Apple is in the process of boosting its ranks of senior-level executives with experience cloud technologies and Web-based software development, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal. Citing unnamed “people familiar with the matter,” the financial newspaper said that Apple is working on hiring a broad base of such executives at the director level and above.
Apple in the Cloud
These efforts have included turning to headhunting firms and recruiters, something Apple has been known to do only recently. For instance, Apple tapped Egon Zehnder International, an international recruiter, to help find a replacement for retail star Ron Johnson, who left Apple to take over as CEO of retail stalwart J.C. Penney’s earlier this year.
Apple also reportedly approached an unspecified “prominent” Internet entrepreneur for a position within the company, though the details of that position weren’t disclosed.
If The Journal’s sources are accurate, the holistic point is that Apple remains serious about its iCloud service and is working on developing further human resources to improve and/or expand its cloud offerings.
That might stand in contrast to Apple’s prior history with online services, which have jumped inconsistently in fits and starts. From the free iTools to Mac.com to MobileMe, Apple rolled out online services with the kind of fanfare that only Steve Jobs could pull off, only to see those same services seemingly stagnate as Mr. Jobs lost interest in them.
When MobileMe launched with problems, for example, Mr. Jobs effectively broke up the development team and eventually started up the much broader iCloud effort rather than digging in and making MobileMe all that it could have been.
If Apple were to follow form when it comes to iCloud, after a rough start with iTunes Match, interface issues with Versions, user-control concerns over Photo Stream, and other bumps in the iCloud road, we might expect to see the service enter an almost immediate maintenance mode.
A continued effort to bring on more cloud experts at the executive level after all the major iCloud services have been launched suggests that Apple won’t follow form this time around, and that it is serious about transforming the way users sync their data and content between Apple devices.