Yep, That’s Really Apple CEO Tim Cook On Twitter

Yes, Apple CEO Tim Cook has started tweeting. The account, which we at TechCrunch (and everyone else following Twitter’s magical recommendations service @MagicRecs) spotted this afternoon, is now confirmed by Twitter. Initially, it did not have the standard blue “verification” check mark, which is why there could have been some doubt — high-profile individuals often see fake accounts spring up claiming to be the person in question.

But Tim Cook’s account appeared to be the real deal, especially since Apple’s SVP of worldwide marketing Philip Schiller, who does have a verified account on Twitter, retweeted him.

Cook identified himself on the service as “CEO Apple,” a “Fan of Auburn football and Duke basketball,” and being from “Cupertino.” At the time of writing, Cook’s account has more than 30,000 followers. The account was originally created in July 2013.

As to Cook’s first tweet? It’s just a mention that he was greeting customers at Apple’s Palo Alto retail stores today, which had been reported earlier by a number of news outlets. (Schiller and SVP Eddie Cue were there as well, giving further credence to the tweet’s veracity, ahead of the official confirmation.)

Of course, news of Cook’s newfound fondness for Twitter comes as the company is launching a series of new iPhones, with the candy-colored iPhone 5c models aiming at affordability, and the faster, fingerprint ID-laden iPhone 5s models, including the popular “golden” iPhone, attracting Apple’s more high-end customers.

Apple has historically held a close relationship with Twitter over the years, too. It went with Twitter as the main third-party authentication and sharing service in iOS 5, and didn’t get around to integrating Facebook until iOS 6. Now, in iOS 7, the integration between the two companies continues. Apple’s assistant Siri can search Twitter for tweets about people or topics. Its web browser, Safari, incorporates something called “Shared Links” to highlight news that’s making the rounds on Twitter’s network, and the Music app will display songs trending on Twitter through the Twitter #music station on iOS 7′s iTunes Radio.

Cook’s Twitter account isn’t the only new account to come out of Apple this week: It also launched the Twitter account @iTunes to accompany iOS 7’s launch, and its latest tweet is even showing up as “Promoted” (i.e. a Twitter ad).