Apple under Tim Cook saw increase in product delay times: report

In the past six years under CEO Tim Cook, Apple has added a bevy of new products and accessories that line its stores around the world.

But a Wall Street Journal analysis published Friday found something else which has grown in Apple under Cook: delay times for new products.

Under Cook, Apple has had three major new products released: Apple Watch, the wireless-earphone AirPods and the upcoming HomePod smart home speaker. All three products’ releases were delayed.

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Apple promised to release the Apple Watch in early 2015 but was delayed until April with lengthy delivery times.

AirPods, which were announced to be released in October 2016, were released two months later with repeated back orders plaguing the delivery dates a year afterward.

“The early response to AirPods has been incredible,” said Apple in a statement in October 2016. “We don’t believe in shipping a product before it’s ready, and we need a little more time before AirPods are ready for our customers.”

The HomePod was supposed to be released in December for the holiday season but was pushed back to “early 2018.” Apple has yet to announce a release date.

“We can’t wait for people to experience HomePod, Apple’s breakthrough wireless speaker for the home,” said an Apple spokesperson in a statement in November. “But we need a little more time before it’s ready for our customers.”

It was not just the major products. Apple also announced delays with the Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard accessories for the iPad Pro. Of the 70-odd products launched under Cook’s watch, five were delayed three months or more after their promised dates and nine between one and three months, according to the Wall Street Journal.

In total, Apple under Cook since 2011 has seen an average of 23 days in delays, compared to only 11 days under his predecessor, Steve Jobs, according to the Wall Street Journal.

One possible reason may be that Cook announces products earlier than Jobs, who tended to wait until the product was fully ready to ship, according to former employees who spoke to the Journal.

But Jobs’ patience wasn’t etched in stone; for major products like the iPhone and Apple TV, Jobs pulled the trigger early and announced the products before they were ready to ship, according to the Journal.

Former Apple employees also point to possible other reasons, such as Apple’s product portfolio growing exponentially under Cook, announcing new models of the same products nearly every year with different sizes and features. In addition, Apple’s global growth and growing sophistication in its technology may have added to the delay.

Despite the speculation, Apple is still enjoying massive growth and financial success. In its latest quarterly earnings in November, Apple said it expected its biggest quarter yet, thanks to the introduction of the iPhone X, at between $84 billion and $87 billion in revenue.

Cook has enjoyed personal financial success by steering Apple toward possibly becoming the first trillion-dollar company in Silicon Valley. Cook received a 47 percent pay raise in his fiscal 2017 salary to $12.8 million, according to Apple’s filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission last month.

Photo: Apple CEO Tim Cook watches as members of the media check out the new MacBook Pro at a press event held at the company’s headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016. (Dan Honda/Bay Area News Group)


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  • Philip Daniels

    $12.8 million salary …