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Tim Cook: Executive change-up at Apple has been great; Jony Ive has been 'really key' to iOS 7 design

Tim Cook Executive changeup at Apple has been great

In October 2012, Apple casually announced via press release a blockbuster shakeup at the executive level. Scott Forstall, who was arguably the face of iOS, was shown the door as Jony Ive, Bob Mansfield, Eddy Cue and Craig Federighi all assumed additional responsibilities within the company.

The reported difficulties of working with Forstall notwithstanding, the expressed purpose of the executive shakeup was to tightly integrate Apple's hardware, software and services to an even greater degree.

Seven months later, at the annual All Things D conference, Tim Cook explained to Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher that so far things under the new hierarchy have been going great. "Really, really great," to be exact.

Last fall, we changed things up a bit. We did it to enhance collaboration. The key, for us, to have a killer product -- it's to have incredible hardware, incredible software and incredible services. And then you combine them in a way that you can't tell what's what any more. The real magic occurs at the intersection of that. It's what Apple has always been about. This change just amped it up even more.

Following that, Kara Swisher asked Cook about Forstall, inquiring as to whether or not the man tapped by Steve Jobs to spearhead the original development of Apple's mobile OS was a collaborative team player.

Ever the corporate diplomat, Cook craftily sidestepped the question:

I don't want to talk about anyone in particular except for those who are there. The whole concept was to tighten the groups even more, so we could spend more time finding magic in intersections. Seven months later, give or take, I think it has been an incredibly great change. Craig is running both iOS and OS X. This has been fantastic. Eddy Cue is focused on services. These changes have been great -- really, really great.

Cook also confirmed that Ive has been lending his aesthetic sensibilities to the next iteration of iOS. While Cook refused to comment on rumors that iOS 7 might see a dramatic UI overhaul, he did note that Ive has been "really key" to its development.

Lastly, Cook confirmed that we'll be able to get a full look at the future of both iOS and OS X at this year's WWDC which is scheduled to kick off on Monday, June 10.

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