled, but also in the pacing and delivery of the announcements. I’d even go so far as to suggest that this is the most together the management team has seemed since Cook took over the lead role at the company from Apple. Whatever the case, there’s definitely an energy in the air that leave you feeling like there’s plenty more innovation on the way from this newly reconfigured, and potentially more close-knit Apple executive squad.